An unprecedented history of the CIA's most secretive operations and the gadgets that made them possible.
Today's CIA is regularly criticized for emphasizing technology at the expense of "human intelligence." In this history of the agency's Office of Technical Services, Wallace, its former head, and academic specialist Melton (Ultimate Spy) refute the charge with exciting content and slam-bang style. The book's chief value is its perspective on the synergy of technology and tradecraft. From WWII through the Cold War and up to the present, the authors say, technical equipment-for clandestine audio surveillance, for example-has been an essential element of agent operations. In the post-Cold War "information society," technology plays an even more significant role in fighting terrorism. Agents remain important, along with their traditional skills. Increasingly, however, they support clandestine technical operations, especially infiltrating and compromising computer networks. The authors persuasively argue that employing and defending against sophisticated digital technology is the primary challenge facing U.S. intelligence in the 21st century. Their position invites challenge, but it cannot be dismissed. 32 pages of photos, over 100 b&w illus. throughout. (June)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Modern espionage requires more than a fast car and a shaken martini; it demands suitable equipment with which to gather, store, and transmit information. Wallace, former director of the CIA's Office of Technical Services (OTS), and H. Keith Melton (CIA Special Weapons & Equipment: Spy Devices of the Cold War), together with Henry Robert Schlesinger (coauthor, Brooklyn Bounce: The True-Life Adventures of a Good Cop in a Bad Precinct), present this well-written account of the ingenious items and procedures developed by the OTS to support field agents. The details of operational activity are as engrossing as the descriptions of the equipment, military and otherwise-e.g., miniature cameras and radios, obscure drugs, tiny weapons, secret compartments, and forged documents-depicted here in 100-plus fascinating diagrams and photographs. Readers can find more photos of such artifacts on the CIA's virtual museum tour (
Daniel K. Blewett
- Tantor Media, Inc.
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- Unabridged, 16 CDs, 20 hours
- Product dimensions:
- 5.40(w) x 6.50(h) x 1.70(d)
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