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Publisher's Summary

A groundbreaking exposé that convincingly challenges the popular image of Edward Snowden as hacker turned avenging angel, while revealing how vulnerable our national security systems have become - as exciting as any political thriller, and far more important.
After details of American government surveillance were published in 2013, Edward Snowden, formerly a subcontracted IT analyst for the NSA, became the center of an international controversy: Was he a hero, traitor, whistle-blower, spy? Was his theft legitimized by the nature of the information he exposed? When is it necessary for governmental transparency to give way to subterfuge?
Edward Jay Epstein brings a lifetime of journalistic and investigative acumen to bear on these and other questions, delving into both how our secrets were taken and the man who took them. He makes clear that by outsourcing parts of our security apparatus, the government has made classified information far more vulnerable; how Snowden sought employment precisely where he could most easily gain access to the most sensitive classified material; and how, though he claims to have acted to serve his country, Snowden is treated as a prized intelligence asset in Moscow, his new home.
©2017 Edward Jay Epstein (P)2017 Random House Audio
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Critic Reviews

"Powerful and convincing." ( The Hollywood Reporter)
"In addition to giving a full and nuanced portrait of the man himself, Epstein details the shattering impact Snowden's theft and famous June 9, 2013, video announcement has had on the agency and the intelligence community worldwide. A riveting and informative work for both Snowden watchers and espionage buffs." ( Booklist)
"Nuanced...A wild and harrowing detective story and impressively evenhanded portrait of a very sticky case." ( Kirkus)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Phineas Tanekhen on 01-01-18

Well Done

A balanced analysis on the IC (past and present), the Contractor Industries that support the IC, those who've betrayed the IC (Ames, Hansen) their Russian "handlers" and the serial malingerer, covert narcissist that is Ed Snowden.

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By Leland on 08-16-17

An important book during a critical time

Ripped from the headlines here is the story that has captivated a nation .. the theft of national secrets. The author did a great job writing this book. It asks the question should the govt keep secrets from the public or risk it being leaked?

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