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Thursday, 21st FebruaryAcademic lecture: British Espionage and Propaganda in WW2 Spain: the role of Tom BurnsCañada Blanch Centre, London School of Economics

Academic lecture by Jimmy Burns, OBE, BSS Chairman chaired by Sir Paul Preston, LSE Contemporary History Professor and Director of the Cañada Blanch Centre.


In 1940, Tom Burns, a young British Catholic publisher and friend of Graham Greene and Evelyn Waugh, was recruited by the British wartime propaganda Ministry of Information and posted to the British Embassy in Madrid. Under the cover of his official post as press attaché, he used his considerable ingenuity and network of Spanish contacts to help organise and deliver the propaganda and intelligence war against the Nazis. The aim was to keep the Franco regime from siding militarily with Hitler and protect Allied interests in Gibraltar, the Western Mediterranean, and North Africa. In doing so he found himself at the heart of a web of intrigue, grappling not only against the Nazis but also drawn into internecine conflicts with which the secret services were riven. It is a dramatic story which evokes the shadow world of clandestine meetings and agent running, bribery, and betrayal. Among the extraordinary dramatis personae are Soviet spy Kim Philby, then head of MI6’s Iberian section, the pro-German Duke and Duchess of Windsor, the British actor Lesley Howard, and  Burns’ nemesis, the German press attaché Hans Lazar.


Date: February 21st

Time: 6.00 pm – 7.30 pm

Venue: Cañada Blanch Centre, LSE, Portugal Street, Cowdray House, 1st floor, Room COW.1.11

Tickets: This event is free and open to all with no ticket or pre-registration required. Entry is on a first come, first served basis.


For more information contact the Cañada Blanch Centre: http://www.lse.ac.uk/canada-blanch/events/2019-02-21/Espionage-Propaganda-in-WW2-Spain


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