Facts and Fears by James R. Clapper
Hard Truths from a Life in Intelligence

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Clapper doesn't break any new ground as to whether Trump and his campaign conspired with the Russians who attacked the election, though he describes his fears about aspects of the story that are already public.
-NPR

Synopsis

The former Director of National Intelligence's candid and compelling account of the intelligence community's successes--and failures--in facing some of the greatest threats to America

When he stepped down in January 2017 as the fourth United States director of national intelligence, James Clapper had been President Obama's senior intelligence adviser for six and a half years, longer than his three predecessors combined. He led the U.S. intelligence community through a period that included the raid on Osama bin Laden, the Benghazi attack, the leaks of Edward Snowden, and Russia's influence operation during the 2016 U.S. election campaign. In Facts and Fears, Clapper traces his career through the growing threat of cyberattacks, his relationships with presidents and Congress, and the truth about Russia's role in the presidential election. He describes, in the wake of Snowden and WikiLeaks, his efforts to make intelligence more transparent and to push back against the suspicion that Americans' private lives are subject to surveillance. Finally, it was living through Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and seeing how the foundations of American democracy were--and continue to be--undermined by a foreign power that led him to break with his instincts honed through more than five decades in the intelligence profession to share his inside experience.

Clapper considers such controversial questions as, Is intelligence ethical? Is it moral to intercept communications or to photograph closed societies from orbit? What are the limits of what we should be allowed to do? What protections should we give to the private citizens of the world, not to mention our fellow Americans? Are there times when intelligence officers can lose credibility as unbiased reporters of hard truths by inserting themselves into policy decisions?

Facts and Fears offers a privileged look inside the U.S. intelligence community and, with the frankness and professionalism for which James Clapper is known, addresses some of the most difficult challenges in our nation's history.
 

About James R. Clapper

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Published May 22, 2018 by Viking. 432 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction
Bestseller Status:
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Peak Rank on Jun 10 2018
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Reviewed by Philip Ewing on May 22 2018

Clapper doesn't break any new ground as to whether Trump and his campaign conspired with the Russians who attacked the election, though he describes his fears about aspects of the story that are already public.

Read Full Review of Facts and Fears: Hard Truths ... | See more reviews from NPR

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