...Let us know what you think about the book, CZ. Would love to hear your opinion also.
And thank you nathaniel for your learned input here, great responses to what is floating around out there for us to read and learn, or be trapped by.
Man is the book lengthy! But I guess if you are attempting to cover a 60 year history, then there's a lot to cover.
I wanted a non politico insight into the CIA, and Weiner who writes for the Washington Post
seems to offer that.
In his intro, Weiner claims to have gone through some 15,000 different documents in covering the history. He says he didn't take anything second hand. He attempts to take a look at the failures in handling the CIA in each of the administrations.
He doesn't spare any president on their handling, giving Clinton bad marks, but giving Bush even worse marks. How bad can you knock your own intelligence operation when you claim they were "just guessing" on their intelligence in Iraq.
I started in the middle (which is a good reading technique) and now am going back to the beginning.
Weiner writes from facts and interjects his own opinions. But if you're a critical reader, you come to your own opinions as well.
In the beginning there was "Wild" Bill Donovan. It is interesting that his picture hangs in the CIA in some quarters, because he was a mess as a leader. He founded the OSS and wanted a CIA, but because of his actions was the worst person to advocate for it.
Jumping ahead. One theme that seems to re-emerge is the role of William Casey. That sucker goes back to Donvan's time. He was Reagan's director. And Casey, the CIA, and a number of presidents share in this whole "Cold War" theme.
I think the CIA is a fascinating organization. And we as a Americans need to understand its role in our government like any other governmental institution. How much should we be involved in covert or "clandestine" activities? How well funded should the CIA be? Should we budget for a bunch of operations officers or analysts? Should it report to the pentagon or the President?
I'm reading the book with that in mind.