Review: Routledge Companion to Intelligence Studies

5 Star, Intelligence (Government/Secret), Intelligence (Public)

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Robert Dover , Michael S. Goodman , Claudia Hillebrand

5.0 out of 5 stars The best collection in English — bold, innovative, essential, October 31, 2013

Routledge's managing editor for this collection, and the contributing editors themselves, one of whom I know personally, have created the single best collection in the English language, and explicitly superior to the Oxford counterpart that is lacking in scope of coverage and diversity of authorship. This is the first book to fully satisfy me in one book (for the five volume standard in the field see Strategic Intelligence [5 volumes] (Intelligence and the Quest for Security) (v. 1-5).

The book is opened by Loch Johnson, long one of my heroes (and with Britt Snider, one of two people to serve on both the Church and Aspin-Brown Commissions). His section concludes that intelligence studies still lacks deep credible understanding of how intelligence does (or does not) influence policy (and strategy and acquisition and operations), when intelligence works or does not, and how, exactly intelligence producers an consumers get on. I have my own answers, shared with General Tony Zinni, USMC, among others: intelligence does NOT influence anything of substance; it costs too much for what little it produces (4% “at best”), and it ignores 90% of the potential consumers of intelligence (see my free online article, “Intelligence for the President — AND Everyone Else.”

From Lock we move to Michael Warner on theories of intelligence, this is a seminal piece both a stellar and nuanced definition of what intelligence is, and consideration of intelligence risk. In this section I am also captured by R. Gerald Hughes on “Strategists and Intelligence,” this is a thoughtful read to which I would add the opening of Ada Bozeman's Strategic Intelligence and Statecraft: Selected Essays (Brassey's Intelligence & National Security Library).

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