Operation PIKESTAFF

Towards the end of the Second World War, with Soviet forces advancing inexorably on all fronts and domestic Communist parties and elements clamoring to join the march, the Allies were worried and started to re-tool some of their carefully-nurtured Resistance fighters across Europe into "stay-behind forces" to fight for capitalist democracy should the Red Tide overwhelm those nations. When Churchill's wartime Conservative government was voted out of office before V-E Day and a leftist government voted in, a similar network of arms caches, saboteurs, provocateurs and "soldiers of the night" was created to, if necessary, "set England ablaze"… That was Operation PIKESTAFF, conducted by a small cadre of SOE's more… reactionary officers.

When the Labour government of Clement Atlee, Churchill's successor, showed no signs of raising the Hammer and Sickle over Whitehall, PIKESTAFF was allowed to quietly fade away. Shortly thereafter, the Special Operations Executive, the creators of PIKESTAFF, was disassembled and (mostly) subsumed by its bitter rival, MI6, and in a curious incident, most of the documents relating to PIKESTAFF were accidentally consigned to the flames when SOE's records were purged. The necessary "stand-down" codes were among the papers lost forever.

Some right-wing nitwits tried to activate PIKESTAFF during the Harold Wilson Labour government in the 1970's but none of the heavily-armed sleeper agents turned up for the muster. It wasn't a case of a resurgent faith in parliamentary democracy - the plotters had simply used the wrong activation code…

Rumor has it that the lifers in the original PIKESTAFF teams may have recruited and trained their own replacements. In some places in Great Britain, there could be third- and fourth-generation sleeper agents still waiting for the right code-phrases to be uttered on "News at Six" to bring them out the cellars and bunkers with their rusty Sten guns and their dangerously weeping gelignite charges, to bring down the Soviet Occupation Government of Great Britain. No doubt their neighbors think they're historical re-enactors…

This was not the organization's finest hour…


Professor Peter Franklin's discovery of documentary evidence of PIKESTAFF brought him to the Laundry's attention. His efforts to discover some of the remaining PIKESTAFF sites lead directly to his induction.


Codename Archive

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License