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Showing 1-10 of 35 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 50 reviews
on June 2, 2015
Jim Olson is a true patriot. While I was hoping for cloak and dagger spy stories, this book is about what the title says - no subterfuge here. Having said that, I was bored as he wrestled with his theme citing philosophers, some long-gone and others fairly new, quoting their writings, and even scripture, on both sides of the dilemma. I personally side with those who say you gotta do what you gotta do and let the moralists agonize over it. In fairness I thought the scenarios he presented at the end were very good, thought provoking.
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on September 3, 2015
Professor Olson is the most engaging professor I have ever known through 13 years of collegiate level training. He is a passionate hero, an amazing story teller, and a gifted discussion leader. Those attributes blend well within his book as he tells the story through his eyes while blending viewpoints from others to create a fascinating text. A wonderful read for scholars, historians, and any student of government service.
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on July 22, 2015
Not only does it address interesting moral questions, but frankly its anecdotes offer a better overview of intelligence operations than ponderous tomes like Lowenthal's (especially for the time to read).
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on January 12, 2014
A more accurate description might be: "The ethical issues of getting what you want". It's not a quick read. There are a lot of thought provoking issues that may be better presented in a seminar as this seems to be how the book is written. We get the issue and then get a number of opinions on that issue summed up by the author. But in the reading; one is likely to develop their own opinion that doesn't square with any that are presented. It's a very "heavy" read.
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on November 3, 2015
Fascinating book by a fascinating man. Met him recently at a talk he gave regarding his career in the CIA. Immediately bought the book and loved it. Note: the books is about 100 pages of his experience then another hundred or so of hypothetical situations involving the "morality" or ethics of espionage that he and a panel of lay people and experts discuss.
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on December 23, 2014
This book is a real mind twister. If you have ever wanted to look at the world through the eyes of an intelligence officer, this book will walk your through the many moral conflicts that you will have to end up weighing for yourself. Read this book with friends so that you can then discuss the various scenarios that are proposed in the book and debate how you would handle each situation.
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on September 3, 2012
Olson does an outstanding job in showing the very nature of questionable motives and moral issues within the book. Issues are made up to show two and sometimes three different sides to the example by select staff and practitioners to include a few students that are very thought provoking. James Olson has a unique way of explaining details and connecting with the reader. Making it easy to understand the example and form your own decision before reading the feedback.
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on January 6, 2017
Fantastic book. Eye opening into the brass tacks and practicality of moral and ethical issues faced by intelligence professionals in an increasingly murky world.
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on May 13, 2017
Gift. Was loved.
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on October 29, 2014
Very insightful. Really makes you think about what espionage behavior is acceptable as Americans. This is also the best reference I've found for realistic spy scenarios and CIA terminology.
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