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on 23 January 2003
If you are aware of Mark Urban and his other publications, UK eyes Alpha will not disappoint. The book is a very objective and informed critique of the role of British Intelligence in the final years of the Cold War and beyond.
Urban covers, in detail, the opinion of insiders on incidents such as the SAS shooting of IRA suspects in Gibralter and the fall of the Eastern Block.
Urban is frank in his critiscism, albeit derservedly so, of policy makers and notes examples of clear intelligence failures many brought on by ridiculous red tape and the negligent application of budgets. Most notably he refers to the almost absolute reliance the British Intelligence system has on US technology in SIGINT and ELINT collection and analysis.
A good read for all interested in modern History, well written and a fascinating insight into what is really going on behind the headlines.
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on 2 February 1999
Urban presents the book as a detailed insight into the workings of the UK intelligence community (GCHQ/MI5/MI6) in the modern arena. He covers the Gulf War (Desert Shield/Desert Storm) in great detail and exposes the UK/US information alliance for what it really is. Also covers counter-terrorist work by MI5. Enthralling - couldn't put it down.
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on 19 July 2003
The book is full of detailed information on persons and events
relating to UK foreign policy and intelligence operations
in recent years. It answers many questions about the events
of the Thatcher and Gorbachev years that led to the collapse
of the Soviet Union. Because it contains all these details,
it is difficult reading for the casual reader. But for the
historian it is a treasure of information.
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on 29 August 2013
Historical review of intelligence services in action appears entirely relevant to current international affairs that require an accurate back story to supporting international diplomacy, and potential military solutions where the latter has failed. Author takes a very reasoned and mature approach to analysis of the political environment and other considerations of national and international actors. An excellent read though copy I bought was preowned and was somewhat defaced in its later pages by perhaps an academic previous owner reviewing content with the aid of a flourescent highlighter pen. Unfortunate. Buy a new one for an uninterrupted read. Well done Mark Urban.
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on 15 April 2016
Great read
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on 25 February 2016
No problems
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on 4 April 2016
Fine
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