Jasper Maskelyne was a world famous magician and illusionist in the 1930s. When war broke out, he volunteered his services to the British Army and was sent to Eygpt where the desert war had just begun. He used his skills to save the vital port of Alexandria from German bombers and to 'hide' the Suez Canal from them. He invented all sorts of camouflage methods to make trucks look like tanks and vice versa. Working for military intelligence, he put on a stage show inside the Royal Palace in Cairo in order to locate an enemy spy's radio transmitter. On Malta he developed 'the world's first portable holes': fake bomb craters used to fool the Germans into thinking they had hit their targets. His war culminated in the brilliant deception plan that won the Battle of El Alamein: the creation of an entire dummy army in the middle of the desert.
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