The Invisible Government

Title:                  The Invisible Government

Author:                 David Wise

Wise, David (1964) and Thomas B. Ross. The Invisible Government. New York: Random House

LCCN:    64017933

JK468.I6 W5


Date Updated:  November 11, 2015

In 1964, Random House published Invisible Government by David Wise and Thomas Ross. The book exposed the role the CIA was playing in foreign policy. This included the CIA coups in Guatemala (Operation PBSUCCESS) and Iran (Operation Ajax) and the Bay of Pigs operation. It also revealed the CIA’s attempts to overthrow President Sukarno in Indonesia and the covert operations taking place in Laos and Vietnam. The CIA considered buying up the entire printing of Invisible Government but this idea was rejected when Random House pointed out that if this happened they would have to print a second edition.

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.

This is a review by the Defense Intelligence School.[1]

An inaccurate, simplistic “expose” of the CIA by two resourceful journalists. Overstates influence of CIA. Exploited by unfriendly nations for anti-American propaganda purposes. (Russian and Cuban editions of this book were also published.)

Reviewed by Paul W. Blackstock and Frank L. Schaf[2]

Two resourceful journalists teamed up to develop this account of the various organizational elements of the American intelligence community. Revealed are “special operations” of the CIA, with four chapters devoted to a description of the CIA in the Bay of Pigs landings in Cuba. Also described are activities in electronic espionage, black radio propaganda, and the use of spy satellites. Factually inaccurate in many cases, but a revealing account considering its date of publication.

[1] Defense Intelligence School (1981). Bibliography of Intelligence Literature: A Critical And Annotated Bibliography of Open-Source Literature (7th ed, rev.). Washington, DC: Defense Intelligence School, p. 73

[2] Blackstock, Paul W. (1978) and Frank L. Schaf, Jr. Intelligence, Espionage, Counterespionage, And Covert Operations: A Guide to Information Sources. Detroit: Gale Research Co., p. 36


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