Author(s): Jonathan Ree
The wartime adventures of the legendary SOE agent Harry R e, told in his own words
A school teacher at the start of the war, Harry R e renounced his former pacifism with the fall of France in 1940. He was deployed into a secret branch of the British army and parachuted into central France in April 1943.
Harry showed a particular talent for winning the confidence of local resisters, and guided them in a series of dramatic sabotage operations, before getting into a hand-to-hand fight with an armed German officer, from which he was lucky to escape.
This might seem like a romantic story of heroism and derring-do, but Harry R e's own war writings, superbly edited and contextualized by his son, the philosopher Jonathan R e, are far more nuanced, shot through with doubts, regrets, and grief.