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Long Strange Journey: An Intelligence Memoir [Kindle Edition]

Patrick Eddington
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Book Description

January 2011 marks the 20th anniversary of the start of Operation Desert Storm, as well as two decades of continuous American military involvement in the Persian Gulf region. A number of questions about that first Gulf War and its consequences have never been answered. Why was President George H.W. Bush so surprised that Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait? Did America’s intelligence community fail to warn him of the threat, or did he ignore their predictions of an invasion? Why did the CIA and the Pentagon deny so vehemently for so long that sick Desert Storm veterans were exposed to Iraq’s chemical agents? Patrick G. Eddington tackles these and other questions in Long Strange Journey: An Intelligence Memoir, which details his career as a military analyst at the Central Intelligence Agency from 1988 to 1996.

Long Strange Journey is a first-person account of the high-tech, space-based side of the intelligence business. Although President Carter first revealed the existence of our imagery spy satellites nearly 30 years ago, no analyst who has used those systems has written a book on the topic and got it past CIA censors until now.

Eddington’s tenure at the CIA spanned the transition from the Cold War to the new era of American interventionism in the Persian Gulf and the Balkans. The book draws upon not only his direct experience reporting on these events for senior government policy makers, but also upon thousands of pages of previously classified documents secured through litigation he pursued during the last decade.

Editorial Reviews

Review

CIA analyst Pat Eddington took on a hidebound intelligence bureaucracy more interested in pleasing political masters than fulfilling its obligation to protecting the nation and those we put in harm's way. Part spy thriller, part scandal, part love story, this book will make you hope there are more like him fighting for truth and justice behind the CIA's veil of secrecy. --Mike German, Senior Policy Counsel for National Security and Civil Liberties ACLU

Long Strange Journey is a gripping depiction of Eddington's struggle to force the CIA, Pentagon and Congress to acknowledge the Gulf War syndrome's causes....It is a must-read for anyone who wants to know how the intelligence community really works. -- Danielle Brian, Executive Director, Project on Government Oversight

Patrick G. Eddington has written an intriguing account of his experiences in the CIA as an analyst of technically derived intelligence-a rare inside look at the difficulties of predicting world events and the frustrations of working within an often slow-moving, status quo oriented government bureaucracy....Long Strange Journey is a valuable narrative about a talented young officer's experiences-and anguish-while serving in the middle ranks of America's premier secret agency. --Loch K. Johnson Regents Professor, University of Georgia, Senior Editor, Intelligence and National Security

Long Strange Journey is a gripping depiction of Eddington's struggle to force the CIA, Pentagon and Congress to acknowledge the Gulf War syndrome's causes....It is a must-read for anyone who wants to know how the intelligence community really works. --Danielle Brian, Executive Director, Project on Government Oversight

Patrick G. Eddington has written an intriguing account of his experiences in the CIA as an analyst of technically derived intelligence-a rare inside look at the difficulties of predicting world events and the frustrations of working within an often slow-moving, status quo oriented government bureaucracy....Long Strange Journey is a valuable narrative about a talented young officer's experiences-and anguish-while serving in the middle ranks of America's premier secret agency. --Loch K. Johnson Regents Professor, University of Georgia, Senior Editor, Intelligence and National Security

An outstanding young CIA analyst learns his Government has lied about whether Saddam Hussein deployed chemical weapons during Desert Storm, and then has covered up the harm this caused the health of thousands of unsuspecting GIs. What can he do about it? Plenty it turns out, if he is sufficiently patriotic, persistent, and persuasive -- and he is willing to risk his career and endure insidious personal attacks in order to help horribly suffering veterans. and to enhance our military preparedness for the future.

Pat Eddington puts a human face on the true intelligence "patriots" who dare speak truth to power. He does so by vividly portraying his daily struggle to discern the facts and then to prevail over those trying -- in the words of the infamous British cable about Bush II's plan to invade Iraq-- "to fit the facts to the policy."

He brilliantly exposes the cover-up DNA of Executive Branch officials, as well as their instinct to kill the messenger when a whistle-blower reveals their misdeeds and misstatements. And he meticulously dissects and debunks the outrageous -- and at times pathetic -- Defense Department and CIA spin in response to his revelations..

Long Strange Journey is simultaneously a chilling roller-coaster of a spy story and a cornucopia of vital insights for current policy-makers befuddled by Iran, China and Afghanistan. This is a "must read" for the Obama White House and concerned citizens, alike.

In his moving memoir, Eddington eloquently reminds us that, as Dr. King warned in his 1968 Riverside Church condemnation of the Viet Nam war: "Their comes a time when silence is betrayal." --Burton Wides, currently a pro bono public interest advocate, headed the Church Committee's investigations of the CIA and was Special Counsel to President Carter for oversight of all U.S. intelligence agencies.

About the Author

Patrick G. Eddington was a military analyst at the CIA from 1988-96. He currently serves as Senior Policy Advisor for Defense and Intelligence Issues for Rep. Rush Holt (D-NJ).

Patrick G. Eddington was a military analyst at the CIA from 1988-96. He currently serves as Senior Policy Advisor for Defense and Intelligence Issues for Rep. Rush Holt (D-NJ).

Product Details

  • File Size: 1249 KB
  • Print Length: 416 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Wasteland Press (January 28, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004NNV5H2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,291,660 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
FINAL REVIEW

It is difficult for any intelligence book to make it to my 6+ category, or top ten percent. What brings this book to the very top of the heap is the skillful weaving of a constant appraisal of the moral in tandem with the practical. Sight unseen I knew this book would be a five, but it jumped to six when I read it from the back to the front and saw:

Page 354: The Agency has become inbred, ossified, parasitic...a prescription for the abuse of individual rights and fatally flawed analyses of the world-at-large that have plagued CIA over the past 30 years...

In the same concluding chapter he slams Congress for not demanding full access to classified information and the Congressional intelligence committees for serving as controllers of Congressional access rather than oversight bodies, with a particular disdain and disinterest in whistle-blowers; the Pentagon for infecting its own troops with alleged medicine that cause neurological problems, and for consistently covering up and lying to one and all about the causes of Gulf War syndrome; and the US Government generally for isolating "military medicine" from civilian medicine to the point that the troops are guinea pigs for bad science, and then victims of cover-ups that would not be countenanced outside the Pentagon.

Page xxiii: [Admiral Edwin] Layton's message [on failure of Pearl Harbor] was simple and timeless: human ego, ambition, and fear always will be a menace to sound intelligence work, and to accountability when people get killed.
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"An absolutely fascinating story of how one patriotic intelligence analyst working in the CIA's entrenched bureaucracy repeatedly spoke "truth to power" -- risking his own career at every turn. As in his first book, Gassed in the Gulf, Patrick Eddington provides the public with a rare glimpse of how the CIA, Pentagon and the Washington establishment often ignore critical information, that subsequently costs our GIs and our citizens dearly.

Mr. Eddington discovered convincing evidence of Saddam's impending invasion of Kuwait, and tried in vain to warn our leaders, then had to watch that war erupt. Two decades later this man literally saw the airliner diving towards the Pentagon, and once again had to witness the cost of our nation's intelligence failures. This well-written memoir is required reading for any American wanting to understand why this country gets repeatedly blind sided by events in a turbulent world."

Alan E. Diehl, Ph.D., former Defense Department senior technical advisor, and author of "Air Safety Investigators: Using Science to Save Lives One Crash at a Time."
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5.0 out of 5 stars Gas Attack March 14, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book Long Strange Journey: An Intelligence Memoir consists of two inter-woven threads each of which is interesting in itself. In one thread Eddington provides a unique look at the analytic processes involved in producing imagery intelligence (IMINT). In the other thread Eddington describes the crusade that he and his wife undertook on behalf of Desert Storm (Gulf War I) veterans who came returned from the war with a compellation of physical and mental systems that eventually became diagnosed as "Gulf War Syndrome" (GWS). This second thread is really the heart of the book and is still on going.

In the mid-80's after service in the Army, Eddington was recruited by the National Photo Interpretation Center (NPIC) then under CIA. His memories of his experiences as an NPIC imagery analyst provides an excellent look at the duties of a photo interpreter and researcher. He also provides yet another light on CIA management and approach to intelligence production. Rather curiously in discussing his duties, Eddington, ignores the fact that an imagery analyst must often do quite a bit careful analysis and research to interpret the contents of an image before it can be processed into IMINT. Also when Eddington recounts the reorganization of NPIC into an independent entity, National Intelligence and Mapping Agency (NIMA), under the Department of Defense (DOD) his implies that this meant that the work at NIMA would be vetted by DOD seniors and NIMA would lose its objectivity. He also unfairly characterized the imagery analysts who went to work for NIMA as mere "bean counters", which in point of fact was untrue.
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