By Robert E Mattingly; United States. Marine Corps. History and Museums Division

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Murphy too was soon in Washington. His political evaluation impressed Donovan who immediately trotted his star diplomat off to see the President. Roosevelt listened to Murphy's report with interest and decided, on-the-spot, to give him Ambassadorial rank. Between a retired Lieutenant Colonel and an Ambassador there now yawned a protocol gap as wide as the Grand Canyon. 'top man' in North Africa. Murphy became Donovan's Eddy remained titular head in Morocco but took his political orders from Murphy in Algiers.

Instead of becoming a platoon commander he was instantly promoted to temporary Captain (a not uncommon practice for officers going on special assignments where specific ranks were required) and assigned to the Office of Strategic Services for duty as Assistant Naval Attache and Marine Corps Observer, Algiers. Recognition of the 055 contribution to the success of TORCH, had prompted calls for more of the sanie in Tunisia. In early 1943, General Mark Clark, commanding the Fifth Army, requested direct support operations and a small group of 055 men was directed to establish an operating base at Oujda, Algeria.

When General Henri Giraud escaped from captivity, his person was briefly seen as a * rallying point for all anti-Nazi Frenchmen. While Murphy worked this angle, Eddy attempted to revive the plan for supporting Riff leaders in Spanish Morocco. To emphasize the need for some sort of action, the Naval Attache returned to Washington to personally argue the respective alternatives. At the time, he estimated Carlton Coon and Gordon Browne - a former Boston insurance executive - could summon more than 10,000 Riffs to the Allied banner.

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