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One month after World War II, Major General Sir Colin Gubbins, the Chief of the British Special Operations Executive (SOE), requested that the Washington Headquarters of the American Office of Strategic Services (OSS) search its captured German document collection for information regarding German wartime knowledge of SOE or OSS secret operations.Both the SOE and the Special Operations Branch of the OSS ran hundreds of clandestine operations during the war, parachuting agents far behind enemy lines.
(3) Allied special operations groups--the SAS, SOE, and the OSS--relied upon portable Eureka sets in all theaters because the ground-based, pre-positioned radar beacons enabled Allied aircraft, equipped with the Rebecca counterpart, to locate agent and supply DZs far behind enemy lines.
Yet, deploying the highly classified beacons in enemy territory held substantial risk because these sets, if captured, could be activated to lure unsuspecting airborne agents and commando teams to certain capture.
Although OSS documentation discloses the training, employment, and extreme secrecy surrounding Eureka-Rebecca system, these records also reveal that Allied special operations commands neglected to weigh the possible consequences whenever agents lost Eureka sets either accidentally during nighttime airdrops, or directly to the enemy.
(4) Furthermore, the postwar inquiries into SOE's Holland disaster confirmed what may have been suspected--yet not circulated throughout the special operations community--that as early as 1942 the Germans had captured and activated Eureka beacons in order to manipulate Allied DZs.
Due to these gaps in operational security, Allied commands continued to issue Eureka beacons throughout the war without modifications that would limit their vulnerability to further enemy exploitation.
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More than sixty years later, historical assessments of enemy technical countermeasures to Allied special operations tend to concentrate on German Funkspiele or "radio games," that often deceived Allied special operations headquarters through the playback of captured agent radio transmitters.