Hard Measures has been promoted on CBS 60 Minutes and on Hannity as an expose of the Obama administration's misguided policies related to interrogations of detainees in the War on Terror.
But it is more than that.
The author and his collaborator, Bill Harlow, spend most of their space in the book defending the author's controversial and correct decision to order the destruction of tapes of interrogations of al Qaeda detainees.
The book also:
1. Covers and celebrates the author's 31-year career in the CIA, where he rose to the top ranks of the agency.
2. Celebrates and promotes the hard work the agency's employees have done to identify, capture and kill those who have tried to replicate 9/11 and other terrorists acts. It's quite a good story.
3. Mocks the FBI's attempts to build legal cases against captured terrorists for their crimes instead of focusing on extracting information that would help prevent more attacks on the homeland.
4. Mocks former FBI and CIA employees who, the author says, falsely claim to know about or to have been involved in capturing terrorists or interrogating them.
5. Attacks the CIA's office of Inspector General for being staffed by CIA employees who are expendable by the CIA because they aren't the brightest bulb s in the agency.
6. Attacks the Inspector General and his staff for demoralizing CIA employees and getting in the way of their important work.
7. Effectively says former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has lied when she claimed she didn't know about the interrogation processes used and discarded by the CIA. That is not news, however.
8. Paints the author as a victim of grandstanding members of Congress, the ACLU and the media (New York Times). And he clearly is the victim of their biased, self-serving attacks on him and the agency, imho.
9. Does a great job of telling the CIA's side of the "torture" controversy and makes Sen. John McCain look like the idiot that he is.
10. Gives a fascinating overview of CIA politics, procedures, careers and operations. This book is a tremendous PR piece for the CIA, imho.
Because I haven't spent much time worrying about the CIA, I"m not an expert on the agency and don't pretend to know whether the author is fairly portraying everything he covers in this book. What I can say is that he makes a convincing case and that the book is very readable. I started reading the book on my browser after dinner and finished it a few minutes ago. It's 3:15 AM. I'm not in the habit of staying up this late to read anything.