Radhika Apte as Noor Inayat Khan in ‘A Call to Spy’ Credit – Courtesy of IFC Films
The summer of 1941 was a bleak time for Britain and her European allies in the war. The Nazis were bombing key cities across the country in what came to be known as the Blitz, and much of Europe had fallen to the Germans, leaving Britain vulnerable. This made the work of the Special Operations Executive (SOE), and the actions of three key women within it, that much more important.
Established in June 1940 in London, the SOE was a volunteer force set up to wage a secret war behind enemy lines. Prime Minister Winston Churchill famously ordered the SOE’s agents to “set Europe ablaze” through espionage, sabotage and building a resistance network in occupied Europe. Dozens of women were recruited by the SOE and deployed as spies, including