The Honourable Schoolboy

The Honourable Schoolboy

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The Honourable Schoolboy (1977) is a spy novel by John le Carré
John le Carré
David John Moore Cornwell , who writes under the name John le Carré, is an author of espionage novels. During the 1950s and the 1960s, Cornwell worked for MI5 and MI6, and began writing novels under the pseudonym "John le Carré"...

. George Smiley
George Smiley
George Smiley is a fictional character created by John le Carré. Smiley is an intelligence officer working for MI6 , the British overseas intelligence agency...

 tries to reconstruct an intelligence service and to run a successful offensive espionage
Espionage
Espionage or spying involves an individual obtaining information that is considered secret or confidential without the permission of the holder of the information. Espionage is inherently clandestine, lest the legitimate holder of the information change plans or take other countermeasures once it...

 operation to save the service from falling to the "war hawks"
War Hawk
War Hawk is a term originally used to describe members of the Twelfth Congress of the United States who advocated waging war against the British in the War of 1812...

 in government. The "Honourable Schoolboy” of the title is Gerald Westerby, a spy sent to Hong Kong
Hong Kong
Hong Kong is one of two Special Administrative Regions of the People's Republic of China , the other being Macau. A city-state situated on China's south coast and enclosed by the Pearl River Delta and South China Sea, it is renowned for its expansive skyline and deep natural harbour...

.

The Honourable Schoolboy is the second novel of the informal “Karla Trilogy” and won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize
James Tait Black Memorial Prize
Founded in 1919, the James Tait Black Memorial Prizes are among the oldest and most prestigious book prizes awarded for literature written in the English language and are Britain's oldest literary awards...

 for literature for 1977; like the first and the third novels, Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy is a 1974 British spy novel by John le Carré, featuring George Smiley. Smiley is a middle-aged, taciturn, perspicacious intelligence expert in forced retirement. He is recalled to hunt down a Soviet mole in the "Circus", the highest echelon of the Secret Intelligence...

(1974) and Smiley's People
Smiley's People
Smiley's People is a spy novel by John le Carré, published in 1979. Featuring British master-spy George Smiley, it is the third and final novel of the "Karla Trilogy", following Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and The Honourable Schoolboy...

 (1979). It was later anthologized in The Quest for Karla
The Quest for Karla
Smiley Versus Karla , by John le Carré, published in the US as The Quest for Karla, is an omnibus edition of three novels concerning George Smiley's fight against Karla, his counterpart in Moscow Centre . The "Karla Trilogy" includes:* Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy - * The Honourable Schoolboy - *...

(1982), an omnibus
Anthology
An anthology is a collection of literary works chosen by the compiler. It may be a collection of poems, short stories, plays, songs, or excerpts...

 edition of the Smiley books.

Synopsis


In 1974, George Smiley, the Chief of the Secret Intelligence Service
Secret Intelligence Service
The Secret Intelligence Service is responsible for supplying the British Government with foreign intelligence. Alongside the internal Security Service , the Government Communications Headquarters and the Defence Intelligence , it operates under the formal direction of the Joint Intelligence...

 (known as "the Circus"), is cleaning its London house—in the aftermath of discovering and capturing a Soviet mole among the Circus's leaders. In reconstructing and rehabilitating the compromised organization, he seeks clues to the trail of Karla
Karla (fictional character)
Karla is a fictional character in several novels by John le Carré. A Soviet Intelligence officer, he most often appears as a distant antagonist of George Smiley...

, his KGB
KGB
The KGB was the commonly used acronym for the . It was the national security agency of the Soviet Union from 1954 until 1991, and was the premier internal security, intelligence, and secret police organization during that time.The State Security Agency of the Republic of Belarus currently uses the...

 counterpart and personal nemesis, in the USSR
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

.

To protect the politically weakened spy service from the Government war hawk
War Hawk
War Hawk is a term originally used to describe members of the Twelfth Congress of the United States who advocated waging war against the British in the War of 1812...

s, Smiley must launch a successful offensive espionage operation against the enemy. To that effect, Smiley, Sachs, and di Salis “take back-bearings” and identify investigations unreasonably suppressed by Bill Haydon. They discover Sam Collins’s investigation of a money-laundering “gold seam” in Vientiane
Vientiane
-Geography:Vientiane is situated on a bend of the Mekong river, which forms the border with Thailand at this point.-Climate:Vientiane features a tropical wet and dry climate with a distinct monsoon season and a dry season. Vientiane’s dry season spans from November through March. April marks the...

, Laos
Laos
Laos Lao: ສາທາລະນະລັດ ປະຊາທິປະໄຕ ປະຊາຊົນລາວ Sathalanalat Paxathipatai Paxaxon Lao, officially the Lao People's Democratic Republic, is a landlocked country in Southeast Asia, bordered by Burma and China to the northwest, Vietnam to the east, Cambodia to the south and Thailand to the west...

; it points to Karla—also evident in the matter is Collins' personal agenda.

The Honourable Gerald “Jerry” Westerby is a former newspaper reporter and occasional SIS secret agent
Secret Agent
Secret Agent is a British film directed by Alfred Hitchcock, loosely based on two stories in Ashenden: Or the British Agent by W. Somerset Maugham. The film starred John Gielgud, Peter Lorre, Madeleine Carroll, and Robert Young...

 and a minor character in Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, the preceding novel. At the opening of the novel, Westerby has been living in retirement with his girlfriend in a small Italian village, whose inhabitants have nicknamed him "The Honourable Schoolboy". Collins' investigations prompt Smiley to recall Westerby and despatch him to Hong Kong
Hong Kong
Hong Kong is one of two Special Administrative Regions of the People's Republic of China , the other being Macau. A city-state situated on China's south coast and enclosed by the Pearl River Delta and South China Sea, it is renowned for its expansive skyline and deep natural harbour...

 where he blackmails the banker Frost for photographs of the account of Drake Ko—destination of the Soviet money transmitted via Vientiane. The photographs reveal to Westerby that it is a “lock-away account”, featuring only the name of the founder’s trust—“Drake Ko”; moreover, the trust-beneficiary is identified only via fingerprint; no money has been withdrawn, and the balance is about a half-million American dollars.

The field work of Westerby and Craw, another journalist-spy, in Hong Kong, and of the Circus “burrowers” in the UK, identified “Elizabeth Worthington” as Ko’s blonde girlfriend Liese Worth; previously, she was girlfriend to bush pilot Tiny Ricardo, a Mexican mercenary
Mercenary
A mercenary, is a person who takes part in an armed conflict based on the promise of material compensation rather than having a direct interest in, or a legal obligation to, the conflict itself. A non-conscript professional member of a regular army is not considered to be a mercenary although he...

 in Vientiane, as such, she thought herself a British intelligence agent run by Mr Mellon (Sam Collins). Sachs and di Salis interview a Mr Hibbert, learning that he is the missionary who named the foundling Ko brothers “Drake” and “Nelson” to honour Britain; and that “Liese” was the name of his dead wife.

US intelligence reports that Ricardo is alive and that he had approached them with information about an opium
Opium
Opium is the dried latex obtained from the opium poppy . Opium contains up to 12% morphine, an alkaloid, which is frequently processed chemically to produce heroin for the illegal drug trade. The latex also includes codeine and non-narcotic alkaloids such as papaverine, thebaine and noscapine...

 cargo he was to fly to Red China. Moreover, because the US wants to arrest Ko as a drug kingpin, they give Smiley ten to twelve weeks to pursue Circus interests before intervening. Faster than Peter Guillam, Smiley quickly grasps the implication—Tiu's, Ko’s second-in-command, quick trip to Shanghai
Shanghai
Shanghai is the largest city by population in China and the largest city proper in the world. It is one of the four province-level municipalities in the People's Republic of China, with a total population of over 23 million as of 2010...

 six weeks before Ricardo’s planned opium cargo flight to Red China, was to meet with Nelson, Drake’s brother, to arrange their reunion rendez-vous via which Nelson would escape China in Ricardo’s Beechcraft
Beechcraft
Beechcraft is an American manufacturer of general aviation and military aircraft, ranging from light single engine aircraft to business jets and light military transports. Previously a division of Raytheon, it has been a brand of Hawker Beechcraft since 2006....

.

Smiley thus decides to “shake Ko’s tree”, forcing him to react to being spied upon, thereby advancing Operation Dolphin. Westerby manœuvres Liese Worth—aka “Lizzie Worthington”—to dinner. She calls Tiu to the restaurant; before him, Westerby interviews her about Ricardo, the bush pilot, about the connection between Indocharter Air Transport and the Soviet embassy in Vientiane. Surprised and personally relieved, Westerby perceives her ignorance of the gold seam, of Nelson Ko and of the Soviet connection.

The burrowers’ biography of Nelson Ko, aka “Sheng-hsiu Ko”, and later, “Yao Kai-sheng”, reports that, from 1955-56, he attended shipbuilding school in Leningrad, where the faculty included Ivan Ivanovitch Bretlev (a “talent-spotter” for Karla). In 1957, Nelson returned to China (the Circus presumes he spent the intervening time training under Karla), where, as Yao Kai-sheng, Nelson held great responsibilities, until 1967, when his Soviet credentials politically disgraced him during the Cultural Revolution
Cultural Revolution
The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution, commonly known as the Cultural Revolution , was a socio-political movement that took place in the People's Republic of China from 1966 through 1976...

. In 1971, he took a naval engineering job, but was not formally rehabilitated until early 1973. He was then integrated into the Central Planning Committee of the Chinese Communist Party. In assistance, the “Cousins” give the Circus the biography of opium
Opium
Opium is the dried latex obtained from the opium poppy . Opium contains up to 12% morphine, an alkaloid, which is frequently processed chemically to produce heroin for the illegal drug trade. The latex also includes codeine and non-narcotic alkaloids such as papaverine, thebaine and noscapine...

 smuggler Charlie Marshall, a friend and Ricardo's co-pilot.

In the event, Drake's men torture and murder Frost for revealing Ko’s account to Westerby; his brutally mutilated, fly-covered corpse unsettles Westerby and the Circus.

On Circus orders, Westerby finds the bush pilot-opium smuggler Charlie Marshall in Battambang
Battambang
Battambang is the capital city of Battambang province in northwestern Cambodia.Battambang is the second-largest city in Cambodia with a population of over 250,000. Founded in the 11th century by the Khmer Empire, Battambang is well known for being the leading rice-producing province of the country...

, Cambodia, and manages to board the DC-4 Carvair flight Marshall is flying en route to Phnom Penh
Phnom Penh
Phnom Penh is the capital and largest city of Cambodia. Located on the banks of the Mekong River, Phnom Penh has been the national capital since the French colonized Cambodia, and has grown to become the nation's center of economic and industrial activities, as well as the center of security,...

. Ricardo also is aboard, but Westerby doesn’t grasp who he is until Phnom Penh; in evading him, Ricardo shoots at Westerby. That night, Westerby takes Marshall from an opium den and interrogates him, learning that Lizzie was a heroin courier for Mellon (Sam Collins); that she directly intervened with Drake on Ricardo’s behalf; that Tiu offered him (Marshall) five thousand dollars for an unconventional flight—which he (Marshall) turned down, per paternal advice; and where, between flights, Ricardo currently hides.

Westerby pursues Ricardo, by ferry, across the Mekong
Mekong
The Mekong is a river that runs through China, Burma, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. It is the world's 10th-longest river and the 7th-longest in Asia. Its estimated length is , and it drains an area of , discharging of water annually....

 River, into Thailand
Thailand
Thailand , officially the Kingdom of Thailand , formerly known as Siam , is a country located at the centre of the Indochina peninsula and Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by Burma and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, and to the...

; Ricardo tells Westerby that Tiu, on behalf of Ko, hired Ricardo to fly opium
Opium
Opium is the dried latex obtained from the opium poppy . Opium contains up to 12% morphine, an alkaloid, which is frequently processed chemically to produce heroin for the illegal drug trade. The latex also includes codeine and non-narcotic alkaloids such as papaverine, thebaine and noscapine...

 into Red China and pick up a package, paying Ricardo's debts as an advance for the job; but instead of completing the job, Ricardo stole the opium and the Beechcraft airplane and went into hiding. Westerby tells Ricardo that Nelson was the package. Ricardo again tries to kill Westerby, with a delayed-action hand grenade
Grenade
A grenade is a small explosive device that is projected a safe distance away by its user. Soldiers called grenadiers specialize in the use of grenades. The term hand grenade refers any grenade designed to be hand thrown. Grenade Launchers are firearms designed to fire explosive projectile grenades...

 in the fuel tank of his hired car; Westerby figures out the ruse, and safely watches the car explode.

On the 30th of April 1975, Westerby arrives at an American air force base in northeast Thailand, and cables his report to the Circus; he also learns that the North Vietnamese Army
NVA
NVA is a three-letter acronym for:*National People's Army, or Nationale Volksarmee, the army of former German Democratic Republic*Nieuw-Vlaamse Alliantie, a Flemish political party also known as New-Flemish Alliance...

 captured Saigon, winning and ending the Vietnam War (1945–75). In turn, the Circus orders his direct return to London, explicitly ordering he not return to Hong Kong. Disobeying, Westerby goes to Hong Kong, where, at his flat, he finds the corpse of Luke, his photo-journalist room-mate, shot dead;(perhaps) mistaken for Westerby, by Tiu.

To ascertain the successful conclusion of Operation Dolphin, Smiley, Guillam, Fawn (Smiley’s factotum-bodyguard), and the CIA men Martello and Murphy, are in Hong Kong to capture Nelson. Smiley knows Nelson will escape China (as Drake did in 1951) on a fishing fleet junk
Junk (ship)
A junk is an ancient Chinese sailing vessel design still in use today. Junks were developed during the Han Dynasty and were used as sea-going vessels as early as the 2nd century AD. They evolved in the later dynasties, and were used throughout Asia for extensive ocean voyages...

 to the southern-most island of Po Toi
Po Toi
Po Toi is the main island of the Po Toi Islands and the southern-most island of Hong Kong, with an area of 3.69 km².-Name:...

.

On the run, and spurred by schoolboy romanticism, Jerry Westerby remains in Hong Kong—to rescue Lizzie Worthington (he takes her from a cocktail party), and to protect Nelson from capture by the Circus, while the CIA spies on Drake. They go to her apartment; Smiley enters unannounced, and Westerby, expecting either Drake or Tiu, assaults him, before realizing it is his boss, and, in turn, Fawn manhandles Jerry. Smiley orders Fawn and Guillam to put Westerby aboard a flight to London; but Westerby escapes, gets Lizzie, and they take a boat to Po Toi. There, she shows him the places special to Drake, helping Westerby to determine where Nelson will land from China. After arranging a next-night rendez-vous with Westerby, Lizzie returns to Hong Kong.

That night, on Po Toi island, Westerby finds Drake and Tiu at the beach, awaiting Nelson. Upon disabling Tiu, Westerby tells Drake he wants Lizzie for himself, for saving Nelson from the British and the Americans; Drake is sceptical. When Nelson lands, he and Drake embrace; American helicopters appear, depositing men who separate the brothers, and load Nelson on a helicopter. Fawn shoots and kills Westerby; leaving Drake on the beach, sobbing over his brother, again lost to politics.

Peter Guillam’s suspicions of the CIA, of Enderby, and of Collins proved correct—the Americans, not the British, detain and interrogate Nelson; his interrogators do not include di Salis and Sachs; the success of Operation Dolphin yields top Circus jobs for Enderby and Collins; the (temporary) Chief of the Circus, Smiley, and Connie Sachs are retired with pension; and Peter Guillam, again, is exiled to head the scalp-hunters in Brixton, as at the start of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy is a 1974 British spy novel by John le Carré, featuring George Smiley. Smiley is a middle-aged, taciturn, perspicacious intelligence expert in forced retirement. He is recalled to hunt down a Soviet mole in the "Circus", the highest echelon of the Secret Intelligence...

.

Authorial Epilogue: In the foreword to a later edition, le Carré wrote that the story’s narrative
Narrative
A narrative is a constructive format that describes a sequence of non-fictional or fictional events. The word derives from the Latin verb narrare, "to recount", and is related to the adjective gnarus, "knowing" or "skilled"...

 thrust might have been smoother had he omitted George Smiley
George Smiley
George Smiley is a fictional character created by John le Carré. Smiley is an intelligence officer working for MI6 , the British overseas intelligence agency...

, because Smiley’s appearances distracted readers from Westerby.

"Circus" jargon


The characters’ jargon
Jargon
Jargon is terminology which is especially defined in relationship to a specific activity, profession, group, or event. The philosophe Condillac observed in 1782 that "Every science requires a special language because every science has its own ideas." As a rationalist member of the Enlightenment he...

-heavy dialogue establishes the fictional authenticity of the espionage portrayed in The Honourable Schoolboy; examples of John le Carré’s tradecraft
Tradecraft
Tradecraft is a general term that denotes a skill acquired through experience in a trade.The term is also used within the intelligence community as a collective word for the techniques used in modern espionage...

 language are:
Tradecraft term Definition
Agent An external, free-lance person recruited to provide information and services; Circus staff are referred to as intelligence officers.
Burrowers The Circus’s researchers, usually intellectual
Intellectual
An intellectual is a person who uses intelligence and critical or analytical reasoning in either a professional or a personal capacity.- Terminology and endeavours :"Intellectual" can denote four types of persons:...

s, recruited at universities.
Circus The in-house name for MI6, the SIS (Secret Intelligence Service) which collects foreign intelligence. “Circus” refers to the SIS’s London locale at Cambridge Circus
Cambridge Circus, London
Cambridge Circus is a traffic intersection at the intersection of Shaftesbury Avenue and Charing Cross Road in central London...

.
The Competition MI5
MI5
The Security Service, commonly known as MI5 , is the United Kingdom's internal counter-intelligence and security agency and is part of its core intelligence machinery alongside the Secret Intelligence Service focused on foreign threats, Government Communications Headquarters and the Defence...

, the internal UK counter-espionage and counter-terrorism security service, whom the Circus often calls “The Security Mob”.
The Cousins The CIA in particular, and US intelligences services in general.
Ferrets Technicians responsible for finding and removing hidden microphones, cameras, et cetera.
Housekeepers Internal auditors and disciplinarians of the Circus.
Janitors Operations staff
Lamplighters Controls surveillance and couriers.
Mothers Secretaries and trusted typists serving the head of the Circus.
Nuts and Bolts Engineers who develop and manufacture espionage devices.
Pavement Artists Circus officers who inconspicuously follow people in public.
Scalphunters Assassinations, counter-espionage, burglaries, kidnappings, et cetera, that was sidelined after Control’s dismissal.
Shoemakers Circus forgers
Babysitters Bodyguards
Wranglers Radio signal analysts and cryptographers; the name derives from Wrangler maths students.

Characters


The Circus
  • The Hon. Jerry Westerby — a reporter, and occasional
    Freelancer
    A freelancer, freelance worker, or freelance is somebody who is self-employed and is not committed to a particular employer long term. These workers are often represented by a company or an agency that resells their labor and that of others to its clients with or without project management and...

     SIS secret agent
    Secret Agent
    Secret Agent is a British film directed by Alfred Hitchcock, loosely based on two stories in Ashenden: Or the British Agent by W. Somerset Maugham. The film starred John Gielgud, Peter Lorre, Madeleine Carroll, and Robert Young...

    .
  • George Smiley
    George Smiley
    George Smiley is a fictional character created by John le Carré. Smiley is an intelligence officer working for MI6 , the British overseas intelligence agency...

    — (temporary) Chief of the Circus
    Secret Intelligence Service
    The Secret Intelligence Service is responsible for supplying the British Government with foreign intelligence. Alongside the internal Security Service , the Government Communications Headquarters and the Defence Intelligence , it operates under the formal direction of the Joint Intelligence...

    .
  • Peter Guillam
    Peter Guillam
    Peter Guillam is a fictional character in John le Carré's series of espionage novels. He first appears in Call for the Dead at which time he is working for the Ministry of Defence....

    — Circus “cupbearer” to Smiley.
  • Fawn - Smiley's factotum
  • Connie Sachs
    Connie Sachs
    Connie Sachs is a fictional character created by John le Carré. Sachs plays a key supporting role in le Carré's Karla Trilogy of spy novels including Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy; The Honourable Schoolboy; and Smiley's People....

    — chief Moscow-gazer.
  • Doc di Salis — head China-watcher.
  • Molly Meakin — skilful, junior staff; a pretty Circus girl who catches Peter Guillam’s eye.
  • Sam Collins — an "old Circus" field officer, formerly based in Vientiane, Laos.
  • Stubbs — Westerby’s managing editor at the newspaper.


The Steering Committee (authorising further operations after the Ko bank account papers are obtained)
  • Oliver Lacon
    Oliver Lacon
    Oliver Lacon is a fictional Permanent Secretary at Britain's Cabinet Office in John le Carré's 'George Smiley' spy novels: Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, The Honourable Schoolboy and Smiley's People. He is responsible for administrative oversight of The Circus, Le Carré's fictionalised version of...

    — Circus watchdog from the Cabinet Office
    Cabinet Office
    The Cabinet Office is a department of the Government of the United Kingdom responsible for supporting the Prime Minister and Cabinet of the United Kingdom....

  • Roddy Martindale — of the Foreign Office, the scourge of the Circus.
  • Saul Enderby — of the Foreign Office, was ambassador to Indonesia; the chief pundit on South East Asia; future chief of the Circus
    Secret Intelligence Service
    The Secret Intelligence Service is responsible for supplying the British Government with foreign intelligence. Alongside the internal Security Service , the Government Communications Headquarters and the Defence Intelligence , it operates under the formal direction of the Joint Intelligence...

    .
  • Wilbraham — of the Colonial Office.
  • Pretorius — of the Security Service.
  • The Welsh Hammer — a Treasury banker.


Other Characters
  • Ann — Smiley’s unfaithful wife.
  • Peter Worthington — the husband Elizabeth Worthington abandoned.
  • Mr. and Mrs. Pelling - Elizabeth Worthington's parents
  • Mrs. Matthews - unofficial widow of Control
  • Mr. Hibbert - as a missionary in Shanghai, knew Drake Ko and his brother Nelson
  • Martello - head of CIA London office
  • Murphy - Martello's assistant
  • Tiny Ricardo - Mexican frontman for Indocharter Vientiane S.A.
  • Elizabeth Worthington, alias Lizzie, alias Lizzie Ricardo, alias Liese Worth - first, common-law wife of Tiny Ricardo; then, mistress of Drake Ko
  • Charlie Marshall - sometime business partner of Tiny Ricardo
  • Luke - Californian journalist in Hong Kong
  • Big Moo - local journalistic jargon for the governor of Hong Kong
  • Rockhurst ("The Rocker") - Superintendent of Police in Hong Kong
  • William Craw - an aging journalist, working for British Intelligence
  • Jake Chiu - Luke's landlord, a real-estate entrepreneur
  • Major Tufty Thesinger - Erstwhile SIS Head of Station, Hong Kong
  • Frost - works at a Hong Kong bank, is used by Westerby
  • Drake Ko - Hong Kong Fat Cat, receiving US$25K a month from the Soviets
  • Nelson Ko - Drake's brother; also the name of Drake's deceased son
  • Tiu - Ko's assistant
  • Arpego - wealthy Filipino, friend of Ko
  • Phoebe Wayfarer - half-English, half-Chinese agent for Brit Intel
  • Sally Cale - art faker, illicit bullion dealer, occasional heroin trafficker, business partner or employee of Ko, introduced Liese to him
  • Keller - veteran journalist whom Westerby meets in Phnom Penh
  • Lorraine - American journalist in Phnom Penh

Adaptations


Jonathan Powell, producer of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (1979), said the BBC considered producing The Honourable Schoolboy but a production in South East Asia was considered prohibitively expensive and therefore the BBC instead adapted the third novel of the Karla Trilogy Smiley's People
Smiley's People
Smiley's People is a spy novel by John le Carré, published in 1979. Featuring British master-spy George Smiley, it is the third and final novel of the "Karla Trilogy", following Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and The Honourable Schoolboy...

(1979) which was transmitted in 1982. In Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, casting Joss Ackland
Joss Ackland
Sidney Edmond Jocelyn Ackland CBE , known as Joss Ackland, is an English actor who has appeared in more than 130 films and numerous television roles.-Early life:...

 in the minor role of Jerry Westerby was logical, if the original intent was retaining him as the protagonist of a television adaptation of The Honourable Schoolboy novel.

In 1983 the BBC adapted The Honourable Schoolboy to radio. Martin Jarvis played Jerry Westerby and Peter Vaughan
Peter Vaughan
Peter Vaughan is an English character actor, known for many supporting roles in a variety of British film and television productions. He has worked extensively on the stage, becoming known for roles such as police inspectors, Soviet agents and similar parts...

 played "George Smiley". A subsequent BBC radio adaptation, first broadcast in 2010 in the Classic Serial slot, featured Simon Russell Beale
Simon Russell Beale
Simon Russell Beale, CBE is an English actor. He has been described by The Independent as "the greatest stage actor of his generation."-Early years:...

 as George Smiley and Hugh Bonneville
Hugh Bonneville
Hugh Richard Bonneville Williams, known professionally as Hugh Bonneville , is an English stage, film, television and radio actor.-Education:...

as Jerry Westerby, as part of Radio 4's year-long project to adapt all eight Smiley novels.