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The Interrogator: An Education Hardcover – Bargain Price, June 28, 2011
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“This haunted, powerful book may well be the best and most truthful firsthand account of life inside the CIA ever published."
Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame Wilson
“Glenn Carle's book The Interrogator is a disturbing tale of the extremes to which the Bush administration was prepared to go in its Global War on Terror. Faceless bureaucrats sacrificed the core values that made the United States a great country, while ignoring the counsel of experts on the ground. This is a damning story and a nation of laws would demand an investigation into whether crimes were committed. We fear that we are no longer that nation…”
Lawrence Wilkerson, former chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell
“In The Interrogator, Glenn Carle has done more than simply lift a part of the curtain behind which are lurking despicable men such as John Yoo and Douglas Feith, he has turned the stage lights on those who stand out front and continue to receive rave reviews from the rabid right wing, men such as Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld. But most of all, Carle’s moving and emotional story—in spite of CIA redactions to the text—has exposed us all, from the CIA officers who turned a blind eye, to the cabinet members who should have known better, to the American people themselves because they allowed such people to corrupt our nation. I know; I was one of them.”
John H. Hedley, former Chairman of CIA’s Publications Review Board
“Glenn Carle shares his personal experience and soul-searching reflection on rendition, detention, and interrogation in the Global War on Terrorism. It is a cathartic effort that recounts an intensely emotional journey. Carle weighs what he sees as the corrosive effect of this experience on him, his Agency, and his country. Ultimately the detainee interrogated may not have suffered most; perhaps it was the interrogator himself.”
Peter Bergen, author of The Longest War: The Enduring Conflict between America and al-Qaeda
“Glenn Carle writes with great verve and lyricism about a decidedly unlyrical moment in the history of the U.S. intelligence community; the decision after 9/11 to take the gloves off when it cane to the detention and interrogation of al Qaeda suspects. As Carle witnesses, the U.S. government’s assumptions about how important those suspects were was sometimes way off base, while their treatment at the hands of American officials often did not measure up to the high ethical standards the United States wishes to uphold as a country. Carle tells the story from inside the CIA’s “war on terror” and he does it with great honesty and realism; he has the eye of the novelist and the analytical skills of the senior CIA officer he was. That makes “The Interrogator” an engrossing read, and also an important book.”
David Ignatius, columnist for The Washington Post and author of Body of Lies
Glenn Carle’s "The Interrogator" is a remarkable memoir--for its searing personal honesty, for its portrait of the amoral secret bureaucracy of the CIA, and most of all for its revelation of how a decent American became part of a process that we can only call torture."
Gilles Kepel, Professor, Institute of Political Studies, Paris, author of Beyond Terror and Martyrdom: The Future of the Middle East
"This fascinating insider narrative of GWOT is one of the best assessments I have ever read on the major discrepancy between the jihadi challenge and the US response."
About the Author
Glenn l. Carle was a member of the CIA’s Clandestine Service for twenty-three years and retired in March 2007 as deputy national intelligence officer for transnational threats. He lives in Washington, DC.
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Carle's book is a personal account, one view, one perspective - and that is what makes it so influential. Carle is not just anyone speaking his mind, he's an insider, an experienced CIA operative, someone who saw and lived through what he did because the agency chose him for it -- that is the context in which he finds courage to challenge the views of his colleagues, his organization, and to a great extent, of his/our society.
Carle takes us on an emotional ride and confronts us with the discomforts of balancing individuality with being a member of society (what does it mean to be an American? "Whose flag do you serve?"), of being an obedient agent and a patriotic individual with a deep sense of personal integrity. He challenges the notions of patriotism, of what is justifiable, and of personal duty. One may disagree with him, but one cannot but respect Carle for raising the questions.
The choice to leave space-holders for the parts redacted by the CIA, contrary to one reviewer's comments, is not "annoying." It represents the reality and emphasizes the pressure in which Carle found the courage to speak out. This is not a fun fiction novel, but a serious and sobering account of a reality on the very edge of inter-societal conflict, which rarely reaches the ears or minds of mere mortals.
A small note on the editing of the book. I completely agree with Toquam's comments (and could not have expressed it better). The book could use some editing - but only in order to help the reader focus on its spirit and not be jarred by an occasional grammatical awkwardness and impassionate repetition of certain concepts and thoughts. Sometimes, however, I felt that the linguistic and stylistic imperfections juxtaposed with the passages redacted by the CIA made Carle's accounts that much more real and powerful.
Interestingly written with mature language. The urinal anecdote screamed for elaboration, but we were left "high-and-dry" just like the urinal.
I think was Glenn's objective was to write his memoires. However, the book may now come across to some readers (who did not have the benefit of his interview), as an attempt by him to get his back on the CIA, rather than the narrative of his real-life experiences.