Right wing extremists

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Right wing extremists

John McNab (KV 2/2474-2475)

Monocle-wearing teacher McNab was William Joyce's (Lord Haw-Haw's) nominated second in command of the National Socialist League at the outbreak of the Second World War. These two heavily weeded files record the Security Service's interest in him from 1935 to 1956, during which time his correspondence was intercepted on the grounds that he was "the chief associate of William Joyce", with whom he had visited Germany days before the outbreak of war, and with whom the files reveal he carried out ciphered correspondence. KV 2/2474 (1935-1944) records that Joyce nominated him as the man through whom League members should keep in touch. He was detained in May 1940, and not released until October 1944, since he was seen as one of the detainees who had the strongest held political views. The file contains transcripts of his hearings by the advisory committee hearing appeals against internment in July 1940 (serial 91a) and January 1943 (serial 137a).

After his release, a passport was issued in error to McNab, and attempts by the Home Office to retrieve it failed. KV 2/2475 (1945-1956) notes how McNab "…in defiance of the Home Secretary…has smuggled himself to Eire whence he has gone to Spain with his wife" (minute 292). From there he engaged in anti-British activities, and an agent was set to watch him, under cover of receiving English lessons. The source's account of their dealings is at serial 307a. The file also records how, before leaving Britain, McNab attempted to leave cigarettes and money for William Joyce at Bow Street Police Station in June 1945. Also, at serial 306a, the file contains the text of a poem written by McNab To Hermann Goering, which was recovered from intercepted correspondence between two other right-wing extremists.