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The Threat Matrix: The FBI at War in the Age of Global Terror Hardcover – March 28, 2011


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 672 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company; 1 edition (March 28, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316068616
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316068611
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,069,275 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Kirkus Reviews: One of the best nonfiction books of 2011.

"Action-filled, richly detailed portrait of the Federal Bureau of Investigation in its new guise--charged not just with solving crimes already committed, but now with preventing at least some of them...There's solid storytelling at work here--and quite a story to tell, too."—Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"The Threat Matrix is...a well-told story and a reading pleasure."—The CIA journal Studies in Intelligence (September 2011)

About the Author

Garrett Graff is the editor-in-chief of The Washingtonian. He is the author of The First Campaign: Globalization, the Web, and the Race for the White House (FSG, 2007) and the founding editor of the FishbowlDC.com, the first blog to cover the White House press briefings.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
5 star
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4 star
24%
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See all 17 customer reviews
Informative, entertaining and well written.
Andrew Williams
From the days of J. Edgar Hoover to the current FBI Director Mueller, Graff does an extensive job of chronicling the evolution of this government agency.
Dr. Wilson Trivino
I just downloaded the book on my Kindle and can hardly put it down!
Animal Lover

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Animal Lover on April 26, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I, too, heard the NPR Diane Rehm interview with this author yesterday. I downloaded the sample and immediately started reading it. I just downloaded the book on my Kindle and can hardly put it down! I'm not a fan of nonfiction books, but this reads like a better-than Tom Clancy book. The memories of the Germany-hosted Olympics where the Israeli athletes were mowed down by Palestine terrorists and then the Southern Airlines terror of having to fly back and forth from USA to Cuba are fully described in the early chapters of The Threat Matrix. What an awakening to terror from the "gangsta" days of J.Edgar Hoover!! This book is going to fly off the shelves and into the Kindles when the accolades get out!
Thank you, Amazon, for making it immediately available!!
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful By GLS on March 15, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Great book--a total page-turner and incredibly illuminating about the secret war on terror and the secret wars within the US government and how they have shaped this global battle. I've read a lot of book--many excellent--about the war on terror and the rise of Al Qaeda, and this one adds lots of fascinating new details and some real shockers. And it reads like the best sort of thriller fiction: great characters, high stakes, lots of action. Can't recommend it highly enough.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By C. merrill on May 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I found this book to be a fascinating read into the entire history of the FBI. On the one hand, a lot of infighting from the people who protect us but on the other, a huge sense of gratitude and debt to those who have protected us from bank robbers, mafia bosses and crazy terrorists. If you are interested in how we really fight the bad buys I'd say it's definitely worth reading.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Charney on June 28, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Garrett Graff's "The Threat Matrix" is an awesome account of the FBI's transformation from reactive to proactive in the age of global terrorism. Well sourced with a wide array of documents, interviews and inside access, Graff has captured the essence of the world's finest law enforcement and domestic intelligence organization. Don't expect this book to be account-after-account of FBI success however. The author made great effort to represent the FBI as is; including the good and the not-so-good. He tells it like it is. But it's in this story that we get an insider's view of some of the things that contributed to the "not-so-good", and how far the FBI has transformed since 9/11. This is the thrilling account of a high-stakes game to beat the terrorists to the next attack. All while the FBI is still focusing on a plethora of other criminal and National Security threats. The Threat Matrix is more than a worth wile read about the FBI's last four decades. It's an exhilarating page-turner about an agency that has been notably absent from writings in the post-9/11 world. Graff is completely on target!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By DKW on May 11, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This book is a real page-turner, with fascinating, behind-the-scenes accounts of the Lockerbie investigation, the interrogation of Saddam Hussein, the mafia wars, and much more. I hadn't realized how much international work the FBI does. And Graff does a great job of explaining how the FBI is often caught in the tension between citizens' sometimes conflicting demands for both privacy and security.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Wilson Trivino on August 13, 2011
Format: Hardcover
FBI- no other three bold letters are most known in the world and represent an iconic image of the good guys. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) encapsulates the G-men of the movies with dark shades, white starch shirt, and a dark suit with a shinny badge sweeping in and fighting for justice.

However, this is not what the modern FBI is about. A relatively small force of 13,500 agents, they have become the world's enforcer. In The Threat Matrix: The FBI At War in the Age of Global Terror by Garrett M. Graff, the author takes on a fascinating journey into the history and evolution into the modern FBI.
In the first pages you are thrown into the ride up to the White House where the President received his daily security briefing. The "threat matrix" is a short document that summarizes all the hot spots around the world and captures what is going on. The threats and terrors in this book will make you wonder if this is what we can know, what the things we can't know are. Sure to keep the average person awake at night.

Since the war on terror began ten years ago on September 11, the United States has become more alert about threats. The FBI has become an integral part of this protection.

From the days of J. Edgar Hoover to the current FBI Director Mueller, Graff does an extensive job of chronicling the evolution of this government agency. The politics, the need, and the priority have changed but the image of the FBI has withstood the challenges.

Graft also delves into learning about FBI Director Muller, the longest FBI director since Hoover, who is still not a known figure. His tough no nonsense approach has made his the right man for the job who has served two presidents.
Read more ›
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By David J. on July 11, 2011
Format: Hardcover
What an incredible story by Garret Graff (given literally unprecedented access to a ton of material, with very few restrictions). I gained an immense appreciation and respect for what the FBI has gone through, from the early days with Hoover and through the 40s and 50s, to the many Directors since then (and the last 25 years that involved former Director Freeh and current Director Mueller, and FBI agents Revell and Marquise who I met many years ago, just to name a few). The Lockerbie story is incredible...the detailed and painstaking evidence gathered by the FBI, and thousands of man hours expended to unravel the truth behind the Lockerbie bombing, and how their main suspect had been narrowed down, was nothing short of amazing, and truly exemplifies how dedicated our agents remain committed. What I really appreciated, in one of many examples, is the authors description of the dilemmas faced by Director Mueller, between what the intelligence community may conclude with, versus law enforcement evidence in making a solid case. Even the pitfalls the Bureau has faced with their JTTF's in preventing the commission of a crime from occurring, with solid intelligence (and lending itself to "conspiracy to commit" charges), versus investigating a crime after its commission as an unthinkable alternative. I am only a third of the way through the Threat Matrix but I know this is the stuff Hollywood would crave over, with the difference being its all real. Strongly recommended reading for all.
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