chapter  7
The Istrian Débâcle
Pages 10

The Secret Intelligence Service – that is, ‘ISLD’ – evacuated Owen Reed from Croatia at the end of June 1944 so that he could report firsthand on the Partisans’ declared intention of annexing the north-eastern Italian territory of Venezia Giulia, and with it the city of Trieste. He spent a week being debriefed at ISLD’s Bari operations centre, No. 1 I(U) Section, and was then taken by boat to Vis to report to Fitzroy Maclean. He spent ‘all morning with Fitz’ on 9 July, providing a full appraisal of the Partisan movement in Croatia, the military situation there, and the status of the British mission. Back in Bari the next day there was just time for ‘hectic packing and cleaning up’; early on the morning of the 11th he boarded the aircraft that was to bring him back to Britain, via north Africa and Gibraltar, after an absence of more than two years.1