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Electrode, Comp-701341259, DC-prod-dfw5, ENV-prod-a, PROF-PROD, VER-19.1.31, SHA-771c9ce79737366b1d5f53d21cad4086bf722e21, CID-42f9baf9-e63-16e77237a229f1, Generated: Sun, 17 Nov 2019 02:14:04 GMT

The End of Intelligence : Espionage and State Power in the Information Age

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Using espionage as a test case, The End of Intelligence criticizes claims that the recent information revolution has weakened the state, revolutionized warfare, and changed the balance of power between states and non-state actors--and it assesses the potential for realizing any hopes we might have for reforming intelligence and espionage. Examining espionage, counterintelligence, and covert action, the book argues that, contrary to prevailing views, the information revolution is increasing the power of states relative to non-state actors and threatening privacy more than secrecy. Arguing that intelligence organizations may be taken as the paradigmatic organizations of the information age, author David Tucker shows the limits of information gathering and analysis even in these organizations, where failures at self-knowledge point to broader limits on human knowledge--even in our supposed age of transparency. He argues that, in this complex context, both intuitive judgment and morality remain as important as ever and undervalued by those arguing for the transformative effects of information. This book will challenge what we think we know about the power of information and the state, and about the likely twenty-first century fate of secrecy and privacy.


Stanford University Press
Book Format
Original Languages
Number of Pages
David Tucker
Publication Date
August, 2014
Assembled Product Dimensions (L x W x H)
8.90 x 6.00 x 0.70 Inches

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Tucker asks a good que...

Tucker asks a good question about the future of secrecy and privacy in the information age, looking at it through espionage and the collection and creation of intelligence by the state, but a difficult one to answer for one who hasn't been directly involved in the craft. Tucker asserts that the state will continue to have an advantage over non-state actors because of its immense ability to collect information, while the non-state actor is challenged to collect the resources required to be impactful in the long run. Increased surveillance and tracking capabilities due to the data trails left may may have made it more costly to conduct clandestine and covert operations, but it won't eliminate their use. The author is methodical in his case development, characterizing the value of information to the state, how it's shared, traded, or outright stolen, and the principles/agents involved in those transactions. He discusses the dimensions of espionage and how its managed as an activity. Tucker then goes into the value of intel in conventional vs irregular warfare, all from an academic perspective. He closes with the challenges of managing and maintaining confidence in intel production and the conduct of espionage, concluding that it's more difficult to know yourself than your enemy. One area that Tucker doesn't have a great deal of insight into is the changing nature of collaboration within the U.S. intel community, its ability to communicate and share, and internally judge its own products/producers. It does still suffer from parochialism and other dysfunctions, but the info age has brought greater focus on product quality through collaboration. Returning to my first thought, it's a question worth pursuing, but not one that can be handled well from the outside, looking in.

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Electrode, Comp-283873734, DC-prod-dfw6, ENV-prod-a, PROF-PROD, VER-30.0.3, SHA-fe0221a6ef49da0ab2505dfeca6fe7a05293b900, CID-4b283459-b94-16e772449a9a34, Generated: Sun, 17 Nov 2019 02:14:57 GMT