Code Name Vfo565 is the first book of the GMJ Series but not the first in history for the characters. That honour would go to Code Name Foxtrot which takes place in 2004 or eight years before Code Name Vfo565 which takes place in 2012. Why you may ask did I not then wrote Code Name Foxtrot first? It is a good question and comes down to the Series developing by itself. When I started writing the GMJ Books I had no idea, really not, that it would grow to so many books. I thought the Egg Breaker War would be of more interest to the reader and hence started with Code Name Vfo565.
The name of the book refers to an actual operation which I am aware off and in this context it was the code flashed to activate the sleeper agents in 1998 after the US Embassy attack in Kenya. By this time, in 1998, the Egg Breakers were already established and operating independently from South African Secret Service control. As you read the books you will find that the Apartheid Era National Intelligence Service was disbanded and replaced by the South African Secret Service & National Intelligence Agency in 1995 or a year after Mr Mandela took over. The old spy networks were disbanded and by 1997 / 1998 they were creating new ones and incorporated the Egg Breaker networks and people like our heroine, Angelique Dawson, took command of operations. And she caused havoc.
I am asked often if Angelique exists. Yes, she is based on a few female agents I knew personally as is Foxtrot and Geelslang, the other two main characters found in every GMJ book. They too are based on Special Forces members I knew. Be clear that the GMJ Books are fiction but they are based on a large part of reality and you can bet your last dollar whatever these characters say in the books, whatever statements they make, I am able to prove. There went a lot of research into this and it is not by chance. It is written like that probably because I wrote many non-fiction books on counter terrorism, law and business under my real name. The shadowy world the characters live in is also not unknown to me and let us leave it like that. If you want to know about Special Forces operations and spy stuff in Southern Africa (applicable worldwide) then read these books. They are as real and historically correct as is humanly possible to recreate.
The first thirty pages of Code Name Vfo565 is tedious according to some feedback as it takes place in London where the premises of the Series is discussed by Sir John McElroy (a recurring character representing MI6). I do not agree that it is tedious; this part was needed to inform the reader what is happening down south. There is a saying that truth is stranger as fiction and that deeds are more valuable than words. Those thirty pages is an eye opener for many and it is what many intelligence analysts from Mossad to the CIA to the French, DGSE are saying. They believe that the new South Africa is not a Western supporter on the War on Terror no matter what the politicians say officially. And they have a point if you look at the deeds more than the words as set out in Code Name Vfo565. Sir John summarises very nicely why it is virtually impossible for Western Special Forces to operate inside Southern Africa without invitation and it all comes down to the local Super Power, South Africa, being able to prevent it. We went deep into history to explain this phenomenon and how risky such an undertaking will be and why the Egg Breakers suddenly became the trump card. They were already established, Christian and Western in outlook and not impressed with the new South African policies of supporting Muslim radicals and this starts the Egg Breaker War which is described fully in Code Name Pour Angelique, Code Name Phoenix, Code Name Lise and then Code Name Dawson. We will discuss the books one by one in the coming weeks.
Code Name Vfo565 becomes a lot more interesting once past Sir John’s explanation which are needed, I repeated his explanations in every book. Why? Simply because many readers buy a book on its cover (yes it is true) and then you would need to understand the context and hence the few pages explaining where the Egg Breakers come from and what is happening down south. But it is only in Code Name Vfo565 where we go into great detail, in the rest of the books it is only a page or two. The books are purposely written to be read on its own, it would be great to read the entire series but it can be read one by one. Therefore I had to repeat myself and the books also refer to each other.
What is Code Name Vfo565 about? I don’t want to reveal everything and give the plot away too much but it starts with Sir John realizing they need control of the Egg Breakers to snatch Muslim radicals and bring them to mother-ships waiting outside territorial waters where they can be interrogated at leisure. This happens in the real world, by the way. Since they cannot do so themselves the Egg Breakers are recruited as mercenaries to help and they do, Geelslang and Foxtrot snatches two Muslims and deliver them but they also report every move to Angelique Dawson, the bona fide head of counter terrorism for the South African Secret Service. She plays a central part in every book. The entire GMJ Series is about the love story between Angelique Dawson and her premier undercover operator, Major Geoffrey Foxtrot. For years the two of them looked at each other with goat’s eyes as Geelslang describes it and for years Geelslang wondered what exactly Angelique was up to. As the books progress it becomes clear what was going on and the way she controls her star agent is a trademark of the series with a battle of wits between the sexes which she always wins or nearly always. Angelique is not an easy woman to appreciate for a man like Foxtrot who has decidedly conservative ideas on the subject. She is dangerous too giving Foxtrot hell all the time in the nicest possible way as happens between people who dearly loves each other and does not know it yet.
The books are written by Foxtrot many years later recalling their adventures and how they finally became souls so it jumps around in time. I never had a reader complaining about this. To me the highlight of the book is not the Special Forces operations which are as genuine in tactics as it gets but where the two of them finally admit they are in love on a beach in Southern Mozambique. It is the special moment of the entire series and she is detained (a nice word for kidnapped and tortured) soon after by her organisation and accused of being a double agent for DGSE. Foxtrot rescues her and that is what Code Name Vfo565 is about, the Egg Breaker Program, why the new South Africa became what it did and the love story between Angelique & Foxtrot with Geelslang in the background. It is a great read and well worth your time. I do hope you will enjoy reading this book as much as I had writing it. It was fun.
George M James is a pseudo name for the author and used for security reasons. He is an expert on counter terrorism and counter insurgency operations in sub Saharan Africa, a military and war historian and published author of 43 books. His late wife was an American Patriot that served with the U.S. Navy. His books are widely read among military veterans of many nations.