Spying in America in the Post 9/11 World: Domestic Threat and the Need for Change

Spying in America in the Post 9/11 World: Domestic Threat and the Need for Change

Spying in America in the Post 9/11 World: Domestic Threat and the Need for Change

Spying in America in the Post 9/11 World: Domestic Threat and the Need for Change

Synopsis

This book examines the realities of living in the United States after the events of September 11th, 2001, and evaluates the challenges in gathering internal intelligence without severely compromising personal liberties.

• Maps clarify America's security threats in a global and domestic context

• Photographs depict historic events like the attacks of September 11, 2001, the Oklahoma City bombing, and the signing of the U.S. Constitution

• Includes a bibliography of reference sources and recommended reading as well as an index of interviewees and quotations

• A glossary explains the most commonly used terms in intelligence and homeland security

Excerpt

One of the challenges of age is your ever-growing memory. Sometimes faulty and seen through rose colored glasses—at other times, those memories are stark and filled with darkness and fear.

I am a child of the Cold War against the Soviet Union. One of my starker memories is when I sat in my grade school hallways during the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis wondering exactly what would happen if a nuclear bomb hit Portland, Oregon. The pictures on television always showed the mushroom cloud shape and the devastation that followed. No one got around to discussing the fallout and radiation sickness afterward. Still, this time of fear passed. I grew up and moved to Washington, D.C., joined the CIA, and watched the Soviets fade into the dustbin of history.

I am saying this because, while I take the issue of Islamic terrorism seriously, I believe we need to gain some perspective on this threat. Living in Washington, you tend to be surrounded by experts and other types who spend all day thinking about problems. They become justifiably obsessed by these problems. In the case of homeland security, thousands of people are now experts on various subjects that range broadly from things like “risk management” to how to detect body heat crossing a borderline.

Still, speaking as an old Cold Warrior, I believe we need to get some perspective on our enemy and see what our proportional response should be. Let me rephrase it this way: Until Islamic terrorists lay their hands on 1,500 intercontinental ballistic missiles and can destroy every major American city in fifteen minutes, I think we are ill-advised to declare total war on them.

That being said, we are dealing with some very dangerous vipers. They would like to kill us and establish their own perverse form of Islam . . .

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