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Legacy of Ashes Audiobook

Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA

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Publisher's Summary

This is the book the CIA does not want you to read. For the last 60 years, the CIA has maintained a formidable reputation in spite of its terrible record, never disclosing its blunders to the American public. It spun its own truth to the nation while reality lay buried in classified archives. Now, Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times reporter Tim Weiner offers a stunning indictment of the CIA, a deeply flawed organization that has never deserved America's confidence.

Legacy of Ashes is based on more than 50,000 documents, primarily from the archives of the CIA. Everything is on the record. There are no anonymous sources, no blind quotations. With shocking revelations that will make headlines, Tim Weiner gets at the truth and tells us how the CIA's failures have profoundly jeopardized our national security.

©2007 Tim Weiner; (P)2007 Blackstone Audio Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Absorbing...a credible and damning indictment of American intelligence policy." (Publishers Weekly)
"A timely, immensely readable, and highly critical history of the CIA, culminating with the most recent catastrophic failures in Iraq." (Mark Bowden, author of Blackhawk Down)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (2605 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Silas8541 SACRAMENTO, CA, US 07-22-15
    Silas8541 SACRAMENTO, CA, US 07-22-15 Member Since 2014

    SASylvanus

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    "Did we do that??"

    I was always intrigued by the intelligence services of the United States but I was really let down to find out where and how it all started good men, good people, good Livs all lost in an effort to gain that which someone else wants to to be blinded to. From this to Edward Snowdin, where is the justice, and who is the avenger?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kevin Johnson 05-13-15
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    6
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    "eye opening history of US foreign policy blunders."

    this book is required reading for every American. eye opening. balanced. masterful account of cia history.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Arcane Code Columbiana, AL, United States 04-30-15
    Arcane Code Columbiana, AL, United States 04-30-15 Member Since 2013
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    12
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    "Outstanding history of the CIA"
    Would you listen to Legacy of Ashes again? Why?

    Absolutely. Gripping story that never gets boring.


    What does Stefan Rudnicki bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    His voice just sucked me right into the story. He did a great job.


    Any additional comments?

    After listening to John C. Dvorak constantly talk about this book on the No Agenda Show, I broke down and got it, and boy am I glad I did. It is an excellent story of an organization misused by the powers that be for their own purposes.

    It is one of the few books I just could not stop listening too, I had my earbuds in non stop for the 3 days it took me to consume it.

    This ranks as one of my top 10 Audible favorites, and should be a must read for everyone.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alison 04-22-15
    Alison 04-22-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Hard to listen to reader"

    Okay story but the reader was so hard to listen to I could not pay attention. Hard to get through.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    najib 03-23-15
    najib 03-23-15 Listener Since 2009
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    "the destastfull truth of our national interest "

    it shows that only few know their own people. their own country. what's really going on.
    that's why I love this America.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    H. Shalit 07-09-14
    H. Shalit 07-09-14

    havi_ga

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    19
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    "Interesting history, but flawed"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Legacy of Ashes to be better than the print version?

    I can't answer this question.


    What about Stefan Rudnicki’s performance did you like?

    He is clear and precise.


    Any additional comments?

    This is a well researched book, written clearly. However, occasionally Weiner jumps to a conclusion that is not supported by his research. Overall, even if Weiner exaggerates a little, this is truly scary and deserves listening.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    James 12-29-13
    James 12-29-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fantastic!"

    This book offers a great look not only at the inside, but the history of the CIA. It’s interesting to take a look and to hear the stories, but also to realize that the same thing that ravages other industries and organizations (lack of information, overconfidence, unwillingness to change, etc.) plagued the CIA as well. No surprise there!

    I understand, as the author puts it, “the CIA has to break the laws of other countries in order to gather information”, but this book gives incredulous situations and stories that have occurred throughout the history of the CIA.

    I thought it was a very good book, although a little long and winding, but it good enough to keep my attention throughout.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dan 09-09-13
    Dan 09-09-13 Member Since 2004
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    "No good, just the bad and the ugly"

    This is not a complete history of the CIA but an exhausting catalog of its many missteps, failures, and errors in judgment and execution. The author uses recently declassified material and extensive interviews with former CIA and government officials as source material for the review. The sometimes comic and often tragic mistakes aren't placed in historical context or examined in great detail (each episode could be its own book) but there is enough to keep you interested and to show the patterns of individual and institutional behavior. It is a sad story and a cautionary tale of the limits of our ability to have good "intelligence". Those interested in a cure will be disappointed; this is a book documenting failures not proposing solutions.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Inez da Sola NY, NY 09-07-13
    Inez da Sola NY, NY 09-07-13 Member Since 2016

    JR

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    "Crucial American political history"
    What did you love best about Legacy of Ashes?

    The book is a detailed, meticulous account of the history of the CIA from its founding up through the mess in Afghanistan. Weiner is thorough, fearless. He avoids the overly diagnostic or predictive, letting the accumulation of facts do the work. The historical account is shocking, a great pile of rubble strewn in the CIA's path, lies stacked up all the way to the White House, and Weiner tells the tale straightforwardly, without ideological baggage.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I appreciated the detail, the naming of names, the sheer amount of footwork Weiner has done--interviewing the main characters, reviewing classified and declassified documents as well as the CIA's own accounts of its activities. Weiner is non-partisan--except inasmuch as he is a fighter for the truth.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Stefan Rudnicki’s performances?

    The reader has a nice voice but his pronunciation of certain words is off, including things like place-names (e.g., Yemen: accent is on the first syllable, not the second), which is distracting. Occasionally he tries to mimic accents such as Kissinger's or a presumed Russian interlocutor. This lends character to the reading but I felt was unnecessary.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    From Dunkirk to Tora Bora...


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sam Motes Tampa 07-03-13
    Sam Motes Tampa 07-03-13 Listener Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not a pretty picture of the CIA"

    Not a flattering look at the rumblings and over reaching of the CIA over the years. I found it very disturbing the amount of power the CIA wields and how utterly inept they have been over the years. I am sure this is biased in one direction but a very eye opening read none the less.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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