Codebreaking Achievement Exploited In New Film

That the magnificent achievement of breaking the German Enigma code has been exploited as a statement for gay rights and women’s equality is emblematic of the influence of the radical repurposing of history to serve the reigning politically correct cultural regime. At least that’s the view presented in Imitation Game, a recently released film.

One of the few advantages possessed by the British as they stood alone against Nazi Germany from 1939 to 1942 was the Ultra Secret -- the code name for breaking the German Enigma cipher, the supposedly unbreakable electronic transmission of top secret messages. Enigma machine operators would strike a key for one letter of the alphabet that then was subject to 150 million permutations before being received by operators on the other end of the transmission.

In late 1939, The British, relying on previous efforts by the Poles to break the Enigma code, gathered 12,000 mathematicians, crossword experts, chess champions, Cambridge and Oxford dons, female cryptanalysts and various others with an aptitude for puzzle solving, swore them all to secrecy and confined them to Bletchley Park, an old country estate and small surrounding village 50 miles northwest of London. In under a year, the sophisticated Enigma code was broken, largely due to the genius of Cambridge math professor Alan Turing, who created what is considered the world’s first working computer in the process. As Turing says in the film (played by actor Benedict Cumberpatch), Enigma is a machine, so a machine is needed to break it.

That Turing was homosexual played no known part in his codebreaking experience. That came after the war when his sexual preferences, illegal at the time in Britain, raised alarms that he was a security risk. He was left out of important work and subjected to chemical treatment to “cure” his homosexuality. He committed suicide in 1954 by injecting cyanide into an apple and taking a bite. Or, at least that is the story line, now under attack by Turing theorists.

Imitation Game elevates Turing’s homosexuality to a level that forces competition with the amazing accomplishments of the Bletchley codebreakers, about whom Britain’s King George VI said: "It was thanks to Ultra that we won the war”. To suit the mission of the filmmakers to embellish the story to make “diversity points”, actress Keira Knightley is jammed into the screenplay to represent modern female angst as the woman who is just as smart as the men but has to overcome male prejudice to win a place at the table.  This is particularly ridiculous and fictitious. Women played key roles at Bletchley and have been recognized for their accomplishments.  Of course, reviews of the film in the MSM focus on the victimization issues, such as  Ann Hornaday’s review in the Washington Post gushing that the “sexism subtly mirrors Turing’s own with homophobia.  

Sexism and homophobia were not considered issues at Bletchley. But dedication and heroism were – and character: Not one of the 12,000 men and women revealed the Ultra Secret until it was declassified in the mid-1970s. As intelligence expert Christopher Andrew put it about the film, “Monty Python meets Bletchley”.