GreyC

What does M.I.R.S. stand for British Intelligence WW2?

9 posts in this topic

ID: 1   Posted

Hello,

I came across a German document detailing execution procedures for Serbia. This document seems to have gotten into the hands of British intelligence, copied and given to the Russians in 1943. The British "address" was M.I.R.S., The War Office, Victoria Hotel, London. As far as I know this hotel was requisitioned from 1940 on by the War Office to house part of the SOE. So given the nature of the document the M.I.R.S. seems to be an intelligence gathering or producing agency. Can anybody of you tell me what the abbreviation stands for Military Intelligence... something? And what did it do?

Thank you,

GreyC

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ID: 3   Posted

Hello Trooper_D,

much appreciated!

GreyC

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ID: 4   Posted (edited)

9 hours ago, GreyC said:

The British "address" was M.I.R.S., The War Office, Victoria Hotel, London.

I've been thinking about this, GreyC, and am slightly puzzled. I have never heard of 'Victoria Hotel' and I wonder if it meant St Ermine's Hotel, which is in the Victoria (SW1) district of London. It has been known by this name (St Ermine's) since its founding in 1899, I believe, and certainly since the Ewardian period. You may know this already but others reading this thread might be interested to know that the hotel is still going and is a nice place to stay in London. They have some information about their history here,

http://www.sterminshotel.co.uk/about/our-history/

and here is a bit more detail about SOE and MIRS working together at the hotel during the war

http://www.thehistorypress.co.uk/articles/st-ermins-hotel-and-the-origins-of-soes-section-d/

If you read through this second link, you will note that the Russian double-agent Guy Burgess worked there and so I wonder, when you write that your document was "copied and given to the Russians in 1943", whether it was actually passed to the Russians by Burgess as part of his spying effort for them!

Do you actually own this document or have you seen it online?

Edited by Trooper_D

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ID: 5   Posted

Hi Trooper_D,

the hotel seems to have been in Northumberland Avenue, London.

The document can be found here:

http://wwii.germandocsinrussia.org/de/nodes/1850-akte-52-akte-nr-42-1943-der-2-verwaltung-der-hauptverwaltung-aufklarung-gru-der-roten-armee-gefechtsausbildung-und-erganzung-in-der-wehrmacht#page/194/mode/inspect/zoom/6

I chanced upon it in a different forum.

GreyC

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ID: 6   Posted

40 minutes ago, GreyC said:

the hotel seems to have been in Northumberland Avenue, London.

Thanks for that clarification, GreyC. You are, of course, right. It is now called The Grand Hotel,

http://www.thegrandattrafalgarsquare.com/

I am intrigued by the address on the document you have linked to because the only references I can find on the Internet to the Hotel Victoria, in this connext, are to Room 238 being used by SOE for interviews of prospective agents. I can find no mention of MIRS being there. Further research required, perhaps.

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ID: 7   Posted (edited)

Hi Trooper_D,

what I could gather in a quick internet search is the following:

The MIRS (Military Intelligence Service) was a joint Anglo-American agency with offices in Washington DC and London (Victoria Hotel), founded in May (other sources say January) 1943 under the supervision of Britain´s MI14 (Order of Battle German Forces) and the State´s G-2 (Assistent Chief of Staff). Shortly before the joint landing of British and US forces in North Africa. Its personnel was comprised mainly of German emmigrants to the US, its task was the analysis of captured German documents (150ts until 1945) and the dissemination of the knowledge gained through this. They had field agents who, especially directly after Germany´s surrender, discovered valuble documents in Germany that helped the allies prepare for the Nürnberg trials.

GreyC

Source e.g.: Germany and the 2nd WW, p. 306; Vol IX/II, Oxford 2014.

Edited by GreyC

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ID: 8   Posted

Thanks for casting more light on this interesting - if somewhat arcane - subject, GreyC.

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ID: 9   Posted

Good morning,

it´s a pleasure.

GreyC

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