These Four Legendary Female Spies Helped End Tyrannical Regimes

Female spies

Many women throughout history worked as spies, doing their part to assist the Allied forces and French resistance.

Mata Hari

One of the most famous female spies in history, Mata Hari was a spy for the Allies during WWI. Unfortunately, the Germans found her out and had her labeled a German spy. The French arrested her in 1917.

Mata Hari told the French that she was loyal to them and declared her innocence. Yet, despite all that, she was declared guilty of espionage and sentenced to death.

Her fate was execution by firing squad. But, according to legend, she did not want a blindfold and blew the executioners a kiss. She was 41 when she died.

Krystyna Skarbek

Born to Polish aristocrats, Krystyna Skarbek wanted to help with the war efforts, so she tried to enlist. All attempts were blocked because she was a woman.

However, she came up with a plan to put a kink in Germany’s propaganda and war efforts. She was going to pose as a Budapest-based journalist and ski into Nazi-occupied Poland to disseminate anti-Nazi messages.

She became Christine Granville when she joined the British Special Operations Executive. She was adept at getting information in and out of Poland. Granville was labeled as Churchhill’s favorite spy.

Once she left the service, her life was rather unexciting, drifting from job to job. She died in 1952 after being stabbed by a jealous lover.

Nancy Wake

Nancy Wake was the wife of a French industrialist who saw all the harm the Nazis were doing close up and decided to take action. During WWII, she became a part of the French Resistance.

She was a key figure in the French and British intelligence communication and smuggled servicemen out of the country.

Wake joined the SOE, becoming one of their most decorated servicewomen. She was a Knight of The Legion of Honor appointed by France and received the Medal of Freedom from the United States.

Virginia Hall

Hall was an American ambulance driver in France but had to leave when they surrendered to Germany. She filled in the U.S. Embassy about her experience in France and was recruited into the S.O.E.

She worked smuggling information and people out of France and agents and supplies in. She eventually joined the O.S.S. Hall was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross in 1945 for her work in France.

Sources: 1, 2

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