Posts Tagged ‘spy books’

ClandesTime 175 – An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: The Death of Osama Bin Laden

ClandesTime 175 – An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: The Death of Osama Bin Laden

Osama Bin Laden’s death is the perfect postmodern event, in that most of the reports detailing how, where and when he died contradict all the other reports. This week I take an in-depth look at the Abbottabad raid of 2011 and the official story of Bin Laden’s death, analyzing some ...
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ClandesTime 172 - An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: Charlie Wilson's War

ClandesTime 172 – An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: Charlie Wilson’s War

George Crile’s book Charlie Wilson’s War is the most in-depth account of the CIA’s support to the Afghan mujahideen, based on countless interviews with inside sources. It tells the story of how a rogue congressman – Charlie Wilson – and a rogue CIA officer – Gust Avrokotos – joined forces ...
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ClandesTime 166 - An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: Aimen Dean

ClandesTime 166 – An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: Aimen Dean

Aimen Dean, born Ali Al-Duranni, was MI6’s spy inside Al Qaeda from 1998 to 2006. In this episode I do a critical view of his autobiography Nine Lives: My Time as MI6’s Top Spy Inside Al Qaeda, and how Dean’s story connects to other people and events explored in this ...
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After Claiming They Couldn't Find It, FBI Release Sam Greenlee File That's More Redacted than National Archives Version

After Claiming They Couldn’t Find It, FBI Release Sam Greenlee File That’s More Redacted than National Archives Version

The FBI got back to me recently with a response to my request on The Spook Who Sat by the Door, including a few pages from Sam Greenlee's FBI file, which they'd previously claimed they could not find. Amusingly, the version of this file released to my by the National ...
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ClandesTime 157 – Two Years Inside the CIA’s Office of Public Affairs

ClandesTime 157 – Two Years Inside the CIA’s Office of Public Affairs

The CIA’s Office of Public Affairs (OPA) was established in the late 1970s and contains their entertainment liaison office. This week I go through an 8-page summary of the CIA’s Entertainment Liaison and Media Outreach activities covering 2014-16. This includes their relationships with journalists, their involvement in entertainment such as ...
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What does the CIA's Office of Public Affairs Actually Do?

What does the CIA’s Office of Public Affairs Actually Do?

The CIA's Office of Public Affairs is - ironically - very tight-lipped about what they actually do, so I was pleased that they recently responded to a 3 year old FOIA request and provided me with a document summarising their activities from 2014 to 2016. This includes numerous meetings with ...
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ClandesTime 144 - The Recruit (by Robert Muchamore)

ClandesTime 144 – The Recruit (by Robert Muchamore)

One of the growing markets in spy fiction is pop culture aimed at teenagers or 'young adults'. The CHERUB series by Robert Muchamore depicts a junior wing of MI6, with the first novel in the series – The Recruit – depicting the recruitment, training and first mission of our protagonist, ...
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ClandesTime 140 - How the CIA Censored The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence

ClandesTime 140 – How the CIA Censored The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence

In 1974 former CIA officer Victor Marchetti and former State Department official John Marks published their book The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence. This week I examine a file in the JFK archives that details what the CIA censored from the book, and why. I look at several categories ...
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ClandesTime 132 - The Secret World of Tom Clancy Part III: US Intelligence

ClandesTime 132 – The Secret World of Tom Clancy Part III: US Intelligence

Aside from Ian Fleming, there is no more influential spy author than Tom Clancy. Clancy’s books (and the films and computer games based on them) benefited from his close contact with the US government. This week we shed light on his relationships with the CIA and the NSA, and ask ...
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The CIA's Tom Clancy File

The CIA’s Tom Clancy File

Just as with James Bond and Ian Fleming, the CIA's CREST database is littered with reference to Tom Clancy.  In preparation for this weekend's podcast I put together a collection of over 100 pages of internal Agency memos and open source records that record Clancy's relationship with the CIA for ...
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The time Tom Clancy was paid to speak at CIA headquarters - and he gave the money back

The time Tom Clancy was paid to speak at CIA headquarters – and he gave the money back

Tom Clancy was a good friend of US intelligence.  After the publication of his enormously successful Hunt for Red October in 1984, he was repeatedly invited to speak at the CIA, NSA and FBI.  The CIA even paid him a $500 honourarium for his 'performance' for speaking at Langley in ...
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MI5 file on Sir Kingsley Amis

MI5 file on Sir Kingsley Amis

The latest files to be released by the National Archives include one on Kinsgley Amis - the former novelist and critic who was knighted in 1990. Amis was a member of the Communist party while at Oxford university in June 1941, though he renounced Marxism in 1956-7. MI5's monitoring of ...
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