MI6 history documents the intelligence service's real 'James Bonds'
UPI News Service, 09/22/2010
The fictional James Bond had several real-life models, including a World War II British agent who came ashore in a dinner jacket and wetsuit, a new book says.
Peter Tazelaar's 1941 exploit was later repeated by Sean Connery in the movie "Live and Let Die," The Sun reports. Tazelaar, a Dutchman working for MI6, shed the wetsuit and walked into a nearby casino after landing on the Dutch coast.
Keith Jeffery, a professor at Queen's University in Belfast, is the author of "MI6 -- The History of the Secret Intelligence Service 1909-1949." The book, published this week, is the first official history of the agency.
Jeffery said author Ian Fleming may also have used a close friend, Wilfred "Biffy" Dunderdale, as a model for the character of James Bond.
"When head of the SIS Paris station in the Thirties, he had a penchant for pretty women and fast cars, and has been proposed as one of the possible models for Bond," Jeffery said in his book.
"The real James Bonds are more interesting than the fictional James Bond because they are real people," Jeffery said.
Fleming, a birder as well as a spy, famously named his spy for the author of a book on Jamaican birds.