Mark Collins – Espionage and Moles, John le Carré and Stefan Zweig

The English, ex-SIS, master of spook fiction is generally credited with inventing the use of the word “mole” in the intelligence context.  On the other hand there is this in the autobiography of the Austrian (Jewish) writer Stefan Zweig, very prominent in the first part of the twentieth century: from The World of Yesterday, about his time in Switzerland 1917-18 (pp. 301-2):

…I soon realised that among those who claimed to be refugees or martyrs to their heroic convictions, some dubious figures had smuggled themselves in.  They were paid by German intelligence…Peaceful, stolid, Switzerland, as we could all soon see from our experience, was being undermined by secret agents from both sides working busily away like moles…

E Tenebris Lux (more here)?

Mark Collins, a prolific Ottawa blogger, is a Fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute; he tweets @Mark3Ds


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