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Nicknamed, not inaccurately, the "Ministry of Ungentlemenly Warfare", the SOE conducted espionage and sabotage throughout World War II, as well as smuggling supplies to La Résistance and providing British emisaries to the various rebel leaders.
In a way the SOE's experience of World War II was closer to the James Bond image then that of the rest of British intelligence, for they were expected to look for trouble more often and, it being wartime and all, they really did have a Licence to Kill. However very few even of the SOE had eighty women in a two hour movie (given that a lot of them, the radio-operators particularity, were women that would have been even cooler) or engaged in car chases that destroyed two dozen cars on a regular basis. And it is not clear that many SOE agents would have worried about whether their drink was shaken or stirred. Sometimes Real Life can be boring.
The SOE was headquartered in London 64 Baker Street (nicknamed the "Baker Street Irregulars") with dozens of training camps throughout the U.K. plus facilities in Singapore, Haifa, and Canada.
Appearances of SOE in fiction:
- The Laundry is (in its universe) the only part of SOE that survived, which is only part of why relationships with MI 6 are strained at best.