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Alias George Wood

Fritz Kolbe (alias George Wood) espionage services,
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CONFIDENTIAL

George Wood

important official information.   This man was in Bern at the moment and would be willing to meet with the Americans if they desired. He had brought with him these 16 Foreign Office telegrams. As evidence of good faith Kocherthaler would leave them for Mayer to study before deciding to see his friend, who, however, would have to leave again for Germany on Friday, day after tomorrow.
Visitor from Berlin
The telegrams had nothing about them to suggest a hoax.   Mimeographed in double space and addressed to the Foreign Office from
the German legations in Dublin, Stockholm, Sofia, Ankara, Rome, and Bern itself, they seemed the usual copies any foreign ministry must make to disseminate incoming messages. A routing stamp showed that these particular copies were intended for "Ambassador Ritter." After consulting Dulles, Mayer set up a meeting at his own home for 10:30 Thursday morning. There Kocherthaler brought Fritz Kolbe.

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Kolbe, as Dulles later described him for the benefit of the British MI-6, was about five feet seven and had a round head, baldish, with prominent ears and typically Prussian-
Slavic features.   Frank eyes wide apart, manner unsophisticated but well poised.   He was forty-three.   He had been with
the Foreign Office since 1925, mostly abroad until the war began-ten years in Madrid, two in Cape Town. His son, whose mother had died in 1936, was still in South Africa, in the care of his former housekeeper. So was his second wife, a Swiss girl, from whom he was trying to get a divorce. Since being recalled to Berlin in 1939 he had worked for Minister Rudolf Leitner and then for his boss, Ambassador (for Special Duties) Karl Ritter. Ritter was the liaison channel between the Foreign Office and OKW, the supreme military command, and was

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CONFIDENTIAL


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Posted: May 08, 2007 08:05 AM
Last Updated: Aug 05, 2011 08:44 AM