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CI Centre Picks

Alger Hiss: Why He Chose Treason
By Christina Shelton

"Alger Hiss fastened upon an illusory ideology claiming to answer all questions, promising utopia, but in reality concealing tyranny. In the process he betrayed his country. Dedicated by oath and office to serving his country, he became a secret agent of the adversary, the Soviet intelligence apparatus. He had closed his mind, blind to the inhumanity of Communism, and adopted Lenin’s notion that the choice of revolution is ultimate and irrevocable, an act of passion as well as intellect. Hiss worked hard to appear urbane and sophisticated and behind this persona was his single-minded devotion to Communism, leading to a life time of defiance and denying any wrong doing."

Snow: The Double Life of a World War II Spy
By Nigel West

SNOW is the codename assigned to Arthur Owens, the most important British double agent in the early years of the Second World War. Described by Mi5 as a typical underfed Cardiff he type became the first of the great double-cross agents who were to play a major part in Britain's victory over the Germans. When the stakes could not have been higher, MI5 sought to build a double-cross system based on the shifting loyalties of a duplicitous, philandering and vain anti-hero who was boastful and brave, reckless and calculating, ruthless and mercenary... but patriotic. Or was he? Based on hundreds of secret Mi5 files, meticulous research and for the first time, the testimony of his family. Snow reveals the truth about an extraordinary man whose messages were used to make the first break through in the german Enigma codes at Bletchley Park and whose daughter went on to become a Hollywood film star.

Spies: The Rise and Fall of the KGB in America
By John Earl Haynes, Harvey Klehr, and Alexander Vassiliev

This stunning book, based on KGB archives that have never come to light before, provides the most complete account of Soviet espionage in America ever written. In 1993, former KGB officer Alexander Vassiliev was permitted unique access to Stalin-era records of Soviet intelligence operations against the United States. Years later, living in Britain, Vassiliev retrieved his extensive notebooks of transcribed documents from Moscow. With these notebooks John Earl Haynes and Harvey Klehr have meticulously constructed a new, sometimes shocking, historical account. Along with general insights into espionage tactics and the motives of Americans who spied for Stalin, Spies resolves specific, long-seething controversies. Spies also uncovers numerous American spies who were never even under suspicion and satisfyingly identifies the last unaccounted for American nuclear spies. Vassiliev tells the story of the notebooks and his own extraordinary life in a gripping introduction to the volume.

Spying in America: Espionage from the Revolutionary War to the Dawn of the Cold War
By Michael J. Sulick

Can you keep a secret? Maybe you can, but the United States government cannot. Since the birth of our country, nations large and small, from Russia and China to Ghana and Ecuador, have stolen the most precious secrets of the United States. From the American Revolution, through the Civil War and two World Wars, to the atomic age of the Manhattan Project, Sulick details the lives of those who have betrayed America's secrets. Spying in America serves as the perfect introduction to the early history of espionage in America. Sulick's unique experience as a senior intelligence officer is evident as he skillfully guides the reader through these cases of intrigue, deftly illustrating the evolution of American awareness about espionage and the fitful development of American counterespionage leading up to the Cold War. Enjoy a special 30% discount.

Tiger Trap: America's Secret Spy War with China
By David Wise

For decades, while America obsessed over Soviet spies, China quietly penetrated the highest levels of government. Now, for the first time, based on numerous interviews with key insiders at the FBI and CIA as well as with Chinese agents and people close to them, David Wise tells the full story of China’s many victories and defeats in its American spy wars.Two key cases interweave throughout: Katrina Leung, code-named Parlor Maid, worked for the FBI for years, even after she became a secret double agent for China, aided by love affairs with both of her FBI handlers. Here, too, is the inside story of the case, code-named Tiger Trap, of a key Chinese-American scientist suspected of stealing nuclear weapons secrets. These two cases led to many others, involving famous names from Wen Ho Lee to Richard Nixon, stunning national security leaks, and sophisticated cyberspying. The story takes us up to the present, with a West Coast spy ring whose members were sentenced in 2010—but it surely will continue for years to come, as China faces off against America. David Wise’s history of China’s spy wars in America is packed with eye-popping revelations.

The Triple Agent: The al-Qaeda Mole who Infiltrated the CIA
By Joby Warrick

A stunning narrative account of the mysterious Jordanian who penetrated both the inner circle of al-Qaeda and the highest reaches of the CIA, with a devastating impact on the war on terror. In December 2009, a group of the CIA’s top terrorist hunters gathered at a secret base in Khost, Afghanistan, to greet a rising superspy: Humam Khalil al-Balawi, a Jordanian double-agent who infiltrated the upper ranks of al-Qaeda. For months, he had sent shocking revelations from inside the terrorist network and now promised to help the CIA assassinate Osama bin Laden’s top deputy. Instead, as he stepped from his car, he detonated a thirty-pound bomb strapped to his chest, instantly killing seven CIA operatives, the agency’s worst loss of life in decades.

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