Chapter II
"One of a Kind, Unique . . ."

"In 1941, long months before Eisenhower's and Mark Clark's men starting piling ashore on the Moroccan and Algerian beaches, the quality of the U.S. commercial agents in North Africa underwent a sea change that might have perplexed even such a connoisseur of pixies as Barnaby's* fairy godfather."1 These fellows were indeed a strange lot. All appeared to be in middle-age and despite their business suits, there was a faintly military air about them. One in particular was a tall, lean, soft-spoken gent who walked with a noticeable limp and could chatter away in Arabic as well as any foreigner in the Maghreb. There were twelve of these men altogether, apostles not of commerce but of intelligence. The gimpy-legged linguist was coordinator of their activities. His friends called him "Bill," but he signed his official correspondence: William A., Eddy, Lieutenant Colonel, USMCR (Ret.)

Eddy was no stranger to either intelligence gathering or the Mid-East. Born in Ottoman Syria of Presbyterian missionary parents, he spent his early boyhood near Sidon in what is today Lebanon.

In 1908, young William was sent to Wooster, Ohio, for an American education. Following secondary school, he entered Wooster College in 1913, remained there for two years of varsity football and

* "Barnaby" was a small boy whose adventures appeared in a syndicated comic strip published by the New York newspaper P.M. from 1941-1962. His fairy godfather was Mr. O'Malley.


basketball, then transferred to Princeton, Graduating in 1917 with a Bachelor's degree in literature, Eddy applied for a commission in the Marine Corps Reserve.

Wartime pressure had reduced Marine officer training to the bare essentials. On 31 October 1917, scarcely 4 months after donning his gold Second Lieutenant's bars, Eddy was in France. As intelligence officer for the 6th Marines, Lieutenant Eddy sought his information firsthand.When reconnaissance patrols were necessary, he frequently led them himself.

On the night of 4 June 1918, Eddy and two enlisted Marines were the first to find and report German movements in the Belleau Wood area.2 Crawling well behind enemy lines, the little group brought back information which conclusively located the axis of the German advance toward Paris. His work that night earned him the Distinguished Service Cross.

Six days later Eddy was back on his belly in no-man's land in company with Sergeant Gerald C. Thomas.* American maneuver had been restricted by poor maps and thick woods as well as German Mausers. Eddy climbed a tree and noted the effects of Allied artillery. Despite being chased down by snipers on several occasions, the Lieutenant stuck it out. His patrol report is a classic for brevity, clarity, and accuracy.3 The results were highly satisfactory. The Germans got a rain of several hundred tons of U.S. and French artillery shells; the Marines, Belleau Wood; and Eddy, the first of three Silver Stars.3 A year before, he had barely left the quadrangles of "Old Nassau, now he was a well-decorated veteran of whom even such a hardened campaigner as

* Thomas later became a Marine General.


Over There--William A. Eddy as a Captain in France, 1918
Over There--William A. Eddy as a Captain in France, 1918

Albertus Catlin wrote, "Eddy's conduct was distinguished to a degree by unerring judgment, immediate action, and a remarkable sangfroid.4

Wounded in action for the first time on 25 June, Eddy continued to serve in the front lines. He won the Navy Cross at St. Mihiel, but in his weak physical condition, contracted a near-fatal case of pneumonia. Invalided back to the United States, he was placed on the retired list as a Captain having been designated "unfit for active service."

Following a slow recovery, Eddy re-entered Princeton, earning his M.A. in 1921 and a Ph.D. the following year. But adventure was in his blood, so in 1923 he accepted a post as Chairman of the English Department at the American University in Cairo. Although his childhood Arabic was rusty at first, by the time he returned to the U.S. in 1928, Eddy was fully fluent and taught classes in both languages.*

Eddy next took up residence at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire as Professor English. A specialist in 18th century literature, he wrote the definitive essay on Gulliver's Travels and was chosen as editor for the Oxford University Press Standard Edition of Swift published in 1935.5 In 1936, he became president of Hobart College in New York, a post her held until June 1941.6

Eddy the educator never quite lost touch with the Marine Corps. In 1936 he proved sufficiently vital to be promote to Major on the retired list.

* A further footnote in the biography of this remarkable man was the fact that he is credited with introducing basketball to the Middle East; organized a league which was still active forty years later, and translated the current American rule book into Arabic.


During December 1940, Eddy and Major General Holcomb apparently met by chance at a Washington social function. The subject of their conversation as well as its location remains unrecorded. What is clear is that Eddy, concerned about the events in Europe and the Mideast, offered to resign as President of Hobart and return to active duty in the Corps if his services could be profitably utilized.

Holcomb was usually not keen on such arrangements, particularly in view of the professor's obvious physical condition, but it was a time of crisis in the Naval intelligence community and Eddy certainly possessed impressive credentials.* Experienced Arabists did not grow on trees. Within the next few weeks, the Major General Commandant discussed Eddy's proposal with Rear Admiral Anderson, the Director of Naval Intelligence. On 28 January 1941, he despatched a short personal note which began, "I am writing to find out how quickly you can report for duty, should your services be required, which I am inclined to think will be the case."7

During the next several months, a series of letters and cables went back and forth between the two men as Eddy sought his release form the college trustees and Holcomb attempted to pin down if ONI really wanted his retired Major. The upshot of all this correspondence

* Neither the President nor Knox were satisfied with military intelligence efforts during the period. The Battle of Britain was in full tilt and shipping losses in the Atlantic were rising. No one seemed to be able to provide well analyzed information on whether England could survive, and Ambassador Kennedy in London was providing little encouragement. In fact, Kennedy's retreat for a winter vacation in Florida prompted the London News Chronicle to the following bon voyage commentary: "Joe Kennedy deceives many people, his suave monotonous style, his nine overphotographed children, and his hail-fellow-well-met manner conceal a hard-boiled businessman's eagerness to do a profitable business deal with the dictators."8


was a set of orders to active duty, effective in June 1941.9 Scarcely two months later, Eddy was on his way back to Cairo as Naval Attaché wearing the silver oak leaves of a Lieutenant Colonel.

Cairo was a natural assignment for Eddy as well as a homecoming of sorts. As Naval Attaché, he was in a position to observe the fighting between British forces and the Italians, and to report on the balance of seapower in the eastern Mediterranean. As a scholar and Arabist, was doubly useful because of his previous contacts with all levels of Egyptian society. Such a man could not, and did not, escape the notice of Donovan.

In October 1941, COI had gained presidential approval to expand its overseas operations. North Africa, a recurring theme in the organization's history, was pinpointed for "a concrete illustration of what can be done."10 Since much of the area was wide open to German and Italian penetration because of the status of occupied France, North Africa "presented a unique opportunity for the United States in the field of intelligence, fifth column, subversion, and related activities. Until COI was organized, however, there was no agency prepared to exploit the situation and no unified plan for future action there."11

Tangier,* sitting directly opposite the British bastion at Gibraltar, was considered the most important listening post in French

* Tangier (often mistakenly spelled Tangiers) was one of the first "international cities" in the world. About 1/3 the size of London, it had changed hands numerous times. Once it was a British possession, but its usual masters have been the Spanish and Portuguese. During the 19th century, it became headquarters of the international business and diplomatic community. Thus, when France took virtual control of most of Morocco, Tangier already had a peculiar historical identity. This was recognized by the Conference of Algeciras in 1906 and by further agreements in 1912, 1923, and 1924. In 1942, it was surrounded by the Spanish zone on the landward sides, but remained nominally neutral territory.


Morocco. Its location drew spies and rumor peddlers by the score. Donovan arranged for Eddy to be returned to Washington, thoroughly briefed regarding COI plans, and assigned there as his personal representative.*

The twelve "control officers" who had been operating as accredited commercial "vice consuls" were to be placed under Eddy's leadership, thus freeing Robert D.Murphy, a State Department officer also working under cover for COI, for high level liaison with the GYMNAST planners. Eddy's appointment was considered significant enough to warrant mention in a personal memorandum from Donovan to the President.12

Eddy's job was a ticklish one for several reasons. First, there was the obvious Axis presence which made security a vital and frequently dangerous aspect of his work. Second, the British were also deeply concerned and involved in both Morocco and Algeria. Before despatching his personal representative, Donovan was careful to coordinate with William Stepehnson--codename INTREPID--the British Security Coordinator in America.**

COI specifically recruited several civilians to beef-up the Tangier operation, one of whom was the noted anthropologist Carlton Coon. Eddy also took with him an assistant, young Second Lieutenant Franklin P. Holcomb, USMCR, the Commandant's son.

* Eddy's transfer from Cairo was opposed by both the ambassador and ONI; however, a personal plea by Donovan to Knox overrode all objections.

** Stephenson was very active in advising both Donovan and the President on intelligence matters. In the context of Eddy's assignment, he was frank in pointing out the rivalry between SIS (British Secret Intelligence) and SOE (Special Operations Executive--the "Operators"). It was in large measure such briefings which convinced Donovan not to separate these functions in his organization.


In March, the JCS issued their first directive to COI. This involved initial guidance for support to proposed plans for an invasion of the Azores. This directive "had a significance wholly apart from its subject matter. In March, the general reorganization of information agencies in Washington was pending. It was also in that month that the JCS proposed to the President, with Donovan's concurrence, that COI be made a supporting agency to the JCS."15 Thus, the quality of work done by "Eddy and Company" would impact directly on whether the agency survived.

During the Spring of 1942, Eddy travelled extensively throughout his area of responsibility. Holcomb remained largely in Tangier and Casablanca. Dressed in civilian clothes, he flitted back and forth between the Spanish and International Zones, playing the spy game to its hilt. Looking back on this period after the war, he recalled:

It was a strange time. I knew the German, Italian, and Spanish agents, and great many of them knew me. This was particularly true of the attachés. We all knew each other and, I should say there was a sort of working agreement not to get in each other's hair too obviously. On the other hand, it was necessary to to tip one's hand in front of the opposition.16

In May, the radio net paid a first big dividend. The British were extremely concerned with what was left of the French fleet.* With the Laval government cuddling up to Hitler, it was vital that the French battleship Jean Bart, which was anchored at Casablanca, be closely monitored. Since Eddy was away in Lisbon, it fell to Holcomb to

* The majority of the French fleet had been sunk by the British in July 1940 at Mers El Kebir, or was swinging helplessly at anchor in Toulon.


Frank Holcomb had recently graduated from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. Like Eddy, Holcomb too walked with a limp, his right knee having been badly mangled in a college days auto accident. It is quite doubtful that Holcomb would have become a Marine officer under normal circumstances, but with letters of recommendation from the likes of Generals Smith, Price,, a Board of officers decided that he might be commissioned for specialist duty with ONI. Within a month of reporting for active duty,. Frank Holcomb was angling for an assignment as Eddy's "number two" in Cairo--a request which his boss, Lieutenant Commander Bode, promptly torpedoed with the following comment:

While Lieutenant Holcomb's performance of duty in this section has been of a conspicuously high standard and high satisfactory, he does not possess the requirements desirable under present circumstances as Assistant Naval Attaché, Cairo.13

Yet, when Eddy boarded the East-bound Pan Am Clipper on 3 January 1942, Holcomb occupied an adjoining seat. The machinations involved in securing this appointment remain obscure, but they are likely linked to those which resulted in Franklin's initial commission; having the senior U.S. Marine on active duty as one's father was surely an advantage.

Eddy and Holcomb arrived in Tangier and set to work organizing a system of intelligence reporting. This included use of the diplomatic pouch and was supplemented by a clandestine radio net. Utilizing transmitters supplied by SIS, the new attaché and his assistant began operation of a base station--codename MIDWAY--which was linked to LINCOLN (Casablanca), FRANKLIN (Oran), PILGRIM (Tunis), and YANKEE (Algiers). Eddy also kept in touch with the British in Gibraltar. His formal reports went straight to Donovan.14


coordinate the "watch." The young lieutenant performed this job so effectively that on 9 May, a cable arrived from the Royal Navy stating:

Congratulations to all concerned for the efficient working and speed of the Casablanca New Service. It is of the utmost value.

Holcomb received what amount to a "mention in despatches" for this piece of work.18

Collecting naval intelligence was only part of the Tangier operation. Eddy, Holcomb, Coon and the others were also up to their necks in projects to solicit support for the Allies from the always rebellious Riffs, whose charismatic leader Abd-el-Krim was then in the 15th year of an enforced "vacation" on the island of Reunion. There were plans for a "hit list" of Gestapo officers and agents and for bribery of Vichy officials. More importantly, Eddy sought to secure arms, in massive quantity, for French colonial troops many of whom were patently anti-German. This request began a tug of war between Tangier and Washington. Donovan was not in favor of placing so many chips on one "horse."

Eddy and Murphy responded to COI's misgivings with the warning that "we will not find such leaders elsewhere,and dare not lose them now . . . the least we can do is help supply them on their own terms which are generous and gallant."19 When Washington failed to budge, Eddy petulantly messaged: "If Murphy and I cannot be trusted with a few millions francs in an emergency then I should be called back and someone who can be trusted sent. . . . We are desperately hoping and waiting."20

The tenor of these comments aroused COI headquarters, but the Join Chiefs, who would have to supply the arms, were wary. Fearing that any military supplies delivered might fall into Axis hands, and


recognizing--far better than Donovan--the logistical difficulties involved, they flatly rejected the proposal. Donovan was disappointed, but to bolster Eddy's morale, he wrote back, "If we are right, it will all work out . . ." Tangier got a little money, but no guns.21

The resistance plan did not die however. When General Henri Giraud escaped from captivity, his person was briefly seen as a rallying point for all anti-Nazi Frenchmen.* WHile Murphy worked this angle, Eddy attempted to revive the plan for supporting Riff leaders in Spanish Morocco. To emphasize the need for some sort of action, the Naval Attaché returned to Washington to personally argue the respective alternatives. At the time, he estimated Carlton Con and Gordon Browne--a former Boston insurance executive--could summon more than 10,000 Riffs to the Allied banner.

Unfortunately, as Eddy would point out in a 10 June briefing to JCS, the two plans were by nature mutually exclusive. Giraud had been a key figure in bagging Abd-el-Krim and no pied noire in his right mind would welcome an armed insurrection by the same natives France had been fighting for 80 years. The Riffs, on the other hand, would not be keen on spending blood without some sort of promise that their efforts would lead to independence.

Eventually, it was decided to play the Giraud "card" first while organizational plans proceeded for a Moorish uprising. Meanwhile, two parallel links were established to Riff leaders--codenamed TASSELS and STRINGS--who were unaware of each other's connections to COI.

* Giraud escaped from a German maximum security prison by climbing down a thin rope smuggled to him inside a wine bottle. He made his way into unoccupied France and was contacted there by Murphy's network.


Both had substantial intelligence collecting capabilities since their followers moved freely throughout the entire area, undeterred by borders and unnoticed by either the French or Spanish. "These men knew how to handle arms and conduct guerilla warfare in difficult terrain."22

Sensing that something was brewing in Morocco, the Laval Government began a heavy crackdown on pro-Allied sympathizers. This hampered Eddy's activities and heightened his concern that the moment for opening North Africa to a near bloodless expeditionary force landing might be rapidly slipping away. Consequently, he flew to London to solicit British support.

Franklin Holcomb was also busy. On 9 July, he and a date were cornered in a local nightclub (shades of Bogart's Casablanca) by a group of Italians. The ensuing episode was later reported to the Commandant in the following terms by Admiral Kirk:

The Ities here (Tangier) are not so clever. As a matter of fact, ten of them one night tried to pick a fight with the assistant naval attaché who was alone except for a lady. The Italian consul himself, Duke Badoglio led the gang . . .

Holcomb's fists proved adequate to the challenge and Kirk's note went on to say that "the whole affair helped us a lot with the Spanish and hurt the Wops . . ."23 The lieutenant did not go unrewarded. When news of the brawl somehow reached the attention of the President, Roosevelt responded by directing an immediate promotion to Captain.24

In England, Eddy's mission took a quick U-turn. Instead of talking with the British, he found himself face-to-face with Eisenhower, Patton, Doolittle, and General Strong, the Army's G-2.

July 1942 was a watershed for American involvement in North Africa. The month began with the JCS firmly fixed on a cross-channel


invasion of France (Operation SLEDGEHAMMER) as the best means of supporting the Russians. Churchill's government, reeling from criticism of losses in the Western Desert, faced a vote of "no confidence" in the Commons. President Roosevelt, agonized by what a change of leadership in Britain might mean, received a message from the Prime Minister on 8 July, which strongly urged that GYMNAST be implemented quickly. In it, Churchill pleaded:

I am sure that French North Africa is by far the best chance for effecting relief to the Russian Front in 1942 . . . Here is the safest and most effective stroke which can be delivered this autumn.

It must be clearly understood that we cannot count upon an invitation or a guarantee from Vichy. But any resistance would not be comparable to that which would be offered by more than a military issue. It seems to me that we ought not to throw away the sole great strategic stroke open to us in the western theater during this cardinal year.25

American opposition to GYMNAST centered in the dispute between Marshall and King over whether the Atlantic of Pacific should get priority in naval planning. Roosevelt, a confirmed advocate of "Europe first" finally settled the argument by sending both of these, along with his most trusted personal advisor, Harry Hopkins, to London with marching orders to get the problem solved. After a series of acrimonious meetings and a spate of personal messages it was determined that SLEDGEHAMMER was not feasible and North Africa would be the target. Roosevelt called it: "a turning point in the whole war."26

It was while this delegation--referred to by the President as the "three musketeers"--was in London, that Eddy arrived. Buttonholed by Colonel Edward Buxton, Donovan's Executive Officer, he agreed to dinner at Claridge's Hotel on 24 July. Other guests were to be


Doolittle, Strong and Patton. "If Eddy could convince this group of hard-nosed military men of the value of his plan, he would have a direct line to the War Department."27

When Eddy appeared for dinner he was, uncharacteristically, dressed in full uniform. Five rows of ribbons neatly traced his left breast pocket. "Do you know Bill Eddy?" Buxton asked George Patton.

His gaze riveted on the Marine's' chest, "Old Blood and Guts" responded, "Never saw him before in my life but the son of a bitch's been shot at enough hasn't he?"28

Thus began a conversation which carried through until the small hours of the next morning. Even Strong--a bitter enemy of Donovan and his organization--came away impressed. Later that afternoon, Eddy met General Eisenhower for the first time.

And so, in the final week of July 1942, three things were settled: The United States would invade North Africa before year's end; Eisenhower would command the operation; and the new codename would be TORCH. Eddy's intelligence outfit would prepare to strike the match. The newspapers were full of Midway and the Russian front. "Fierce Fighting 80 Miles from Stalingrad," the Baltimore Sun headlined, but help was on the way.29

Eddy flew to Tangier and within a week was back to London. At 0930 on 2 August, he delivered a detailed briefing to Eisenhower, carefully covering the situation in Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia. Eddy's insight and grasp of what would be required in the proposed multi-division amphibious assault so impressed Ike that the new commander drafted a long "eyes only" message to General Marshall which ended:


"Colonel Eddy of the U.S. Marines will arrive in Washington this week. He possesses much information which will be valuable to the Chiefs of Staff. It is recommended that he return, through here,to his post in Tangiers [sic] at earliest possible moment."30

In the States, Eddy and Donovan went over plans for all subversive and intelligence activities designed to support TORCH. Money was no longer an obstacle--"Wild Bill" cheerfully approved a tentative two million dollar budget for the operation. On 11 September, Eddy briefed the assembled JCS on his plans. Most of these were approved "with the proviso that control of all secret activities should be vested in the Supreme Commander, General Eisenhower."31 This caveat would soon raise a minor tempest.

Murphy too was soon in Washington. His political evaluation impressed DOnovan who immediately trotted his star diplomat off to see the President. Roosevelt listened to Murphy's report with interest and decided, on the spot, to give him Ambassadorial rank. Between a retried Lieutenant Colonel and an Ambassador there now yawned a protocol gap as wide as the Grand Canyon. Murphy became Donovan's "top man" in North Africa. Eddy remained titular head in Morocco but took his political orders from Murphy in Algiers.

While Patton trained his Morocco assault force in the same Solomon's Island (Maryland) exercise area recently evacuated by the 1st Marine Division,* Eddy''s apparatus swing into action. Data on ports and airfields were collected, the Atlantic beaches clandestinely surveyed, and known agents carefully watched. Unfortunately, much of

* "Howling Mad" Smith was Patton's amphibious assault tutor.


the intelligence was little better than a travelogue. The best efforts to secure reliable hydrographic information on the three proposed landing beaches and the Sebu River channel leading to Port Lyautey were proving to be dismally inadequate.

In an attempt to solve this extremely serious deficiency, Eddy concocted a daring plan--approved by Patton without recourse to any other authority--to smuggle two experienced local watermen out of Casablanca. These would be flown to the United States and then accompany the invasion fleet back across the Atlantic. One of the two men scheduled for this voluntary "snatch" was the chief pilot of Port Lyautey whose name was Malverne. Eddy gave control of the mission to his resident in Casablanca, David King. But it was Frank Holcomb and Gordon Browne who were tasked with the actual rascality.

Holcomb was directed to drive the nearly two hundred miles from Tangier to Casablanca in his old black Chevy. Behind this, as usual, he pulled a small open-topped trailer.

Dragging a trailer was something most prudent drivers did in 1942 Morocco. Gasoline was sometimes hard to find and it was advisable to take one's own on long trips. Therefore, the sight of some fuel drums would not elicit special interest. Or so was the hope, for wedged behind the drums, covered with a carpet and some burlap, was Malverne.

Moroccan nights can be clammy, frigid affairs in winter, but Holcomb and Browne were most concerned about their passenger's ability to take the pounding of the drums and the carbon monoxide which billowed form the car's exhaust. Driving as fast as they could (consistent with their "cargo's" survival) they passed through the first


of six separate checkpoints without incident. The second was likewise routinely negotiated. The next few would not be simple.

At checkpoint #3, a coughing, wheezing sound began emanating from the trailer. Browne got out and walked casually around, kicking the tires and shaking the drums while Holcomb spoke with the guards. They were waved through.

As the coast road wound closer to Tangier, traffic thickened. More and more Arab villages dotted the roadside, their mud brick buildings encircled by thorn bush barriers against both wind and prying eyes. Soon Holcomb and Browne's progress had been reduced to a crawl. The Spanish border police were notoriously slow and that night was to be no exception. The coughing began once more. This time it was a good deal more persistent.

Finally the car drew up to a barber-striped wooden barrier. Holcomb hurried into the customs shed with the passports while Browne nervously eyed the guards in their German-style coal scuttle helmets. One began to circle the car. Browne got out.

After peering into the back seat, the guard paused to light a cigarette and then continued toward the trailer. Browne winced as another cough came from beneath the carpet. But the sentry, who must have been stone deaf, merely poked at the burlap bags and continued his inspection. The Spaniard may have noticed nothing, but his dog was not so careless. As Holcomb emerged with the stamped passports, he saw the animal posed in the classic "point"--leg lifted, tail straight, nose directed toward Malverne's hiding place.

"There was only one thing for me to do," he later recalled. "Up in the front seat I had a big Virginia ham--something that had


been sent from home and that I had been saving for weeks. I took one look at the big, curious eyes of the dog, and I threw the ham at him."32

The gate swung open. Holcomb, Browne, and their still-gagging passenger, lurched forward, narrowly missing a parked truck. A final rear-view reflection of the Customs Post revealed a puzzled set of sentries, a yapping mutt, and Holcomb's prize ham lying in the dusty Moroccan roadway. The final two checkpoints were a snap.*

On the morning of 8 November1942, 83,000 Americans and more than 15,000 British solders, sailors, and airmen landed in Oran, Algiers, and across the atlantic beaches near Casablanca. The French Navy and some ground troops, particularly the colonial infantry--who wore an anchor on their hats and called themselves Marines--briefly fought back. But within four days, Eisenhower had his North African bases. A week later, he and Admiral Sir Andrew Cunningham struck a bargain of convenience with French Admiral Darlan which ensured the loyalty of the 105,000 Vichy troops outside metropolitan France. Then, his rear secured, Ike turned eastward toward Rommel.

OSS was to play a largely analytic and political role in the rest of the North African operations although there was some ground combat activity by the first "Operational Group" personnel.

* Malverne eventually reached the United States and later performed his piloting chores with such dexterity that he was awarded the Navy Cross. General Marshall however was not amused. In a personal message to Eisenhower (who knew nothing of the scheme) the Chief of Staff decried the entire affair, citing the risks involved in its execution.33 Certainly, had Holcomb and Browne been apprehended, the landing sites might have been totally compromised.


Franklin Holcomb would later transfer to OSS, rise to Major and direct counter-intelligence operations in France. Eddy was promoted to Colonel on the personal recommendations of both Donovan and Eisenhower.34 He had an important part in intelligence organization and planning for the invasion of Sicily and would serve as Roosevelt's personal interpreter at the Cairo conference. On 12 August 1944, he was released form active duty to accept appointment as the first American Minister to Saudi Arabia.35

Of Eddy's service in those muddled months before TORCH, when the United States seemed everywhere at bay, Ambassador Murphy would write, ". . . no American knew more about Arabs or about power politics in Africa. He was one of a kind, unique; we could have used a hundred like him."36


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