A Kidnapping in Milan: The CIA on Trial

W. W. Norton & Company
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A book so compelling it deserves to become one of the nonfiction classics of our time. As propulsively readable as the best “true crime,” A Kidnapping in Milan is a potent reckoning with the realities of counterterrorism. In a mesmerizing page-turner, Steve Hendricks gives us a ground-level view of the birth and growth of international Islamist terrorist networks and of counterterrorism in action in Europe. He also provides an eloquent, eagle’s-eye perspective on the big questions of justice and the rule of law.

“In Milan a known fact is always explained by competing stories,” Hendricks writes, but the stories that swirled around the February 2003 disappearance of the radical imam Abu Omar would soon point in one direction—to a covert action by the CIA. The police of Milan had been exploiting their wiretaps of Abu Omar for useful information before the taps went silent. The Americans were their allies in counterterrorism—would they have disrupted a fruitful investigation?

In an extraordinary tale of detective versus spy, Italian investigators under the leadership of prosecutor Armando Spataro unraveled in embarrassing detail the “covert” action in which Abu Omar had been kidnapped and sent to be tortured in Egypt. Spataro—seasoned in prosecutions of the Mafia and the Red Brigades and a passionate believer in the rule of law—sought to try the kidnappers in absentia: the first-ever trial of CIA officers by a U.S. ally. An exemplary achievement in narrative nonfiction writing, A Kidnapping in Milan is at once a detective story, a history of the terrorist menace, and an indictment of the belief that man’s savagery against man can be stilled with more savagery yet.
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About the author

Steve Hendricks is a freelance reporter. He is the author of A Kidnapping in Milan and The Unquiet Grave: The FBI and the Struggle for the Soul of Indian Country, which was named to several best-of-the-year lists in 2006. He lives in Tennessee and Montana.

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Additional Information

Publisher
W. W. Norton & Company
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Published on
Oct 11, 2010
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Pages
320
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ISBN
9780393080681
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Language
English
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Genres
Political Science / Intelligence & Espionage
Political Science / Terrorism
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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The next president of the United States faces innumerable complex problems, from a possible prolonged recession to climate change. An immediate difficulty for the president will be the global conflict between the West and Islamic jihadists and state sponsors of terrorism. The creation of the Department of Homeland Security and the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission notwithstanding, the administration needs to be armed and ready to tackle much more in the areas of intelligence and counterterrorism. The president can and must assume a hands-on, informed leadership role if the United States wants to make progress in the war on terror.

Gary Berntsen has written this book as a guide for an incoming president and White House staff so that they may master current human intelligence and counterterrorism operations. After reading its highly specific recommendations and policy prescriptions, the president and his or her staff will be able to draft a First Directive for the leadership of the intelligence and national security communities outlining how the administration wants those communities to proceed and to defend the nation's interests.

Human Intelligence, Counterterrorism, and National Leadership will be of interest to legislators, policymakers, and anyone concerned about intelligence and terrorism policy. With a foreword by Seth G. Jones, a political scientist at the RAND Corporation and Adjunct Professor in the Security Studies Program at Georgetown University. He is the author of In the Graveyard of Empires: America's War in Afghanistan and The Rise of European Security Cooperation.
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For ten years, Senator Graham served on the Senate Intelligence Committee, where he had access to some of the nation’s most closely guarded secrets. Following the attacks of September 11, 2001, Graham co-chaired a historic joint House-Senate inquiry into the intelligence community’s failures. From that investigation and his own personal fact-finding, Graham discovered disturbing evidence of terrorist activity and a web of complicity:

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• In February 2002, only four months after combat began in Afghanistan, the Bush administration ordered General Tommy Franks to move vital military resources out of Afghanistan for an operation against Iraq–despite Franks’s privately stated belief that there was a job to finish in Afghanistan, and that the war on terrorism should focus next on terrorist targets in Somalia and Yemen.
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• The White House was so uncooperative with the bipartisan inquiry that its behavior bore all the hallmarks of a cover-up.
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• Foreign leaders throughout the Middle East warned President Bush of exactly what would happen in a postwar Iraq, and those warnings went either ignored or unheeded.

As a result of his Senate work, Graham has become convinced that the attacks of September 11 could have been avoided, and that the Bush administration’s war on terrorism has failed to address the immediate danger posed by al-Qaeda, Hezbollah, and Hamas in Afghanistan, Syria, Yemen, and Somalia. His book is a disturbing reminder that at the highest levels of national security, now more than ever, intelligence matters.
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Zegart argues that after the Cold War ended, the CIA and FBI failed to adapt to the rise of terrorism. She makes the case by conducting painstaking analysis of more than three hundred intelligence reform recommendations and tracing the history of CIA and FBI counterterrorism efforts from 1991 to 2001, drawing extensively from declassified government documents and interviews with more than seventy high-ranking government officials. She finds that political leaders were well aware of the emerging terrorist danger and the urgent need for intelligence reform, but failed to achieve the changes they sought. The same forces that have stymied intelligence reform for decades are to blame: resistance inside U.S. intelligence agencies, the rational interests of politicians and career bureaucrats, and core aspects of our democracy such as the fragmented structure of the federal government. Ultimately failures of adaptation led to failures of performance. Zegart reveals how longstanding organizational weaknesses left unaddressed during the 1990s prevented the CIA and FBI from capitalizing on twenty-three opportunities to disrupt the September 11 plot.



Spying Blind is a sobering account of why two of America's most important intelligence agencies failed to adjust to new threats after the Cold War, and why they are unlikely to adapt in the future.

A hands-on, practical survival guide from retired Navy SEAL Clint Emerson—adapted for civilians from actual special forces operations—to eluding pursuers, evading capture, and surviving any dangerous situation.

In today’s increasingly dangerous world, threats to your personal safety are everywhere. From acts of terror to mass shootings, and from the unseen (and sometimes virtual) matrix of everyday crime, danger is no longer confined to dark alleys or unstable regions. Potentially life-threatening circumstances can arise anywhere, anytime, and Clint Emerson—former Navy SEAL—wants you to be prepared.

100 Deadly Skills contains proven self-defense skills, evasion tactics, and immobilizing maneuvers—modified from the world of black ops—to help you take action in numerous “worst case” scenarios from escaping a locked trunk, to making an improvised Taser, to tricking facial recognition software. With easy-to-understand instructions and illustrations, Emerson outlines in detail many life-saving strategies and teaches you how to think and act like a member of the special forces.

This complete course in survival teaches you how to prevent tracking, evade a kidnapping, elude an active shooter, rappel down the side of a building, immobilize a bad guy, protect yourself against cyber-criminals, and much more—all using low-tech to “no-tech” methods. Clear, detailed, and presented in an easy-to-understand and execute format, 100 Deadly Skills is an invaluable resource. Because let’s face it, when danger is imminent, you don’t have time for complicated instructions.
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