Legacy of Ashes

Legacy of Ashes

The History of the CIA

Book - 2007
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For the last sixty years, the CIA has managed to maintain a formidable reputation in spite of its terrible record, burying its blunders in top-secret archives. Its mission was to know the world. When it did not succeed, it set out to change the world. Its failures have handed us, in the words of President Eisenhower, "a legacy of ashes."

Now Pulitzer Prize--winning author Tim Weiner offers the first definitive history of the CIA--and everything is on the record. LEGACY OF ASHES is based on more than 50,000 documents, primarily from the archives of the CIA itself, and hundreds of interviews with CIA veterans, including ten Directors of Central Intelligence. It takes the CIA from its creation after World War II, through its battles in the cold war and the war on terror, to its near-collapse after 9/ll.

Tim Weiner's past work on the CIA and American intelligence was hailed as "impressively reported" and "immensely entertaining" in The New York Times .

The Wall Street Journal called it "truly extraordinary . . . the best book ever written on a case of espionage." Here is the hidden history of the CIA: why eleven presidents and three generations of CIA officers have been unable to understand the world; why nearly every CIA director has left the agency in worse shape than he found it; and how these failures have profoundly jeopardized our national security.
Publisher: New York : Doubleday, c2007.
ISBN: 9780385514453
038551445X
Characteristics: 702 p., [8] p. of plates :,ill. ;,25 cm.

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StarGladiator
Dec 28, 2016

Although I am highly critical of Wiener's writing [appalled at some of the positive stuff he's said in interviews, et cetera] I should state that his critical history of the OSS in this book is quite accurate and on target [and people who served in it and botched up missions, like James Jesus Angleton would later head the CIA's Counter Intelligence Department {at the time of JFK's murder by them}, and Paul Paterni, who would be Deputy Chief of the Secret Service {at the time of JFK's murder and appear to be involved} and David Herbert Strier {in the CIA's Counter Intelligence under Angleton at the time of JFK's murder and who would appear to be the assassin behind the deaths of Frank Olson and Maurice Gatlin and possibly Mary Pinchot Meyer}, and Tracy Barnes {cousin to Allen Dulles and an assistant deputy director at the CIA at the time of the murder of JFK and appeared to be involved with it}, et cetera] as is his depiction of the founding of the CIA - - should you wish to view some CIA dummy corporations just stroll down Lovett Avenue in Dallas sometime.

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Gary Geiserman
Oct 01, 2015

One descriptor of the difference between a liberal and a truth-seeker, aka leftist, radical, free thinker is a liberal believes in his/her parents and thus society. A liberal believes in the masculine structure of quantification (academia) to lead us to a better way. A free thinker has separated from parents (become an adult) and can perceive without filters. No longer blindly in support of the gestalt of a system and all it’s institutional tentacles one can actually be courageous no matter where it leads. Frequently free thinkers are set basically adrift from both parents at an early age and can have extra motivation to the courageous. >>>>> We see Liberals pulled left all the time—rarely do they completely break free. If Bernie Sanders was actually a free thinker e.g., he would say why the 1% got that way, why war is good for business etc. Our system (a la “The Matrix”) is imbalanced to the masculine principle to foster domination/be dominated, exploit/be exploited. Any actions to dominate is amplified. Special interests have created structures, laws that favor domination. Governments, psychologies all support this. Science and religion are the building blocks of this ‘matrix’. The only force for love and justice is humans who struggle within this system. >>>>> Corporations pay no taxes (they have monetized this and make money from tax credits), war is tax money paid to corporate contractors, capitalism (‘owning’) is theft in the name of human endeavor (employment for commercial gain should be illegal), religion is personal psychological entrapment for political gain, science (empiricism) kills creativity and spirituality and imprisons us in the world’s largest cult, et al et al. >>>>> This toxic system isn’t why we have domination in our selves, our world, however, merely a reflection of our personal microcosm, a jumping-off point. Personal spiritual change is available. All is illusion; the only thing real is our thoughts/feelings and other more real parts of our selves. Change these and the world one lives in will change. Let’s not be truth-seekers in only a few areas of life; if politics is a lie so is ‘our’ world.

dmetalian Sep 30, 2014

Let's face it, every spy organization like the CIA, KGB aka FSB, Mossad, MI5, etc have their own "dirty tricks department". They have their own respective collosal failures hidden from world view.

This book is just one literature that gives us something to ponder as history keeps repeating itself.

The best way to put it is asked the question, you never learn do you?

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StarGladiator
Nov 22, 2013

Disclaimer: I am not a fan of Weiner's and consider him something of a fraud. A framing of the CIA as an organization concerned with national security, as to a more realistic notion that it is simply another node in the financial-intelligence-complex, created in the aftermath of World War II, as was the NSA and DIA (although the DIA came into being in the early part of the Kennedy administration, it was simply in the pipeline already, as it was designed and legislated into being during the Eisenhower administration) - - primarily concerned with financial intelligence, and command and control of the media and populace to benefit the upper portion of the 1%.

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whs8360
Apr 10, 2012

Really good read. I was much less impressed with the CIA after reading this. I didn't think that was possible.

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