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'Ultra' was made possible because of help from Poland.

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Introduction

'Ultra' was made possible because of help from Poland. The Poles handed a replica of the Enigma to Bletchley Park in August 1939. Without it breaking the code would have been almost impossible. In January 1940 Alan Turing became convinced that the Poles had misinterpreted the workings of the Enigma and, after meeting them, realized that he was correct. He then managed to crack the 'Green' code. In February 1940 John Herivel thought of the idea of putting himself in an operators mind to reduce the setting possibilities. This became increasingly more useful to cracking the Enigma. When Germany invaded Denmark and Norway in 1940 they used a new code; 'Yellow'. This was cracked in five days and as a result Station X was able to supply large amounts of information to the armed forces. But unfortunately the armed forces did not trust the source's reliability because Bletchley Park was top secret and couldn't be spoken about, as well as the armed forces not trusting information coming from civilians. ...read more.

Middle

Unfortunately British Forces were forced to retreat, but for Station X it was a victory and showed what it was capable of. In May 1941 the German battle ship Bismarck had attempted to attack British shipping in the North Atlantic. The Royal Navy sent forces to intercept it, but when it came in contact with HMS Hood, it was slightly damaged. Bletchley Park warned the admiralty that the Bismarck must be heading for Brest because its messages were now being sent t France. The Admiralty was not convinced until Station X cracked the code and proved that they was correct, which led to 'Force H' from Gibraltar to intercept and sink the Bismarck. In 1941, the 'Dolphin' Naval code had been broken and the amount of British convoys sunk dropped from 282,000 tonnes of shipping to 62,000, about 15 ships. In January 1942, Bletchley Park was unable to read messages sent by the German army in North Afrika. This resulted in British forces being forced back in North Afrika, until Station X finally cracked the German code. ...read more.

Conclusion

This gave the Allies an advantage at D Day (6 June). Although many messages sent by Germans in the weeks after the landings were not read, Station X was able to give warnings of counter attacks on 10 and 12 June. However, information from Station X was ignored when 300,000 Germans were almost encircled in Normandy. This allowed the Germans to escape. After D Day the influence of Ultra became less important. Montgomery ignored Station X information when he decided to launch Operation Market Garden, the attempt to capture the bridge at Arnhem. It was a disaster. Information was also provided about the Battle of Bulge, the counter-attack by the Germans in December 1945, though this was not the main reason for the defeat of German attack. Ultra was a valuable source of information for the last 4 years of the war. It became more detailed and consistent and its information enabled Allied forces to survive attacks and avoid defeat. But battles were by won by Allied commanders. Bletchley Park could only provide information to plan tactics and strategy. ...read more.

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