'The Squad and the Intelligence Operations of Michael Collins'. The main role of The Squad, operating undercover in the War of Independence, was to help the Irish side and to provoke the intelligence services and police forces of the crown. The author concentrates on witness statements, relating the accounts as much as possible in the actual words of the men - or in some instances, the women - involved. These statements, from the Bureau of Military History archives, provide many invaluable historical insights into what was happening behind the scenes and help to explain not only what happened, but also, in many cases, why it happened. The Squad made a vital contribution to the War of Independence and was disbanded before the Truce. T. Ryle Dwyer is a columnist with the Irish Examiner and has published many books on aspects of twentieth-century Irish history.