They have acted in movies, sang, and appeared on TV shows. They were loved in America and Europe. However, one can find in their biographies traces of their involvement in espionage activities during the Second World War. Learn the stories of four wonderful women.
From typist to intelligence agent
One of the world’s most famous cookbook authors, Julia Child was a fan of French cuisine. American society loved her and watched her on many TV shows. She graduated from a culinary school in Paris – it was a huge achievement, as Julia was the first woman to do so. Nora Efron directed the film Julie and Julia, which depicted the lives of two women. One of the heroes of the film was Julia Child, played by Meryl Streep.
In the 1940s, before embarking on a culinary and media adventure, Childe tried to join the Women’s Army Corps and Women’s Navy, but failed. It was considered…too high. She became a clerk in the Office of Strategic Services, and then moved to intelligence, where at first she had to write addresses and names on cards.
She later joined the team that searched for a shark deterrent to use in hostilities. Julia created tons of cooking mixes that were meant to do the job. Thanks to her creativity and ingenuity, as well as her collaboration with other researchers, it was possible to create such means.
She also traveled to Sri Lanka and China, where she collected and transmitted information related to the war. After World War II, she was honored and awarded several times for her activities, including. National Legion of Honor Medal.
Julia Child / Bachrach / GettyImages
Photo: Getty Images
Her real name was Audrey Kathleen Ruston and her legend continues today. Audrey Hepburn has starred in what are now classics, such as Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Roman Vacation.
Audrey is one of a small group of actors and actresses who have won Oscars, Grammys, Emmys, and Tonys for their work, which are some of the most prestigious awards in Hollywood.
She was born in 1929 to a Dutch daughter and a British woman. She was born in Belgium, where she spent the first years of her life, and then often moved between Holland and Great Britain. When World War II broke out, Audrey was ten years old. She lived in her mother’s hometown in Holland. My parents, and especially my father, showed right-wing sympathy for fascism, which was weakened by subsequent events.
Young Hepburn discovered her passion for dancing. She attended ballet lessons. When the Nazis entered Holland, the teen decided to use her talent to help others. She certainly did not share the opinion of her father and mother. She performed dance performances and provided all the collected funds to the resistance movement that fought with the occupier.
Her assistance also included providing information and reports in boots, handing out newspapers and publications made by opponents, or donating food to fighters. She helped the wounded in the hospital. She saves the life of an allied paratrooper and offers to have him hidden in their palace by her family.
Many years later, Audrey Hepburn told several times in interviews about the unpleasant experiences of the war, and how the actions affected her family and her health. At the end of the war, Audrey became seriously ill. The family lost almost all of its livelihood, and Dutch society faced the problem of starvation.
Audrey Hepburn in 1953. Silver Screen Collection / Getty Images)
Photo: Getty Images
Mata Hari in the movie and in real life
The career of the film Greta Garbo, which was really called Greta Lovisa Gustafsson, lasted 21 years. During this time, the actress starred in more than 30 films. She was nominated for an Academy Award three times, and in 1955 she received this award for her lifetime achievement. Hollywood admired not only her talent, but also her beauty. She became an icon of the golden age of filmmaking.
Garbo starred in the movie “Mata Hari”. She played a Dutch dancer who was a spy. There have been rumors that Greta, in real life, has a lot in common with the legendary spy.
Some attributed her sympathy to Germany. Others, in turn, claimed that she hated the Nazis so much that she told them about them. Apparently, Greta informed the British circles of the names of the Swedes who were supporters of Adolf Hitler.
The actress was also supposed to act as a go-between and relay messages between the Swedish crown and British intelligence.
It turned out that Hitler was a huge fan of Greta Garbo, who admired her talent, especially her role in the production of “Kamil” from 1936. The Nazi dictator wrote a letter expressing his admiration for the actress. Greta had to tell her friends that she would like to meet Hitler and shoot him with a pistol hidden in her bag …
Photo: Getty Images / Ofeminin
She collected secret information using her personal magic
Frieda Josephine MacDonald or Josephine Baker was born in the United States. I grew up in a poor neighborhood and left school as a teenager. From a young age, she faced the problem of marginalization and exclusion that affected her adult life and her willingness to help.
She moved to New York and got a job as a seamstress on Broadway. Observing actors and actresses on stage, Josephine learned practically everything by heart. By chance and luck, she managed to appear on the big stage and arouse the interest of the audience. Then there was an offer to go to Paris and make more. Thus was the career of Josephine Baker, a singer, dancer, and actress, the first black woman to star in a feature film. “Siren of the Tropics”.
The French love her. In 2021, her remains were interred in the French Pantheon. A black woman had never been buried there before.
Josephine was an artist who lived an extraordinary life. She fought against racism and supported Martin Luther King. However, her fight for justice had begun much earlier. After moving to Paris, she became involved in activities related to World War II. She was recruited into an intelligence agency. She collected secret information using her charm, humor and talent. She met the elite of different countries and was able to obtain valuable information from anyone without arousing suspicion.
Her artistic career allowed her to move freely from one country to another. She has been in different parts of the world, incl. in Africa or the Middle East. While Josephine was fully committed to her performance and career, she never forgot what the French resistance movement had promised. She continued to collect the information she needed and passed it on to the relevant departments in France. For her bravery, she was honored, among other things, by the Medal of the French Resistance.
Photo: Getty Images / Ofeminin
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