Whistleblower at the CIA: An Insider’s Account of the Politics of Intelligence

Melvin A. Goodman. City Lights, $18.95 trade paper (300p) ISBN 978-0-87286-730-7
Goodman (National Insecurity), a former CIA analyst who served from the Johnson administration through the first Reagan administration, exposes the disconcerting politicization of intelligence at America’s best-known international intelligence-gathering agency. The poisonous mixing of politics and ideology in service of White House masters culminates in Goodman’s account of his fateful but unsuccessful takedown attempt of his onetime friend Robert Gates, who became CIA director in 1991 after a failed 1987 attempt. Goodman boldly stepped out of shadows and into the harsh glare of a congressional hearing to charge Gates with downplaying his knowledge of the Iran-Contra Affair and manipulating intelligence facts to serve political ends. Recalling these events, Goodman harnesses palpable outrage to this solid, if sometimes repetitive, indictment of Gates as a relentless careerist who “lacked a moral core.” He also excoriates the news media, the courts, and Congress for failing to protect constitutional democracy or even other whistle-blowers such as Edward Snowden. As Goodman ominously concludes, this ongoing abdication of oversight and commitment to the truth by the keepers of the country’s secrets presages a slow but steady drift into the very authoritarianism against which the U.S. has long railed. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 01/23/2017
Release date: 03/01/2017
Genre: Nonfiction
Open Ebook - 300 pages - 978-0-87286-731-4
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