Intelligence from Secrets to Policy

Title:                  Intelligence from Secrets to Policy

Author:                 Mark M. Lowenthal

Lowenthal, Mark M. (2009, 2015). Intelligence from Secrets to Policy (6th ed.). Washington, DC: CQ Press

LCCN:    2011025066

JK468.I6 L65 2012

Subjects

Date Updated:  December 2, 2016

Lowenthal, who has over thirty years of experience as an intelligence official in both the executive (CIA) and legislative branches of the U.S. government, as well as the private sector, provides a comprehensive overview of the U.S. Intelligence Community, intelligence organizations, policy, and processes, and the relationships of the intelligence community with the executive and legislative branches are clearly and concisely described. The updated 4th edition covers the creation of the Office of Director of National Intelligence, ethical issues raised by the war on terror, intelligence priorities, and transnational issues such as WMD and terrorism. This, and the books listed below with links, are several books recommended by Dan Mulvenna, in his “The Intelligence Officer’s Bookshelf: An annotated bibliography,” compiled by Dan Mulvenna (updated December, 2011). I was in a series of lectures Dan presented on espionage, aboard the Queen Mary II (May, 2012).

Intelligence Textbooks

George, Roger Z. (2006) and Robert D. Kline. Intelligence and the National Security Strategist: Enduring Issues and Challenges

Johnson, Loch K. (2011) and James J. Wirtz, eds. Intelligence: The Secret World of Spies, an Anthology

Richelson, Jeffrey T. (2012). The U.S. Intelligence Community (6th ed.)

Pillar, Paul R. (2011). Intelligence and U.S. Foreign Policy: Iraq, 9/11, and Misguided Reform

Johnson, William R. (2009). Thwarting Enemies at Home and Abroad: How to Be a Counterintelligence Officer

Sims, Jennifer E. (2009) and Burton Gerber, eds. Vaults, Mirrors and Masks: Rediscovering U.S. Counterintelligence

Zegart, Amy B. (2011). Eyes on Spies: Congress and the United States Intelligence Community

George, Roger Z. (2006) and Robert D. Kline. Intelligence and the National Security Strategist: Enduring Issues and Challenges

Johnson, Loch K. (2011) and James J. Wirtz, eds. Intelligence: The Secret World of Spies, an Anthology (3rd ed.)

Richelson, Jeffrey T. (2012). The U.S. Intelligence Community (6th ed.)

Pillar, Paul R. (2011). Intelligence and U.S. Foreign Policy: Iraq, 9/11, and Misguided Reform

Johnson, William R. (2009). Thwarting Enemies at Home and Abroad: How to Be a Counterintelligence Officer

Sims, Jennifer E. (2009) and Burton Gerber, eds. Vaults, Mirrors and Masks: Rediscovering U.S. Counterintelligence

Zegart, Amy B. (2011). Eyes on Spies: Congress and the United States Intelligence Community

Lowenthal, who, as stated, has over thirty years of experience as an intelligence official in both the executive (CIA) and legislative branches of the U.S. government, as well as the private sector, provides a comprehensive overview of the U.S. Intelligence Community, intelligence organizations, policy, and processes, and the relationships of the intelligence community with the executive and legislative branches are clearly and concisely described. The updated 4th edition covers the creation of the Office of Director of National Intelligence, ethical issues raised by the war on terror, intelligence priorities, and transnational issues such as WMD and terrorism.

The book includes an appendix and index. This is the first book on intelligence specifically written to be used as a college/graduate level textbook. The book analyzes each phase of the intelligence process (requirements, collection, analysis, etc.) and also emphasizes the role of the policy maker in all phases and as consumer. There are also chapters on the historical development of the U.S. IC, the role of the IC in the Cold War and after, and moral and ethical issues that arise in intelligence—both operational and analytical.

The author of this book is a member of the Association of Former Intelligence Officers (AFIO), and this review is published on the Association’s website.

Reviewed by Hayden B. Peake[1]

There are about 10,000 books in English devoted to various aspects of the intelligence profession. Most are about espionage and counterintelligence. Many are histories of civilian and military intelligence services.

Still others are devoted to the analysis and the role of intelligence in foreign policy, and a number are concerned with the technical aspects of the profession. A few have appeared in second editions with new material. But only one has been issued in six editions: Intelligence: From Secrets to Policy.

Several reasons explain this phenomenon. First, the author is a respected expert in the field. Mark Lowenthal has long experience in government and intelligence services and has taught intelligence courses at Johns Hopkins and Columbia Universities. Second, the book is a contemporaneous account of intelligence events that are in constant flux. Third, it reads well and provokes thought. Finally, the book sells.

While the current edition has the same number of chapters with the same titles as its immediate predecessor, it also has 117 pages of new material. The expanded topics include congressional oversight, collection, and the use of “big data” in analysis. To these are added problems associated with “multi-INT” and “all-source” analysis that may confuse policymakers. (p. 189) He also covers the ever-expanding difficulties associated with leaks, especially the contributions of Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden. Finally, many more foreign intelligence services are discussed, and the commentary on drones—unmanned aerial vehicles—has been revised and updated with some thoughts, inter alia, on the ethics of the program.

The flexibility of digital publishing and the constant changes in the Intelligence Community suggest the 6th edition will not be the last. In any case, Intelligence: From Secrecy to Policy is likely to remain the premier primer in the field.

_____________________

This, and the books listed below with links, are several books recommended by Dan Mulvenna, in his “The Intelligence Officer’s Bookshelf: An annotated bibliography,” compiled by Dan Mulvenna (updated December, 2011). I was in a series of lectures Dan presented on espionage, aboard the Queen Mary II (May, 2012).

Reviewed by Hayden B. Peake[2].

In 1984, perhaps looking toward retirement, Mark Lowenthal hypothesized that well-written books describing the Intelligence Community (IC) would require new editions in perpetuity. In this, the fifth edition of lntelligence, Dr. Lowenthal—who has served with the Congressional Research Service, the State Department, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, the National Intelligence Council, and the Director of Central Intelligence-provides an expanded update of this basic text.

The 15 chapters that cover the basic functions of the profession and the IC remain unchanged, and there are 51new pages. Additions include changes concerning operational matters—for example, the use of drones, policy initiatives of the Obama administration, and personnel changes since 2009. There are also several new sections in the chapter on transnational issues: demographics, support to the military, and cyberspace. The latter replaces the section on network warfare. The chapter on intelligence reform has been substantially revised and updated, as has the chapter on foreign intelligence services. New sources have been added to the suggestions for further reading at the end of each chapter.

Intelligence is more than a description of the functions, operational mandates, and other obligations of the IC. Lowenthal has included analysis of performance, suggestions for improvement, the role of ethics, and the need for community-wide account­ ability and reform. For these reasons, the book is both a valuable introductory text and a source of information on contemporaryissues facing the IC. Only source notes could improve its quality.

Intelligence Textbooks

George, Roger Z. (2006) and Robert D. Kline. Intelligence and the National Security Strategist: Enduring Issues and Challenges

Johnson, Loch K. (2011) and James J. Wirtz, eds. Intelligence: The Secret World of Spies, an Anthology

Richelson, Jeffrey T. (2012). The U.S. Intelligence Community (6th ed.)

Pillar, Paul R. (2011). Intelligence and U.S. Foreign Policy: Iraq, 9/11, and Misguided Reform

Johnson, William R. (2009). Thwarting Enemies at Home and Abroad: How to Be a Counterintelligence Officer

Sims, Jennifer E. (2009) and Burton Gerber, eds. Vaults, Mirrors and Masks: Rediscovering U.S. Counterintelligence

Zegart, Amy B. (2011). Eyes on Spies: Congress and the United States Intelligence Community

George, Roger Z. (2006) and Robert D. Kline. Intelligence and the National Security Strategist: Enduring Issues and Challenges

Johnson, Loch K. (2011) and James J. Wirtz, eds. Intelligence: The Secret World of Spies, an Anthology (3rd ed.)

Richelson, Jeffrey T. (2012). The U.S. Intelligence Community (6th ed.)

Pillar, Paul R. (2011). Intelligence and U.S. Foreign Policy: Iraq, 9/11, and Misguided Reform

Johnson, William R. (2009). Thwarting Enemies at Home and Abroad: How to Be a Counterintelligence Officer

Sims, Jennifer E. (2009) and Burton Gerber, eds. Vaults, Mirrors and Masks: Rediscovering U.S. Counterintelligence

Zegart, Amy B. (2011). Eyes on Spies: Congress and the United States Intelligence Community

[1] Peake, Hayden in The Intelligencer: Journal of U.S. Intelligence Studies (21, 3, Fall/Winter 2015, pp. 116-117). Hayden Peake is the Curator of the CIA’s Historical Intelligence Collection. He has served in the Directorate of Science and Technology and the Directorate of Operations. Most of these reviews appeared in recent unclassified editions of CIA’s Studies in Intelligence, Other reviews and articles may be found online at http://www.cia.gov

[2] Hayden B. Peake, in The Intelligencer: Journal of U. S. Intelligence Studies, 19, 2 (Summer/Fall 2012, p. 117)

 

 

This entry was posted in Intelligence and Policy and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Intelligence from Secrets to Policy

  1. Pingback: Spies | Intelligence Analysis and Reporting

  2. Pingback: The Craft We Chose | Intelligence Analysis and Reporting

  3. Pingback: The Craft We Chose | Intelligence Analysis and Reporting

  4. Pingback: The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence | Intelligence Analysis and Reporting

  5. Pingback: Eyes on Spies | Intelligence Analysis and Reporting

  6. Pingback: Introduction to Intelligence Studies | Intelligence Analysis and Reporting

  7. Pingback: The Five Disciplines of Intelligence Collection | Intelligence Analysis and Reporting

  8. Pingback: Company Confessions | Intelligence Analysis and Reporting

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s