In his balanced, and thus all the more disturbing, history of the CIA, Tim Weiner tells how an agency intended to inform the President about the world became so mired in cloak and dagger politics that the US now lacks the intelligence it needs to operate effectively on the world stage.
Why is it that the agency intended to provide us with intelligence about the world became a tool to shape our perception of that world for political purposes?
Why, for decades, did the agency acquire a shining reputation despite misreading nearly every global crisis?
How did the CIA misread Castro's Cuba, chances of victory in Vietnam, and the Soviet Union's staying power?
Mr. Weiner argues that these C.I.A. missteps have encouraged many of our gravest contemporary problems: Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, and terrorism- World Affairs Council of Oregon
Tim Weiner is a reporter for The New York Times. He has written on American intelligence for twenty years, and won the Pulitzer Prize for his work on secret national security programs. He has traveled to Afghanistan and other nations to investigate CIA covert operations firsthand.
Tim Weiner explains how, after Watergate, Gerald Ford and Donald Rumsfeld chose George H. W. Bush to run the CIA. Weiner claims Bush did a competent job, but Rumsfeld exhibited some telling behavior as Secretary of Defense while in charge of the intelligence budget.