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Publisher's Summary

In the whirlwind of accusations and recriminations that has attended the post 9/11 world, one man's vital testimony has been conspicuously absent. Candid and compelling, At the Center of the Storm is George Tenet's memoir of his life at the CIA - a revelatory look at the inner workings of America's top intelligence agency and its dealings with national leaders at home and abroad. With unparalleled knowledge and breadth, Tenet illuminates how the country was prepared, and in some respects was not prepared, to deal with a world full of new and deadly threats.Beginning with his installation as director of Central Intelligence in 1997, Tenet unfolds the momentous events that led up to 9/11: his declaration of war on Al Qa'ida, his worldwide operational plan to fight terror, his warnings to White House officials, and the plan for a response laid down just six days after the attack. Tenet also reveals the CIA's efforts since 9/11 to hunt down the fugitive members of Al Qa'ida's leadership.In his gripping narrative of the run-up to the war in Iraq, Tenet provides fresh insights and background, including a privileged account of how the famous "sixteen words" made it into the president's State of the Union speech, the real context of his own now-famous "slam-dunk" comment, and the CIA's views of the rise of an Iraqi insurgency. Finally, as the country digs in for a prolonged war, he gives his thoughts on how we can forge a more secure world.
©2007 George Tenet; (P)2007 HarperCollins Publishers
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Karen on 05-05-07


I am the first to take anything said by a politician or political appointee with a huge grain of salt. So I have done so with George Tenet. That being said, I have to admit that this memoir which covers Al Quaeda, 9/11, and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq is believable, complete and, surprisingly, not self-serving. Well written with eyes of objectivity amazingly wide open, Mr. Tenet admits his and his organization's (CIA) victories and defeats, triumphs and mistakes. This memoir is nicely narrated, well paced and well produced. This book will sit well with Republicans, Democrats and Independents. No Bush bashing here, Mr. Tenet focuses on the facts. He is obviously not a fan of Cheney or Rumsfeld but he does not allow his personal issues to cloud his past. The story here is obviously from his point of view, how HE remembers things, but he does provide documentation and explanation. This book is NOT for those looking for a castigation of Bush and his administration. This is Mr. Tenet's attempt at a historical recreation of his tenure as DCI 1996 - 2004. I rarely give a book 5 stars (check and see - maybe 3 times over the last 10 years/500 books) but I give this recommendation without qualification or hesitation.

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9 of 9 people found this review helpful

By Sally on 05-16-07

Well Worth the Read

I was thoroughly interested in hearing the perspective of this participant in the goings-on before and after 9/11. It's sometimes difficult to find one's own opinion amidst the sound-bites, slants, takes, and, imo, downright lies. Mr. Tenet, as well, has his "slant"; but it's an honest one and can be deciphered without the difficulty of much confusion and muddle. Thank you, Mr. Tenet!

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Gismo Fly on 09-17-14

Real History

What made the experience of listening to At the Center of the Storm the most enjoyable?

The pace never stopped. Things about recent history I never knew .... and neither did the media at the time.

What about Arthur Morey’s performance did you like?

He's a far better narrator than George Tenet the author! Had the right timbre - I thought he was George Tenet!

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?'re a pain in the backside.

Any additional comments?

This is a reference work for future academics.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

By Mr. Luke R. Hamill on 10-07-17

More useful and informative than expected it to be

You have to have sympathy for the person in this challenging role. Gives you a sense of internal power struggles at home as well as abroad.
Disappointing assessment of Israel / Palestine however only to be expected with the lobby groups at play in US politics.
Despite this, many prognoses for the future are fair and balanced in their full depressing glory.

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