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Hard Measures: How Aggressive CIA Actions After 9/11 Saved American Lives Hardcover – 24 May 2012
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"Jose Rodriguez guided some of the CIA's greatest counterterror victories, and his story is one of courage, commitment, and decisiveness. In this book, he provides concrete details about the value of the Agency's interrogation program of terrorists -- a program which thwarted terrorist attacks and has made America safer." -- General Michael V. Hayden, USAF (Ret.) Former Director of Central Intelligence
About the Author
Jose A. Rodriguez, Jr. joined the Central Intelligence Agency in 1976 and served with the Agency for thirty-one years. At the time of his retirement he was the Director of the National Clandestine Service for the CIA, responsible for the coordination of clandestine human operations for the intelligence community. As a former Director of the Counterterrorism Center, he led the worldwide intelligence collection programs and covert action operations against international terrorist organizations following the ouster of terrorists from Afghanistan after the 9/11 attacks.
Bill Harlow is the former chief spokesman for the Central Intelligence Agency. He was the coauthor of former CIA director George Tenet’s #1 New York Times bestseller, At the Center of the Storm, published in 2007. He is a retired Naval Officer who served in top spokesman jobs at the White House, Pentagon, and CIA.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Jose Rodriguez's "Hard Measures," published in 2012, is a top insider's knowledgeable and convincing riposte' to the 2014 release by the US Senate Intelligence Committee's report ("The Feinstein Report") on torture. Rodriguez's book is in four parts; his personal career in the CIA; then identifying the terrorist bad guys by name (Abu Zubaydah, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, etc.), their roles, the techniques used ( EIT, waterboarding, rendition, black sites) and how their "given up" information preserved the national security of this country; his admitted and personal role in the destruction of the tapes of these interrogations and the criminal investigation blowback of his decision; and the inner office bureaucratic interplay of the CIA during his time as head of the Counterterrorism Center.
Rodriguez writes well, his story moves along though one senses the leaden hand of the CIA editing censor. His tales of working inside America's spy agency are amusing at times and are about as close to peering inside the Agency as one will find in books of this kind.
More importantly, he offers pointed justifications for these interrogation techniques not seen or read in the media spin. In his concluding chapter, he takes on the Obama administration and offers some choice observations on the president, the former speaker of the House of Representatives, directors of the CIA and one controversial deputy director who tagged Rodriguez with a questionable letter of reprimand at the end.
For those who read the US Senate’s RDI (i.e. torture) report, this book gives the rest of the story.
It does not refute the events but it does place them in context, along with missing information that effectively tells a completely different story. The Senate report now appears to have been written without any academic rigor and with a pre-determined ending.
The book also provides a good perspective with regards to the destroyed video tapes. More than anything else, this is an insider’s view of government bureaucracy and how sometimes, it is impossible to make a decision. Regardless of the reader’s opinion of these tapes, there is no doubt that Mr. Rodriguez acted to safeguard the lives of his officers and their families.
The book includes several photos but only half are interesting. There is little value in photos of Mr. Rodriguez’s family vacation or when he met the actor Robert DeNiro. That said, the remaining photos highlight his interaction with important individuals and certainly have historical interest.
Bottom line: this is a pretty good book and the narrative moves quickly. The most fascinating part of this book is how it clearly highlights the historical inaccuracies of the U. S. Senate’s RDI report without even trying. Truly, a fascinating look at how politics and covert action collide.
Jose Rodriguez was sufficiently senior to both oversee operations and exist somewhat in the public sphere. The perfect man to outline the truth of the enhanced interrogation program here offers an unsurpassable factual account of the mission that saved thousands of American lives and struck crippling blows to Al-Qaeda.
I've read the Senate Select Committee Report on Torture. There are few more arduous works of fetid dreck than a paperback released by malevolent blowhards to discredit the work of peerless American intelligence officers. HARD MEASURES offers the truth, filling in the many gaps in the report.
Should the author ever read this, I want him to know he has the thanks of a grateful nation for his service.
If you love American you will respect the contributions of the author of this book to decimating Al-Qaeda's leadership and killing Osama Bin Laden.
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