5.0 out of 5 stars The only primer available in English, February 12, 2012
I am an intelligence professional and I know both the author and the subject of this book intimately. Dr. Lowenthal's book represents the *only* available “primer” on intelligence that can be understood by Presidents, Congressmen, the media, and the public.
Dr. Lowenthal's book focuses on the U.S. Intelligence Community itself–the good, the bad, and the ugly. He is strongest on analysis and the politics of intelligence, somewhat weaker on collection and counterintelligence covert action. There is no other book that meets the need for this particular primer, and so I recommend it with enthusiasm.
If you do not like the book, you definitely should not consider a career in intelligence.
All of my books are available here at Amazon and also free online at Phi Beta Iota the Public Intelligence Blog. Below are ten books I specifically recommend along with this one. To see my comprehensive structured list of most of my reviews of intelligence books, search for < Intelligence (Most) > at Google.com.
None So Blind: A Personal Account of the Intelligence Failure in Vietnam
See No Evil: The True Story of a Ground Soldier in the CIA's War on Terrorism
The Craft of Intelligence: America's Legendary Spy Master on the Fundamentals of Intelligence Gathering for a Free World
Strategic Intelligence and Statecraft: Selected Essays (Brassey's Intelligence & National Security Library)
Intelligence Power in Peace and War
Who the Hell Are We Fighting?: The Story of Sam Adams and the Vietnam Intelligence Wars
Bombs, Bugs, Drugs, and Thugs: Intelligence and America's Quest for Security
Silent Warfare: Understanding the World of Intelligence, 3d Edition
Long Strange Journey: An Intelligence Memoir
Seeing the Invisible: National Security Intelligence in an Uncertain Age