Definint el color negre

Dans le document 1.1.1. Objectius de la recerca (Page 47-51)


2.2.1. Definint el color negre

¿En què consistia, la propaganda negra responsabilitat del PWE? En els Arxius es conserva un memoràndum de 18 de juliol de 1942, signat per un dels seus tres membres, Leeper, on es defineixen els termes d’aquest tipus de propaganda:


1. Its Character and the German attitude to it

Black propaganda covers all those forms of propaganda which are not identified with H.M.G. and which have the appearance of springing spontaneously from the local population without British inspiration or connection. It is true that all forms of such propaganda cannot conceal from an enemy government their real source of inspiration, but it is equally true to say that, provided the propaganda is conducted in such a way as to conform with the feelings of a large section of the population in the country to which it is directed, the enemy government will not wish to denounce what strikes a sympathetic chord in the recipient and thereby call attention to its own opposition.

Experience has shown that the German Government, whatever it may know about our black broadcasting propaganda, is most unwilling to call attention to it.

This may rightly be regarded as a tribute to its efficacy, for it can be taken for granted that, were our propaganda to be so maladroit to be innocuous, the German Government would have no hesitation in exposing it. This applies particularly to our black propaganda in Germany, for it is understandable that the German authorities would be still more loath to give publicity to anti-German propaganda to population whom they knew to be hostile to them. (...)

2. Its object

The object of black propaganda is to damage the enemy’s war effort either directly or indirectly. The black propagandist does not necessarily espouse a cause which is openly hostile to the enemy or to an enemy-controlled administration. He can for example have the appearance of being a patriotic Hitlerite or a patriotic Petainiste, under cover of which he can either denounce the evil practices of the men surrounding them, thereby undermining the regimes themselves, or he can supply information of a kind calculated to appeal to the self-interest of his public so that they may, without considering themselves to be in opposition to their governments, do things which are harmful to those governments. This is the indirect method of attack.

The direct attack on the enemy is perhaps less complicated, by in such an attack it must be carefully borne in mind that the immediate object is not to lead a revolt but to stimulate certain forms of discontent which are most likely to lead to revolt. It is not possible at this stage of the war to lead a revolt or to formulate a programme of revolt from this country, for the leaders will come from within and will formulate their own programme, but is [sic] is possible by propaganda from there to take up

Political Warfare Executive responsible for working out policy in more detail so far as it affected the German ‘Empire’; Special Operations Executive responsible for the execution of PWE’s directives anywhere outside the United Kingdom. Each of these levels had its own Minister, with independent access to the ‘highest quarters’” (Mackenzie The secret history of SOE: Special Operations Executive, 1940-1945, pàgines 369-370).

certain subjects which are known to be causes of resentment and thereby to stimulate resentment to a point where local action becomes more likely. It is highly dangerous for the propagandist to exaggerate the part he has to play. In serious propaganda over-acting one’s part is not only amateurish but dangerous. The propagandist must be content to be the forerunner of those who will claim the prize.

3. Difference between White and Black Propaganda Methods

There is a clear line of demarcation between White and Black propaganda methods. The former is British and speaks with official authority, keeping its recipients regularly informed of the course of the war from the British point of view and putting strongly to Europe the part played by Britain in the war.

Black propaganda on the other hand does not speak from outside, but lodges itself inside the country with which it is concerned. It looks at every question from the point of view of people living in the country and is far more concerned with local affairs than with international. It has to act as though it were part of a secret organisation operating from within. What matters is no what we here, but what people on the spot are saying or feeling, how they should be made to react to the hardships of living conditions, to regulations imposed by enemy or Quisling administrations107, to the corruption and misdeeds of local bosses. The object in all such propaganda is to injure the German war machine, but we have to approach that object through stirring up all causes of irritation and resentment to a point where action will be taken of the kind most embarrassing to the Germans. For this purpose small details of intelligence affecting the ordinary lives of the populations concerned are more important in black propaganda than reports giving a broad summary of the political situation. Black propaganda form here has in fact proceed in the same way as the propaganda agent working inside the country, gradually and methodically building up cells of resistance to the enemy by playing upon those causes of irritation most likely to stimulate resistance.

4. What has to be avoided

There are many temptations in the way of those who have to proceed on these lines. There is the temptation to go too fast, to appeal for action before the ground has been prepared for action, to exaggerate the importance of evidence of reception or to be unduly discouraged when evidence does not come in regularly, to indulge in certain forms of propaganda for the satisfaction it gives to the propagandist rather than for the effect that it will produce. In white propaganda H.M.G. can speak its mind openly, but when H.M.G. goes black, it has to make others speak in the way it wishes them to speak. (...)

5. Coordination of Black Propaganda

The underground activities are conducted from many places and by many methods. By broadcasts, by literature smuggled into the countries concerned, by whispers put out from neutral countries, by agents trained here and dropped from the air to carry out and agreed plan of propaganda. Through all these channels of propaganda the main plans of P.W.E. have to be carried out, but in such a way that each channel must seem to be flowing quite independently. There must be coordination without the appearance of coordination. For example whispers must spread rumors which are not in conflict with rumors spread by broadcasts, but they

107 Quisling era una paraula utilitzada aleshores com a sinònim de traidor. Tenia l’origen en Vidkun Quisling, polític noruec que va col·laborar perquè els nazis controlessin el seu propi país, el 1940.

President de Noruega entre 1942 i 1945. En acabar el conflicte, fou jutjat, condemnat a mort i executat.

must not be the same rumours; black broadcasts deal with subjects to which, though treated differently, black leaflets will refer; agents in the country will feed the clandestine press with similar subjects, will secure listeners for the broadcasts, will form propaganda cells within the areas allotted to them. Just as the B.B.C.

broadcasts to Europe must be coordinated so that H.M.G. does not speak with conflicting voices to different countries, so must the various forms of black propaganda be coordinated, though much less openly, so that each form, not only does not conflict with the other, but assists it.

6. Is it really effective?

The black propagandist works unseen and without public recognition. He must cast his bread upon the waters in the hope that he may find it after many days.

From time to time he get evidence that his bread has had a safe passage. For example agents will report back by wireless saying that such and such material has been used and specifying further requirements. A report will come in that clandestine literature smuggled across the frontiers has been circulating inside.

Black broadcasts will be reported on, showing where there has been a listening public, or enemy –controlled broadcasts will answer stories put out by black broadcasts without revealing the source of the story. (...)

Black propaganda demands knowledge, skill, concentration, understanding and, above all, patience and persistence. A Fifth Column against the enemy is not built within a day, and it must be remembered that those who are supplying the bricks and mortar for the building are not even present to witness its progress. Only when our forces of liberation set foot on the European continent shall we be able to judge fully of the preparatory work that has been done behind the lines. If it has been well done, then a solid contribution to victory will have been achieved108.

Amb ocasió de la campanya de propaganda negra contra Itàlia el maig de 1943, un altre document dels Arxius dóna una definició molt més breu d’aquestes activitats clandestines, en contraposició amb la propaganda blanca:

We thus strive on “black” to prepare the ground for a later change in “White”

propaganda from the stick to the carrot by persuading Italians that the carrot has been swallowed and found good by influential leaders109.

Encara en un altre document, s’explica que

‘Black’ propaganda deserves its title for it stands for subversion by underground and underhand methods. Much of it is quite unscrupulous. Whereas White plans. Black employs three principal agencies, namely, S.O.E., rumours and short-wave wireless stations110.

108 Leeper, Reginald (18.07.1942). Black Propaganda. FO 898/63. The National Archives, Kew.

109 Desconegut (Maig 1943). On the Italian situation... FO 898/61. The National Archives, Kew.

110 Groves, P. R. C. Lecture on Political Warfare. FO 898/419. The National Archives, Kew.

Possiblement, una de les millors fonts per comprendre com concebien la propaganda al PWE siguin les lliçons que rebien els seus agents durant el corresponent període de formació. I, de fet, a una d’aquestes lliçons correspon el fragment tot just citat.

Almenys a partir de 1943, els nous agents rebien en un centre de formació un entrenament complet en “printing, photography, broadcasting technique, mass observation, writing of leaflets and local conditions in the country to which the agent is to be sent”111.

Reberen lliçons de temes com ara mentalitat germànica o mètodes per atacar la moral alemanya (pel tinent coronel R. L. Sedgwick), campanyes (també Sedgwick) o una sèrie sobre les armes de guerra política (political warfare), entre moltes d’altres112. Entre els professors, trobem Peter Ritchie Calder113, periodista, que ensenyava mètodes de propaganda i maquinària114. Comptaven també amb un psicòleg professional, el Dr.

MacCurdy, a qui se li demana instrucció per posar dels nervis a les tropes alemanyes (psicologia alemanya)115. Es conserven els apunts de bona part de les matèries. Entre els autors citats a les lliçons com a bibliografia figura el psicòleg anglès Cyril Burt, Carney Landis, Gordon W. Allport i Philip E. Vernon pels seus estudis en moviment expressiu (de l’any 1933), així com els treballs de George Gallup, entre d’altres. Bona part dels apunts que es conserven tracten de Fact and Opinion Research. Són veritables manuals per a experts en opinió pública i sociologia.

El 1944, la Psychological Warfare Branch (PWB) del Supreme Headquarters Allied Expeditionary Force (SHAEF)116 va oferir cursos conjunts Regne Unit-Estats Units, és a dir, PWE i les dues equivalents a l’altra banda de l’Atlàntic (Office of War Information, OWI, i Office of Strategic Services, OSS). Es conserven temaris complets

111 Desconegut (05.07.1942). Review of Black Propaganda Targets (including R. A. F. leaflets). FO 898/63. The National Archives, Kew, pàgina 1. Un historiador constata també que els agents del SOE rebien entrenament bàsic sobre com fer circular rumors i com crear pamflets (Foot, M. R. D. (1999). SOE:

an outline history of the Special Operations Executive, 1940-1946. London, Pimlico, pàgina 225).

112 Cf. PWE (1943). PWE School First Course of Lectures. FO 898/99. The National Archives, Kew. La classe sobre mentalitat germànica analitza fins i tot la seva mitologia, per concloure la necessitat d’arribar a tocar, amb la propaganda, la fibra derrotista que –suposen- té a la seva ànima la cultura alemanya.

113 Ritchie Calder, Peter (1906-1982). Socialista. Havia treballat de periodista al Daily News (1926-1930), Daily Chronicle (1930) i Daily Herald (1930-1941). White l’anomena periodista científic, i el recorda com “a fertile source of first-class technical rumours”. S’incorpora al PWE el 1941.

114 Calder Propaganda Methods & Machinery.

115 Cf. PWE (07.07.1942). Meeting of the Propaganda Policy Committee held in the 7th floor Conference Room at Bush House, on Tuesday 7th July, 1942 at 11 a. m. FO 898/63. The National Archives, Kew.

116 Va preparar l’alliberament d’Europa. Format a finals de 1943. El desembarcament a Normandia fou el 6 de juny de 1944.

d’alguns dels cursos. En el primer d’ells117, celebrat el març de 1944 a Brondesbury, es van donar 21 sessions sobre França i 18 sobre treball d’intel·ligència. Hi participaren 26 americans i 25 britànics.

Dans le document 1.1.1. Objectius de la recerca (Page 47-51)