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The FBI pyramid from the inside Hardcover – 1979

4.5 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 351 pages
  • Publisher: Putnam; Assumed First edition (1979)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399119043
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399119040
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 5.9 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #964,569 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I was able to find this book in the library after it was discovered that Mark Felt was indeed Deep Throat. The book overall is a good, fast read, but don't expect to get any inside story about being Deep Throat (which he denies several times in the book). What the book is instead is a solid description of the FBI bureaucracy, especially in the 60s and early 70s.

More importantly from a historical perspective is that this book is also an unapologetic defense of his mentor J. Edgar Hoover. For example, he characterizes Hoover as being more pro-civil rights than just about anyone else in Washington, such as being against the Japanese internment camps in World War II, refusing to bug offices of a President's opponents etc. Hoover apparently was more pro-civil liberties than Felt himself, as Hoover tried to pull the plug on certain illegal activities which Felt allowed to continue. He refutes many of the dark allegations made against Hoover, such as the investigation of Martin Luther King, although I don't have the background to know if his description of these issues is accurate. Still, it is very interesting to get an alternative point of view on the subject.

Felt is very even-handed, as he complains almost as much about the Kennedy administration (especially the Attorney General RFK) as he does about Nixon. He complains that both Kennedy and Truman did not take the Red Menace seriously enough. The one organization to which he had unqualified loyalty was the FBI itself. Because of this, Felt resents the attempts by both the Kennedy and Nixon administrations to interfere with FBI investigations.

The book is not perfect. True to his career as an adminstrator, he sometimes spends too much time describing bureaucratic minutiae that do not have much relevance to the story.
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Format: Hardcover
This is a vote for "The FBI Pyramid" to be re-printed.
At the moment, let's see......ONE original copy available, $1995.00 -- No, I don't think so. :-)

There is much that we can look for in this book. Besides possible clues about Mr. Felt's motivation for being "Deep Throat" and perhaps even unconscious hints that it was he, we will get a close view of the nature and structure of the FBI and of what he valued about it. I would look particularly for what he said about possible kinds of threats to the authority and functioning of the agency; it then may not be hard to read between the lines for hints of the threats that Mr. Felt had seen and sensed from the Nixon administration.

But this is all speculation until we get the book ourselves. Please re-print it, and help this postscript of the Watergate story to unfold.
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Format: Hardcover
This was a really good book, which I promptly started reading when it came out that Mark Felt was the mysterious "Deep Throat" of Watergate fame. I am amazed to see the inside cover, and read this blurb: "Mark Felt, who was rumored to be the famous informer Deep Throat, and whose name and face are known to millions of newspaper readers as the first top FBI executive......".

I mean, my goodness, how much more blunt could it have been!

....and the book came out 25 years ago!

I also find it ironic that Mr. Felt was actually sent to prison himself---and had former President Nixon testify on his behalf! He was even later pardoned by President Reagan, and got a congratulatory note from former President Nixon, that said, "Justice Always Prevails". Mr. Felt was definitely a brave man! You will definitely find this to be an interesting book.
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Format: Hardcover
This very readable 1979 book has 351 pages but lacks an index and a table of contents to his life in the FBI. Felt's recollection of events was refreshed by FBI records, Senate and House reports, and the Nixon tapes. Neither personal malice nor selfish motivations colored his actions or judgment at any time in his career (p.12). After J. Edgar Hoover died Felt, the #2 man, stayed to help the new Acting Director (who had no experience with law enforcement but many years as a Nixon loyalist). Felt resents "political considerations" imposed on the FBI; yet politics created the Bureau of Investigations. Shouldn't he advocate placing the FBI under Civil Service, like the US Secret Service? When the Secret Service convicted a Senator and Congressman for the Teapot Dome scandal, Congress cut their budget; later FDR reassigned counter-intelligence from the SS to the FBI. FDR depended on J. Edgar Hoover to get reports on the personal life of FDR's friends and enemies. Hoover's gathering of "dirt" on Congressmen and others was a form of pre-emptive defense necessary to political life in America (p.207).

Felt says the actions of the FBI neutralized the threat of terrorism from Al Fatah, the Jewish Defense League, and the Weather Underground (p.13). Felt warns against any complacency since terrorism can return (p.14)! The following chapters tell of his career and the events that propelled him to the top of the FBI Pyramid. Felt gives his side on the "palace intrigue" and his disagreements with William C. Sullivan. [Sullivan was shot before he could testify to the House Select Committee that Investigated Assassinations.] New agents were assigned to four different Field offices in their first four years. There were financial and personal hardships in this (p.25).
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