Juan Pujol Garcia was a Spanish citizen working in Spain and then Lisbon who deliberately became a double agent against Nazi Germany during World War II. He was arguably the most important double agent in history.
Being a double agent is risky business, especially if your goal is to spy on the Nazis. He did great at spying, including stealing information and devices that helped break Nazi codes. But Garcia did far more than just spy. He took action that many believe was responsible for the Germans being so unprepared for the allied invasion of Normandy. Without him the landings at Normandy would have potentially had a different outcome, one that is painful to consider.
He was given codenames by both the Nazis and the Allies. The Nazis called him Alaric. The Allies called him Garbo.
The best reading we have found on Juan Pujol Garcia is Stephan Talty’s “Agent Garbo: The Brilliant, Eccentric Secret Agent Who tricked Hitler and Saved D-Day.” But to really get a feel like you were there on scene we recommend watching Garbo: The Spy. This documentary thriller does a great job of weaving in interviews, film footage and lots of media from the war to put all his actions in context. It does so in a way that made me proud he was on the side of good.
Juan Pajol made many enemies, including enemies who endured after the war. He very smartly found a way to dissappear, faking his own death. His true identity was not revealed till the 1980’s, shortly before his death.
Hey Juan Pajol Garcia: Thanks man, for what you did for humanity. We will never forget.