ISBN-10:
023113889X
ISBN-13:
9780231138895
Pub. Date:
03/02/2009
Publisher:
Columbia University Press
Enemies of Intelligence: Knowledge and Power in American National Security

Enemies of Intelligence: Knowledge and Power in American National Security

by Richard Betts
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Overview

Combining study with experience, Richard K. Betts draws on three decades of work within the U.S. intelligence community to illuminate the paradoxes and problems that frustrate the intelligence process. Unlike America's efforts to improve its defenses against natural disasters, strengthening its strategic assessment capabilities means outwitting crafty enemies who operate beyond U.S. borders. It also requires looking within to the organizational and political dynamics of collecting information and determining its implications for policy.

Betts outlines key strategies for better intelligence gathering and assessment. He describes how fixing one malfunction can create another; in what ways expertise can be both a vital tool and a source of error and misjudgment; the pitfalls of always striving for accuracy in intelligence, which in some cases can render it worthless; the danger, though unavoidable, of "politicizing" intelligence; and the issue of secrecy—when it is excessive, when it is insufficient, and how limiting privacy can in fact protect civil liberties. Grounding his arguments in extensive theory and policy analysis, Betts takes a comprehensive and realistic look at the convergence of knowledge and power in facing the intelligence challenges of the twenty-first century.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780231138895
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Publication date: 03/02/2009
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 264
Sales rank: 740,767
Product dimensions: 5.70(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Richard K. Betts is director of the Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies at Columbia, senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, and author of numerous books on military strategy and foreign policy. He has served on the National Commission on Terrorism, staffs of the Senate Intelligence Committee and National Security Council, and advisory panels for the Director of Central Intelligence.

Table of Contents

Preface
1. Twenty-first-Century Intelligence: New Enemies and Old
2. Permanent Enemies: Why Intelligence Failures Are Inevitable
3. Theory Traps: Expertise as an Enemy
4. Incorruptibility or Influence? Costs and Benefits of Politicization
5. Two Faces of Failure: September 11 and Iraq's WMD
6. An Intelligence Reformation? Two Faces of Reorganization
7. Whose Knowledge of Whom? The Conflict of Secrets
8. Enemies at Bay: Successful Intelligence
Notes
Index

What People are Saying About This

James Wirtz

An original, accessible, and theoretically important work.

James Wirtz, Naval Postgraduate School

Sir Lawrence Freedman

Richard K. Betts has been writing intelligently on intelligence since the 1970s. He now draws on years of scholarship and practical experience to explore how policymakers can be told what they need to know rather than just what they want to hear.

Sir - Lawrence Freedman

Richard K. Betts has been writing intelligently on intelligence since the 1970s. He now draws on years of scholarship and practical experience to explore how policymakers can be told what they need to know rather than just what they want to hear.

John McLaughlin

Richard K. Betts's new book shows a deep and sophisticated understanding of how American intelligence really works. It should be required reading for anyone who wants to get beyond the clichés and sound bites so frequently used to describe this complex and vital enterprise.

John McLaughlin, former deputy director of Central Intelligence

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