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Veil: The Secret Wars of the CIA 1981-1987 Paperback – September 1, 1988
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From Library Journal
Woodward's books on Watergate, the Supreme Court, and John Belushi were not so controversial as Veil. His deathbed visit to William Casey, former CIA head, has been disputed by Casey's wife. What Woodward knew about Casey's Iran-contra role was apparently withheld from Congress. All this smoke has drawn attention from the fire. Woodward's tale of attempted murders, payoffs to foreign leaders, covert contra aid, covert aid to Britain in the Falklands War, and anti-terrorist squads is formidable. He presents Casey's CIA as a dangerously illegal loose cannon on the deck of U.S. foreign policy. Richard B. Finnegan, Stonehill Coll., North Easton, Mass.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Woodward has established himself as the best reporter of our time. He may be the best reporter of all time."
-- Bob Schieffer,CBS News Face the Nation
"Bob Woodward, the master chronicler of Washington's deepest secrets, has produced an investigative record of the CIA's turbulent years under the late William Casey....Veil plows more new ground than a dozen tractors in Iowa."
-- U.S. News & World Report
"Veil lays bare, in a way that no reportage has done before, the power struggle between contending factions -- both inside and outside the CIA -- for control over the nation's foreign intelligence apparatus...."
-- The Washington Times
"To read Veil is to be astonished at the access Woodward achieved....The reader is invited to understand Casey. The author dared open himself to Casey's charm, to Casey's rationale...."
-- New York Daily News
"Fifteen years after he unraveled Watergate as little more than a policebeat reporter, Woodward has lost none of his edge as one of the finest journalistic investigators of our time....Woodward has succeeded brilliantly in cracking state secrets...."
-- Los Angeles Times Book Review --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Furthermore, the way Woodward wove himself into the storyline would lead one to believe that he was a key character in the whole Casey-era saga. Fortunately, this is hardly the case.
Nevertheless, the book is a good review of the key players at the macro-level who were creating policy. Of note, the interaction between Goldwater and Casey is enlightening.
If you really want to get to the meat of CIA/DoD secret activities during this era, Steve Emerson's "Secret Warriors" will provide far more insight into the covert activities of the 80s.
Overall this book gives the reader some very interesting stories about the Regan years and his use of the CIA. The reader of any book covering a review of a set of government policies that had a very firm stamp of approval or even the direction of the President will always fall on side or another on if the book is a truthful and "shocking" exposé or a "political bias hatchet job". I think that is one of the fun things about this book, no matter what side of the argument you are on; you will experience some emotion while reading this book. If you are also very interested in this subject it is interesting to go back into time and read his review and then compare it to some of the new facts on the subject.
Overall, this is another Woodward book, well written and constructed, very detailed and full of a lot of conversations that make you feel that you are involved, not just page after page of monotone lecturing. I wish he spent a little more time on footnotes so that the reader could be a better judge to the research he puts into the book and the sources used. If you like Woodward, you will love this book. If you have leanings to the left then you will have a lot of "you see" stories to tell, and if you are a strong Reaganite then you will be happy with the strong effort described in the book to defeat the USSR.
Woodward gathered material from a variety of sources when writing this book. One of his primary sources was Casey himself. Woodward interviewed Casey on numerous occasions, and Casey was aware that Woodward was compiling material for a book about his leadership of the CIA. Casey was surprisingly forthcoming about his involvement in many covert operations. He must have felt confident that Woodward would not betray his trust and expose any material prematurely. What is odd is that Woodward discusses not only Casey's professional life, but also his personal life, and includes comments about such things as peanuts getting caught in Casey's dentures that seem mean-spirited rather than relevant for the story. Nevertheless, the historical documentation of Casey's leadership and CIA activities in the 1980s makes the book well worth reading.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
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