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Hitler's EnforcersThe Gestapo and the SS Security Service in the Nazi Revolution$
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George C. Browder

Print publication date: 1997

Print ISBN-13: 9780195104790

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195104790.001.0001

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The Foreign Intelligence Mission

The Foreign Intelligence Mission

(p.197) 9 The Foreign Intelligence Mission
Hitler's Enforcers

George C. Browder

Oxford University Press

The third major Sicherheitsdienst (SD) mission, foreign intelligence and counterespionage, continued to develop more slowly than the others, undoubtedly because the SD never had any claim to a monopoly, as it had for domestic Party operations. Also, the SD's alliance with the Gestapo was less helpful in this area. Once Heinrich Himmler and Reinhard Heydrich secured their monopoly of Germany's political police power in spring 1934, they could curb domestic competition with the SD. The political police curbed all overt activity by Party agencies in both domestic intelligence and counterespionage. They could not totally eliminate it, however, for others could claim a need for information gathering related to their missions. The SD had to negotiate delimitations and cooperation in the gray areas of overlap with each agency. In the process, however, they won access to the competitions' contacts and information.

Keywords:   Sicherheitsdienst, mission, foreign intelligence, counterespionage, Heinrich Himmler, Reinhard Heydrich, political police, Germany

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