Secret History of the CIA by Joseph J. Trento, Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
Secret History of the CIA
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Secret History of the CIA

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by Joseph J. Trento
     
 

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The CIA was founded on the best of intentions -- to battle the Soviet Empire during the Cold War. For over 50 years, hundreds of men and women in America's foremost intelligence agency have engaged nobly in espionage that was both risky and mysterious, in the name of national security. But the real CIA, as revealed in this eye-opening book, was an organization haunted

Overview

The CIA was founded on the best of intentions -- to battle the Soviet Empire during the Cold War. For over 50 years, hundreds of men and women in America's foremost intelligence agency have engaged nobly in espionage that was both risky and mysterious, in the name of national security. But the real CIA, as revealed in this eye-opening book, was an organization haunted from the very beginning by missed opportunities, internal rivalries, mismanagement, and Soviet moles.

In The Secret History of the CIA, you will descend into the murky underworld of double and triple agents, of divided loyalties and tortured souls, and of high-stakes operations that played out on virtually every continent. Nationally respected investigative journalist Joseph J. Trento peels away the shroud of secrecy that protected the CIA to reveal how the agency suffered from the profoundly human frailties of those who were chosen to lead it. For over a decade the author conducted countless interviews with legendary spymasters and pored through top-secret files to compile an engrossing history, rich with colorful characters and chilling intrigue. You'll come face-to-face with Igor Orlov, the cold-blooded Soviet double agent who infiltrated the upper echelons of American intelligence; James Angleton, the infamous CIA mole hunter, who implicated the Soviets in John F. Kennedy's assassination; George Weisz, the Hungarian emigrant who worked for the Soviets as he recruited Nazi scientists for the West; and many more.

Riveting and majestic in scope, this book takes you down the shadowy corridors of an organization comprised of America's best and brightest, whose thirst for power and influence compromised security, led to incredible mistakes that strengthened the Soviets, and, at the same time, resulted in the needless sacrifice of thousands of patriotic agents.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Citing legitimate governments ruined and thousands of lives lost, investigative reporter Trento (Widows) views the CIA as stunningly incompetent. He blames the agency's culture of arrogance for the waste of superior intellects and hundreds of millions of dollars. Trento vividly re-creates the day-to-day lives of key CIA agents during defining post-WWII events: the Cuban missile crisis; JFK's assassination; Vietnam; the overthrow of Salvador Allende in Chile; and Cold War espionage in the U.S. and Soviet Union. In Chile, for instance, the Nixon administration arranged a military coup to head off the Socialist Allende's presidency and abetted the assassination of the Chilean army's chief of staff, General Ren? Schneider, who wouldn't help "oust a democratically elected leader." Based on U.S. and Soviet records and reports and on hundreds of interviews with former CIA men and their families, the firsthand stories of moles, secret operations, assassination attempts and triple agents are equal to John le Carr?'s best. But Trento's provocative conclusions that Lee Harvey Oswald worked for the KGB and that Averell Harriman was probably a Communist sympathizer suffer from the poor credibility of his sources; his CIA has few heroes, many alcoholics, womanizers, deceitful bureaucratic infighters, outright liars and worse. Trento's prose sometimes reads like boilerplate spy thriller (peopled by "brilliant," "cunning" men and "beautiful and ambitious" women), but generally he does a good story justice, and he has ample opportunity here. (Oct.) Forecast: Recently released Cold War security documents are spawning numerous intelligence expos?s, and Trento's salable blend of gravitas and sensation willattract a wide readership. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781567318470
Publisher:
MJF Books
Publication date:
03/15/2007
Pages:
542
Sales rank:
106,492
Product dimensions:
6.60(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.80(d)

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The Secret History of the CIA 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
lockman More than 1 year ago
Very interesting, but sometimes boring.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
most of it was a good read