Review: Wilderness of Mirrors

5 Star, Intelligence (Government/Secret)

Amazon Page
Amazon Page

5.0 out of 5 stars

No Winners or Losers, Only Victims,

April 8, 2000
David C. Martin
This book goes a long way toward explaining CIA’s intellectual and operational constipation in the 1950’s through the 1970’s. It follows James Jesus Angleton, who tied the Agency in knots and went so far as to privately tell the French that the CIA Station Chief in Paris was a Soviet spy, and William King Harvey, who literally carried two six-guns both in the US and overseas “because you never know when you might need them.” Included in this book are some serious details about the operations against Cuba, a chapter appropriated titled “Murder Corrupts”, and a good account of how Harvey, in perhaps his most important achievement, smelled out the fact that Kim Philby was indeed a Soviet spy. The concluding thought of the book is exceptional: “Immersed in duplicity and insulated by secrecy, they (Angleton and Harvey) developed survival mechanisms and behavior patterns that by any rational standard were bizarre. The forced inbreeding of secrecy spawned mutant deeds and thoughts. Loyalty demanded dishonesty, and duty was a thieves’ game. The game attracted strange men and slowly twisted them until something snapped. There were no winners or losers in this game, only victims.”
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