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Undercover: The True Story of Britain's Secret Police Paperback – 25 Jun 2013
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Undercover lays bare the deceit, betrayal and cold-blooded violation, practised again and again by undercover officers - troubling, timely and brilliantly executed. (Henry Porter)
Doggedly written and researched by Guardian journalists Rob Evans and Paul Lewis, the revelations in its pages are genuinely explosive ... it's the steady accumulation of detail that's so compelling. The testimony of person after person who was taken in, deceived, gulled, who knew the officers for years - who thought of them as best friends, or lovers, or life partners, or the father of their children, who had no inkling that they were part of an elaborate state-sponsored spy-ring that intruded on the most intimate parts of their lives. (Carole Cadwalladr Observer)
Undercover is not just a book; it's a sensation ... it's terrific and important journalism. (Jenni Russell Sunday Times)
Were these stories not real, they would read like an airport thriller ... Undercover compels the reader throughout, which is a testament to the investigative and writing skills of Evans and Lewis ... The work of these authors is one of the best arguments in favour of a free press you'll ever read. (Alan White New Statesman)
What makes this book so utterly absorbing is not the politics or policing, but the people. (David Aaronovitch The Times)
With luck, the grotesqueries revealed in this powerful book will fire some of the old free and radical British spirit again. (Bernard Porter Guardian)
A breathtaking expose of a top-secret campaign of surveillance against British citizens, told through the compelling human stories of undercover agents.See all Product description
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As far as I'm aware, it's the only book about the subject matter with interviews from the ex-police.
The book is meticulously researched, and the authors clearly know their subject inside out. However it's let down by a slightly hammy writing style, which can make it much more hard going than it should be. There are some bizarre repetitions where the authors will repeat the same fact on 2 consecutive pages, which is quite irritating. Some of the writing is really journalistic as well (the authors do write for newspapers so not really surprising!) and this feels strange to read in a book.
Finally, I would have liked to have had longer interviews with the ex-partners of the police, some of whom had children with these men, and the people they befriended. It almost feels as though they've been interviewed for a few punchy sentences without really explressing what it was like to live with these undercover officers.
Overall though, this was a fascinating read.
I hope it doesn't put a single person off from standing in their own truth and trying to make the world a better place.
At the end of the book the authors quite rightly state that they have only scratched the surface and they urge people to come forward with more information to further expose things by contacting them here Rob.Evans@guardian.co.uk or Paul.Lewis@guardian.co.uk.
Just how far they can go with such stories in a Newspaper owed by the Establishment remains to be seen.
These people should be prosecuted, and particularly those in charge who set it up, rather than retiring with nice fat pensions.
Some of the police offiicers took things way too far and led double lives, going as far as having children with protesters and even carrying out economic vandalism direct action themselves.
Interesting if you are in the least bit concerned about police abuse of powers, the protest scene and the orwellian/huxleyan facist state we are living in today.
A must for all protesters.
I would be very surprised if they were not still up to these tricks in some way.(Jeremy Bamber campaign)
A very important book exploring the attitude of the UK police and what they think is acceptable.
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