George K.Young attended St. Andrews University, University of Burgundy, University of Giessen, and Yale University. He was commissioned (1940) as an officer in the King's Own Scottish Borderers regiment but later transferred to British Intelligence, where he became an expert in the methods of the Italian Fascist police system and those of the German secret services.
Before World War II he was on the editorial staff of the Glasgow Herald, and after the war he joined the Foreign Office, serving in diplomatic posts in Vienna, the Middle East, and, from 1953, in Whitehall — where he specialised in economic and defence intelligence work. His dissatisfaction with the Macmillan government led him to resign as Deputy of MI6 in 1961 and enter merchant banking.
In his book Inside Intelligence, Anthony Cavendish, a friend and colleague of Young, includes a seventeen-page summary of Young's career (Young also wrote the foreword for this book). According to Cavendish, Young's intelligence career started in World War II. He was employed first in Africa and later in Italy and North West Europe where his work involved 'playing back' captured enemy agents as channels for disinformation.
Following the war, after a brief return to journalism, Young returned to the Secret Intelligence Service ("SIS") as head of its Vienna station, where he was involved in running agents in south east Europe. In 1949 he was made head of SIS's economic requirements section (R6), their point of contact with the Treasury, the Board of Trade and the Bank of England. In 1951 he was appointed controller of SIS operations in the 'Middle East Area' which streched from Morocco to Afghanistan down to Ethiopia. Here he became involved in implementing the Anglo American decision to remove the Iranian leader Mossadeq and reinstate the Shah. According to Cavendish the Shah later said of Young that, "In times of crisis he is a man who can take decisions and throw caution to the winds. Young is a man who believes that friendship cuts both ways and that Britain should stand by her friends even at the risk of offending others."
In 1953 Young was recalled to London to take over as SIS Director of Requirements and in 1956, during the Suez crisis, he was again put in charge of Middle East Operations. In 1959 he was appointed Vice Chief of the Secret Service. He finally left the service in 1961.
G.K. (as he was popularly referred to) subsequently became Chairman of the Society for Individual Freedom. He was also an early and leading member of the Conservative Monday Club serving on several of its policy committees (Chairman of the Action Fund 1967-69), (Chairman, Economics Committee), and Executive Council. He was virulently opposed to immigration and helped found the Club's immigration committee. After losing an acrimonious election for the position of Club chairman to Jonathan Guinness in 1974 in which he had been supported by the British National Front, he set up another far-right group called Tory Action.
A London based Czech spy, Jan Mrazek has cited Young as a likely conspirator in a plot to undermine Edward Heath. It has been suggestedTemplate:Whom? that he was closely associated with alleged attempts to undermine the Labour government of Harold Wilson in the mid-1970s, and that he regarded the Tory government of Edward Heath to be virtually socialist. He was a supporter of Enoch Powell's tough line on immigration into the UK.
Young gave his views on the role of the spy in a circular issued during the late fifties (quoted by George Blake).
- "In the press, in Parliament, in the United Nations, from the pulpit, there is a ceaseless talk about the rule of law, civilised relations between nations, the spread of democratic processes, self-determination and national sovereignty, respect for the rights of man and human dignity.
- 'The reality, we all know perfectly well is quite the opposite and consists of an ever-increasing spread of lawlessness, disregard of human contract, cruelty and corruption. The nuclear stalemate is matched by the moral stalemate.
- 'It is the spy who has been called on to remedy the situation created by the deficiencies of ministers, diplomats, generals and priests.
- 'Men's minds are shaped of course by their environments and we spies, although we have our professional mystique, do perhaps live closer the realities and hard facts of international relations than other practitioners of government. We are relatively free of the problems of status, of precedence, departmental attitudes and evasions of personal responsibility, which create the official cast of mind. We do not have to develop, like Parliamentarians conditioned by a lifetime, the ability to produce the ready phrase, the smart reply and the flashing smile. And so it is not surprising these days that the spy finds himself the main guardian of intellectual integrity."
References[edit | edit source]
- Walker, Martin The National Front fontana Second Edition (1978) p122 and pp124-131
- Vallely, Paul (2002-02-22). "The Airey Neave Files". The Independent. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/profiles/the-airey-neave-files-661625.html. Retrieved 2009-02-03.
- Gordon Corera:Security correspondent (25 June 2012). "Heath Caper: A Czech blackmail plot against Ted Heath?". BBC news. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-18556213. Retrieved date=25 June 2012.
Publications[edit | edit source]
- Young, George K., Masters of Indecision, Methuen, London, 1962.
- Young, George K., Merchant Banking - Practice & Prospects, London, 1966.
- Young, George K., Finance and World Power, London, 1968.
- Young, George K., Who Goes Home, Monday Club, London, May 1969, (P/B).
- Young, George K., Who is My Liege - Loyalty and Betrayal in our Time, London, 1972.
- Young, George K., Subversion and the British Riposte, Ossian, Glasgow, 1984, ISBN 0-947621-02-4
- Young, George K., The Final Testimony of George Kennedy Young, published Lobster Magazine 19, 1990 
References[edit | edit source]
- Copping, Robert, The Story of the Monday Club, Current Affairs Information Service, London, April 1972, (P/B).
- Various dust-jacket summary biographies.
- Cavendish, Anthony, Inside Intelligence, Harper Collins, London, 1997
- Blake, George, No Other Choice, Jonathan Cape, London, 1990