Hugh Wilford, The Great Courses – The Agency: A History of the CIA


Theres a fundamental tension buried within the heart of the CIAs mission to protect the American people: between democratic accountability and the inherent need for secrecy. Ultimately, its 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. Youll 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 agencys 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 CIAs 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 Wilfords unbiased exploration of the CIAs 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.

Author: Hugh Wilford, The Great Courses
Narrator: Hugh Wilford
Duration: 11 hours 32 minutes
Released: 19 Jan 2003
Publisher: The Great Courses
Language: English

User Review:

ace crass

I felt this book spent too much time /energy on what the CIA has done wrong over the last decades. Would have liked to hear more about day to day activities of both ANALYSTS and OPERATORS. The people who are in the trenches every day and MUST be doing a lot of things right. Otherwise how have we succeeded as a nation in the last half century or so. His conclusion does give a more balanced discussion of the two basic parts of the CIA, but a little late and not enough