A CIA Book Review

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A CIA Book Review

James Bond with a Union Flag backdrop.


18 April 1962

SUBJECT: School for Spies

1. Attached herewith is a copy of School for Spies by J. Bernard Hutton1.

2. Hutton has written two earlier books, Frogman Extraordinary, which purports to be the "inside story" of the British frogman Lionel Crabb; and Danger From Moscow. The latter is based on the device of a "secret instruction". Both of these books are classical mixtures of fabrication and previously published facts. A review of these books in Studies In Intelligence (Vol. 5, No, 3, Summer 1961, at page A35) points out that they may be "a pecuniary speculation by an exile fabrication mill, or they may be something more sophisticated, a product of Moscow's cold warriors; a case can be made for either view."

Approved For Release 2009/01/05 : CIA-RDP80B01676R0031001 10004-4


4. Specialists in SR Division have read the book and consider it to be largely spurious. It does not comport with CIA information on RIS training, and it is their opinion that the book should be labeled "fiction". There may be some truth in the knowledge that Hutton gained before World War II in his Moscow schooling, but by and large no credence whatsoever should be placed in the book.

Walter Pforzheimer

But tell us what you really think:


The attached book, "School for Spies" by J. Bernard Hutton, is very interesting reading, notwithstanding an opinion that he is unreliable, as indicated in the attached SECRET/ statement.

Stanley Grogan

Ah. A book lover, Col Grogan.

The Literary Corner Archive

Dmitri Gheorgheni

10.12.18 Front Page

Back Issue Page

1aka Josef Heisler, a Berlin-educated Czech journalist who had worked in Moscow in the 1930s. According to more modern investigators, Hutton's stories were indeed really interesting fiction. They also inspired fiction: remember all those stories about the secret Russian town that mimicked small-town America so that spies could practise? Guess where that came from?

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