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The Secret History of the CIA

by Joseph Tren­to
2005 (SC), Car­roll & Graf
ISBN 0786715006
560 pages.

From NameBase.org
This book cov­ers rough­ly three inter­min­gled top­ics. The first is the CIA’s ear­ly years at the Berlin base, where high-fly­ing cor­rup­tion and Sovi­et pen­e­tra­tion was ram­pant, and even seemed to help one’s CIA career. William Har­vey was a key play­er here. The sec­ond involves the migra­tion of some of these play­ers to Viet­nam, and also to Chile. The pri­ma­ry source on Chile is Edward Kor­ry, whose sto­ry is told here in some detail. The third aspect of this book is the mole wars, where Angle­ton plays a major role. Tren­to makes a strong case that Igor Orlov and George Weisz deserve top billing as moles, but is less con­vinc­ing when he describes Angle­ton’s the­o­ries about Oswald. In the end, the point of the book — that the Sovi­ets con­sis­tent­ly ran cir­cles around a cor­rupt­ed and incom­pe­tent CIA — is rock sol­id. It was­n’t our self-serv­ing Key­stone Cops who won the Cold War; it was sim­ply that our arms race out­last­ed the Sovi­et econ­o­my.

Joseph Tren­to has been an inves­tiga­tive reporter on the nation­al secu­ri­ty beat since 1968. He had some scoops in the 1970s, and kept at it through the 1980s and 1990s by cul­ti­vat­ing insid­ers such as James Angle­ton, William Cor­son, and Robert Crow­ley. Through them he man­aged to inter­view dozens of oth­er retired spooks. Now he is pres­i­dent of the Pub­lic Edu­ca­tion Cen­ter [1] in Wash­ing­ton DC.

Avail­able com­mer­cial­ly. Learn more about Joseph J. Tren­to [2].