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Close encounters: the role of culture in interrogation and questioning in the Second World War

Abstract : This article discusses the role of interrogation in intelligence during the Second World War, and it focuses on the importance of culture in the collection of Human Intelligence in the European theatre of operation. It argues that cultural issues, including but not limited to language knowledge, provided an added value to interrogation, interviewing and questioning during and after the Second World War, for example through the employment of native speakers, in particular former refugees and ‘enemy aliens’. The article also highlights some of the flaws involved in this process, which led to bad prisoner handling and therefore bad intelligence collection. It also tries to complement archival sources with personal accounts and oral histories in order to achieve a deeper understanding of the role of the human being in the collection of intelligence through interrogation and questioning.
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Submitted on : Monday, January 13, 2020 - 10:47:49 AM
Last modification on : Thursday, March 5, 2020 - 7:23:16 PM
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Simona Tobia. Close encounters: the role of culture in interrogation and questioning in the Second World War. Rúbrica Contemporánea, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, 2015, WAR AND POST-WAR PERIODS IN LATE MODERN EUROPE, 4 (8), pp.69-81. ⟨hal-02436543⟩

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