Combined Services Detailed Interrogation Centre

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The term Combined Services Detailed Interrogation Centre (CSDIC) was used for facilities in the UK, the continent (Belgium and Germany) between 1942 and 1947, the Middle East, and South Asia. They were run by the British War Office on a joint basis involving the British Army and various intelligence agencies.

They were originally established to interrogate detainees, defectors, and prisoners of war who were known or suspected to be working for National Socialist Germany and Japan. After the war, suspected Soviet agents were also held for interrogation. The last CSDIC facility, the Bad Nenndorf interrogation centre in Germany, was closed down in June 1947.

CSDICs in the UK included the "London Cage", which was the name given to three stately homes located in Kensington Palace Gardens, London.

The CSDICs on the European mainland were:

  • a CSDIC at Diest in Belgium
  • the Bad Nenndorf interrogation centre at Bad Nenndorf in Germany.

Torture and other controversies

The CSDICs are notorious for torture claims. See the "External links" section.

Furthermore, the CSDICs secretly bugged German prisoners and recorded their private conversations and small talk. Claimed transcripts of such conversations has been released. Even assuming that the transcripts are authentic, they may be problematic in other ways, such as due to people in small talk tending to exaggerate their own importance and using dubious claims to support their own arguments. Also, "The British are in turn coy about their means of extracting this material. One transcript carries the note: 'If the information in this report is required for further distribution, prisoners' names should not be mentioned and the text paraphrased as to give no indication of the methods by which it was obtained.'"[1]


"A “secret torture prison” was operated at Bad Nenndorf in north-west Germany, by the Combined Services Detailed Interrogation Centre (CSDIC), a division of the British War Office. The center of the township was emptied of people and surrounded with barbed wire. At night the villagers could hear the screams of the prisoners. Most of the interrogators were “German-Jewish refugees.” The warders were the “most unruly” elements of the British Army, who could be expected to resort most readily to violence.[57]

The Foreign Office briefed Clement Attlee, the prime minister, that “the guards had apparently been instructed to carry out physical assaults on certain prisoners with the object of reducing them to a state of physical collapse and of making them more amenable to interrogation.”[58]

Another “secret center” was operated in London where German POWs could be held and tortured in England without the knowledge of the Red Cross. In 2005, at the request of The Guardian newspaper, documents were declassified showing the extent of the torture regime against Germans after the war. The documents refer to “living skeletons,” tortured, beaten and exposed to extreme cold. The ranks of the prisoners expanded from being members of the Nazi party and the SS, to anyone who had succeeded under the Third Reich. They even included Germans who had escaped from the Russian zone and offered to spy for the British: they were tortured – one dying – to determine whether they were sincere. A former diplomat incarcerated at Bad Nenndorf was there simply because he knew too much about the interrogation techniques, while another was there for eight months due to a clerical error. Apart from physical brutalities, threats to kill a prisoner’s wife and children were accepted techniques of interrogation. An anti-Nazi who had spent two years in Gestapo custody stated he had never experienced such brutality as he had at Bad Nenndorf.[59][2]

See also

External links


Part of this article consists of modified text from Wikipedia, and the article is therefore licensed under GFDL.