"In World War II, the Office of Strategic Services or OSS was central administration for intelligence, i.e. spies The Greek Desk of the OSS with stations at various times in Cairo, Bari, Izmir and Alexandria, covered the eastern Mediterranean. Classical Spies is a lively, sometimes almost day by day account of the founding and work of that Greek Desk. Names of the personnel involved were kept secret until 2008, and so only then could one learn that many of the learned and kindly (for the most part) Classicists who taught Latin, Greek, and Archaeology to generations of Americans during the twentieth century did vital, dangerous, and generally unrecognized work for the Allies.
Their names resonate in influential studies throughout the many areas of research concerned with Mediterranean antiquity. Consider the following; Benjamin D. Merritt, T. Leslie Shear, Rodney Young (whose heroism during the Italian offensive against Greece is chronicled here) James Oliver, Virginia Grace, Missy Crosby, Lucy Talcott, Alison Frantz, John Caskey, Gerald Else, Charles Edson, Sterling Dow, Richard Treat Bruere. I had the good fortune to know and even work with some of these scholars but I never heard a whisper concerning what they did in the years 1941-1944.
Susan Allen has put together a documented report, rich in intimate detail and anecdote, of the trials, frustrations, and occasional successes of a highly qualified team."
—Alan L. Boegehold, Brown University