A History of the FBI
By Tim Weiner
Random House, Hardcover, 9781400067480, 560pp.
Publication Date: February 14, 2012
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY
The Washington Post • New York Daily News • Slate
“Fast-paced, fair-minded, and fascinating, Tim Weiner’s Enemies turns the long history of the FBI into a story that is as compelling, and important, as today’s headlines.”—Jeffrey Toobin, author of The Oath
Enemies is the first definitive history of the FBI’s secret intelligence operations, from an author whose work on the Pentagon and the CIA won him the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award.
We think of the FBI as America’s police force. But secret intelligence is the Bureau’s first and foremost mission. Enemies is the story of how presidents have used the FBI as the most formidable intelligence force in American history.
Here is the hidden history of America’s hundred-year war on terror. The FBI has fought against terrorists, spies, anyone it deemed subversive—and sometimes American presidents. The FBI’s secret intelligence and surveillance techniques have created a tug-of-war between protecting national security and infringing upon civil liberties. It is a tension that strains the very fabric of a free republic.
Praise for Enemies
“Outstanding.”—The New York Times
“Absorbing . . . a sweeping narrative that is all the more entertaining because it is so redolent with screw-ups and scandals.”—Los Angeles Times
“Pulitzer-Prize–winning author Tim Weiner has written a riveting inside account of the FBI’s secret machinations that goes so deep into the Agency’s skullduggery, readers will feel they are tapping the phones along with J. Edgar Hoover. This is a book that every American who cares about civil liberties should read.”—Jane Mayer, author of The Dark Side
“Enemies is a research masterpiece. Picking through seventy thousand newly declassified documents and using on-the-record interviews, Weiner reveals startling new truths and debunks nagging old myths about the FBI. Enemies reads like a thriller, but don’t let the heart-pumping prose fool you. Weiner has written a scholarly tour de force that will be an instant classic for any serious student of American national security.”—Amy B. Zegart, Ph.D., Stanford University, author of Spying Blind
“Tim Weiner’s Enemies is the most comprehensive history of the FBI as an intelligence agency we have ever had. Based on extensive research in previously unavailable materials, Weiner gives us a fresh way to think about J. Edgar Hoover, the many presidents he worked with, and the FBI as a national security agency. The book is also a cautionary tale that is essential reading for anyone concerned about American civil liberties.”—Robert Dallek, author of An Unfinished Life
As J. Edgar Hoover became increasingly worried about communist threats against America, he instructed the bureau to conduct secret intelligence operations against anyone deemed "subversive." A new book, Enemies: A History of the FBI, details those and other secret intelligence operations from the bureau's creation through the current fight against terrorism. More at NPR.org
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