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Publisher's Summary

Enemies is the first definitive history of the FBI’s secret intelligence operations, from an author whose work on the Pentagon and the CIA won him the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award.

We think of the FBI as America’s police force. But secret intelligence is the Bureau’s first and foremost mission. Enemies is the story of how presidents have used the FBI as the most formidable intelligence force in American history.

Here is the hidden history of America’s hundred-year war on terror. The FBI has fought against terrorists, spies, anyone it deemed subversive—and sometimes American presidents. The FBI’s secret intelligence and surveillance techniques have created a tug-of-war between protecting national security and infringing upon civil liberties. It is a tension that strains the very fabric of a free republic.

©2012 Tim Weiner (P)2012 Random House

Critic Reviews

"Enemies is a research masterpiece. Picking through seventy thousand newly declassified documents and using on-the-record interviews, Weiner reveals startling new truths and debunks nagging old myths about the FBI. Enemies reads like a thriller, but don’t let the heart-pumping prose fool you. Weiner has written a scholarly tour de force that will be an instant classic for any serious student of American national security." (Amy B. Zegart, Ph.D., Associate Professor, UCLA School of Public Affairs, author of Spying Blind)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Important gripping history read perfectly

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

If you liked LEGACY OF ASHES you'll like this too. Unbelievable insights on the FBI, Hoover, and the never ending tug of war between liberty and safety.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Amazing and mind blowing.

This very detailed history of our FBI is eye opening in chilling ways. The institution that was created with the warning that "a secret police is a menace to our society," then became just that under the direction of a power hungry maniac. It has had direct and indirect, negative affects on our country and way of life on a truly unknown and vast scale.

This book looks unbiasedly and unapologetically at all of this and is informative to the utmost degree.

You have done your country and its people a true service, Mr. Weiner.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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The sordid truth

Though Weiner is easier on the FBI than he was on the CIA in Legacy of Ashes, make no mistake, this is an unabashed indictment of the FBI. He makes pains to present a balanced history, letting the facts speak for themselves. Hoover's legacy is a wasteland.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Very Entertaining!

Enjoyed the book very much. The narrator does a great job. And the story flows pretty well. Definitely would recommend.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Begin here ...

I recommend this book wholly plus the history of the CIA by the same author. They build upon each other. American history is a complex subject these works help to conect the dots.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • a
  • Dahinda, IL, United States
  • 11-12-12

Good book, just not for me

If you could sum up Enemies: A History of the FBI in three words, what would they be?

All about Hoover

What was one of the most memorable moments of Enemies: A History of the FBI?

At the order of the President, the FBI infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan to stop and disrupt their violent activities. One of the murders that was investigated by the FBI was carried out by a local sheriff, his deputies, and the justice of the peace.

What about Stefan Rudnicki’s performance did you like?

Has a great voice, enjoyed the narration.

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

More details about Hoover than you could ever want to know.

Any additional comments?

I enjoyed parts of the book but there were so many inane details about Hoover I lost interest. As a matter of fact, the majority of the book is exclusively about Hoover. I purchased the book with the understanding that it was going to be about various different FBI operations and while the book DID talk about different operations, everything was from Hoover's perspective. If you like Hoover or care about Hoover, or want to know about Hoover - this book is for you. If not, it's going to be a little long to get through.

10 of 12 people found this review helpful

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Wanted to like it more than I did

The narrator was fine but very monotone. the story was really really dry. Most of the book is about Hoover. That's somewhat expected given his role in the department for decades. But, it felt very biographical for long long sections of the book. I had a very hard time finishing this one. Last several chapters were quite good, though.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Really skimmed over the assassination of Fred Hampton

Thorough but only mentions one of the FBI's most egregious abuses of power, the assassination of Fred Hampton, as an uninteresting aside. Weiner also seems sympathetic to Hoover's unconstitutional anti-communist activities which destroyed countless lives over political affiliations. Otherwise it's fairly meticulously researched and interesting.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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The History of the G-men

Well read, with the artist doing the accents of quoted dialog wonderfully. Scary as hell how close we have come to absolute failure and home far we still have to go.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Tim Weiner

This book about the true FBI sure is a long, long distance from any swashbuckling, car racing thrillers out if Hollywood. Well maybe not if we throw a few comedies in the scenario's. This is instead about the hidden secrets of waist of money, non cooperation, not enough education in the FBI. From computers not up to date to agents not speaking a, single word of the country they have been assigned to. How can a intelligence agency run without properly trained agents and outdated computers?

1 of 1 people found this review helpful