Rear Admiral John Godfrey

Rear-Admiral-John-GodfreyRear Admiral John Godfrey, the Director of Naval Intelligence from 1939 to 1942, was highly regarded by many of his contemporaries but suffered from never gaining Churchill’s full confidence. Nor did he aid his own cause by once sending a memo to Churchill pointing out that the First Lord had been overstating enemy losses at sea. In 1941 he played a crucial role in establishing intelligence co-operation with the United States after a productive 90 minute meeting with President Roosevelt. Just days after being promoted to Vice Admiral in mid 1942 he was relieved of his duties, after falling out with the Joint Intelligence Committee (the British Government’s top spy coordinating body), and sent to India as the Flag Officer Commanding the Royal Indian Navy. He retired in 1945 and died in 1971, aged 83. These days he’s considered to be one of the unsung heroes of the war.


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