Singer, Kurt D. 1911–2005
Singer, Kurt D. 1911–2005
OBITUARY NOTICE—See index for SATA sketch: Born August 10, 1911, in Vienna, Austria; died December 9, 2005, in Santa Barbara, CA. Activist, spy, publisher, and author. Singer was an anti-Nazi activist and spy against Germany during World War II who later became known for his espionage and crime books. After attending the University of Zurich, he started Mitteilungsblätter, an underground newspaper strongly against the Nazis, in 1933. This, naturally, put him in danger and he soon had to flee to Sweden. He attended the Labor College in Stockholm and published the titles Det Kommandet Kriget (1934), the coauthored Carl von Ossietzky (1937), and Goering: Germany's Most Dangerous Man (1940). The book on Ossietzky was part of an effort to have that anti-Nazi leader released from a concentration camp. With the publication of the Goering biography, the German government demanded that Sweden ban the title. Sweden complied, though it refused to extradite the author as the Nazis also wished. Seeing the situation in Europe spiraling downward, Singer decided to move to the United States. While in Sweden, he had also been involved in counterespionage, and he continued these activities after he moved to America. He worked with the U.S. government, as well as with the secret service in Great Britain and Norway. Meanwhile, he continued to write about the war, focusing on the espionage side with titles such as Spies and Traitors of World War II (1945). After the war, Singer, who had changed his original surname from Deutsch, attended the Divinity College of Metaphysics, where he completed a Ph.D. in 1951. In 1955, he founded the news service Singer Communications, Inc., in California. He continued to write and edit books on spying, as well as on crime, including Spies and Traitors: A Short History of Espionage (1953), Crime Omnibus (1961), and I Spied and Survived (1980). He also wrote biographies such as The Danny Kaye Saga (1957) and Mata Hari (1967), and tales of the supernatural, including The Unearthly: The World's Greatest Stories of the Occult (1962) and Strange Stories of the Unknown (1980). With his wife, Jane Sherrod, he penned several children's books that also covered espionage, biography, and ghost tales. Among his more recent titles, which again prove his versatility, are The Complete Guide to Career Achievement (1994), Success Secrets (1995), The Joy of Practical Parenting (1995), and Der deutsche Widerstand gegen Hitlers Krieg—1939–45 (2002). An acknowledged authority on World War II history, Singer was in demand as a lecturer on the war and its espionage efforts.
OBITUARIES AND OTHER SOURCES:
Los Angeles Times, December 14, 2005, p. B11.
North County Times Online, http://www.nctimes.com/ (December 14, 2005).