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The Agency: A History of the CIA

Narrated by: Hugh Wilford
Length: 11 hrs and 32 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (22 ratings)

Regular price: $34.95

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Publisher's Summary

There’s a fundamental tension buried within the heart of the CIA’s mission to protect the American people: between democratic accountability and the inherent need for secrecy. Ultimately, it’s US citizens who bear the responsibility of staying informed about what the CIA has done and continues to do.

In these 24 engrossing lectures, explore the roles the CIA has played in recent American history, from the eve of the Cold War against communism to the 21st-century War on Terror. You’ll delve into some of the most remarkable successes, including the sound intelligence CIA spy planes provided during the Cuban Missile Crisis and the admirable performance of the CIA throughout much of the Vietnam War, as well as historic failures, including the agency’s slowness spotting the rise of radical Islamism (including the September 11 attacks).

In many cases, the lectures lead you to consider important questions about the nature of the CIA and its role in shaping modern history. What makes particular regions of the world ripe for the CIA’s attention? How successful are techniques like drone strikes, rendition, and interrogation? How does the CIA compare with its depiction in much of popular culture?

Here, in Professor Wilford’s unbiased exploration of the CIA’s inner workings, is everything you need to come to your own conclusions about what “the Agency” might have done right, what it might have done wrong, and what it should do in the future.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2019 The Great Courses (P)2019 The Teaching Company, LLC

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Interesting history of Our Spies, modest bias

Very enjoyable review of the prehistory and history of the CIA. In general, the professor was unbiased. By the end, some of his anti-CIA views leaked through -- especially when he got into the Bush era. Overall, though, worth the listen.