Prepared by Op-20G Committee for Board of Awards and
forwarded as Enclosure to CNC TOP SECRET Serial 0005P20.

Captain Joseph N. Wenger was assigned to the Communications Intelligence Organization February 15, 1942 as technical director of OP-20-G.  In this capacity he was responsible for the technical organization and direction of all the productive work of the Organization; which at that time included several units (intercept and cryptanalytic) dispersed well over the world and a cooperative arrangement with the British government who were also operating in dispersed units.

Captain Joseph N. Wenger

Captain Wenger proceeded to weld these units into an efficient whole by (1) coordinating the tasks of each (2) establishing rapid communication facilities for the exclusive use of the C.I. organization (3) negotiating working agreements with the Army and cooperating Allies (4) obtaining the necessary high command support to achieve adequate personnel and facilities to accomplish the mission of the organization and (5) assigning definite responsibilities to each unit in a manner which produced optimum use of available skills and facilities.

On November 2, 1944 Captain Wenger became Assistant Chief of Naval Communications for Communication Intelligence (Op-20-G), and as such was in responsible charge of all U.S. Naval C.I. activities.  Further reorganization of the Communication Intelligence Organization followed which divorced the Washington productive activities from the staff activities.  In this newly created position Captain Wenger was able to bring his overall plan to complete maturity.

But his total accomplishment was not limited to organizational and administrative responsibilities.  He originated and developed basic techniques and principles which proved to be the foundation for the success of the mission.  Illustrations in this connection are:

  • Conception, preparation and implementation of the world wide coordinated war organization of C.I. activities.
  • Conception, preparation and implementation of war operating plan for C.I. organization.
  • Basic techniques for mechanical decode of intercepted messages.
  • Basic techniques used in traffic analysis.
  • Creation, implementation and maintenance of the C.I. research group.
  • Initiation of the project for the development and application of electronic analytic equipment for cryptanalytic purposes.
  • Initiation of project for the development of Bombes.
  • Service as head of a committee of three responsible for planning, organizing and directing the Bombe project.
  • Conception and general features of the C.I. rapid communications system.
  • Application of ionosphere and wave propagation principles to intercept operation.
  • Conception of, and initiations of action to create, Army-Navy combined Communication Intelligence Committee and Army-Navy combined Communication Intelligence Board for Army-Navy coordination in this field.
  • Establishment and maintenance of central collateral file for C.I. purposes.
  •  Reorganization of Atlantic D/F Communication system which resulted in greatly increasing the speed of efficiency of strategic D/F nets so they could be operated on a tactical basis.
  • Initiation and maintenance of performance studies which resulted in improving efficiency of C.I. operations.
  • Establishment of central intelligence file and development of general features of C.I. collation system.
  • Initiation and drafting of U.S. Navy C.I. security regulations.

It is the considered opinion of the senior officers in Communications Intelligence that the achievements of the C.I. Organization are directly attributable to the technical ability, judgement and leadership of Captain Wenger and that no other officer in the Navy could have filled this complex billet so ably.

Source: COMINT in WWII & Information Technology