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True Believer: Inside the Investigation and Capture of Ana Montes, Cuba's Master Spy Hardcover – March 3, 2007

4 out of 5 stars 44 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Several years ago, I informed the Federal Bureau of Investigation of a growing suspicion that one of our own DIA employees, Ana Belen Montes, was secretly an agent of the Cuban government. The evidence at first was weak, but I worked with the FBI over several years to develop the facts and finally bring her to justice. This book is the inside story of that long and ultimately successful spy hunt." -- Scott W. Carmichael

About the Author

Scott W. Carmichael, senior security and counterintelligence investigator for the Defense Intelligence Agency was the lead agent on the Ana Montes espionage investigation. His contributions to national security have earned him the DIA Civilian Expeditionary Medal and Award for Meritorious Civilian Service, the Defense Intelligence Director's Award, the Department of Defense Counterintelligence Award, and the National Intelligence Medal of Achievement. He lives n the Washington, D.C area.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 1 - 1 year
  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Naval Institute Press; 1St Edition edition (March 5, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1591141001
  • ISBN-13: 978-1591141006
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 0.8 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,249,724 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Hi. I'm Scott Carmichael. I was born in the State of Wisconsin and, yes, I will forever be a die-hard Green Bay Packers and University of Wisconsin Badgers fan. But my journey through life has taken me far from the place of my birth in the small farming community of Fort Atkinson. I spent four years in the service of our country as a U.S. Navy enlisted man during the Vietnam War. I was a Chinese-Mandarin linguist then, posted to small communications stations located in the Philippines and Okinawa, though I occasionally volunteered for temporary assignments on board American submarines operating secretly in the Tonkin Gulf and the South China Sea. The crews of USS Wahoo (SS-565) and her sister boat USS Gudgeon (SS-568), introduced me to the real Navy - the pig-boat Navy, and developed within me a greater understanding and appreciation for the concepts of teamwork, comradery, commitment, and - the stench of diesel fuel, which permeates the body and remains deeply etched at least within my memory banks to this day. Following discharge from the Navy, I obtained a BA degree in East Asian Studies from the University of Washington, in Seattle. Beautiful city. Met some of the most memorable and wonderful people imaginable during my stay there, and I miss them. But I returned to Wisconsin after graduation - to become a cop. I served as a police officer in my mother's hometown of Edgerton for a period of approximately 7 years, and learned while so employed virtually everything that I now know..about people. Priceless knowledge. Invaluable. That experience, that education as a police officer has since served me very well indeed. Because my business today is all about people, and what makes them tick. In 1984, I assumed new duties as a Special Agent of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, NCIS. That was before the service became the focus of its own TV show. I specialized in Foreign Counterintelligence, and spent a couple of years stationed at the Naval Base on Treasure Island, located in the middle of San Francisco Bay. Wow. Go there, if ever you have the opportunity. It is a long ways from cow country, believe me. Then I married, and in 1986 moved to Washington DC, where I accepted assignment to NCIS headquarters. Two years later, the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) developed an organic capability to find spies within its ranks - and hired me as one of a number of specialists to perform that mission for the agency. That has been my calling, ever since. I have accumulated a total 25 years employment as a Special Agent of DIA, and serve today as the senior security and counterintelligence investigator for the agency. I sometimes work alone, but more often work in cooperation with agents of the FBI and/or the military service investigative agencies to resolve counterintelligence issues which impact DIA - and, I do other things as well. Whatever the boss asks of me. In 2007, the Naval Institute Press published my first book, True Believer, and in 2010, published my second, Moon Men Return. I have others in the works. And that is me. My biography. I do not consider myself to be a writer by trade. I am an investigator who happens to write, and I love doing so whenever I have the time or feel the inclination. I suppose I will continue to write until people tell me to stop. Thanks.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The plot is a great story about a Cuban spy (mole) in the Defense Intelligence Agency. The main good guy is a perceptive and doggedly tenacious counterintelligence agent/investigator. The bad guy (gal) lives a poker-faced double life: hard working and ambitious U.S. govt. employee with far-reaching influence in foreign policy decisions. So far so good, but the story is told like the author doesn't want to reveal the slightest bit of tradecraft or investigative detail. I know the author, who is also the good guy/investigator, needs to protect methods/techniques, but he does the reader a great disservice by holding back on details involving missteps and clues detected by the U.S. govt sleuths. The author mentions how the mole was detected due to certain telltale clues, but yet doesn't elaborate. If you want to read a story that is long on "If I tell then I'll have to kill you" intrigue then you (the reader) will be happy with lack of detail and supporting narrative.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The story is that of a dedicated Cuban agent climbing through the American intelligence community. Although often lost on the general public traitors generally come in two varieties, intelligence sources and agents of influence. Montes was both plus in a great position to help others inside the US intelligence community.

It matters not that Cuba is a flacid threat to the US, they are involved in Latin American leftist movements and looking to trade intel for goods and favors from the whose who of dictatorships. The author links Mondes directly to the death of a US military advisor working in Latin America. It is likely that there were more casualties.

One of the great frustrations of the case is the glacial pace of investigations. Again months and months were lost as the FBI agents worked with the DOJ's staff to try to get the required authorizations to bring the case foreward. In the end the events of 9-11 and the probability that Montes would compromise major anti-terror activities lead to her arrest before all the evidence could be gathered.

Just as we wondery why we could not connect the dots at Virginia Tech, one wonders why we keep erasing the dots in the interest of "justice" .

Like so many of these stories it begins with one suspicions person, initially ignored as onbody wants to believe that one of their own have betrayed the trust.

Update 5-10-07

Mr. Cespedes ( see comments) offered the following insightful comments, "What this reviewer neglects to mention is that the damage done to US security by this Cuban spy is tremendous. The fact is that the Cuban dictatorship has close relationships with Iran, Syria, China, Russia and all other terrorist states in the world.
Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I knew Ana Montes a little, and while this book is an interesting account of how she was exposed and then caught, the constant reference to "details I can't reveal" spoils the whole story. Those are the details that led to Carmichaels commitment to catch her, but he will not tell us what they are. This book is not really worth buying, unfortunately. It's just a bogus, aimless story. The ending..Montes is caught...is predictable, but how Carmichael got there is kept on the margin. Too bad.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was a very quick read, somewhat disconcerting at times due to frequent changes of progress developing. I can just imagine the effect on the writer being so close. He did an extremely thorough job with background and a very good job of providing credit to others involved; so many writers seem to be reluctant even to use anonymous "names."
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Format: Hardcover
True Believer:Inside the Investigation and Capture of Ana Montes,Cuba's Master Spy.

Communist Believer/Castroite Spy Ana Montes should have had a Life Sentence or Worst,as fully and brilliantly told in the book this scumbag betrayed America and it's not something that is to be ignored or say what can a Little Island like Cuba do? Well Cuba does not Like The United States for one and is allied with Our Worst enemies.The book tells in detail how this person if you can call her that betrayed her country,her Faith(Catholic?Attended Mass,Sickening)and Her family and co-workers by selling the store like Obama did in 2014,(Cuban Five anyone? The spies who were implicit in the Brothers to The rescue Shootdown,4 of them were American citizens! along with the Treacherous Francis who has Betrayed God's word/The Church.)This book mattered in 2007 and it matters now and beyond,she worked for over 20 years in the highest and most top secret Clearances in our government she could have done even more harm,Her arrest happen after 9/11 hence why not much stink was made ado but the author points out eloquently that should have been a big stink and we Should worry,This person did this not for money but out of Conviction of her love and belief of all things In Fidel Castro!(a Mass Murderer/Tyrant)sadly there are many like her despite the high education who admire Tyranny,or are Naive.A Puerto Rican by her Family(No surprise they wanted independence for Puerto Rico guess what the Loyalty lays)should have never held such high jobs in such positions,and had such a light sentence.A Cautionary tale that should not be repeated.
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