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Ghost: confessions of a counterterrorism agent

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For decades, Fred Burton, a key figure in international counterterrorism and domestic spycraft, has secretly been on the front lines in the fight to keep Americans safe around the world. Now, in this hard-hitting memoir, Burton emerges from the shadows to reveal who he is, what he has accomplished, and the threats that lurk unseen except by an experienced, world-wise few.In the mid-eighties, the idea of defending Americans against terrorism was still new. But a trio of suicide bombings in Beirut–including one that killed 241 marines and forced our exit from Lebanon–had changed the mindset and mission of the Diplomatic Security Service (DSS), the arm of the State Department that protects U.S. embassy officials across the globe. Burton, a member of DSS’s tiny but elite Counterterrorism Division, was plunged into a murky world of violent religious extremism spanning the streets of Middle Eastern cities and the informant-filled alleys of American slums. From battling Libyan terrorists and their Palestinian surrogates to having facing down hijackers, hostages, and Hezbollah double agents, Burton found himself on the front lines of America’s first campaign against Terror.In this globe-trotting account of one counterterrorism agent’s life and career, Burton takes us behind the scenes to reveal how the United States tracked Libya-linked master terrorist Abu Nidal; captured Ramzi Yusef, architect of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing; and pursued the assassins of major figures including Yitzhak Rabin, Meir Kahane, and General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq, the president of Pakistan–classic cases that have sobering new meaning in the treacherous years since 9/11. Here, too, is Burton’s advice on personal safety for today’s most powerful CEOs, gleaned from his experience at Stratfor, the private firm Barron’s calls “the shadow CIA.”Told in a no-holds-barred, gripping, nuanced style that illuminates a complex and driven man, Ghost is both a riveting read and an illuminating look into the shadows of the most important struggle of our time.Praise for GHOST“With spy thriller suspense and the clarity of a police report, former special agent Burton’s State Department saga reads like a brewing-storm prequel to the current war on terror ... Of obvious interest to anyone with an eye on world affairs.... Most striking is the material’s relevance twenty years later; Burton’s clashes with Hezbollah in Beirut and prickly diplomacy with Iran could almost be pulled from present-day newspapers”Publisher's Weekly“In many ways, this book reads like a le Carré spy novel: it’s not flashy, not filled with pyrotechnics, not full of chase scenes and derring-do. Rather, it’s the story of a working man whose job involved trying to prevent people from attacking his country. Shorn of ideological rights and wrongs, it’s a fascinating look at what counterterrorism really means on a day-to-day level.”Booklist“The world of counterterrorism is like that old jigsaw puzzle in the back of the closet: its many missing pieces and extra parts jumbled in from other puzzles make it almost impossible to assemble. But in Ghost, Fred Burton manages to join together enough pieces to give us a discerning look at that world. This is a story, told in human terms, that will help make sense of the great puzzle of our times.” —Eric L. Haney, author of Inside Delta Force and executive producer of The Unit“Burton’s memoir of fighting the defensive fight against the burgeoning terrorist threat in the 1980s and beyond is a revealing personal journal of the stress and boredom involved in putting the pieces of the puzzle together to obtain justice. Fred Burton was there, and you will be as well.” —Bobby R. Inman, admiral, United States Navy (retired), former director of National Security Agency and former deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency"This memoir is all at once hard-hitting, well-researched, and an easy read. Organized into thirty-six chapters, with thoughtfully-placed transitions between each, Ghost becomes ones of those books that is easy to put down and return to in a few days." —SmallWars Journal.com
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ISBN:
9781400065691
9781481583411
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full_title ghost confessions of a counterterrorism agent
author burton fred
grouping_category book
lastUpdate 2017-04-30 04:53:10AM

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display_description

For decades, Fred Burton, a key figure in international counterterrorism and domestic spycraft, has secretly been on the front lines in the fight to keep Americans safe around the world. Now, in this hard-hitting memoir, Burton emerges from the shadows to reveal who he is, what he has accomplished, and the threats that lurk unseen except by an experienced, world-wise few.

In the mid-80s, the idea of defending Americans against terrorism was still new. But a trio of suicide bombings in Beirut—including one that killed 241 marines and forced our exit from Lebanon—sparked a change in the State Department's mindset. Burton, a member of a tiny but elite counterterrorism unit, was plunged into a murky world of violent religious extremism spanning the streets of Middle Eastern cities and the informant-filled alleys of American slums. From battling Libyan terrorists and their Palestinian surrogates to facing down hijackers, hostages, and Hezbollah double agents, Burton found himself on the front lines of America's first campaign against terror.

In this globe-trotting account of one counterterrorism agent's life and career, Burton takes us behind the scenes to reveal how the United States tracked Libya-linked master terrorist Abu Nidal; captured Ramzi Yusef, architect of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing; and pursued the assassins of major figures including Yitzhak Rabin, Meir Kahane, and General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq, the president of Pakistan—classic cases that have sobering new meaning in the treacherous years since 9/11. Here, too, is Burton's advice on personal safety for today's most powerful CEOs, gleaned from his experience at Stratfor, the private firm Barron's calls "the shadow CIA."

Told in a no-holds-barred, gripping, nuanced style that illuminates a complex and driven man, Ghost is both a riveting read and an illuminating look into the shadows of the most important struggle of our time.

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oclc (OCoLC)190875004
owning_library_arlington Arlington Public Library, Arlington Public Library Online, Aurora Hills, Aurora Hills Online, Central, Central Online, Cherrydale, Cherrydale Online, Columbia Pike, Columbia Pike Online, Connection Crystal City, Connection Crystal City Online, Detention Center, Detention Center Online, Glencarlyn, Glencarlyn Online, Local History, Local History Online, Plaza, Plaza Online, Shirlington, Shirlington Online, Westover, Westover Online
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physical 1 online resource (1 audio file (9hr., 33 min.)) : digital., x, 276 p. ; 25 cm.
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primary_isbn 9781400065691
publishDate 2008
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publisher Blackstone Audio, Inc., Random House,
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subject_facet Intelligence officers -- United States -- Biography, Terrorism -- United States -- Prevention
target_audience Adult
target_audience_full Adult
title Ghost : confessions of a counterterrorism agent
title_display Ghost : confessions of a counterterrorism agent
title_full Ghost : confessions of a counterterrorism agent / Fred Burton, Ghost Confessions of a Counterterrorism Agent, Ghost [electronic resource] : confessions of a counterterrorism agent / Fred Burton
title_short Ghost :
title_sort ghost confessions of a counterterrorism agent
title_sub confessions of a counterterrorism agent
topic Biography & Autobiography, Nonfiction
topic_facet Biography & Autobiography, Nonfiction