Summary Of Tim Weiner's Legacy Of Ashes

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When one looks at America’s security over the years, one will notice that America hasn’t really been thriving off of intelligence, rather, it has been flourishing in technology, research, weaponry, etc. Even though, America has drastically developed its intelligence agency after the tragic incident of 9/11, there are still some flaws in the system. The ultimate goal of the CIA is to keep the president alerted against surprise attacks, such as another September 11th. Yet the Central Intelligence Agency continues to disappoint. In the book titled, “Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA”, by Tim Weiner it describes how the most powerful country in the history of Western civilization has failed to create the top-of-the-line spy-service. The novel…show more content…
“The CIA’s Berlin base had been trying unsuccessfully for more than a year to obtain intelligence on the Red Army in occupied Germany and Russia, to track Moscow’s progress in nuclear weapons, fighter jets, missiles, and biological warfare” (Weiner 30). The author explains to the audience that the agency can’t stand by their word and be called the top-of-the-line spy service. They seem to take too long to obtain intelligence of their missions. How can one be able to rely on another if the other person takes too long to get some information? Beschloss even stated in his article, “‘all of the covert action programs undertaken by C.I.A. up to this time’” had not been worth “‘the risk of the great expenditure of manpower, money and other resources’”. He states that the CIA has not been a useful tool to the country, that the agency wastes the country’s resources on non-substantial or unworthy intel. In another article of the New York Times titled, “Can the C.I.A. Really Be That Bad?” by Michael O’Hanlon, it justifies the CIA’s harsh criticism towards its sloppiness and trust with other people. “They deserve a stern rebuke for their sloppiness and gullibility, and reforms are on the way. In particular, the agencies' willingness to trust human sources whose credibility should have been much more suspect was a serious institutional error”. The author explains that the agency isn’t doing their job. They shouldn’t be trusting their sources from other people or be so gullible at the work they do. They need to have better ways of obtaining credible intelligence to inform the President of the United

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