Review: Sharing the Secrets–Open Source Intelligence and the War on Drugs

5 Star, Crime (Organized, Transnational), Intelligence (Government/Secret), Intelligence (Public)

Amazon Page
Amazon Page

5.0 out of 5 stars Seriously Under-Marketed and Under-Appreciated, A Real Value,

February 13, 2002
J. F. Holden-Rhodes
EDIT of 22 Sep 08: The publisher has sucumbed to insane greed. This book should not be selling for more than $45.95. It cost a penny a page to produce and they have not spend a dime on marketing, so go figure….

It is always a shame when a really great book is badly marketed and consequently does not reach as many professionals and citizens as it should. This is such a book.

What the blurbs don’t tell you, such as they are, is that the author was one of the true pioneers in the world of open source intelligence (creating useful actionable intelligence using only legal and ethical sources and methods). His brilliant efforts in the early 1990’s were easily a decade ahead of where the Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) is today–using a wide variety of Latin American newspapers and lots of brainpower, he was able to create tactical intelligence that contributed significantly to the success of operational missions by the U.S. Southern Command and the Drug Enforcement Administration, leading the destruction of cocaine laboratories, the interdiction of aircraft, and the arrest of key people in the transnational criminal structure.

This book is an essential reference for any agency or command library concerned with asymmetric warfare, unconventional threats, and non-traditional methods of providing intelligence support to those responsible for dealing with anything other than traditional war. The sources and methods that the author discusses are especially pertinent to the study of terrorism, proliferation, transnational crime, cross-national toxic dumping, and other sub-state and non-state threats.

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