Operation Ironside

Operation Ironside

Operation Ironside was a deception operation in the Second World War, meant to persuade the Germans that the Allies would stage an invasion near Bordeaux along the Bay of Biscay. The operation consisted entirely of deceptive messages, without any supporting physical evidence, unlike other deception operations intended to draw German defences away from the planned Normandy landings. Bordeaux was an important military port during the war and had already been a target of commando raids in 1942. Planned by the London Controlling Section, Ironside was communicated to the Germans by double agents in May and June 1944. Rumours of an impending two-division assault were communicated by Agent Bronx, a Peruvian socialite, with help from other agents, including Tate and Garbo. Historians have found no indication that the Germans believed an invasion in the area to be imminent, probably because Bordeaux was beyond air cover from the UK and there were no detectable naval activities in the region. Nevertheless, the operation may have succeeded in delaying one Panzer division from moving north to defend in Normandy.

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