Sunday, April 19, 2015

NAAS 5 reports retrieved from France - 1945

During WWII the German Army’s signal intelligence agency OKH/In 7/VI had signal intelligence regiments assigned to Army Groups in order to supply them with radio intelligence on Allied formations. Western Europe was covered by KONA 5 (Signals Intelligence Regiment 5), whose cryptanalytic centre NAAS 5 (Nachrichten Aufklärung Auswertestelle - Signal Intelligence Evaluation Center) was based in Saint-Germain-en-Laye, a suburb of Paris.

In summer 1944 the Germans had to evacuate France and it seems that this unit tried to destroy some of its reports but they didn’t have time to properly dispose of them. Instead many reports were buried.
The US authorities were able to locate the site and they recovered many of these documents. A US report, dated 25 January 1945, says that about 2.000 sheets of paper were recovered and were 30% readable. They included intercepts and decrypts of the M-209 cipher machine, the War Department Telegraph Code, possibly Combined Cipher Machine traffic, as well as the British Aircraft movement’s Code and Syko system.

There was even a message from Washington to the US Military Mission in China from 1942 sent via the gunboat TUTUILA.

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