Secret War in Portugal [1939-1945]
For SOE [British Special Operation Executive] 24 Land was the code name for Portugal

04 May 2019

Marya Mannes - OSS

On her book of memoirs, published in 1972, that I just read, Maria  [she assumed Marya] von Heimburg Mannes was is Lisbon during WW2 for intelligence gathering purpose, on behalf of the Counter-Intelligence Dept. of the American OSS, that approached her in the winter of 1943. Her code name was [or could be, because she gives no assurance about it] agent B548. 
She arrived to the Tagus River, by Clipper, the 3d June 1944. She would return September same year. Her cover was that she was working for The New Yorker magazine.
During the flight she met George Kennan - who was finishing his term as US Chargé d'Affaires in Portugal, who briefed her extensively about the situation in this country «more than I had learned from prior briefings». Another passenger - which name she does not reveal - was «the director of an international business cartel based in Lisbon who was later to be of help in many ways, some of which e would not know».
Following instructions she travelled to Madrid also.
Some facts of her findings were published in The New Yorker magazine that summer [see of them in Malomil blog, here]; her last journalist act was to send a requested article to Vogue in fashion in Lisbon.
Daughter of a well know musician and composer, David Mannes [see his autobiography here] Marya - which personality is fascinating even on sentimental terms - lived a full life between Literature, theater and music and writing for periodicals, mostly on fashion and social events. 

Marya Mannes, third from the left

Marya duty was to gather information about German penetration in Portugal, infiltrating on Axis circles and Portuguese sympathizers.
After David Waller [on his biography of Wild Bill Donovan] she was even raped by a Portuguese parachute manufacturer for the Germans. But, following her own account of the incident, not physical contact contacted occurred. 
In Madrid she met a man that would later compromised as an Abwehr agent, Paul Jean Marie Cavaillez and kept a long relationship with him, even later when back in America.