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Spying is supposedly the second oldest profession, and the smoke and mirror world has inspired countless authors and films of this world where no one can trust anyone else. In this brave new digital world, gone are a lot of the old techniques and tradecraft, instead, the spooks are sifting our mind-boggling quantities of data looking for the ghosts in the machines. Except they aren’t always there. However, having a human perspective on the world around you is still an advantage. An expert operative who can determine the wheat from the digital chaff is still invaluable and in this book, Grey, takes us on some of the nail-biting missions and how having the right person in the right place at the most appropriate moment is still the way to win against enemies real and virtual.

Grey also considers where espionage is heading too. The ability of modern agencies to hoover up vast amounts of data from every phone call, web page and email means that they are drowning in data, so much so that they do miss things. Gone are the days when these was state verses state with fairly clear, if blurred lines and long term goals that could be met. Now it is state verses small cells of a disparate organisation that do things very differently and modern spies may have missions that only last a few months. But still the key is still using human judgement that draws from intelligence from people on the ground, proper analysed signals intelligence along with other elements and combining them to form the best picture of what is happening. Overall an interesting book about a sector that still likes to hide in the shadows.
PDCRead | Apr 6, 2020 |
Silly and naive book about what the author claims was/is the CIA torture program under Bush during the time after 9/11. Grey claims that Al Qaeda were almost saints compared to Hilter and his murder squads. Grey purports to uphold the Geneva conventions and the rulings of the Supreme Court on cruel and unusual punishement. Grey cleanly overlooks the gross negligence of Clinton (USS Cole attack, Nairobi and Tanzania embassy bombings) when he had many opportunities to eliminate Bin Laden. This author is of the same mindset as Obama who felt that any restrictive American law to enhance security was a tact that only encouraged more terrorism (Guantanamo & black sites). Obama actually went on to absolve the CIA of all crimes and let the person who erased actual video tapes of CIA personnel torturing suspects to go uncharged. This author is a journalist who offers little insight into US foreign policy and national security besides pie-in-the-sky platitudes.
One of the reasons why the Bushes and Obamas get along so well together is they both went along with sweeping under the rug of CIA actions which anyone else would have be imprisoned for.
sacredheart25 | 4 andra recensioner | Dec 17, 2018 |
Nothing to be Proud Of; But Required Reading

An important book in the quest to better understand the war on terror and the actions taken. In this writing, the actions taken are not consistent with civil and democratic society. While readers may have alternative views and/or sentiments as they read this book, most will find it worth the read.

The book recounts the secret prison and torture program sponsored (at least in this argument) by the CIA. Books like Grey’s are required reading in any democratic society. The informed citizen will assure that we remain a democracy and, in this case, that we clean up our mess.
ggarfield | 4 andra recensioner | Jan 17, 2009 |
A meticulous and innovative investigation into the CIA kidnapping and torture of political prisoners called Extraordinary Rendition.
CIJ | 4 andra recensioner | Jan 8, 2009 |
Ghost Plane: The True Story of the CIA Torture Program by Stephen Grey, is very specific, and very troubling, in disclosing the shocking details of Grey's investigation. His look at the CIA's secret rendition program includes examples of extreme torture against alleged Islamic militants and other terror suspects – suspects who are grabbed at airports worldwide and transported via a fleet of government planes to “dark” prisons. Grey's systematic study included first-hand reporting, a plethora of public documents and a multitude of on-the-record interviews. In describing the ongoing interrogation program, which includes other secretive U.S. agencies, Grey states that “few on either side doubt ... the scale of torture implemented within many of the jails where America has sent its prisoners.” While Grey does not dispute that the Middle East “contains a rich pool of recruits for Islamic militancy,” he weighs in against the current strategy in the war against terrorism. “[D]emoracy, and respect for civil rights, still provides the only real hope.” -- Jeanie Straub
jeaniestraub | 4 andra recensioner | Dec 18, 2007 |
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