Albert's Reviews > Enemies: A History of the FBI

Enemies by Tim Weiner
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's review
Apr 23, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: non-fiction, history, first-reads, crime
Read from April 13 to 20, 2012 — I own a copy

As I approach the midway point of Enemies: A History of the FBI I must confess I'm surprised at how easy the book has been to read. Being that J. Edgar Hoover was synonymous with the FBI, I'm not surprised to find that so far it is basically about the man who singlehandedly built the FBI to what it is today. Even knowing what I did about how Hoover used, and abused his powers to fight communism, I have still been shocked at how far he actually went to increase and retain the power that he welded. And how single-minded he was in his pursuit. He seemed to think that everything was linked to communism, from homosexuality to the civil rights movement. I'm very much pulled back to the book every time I set it down. I can't wait to find out what he's going to do next. I'm approaching the Kennedy years so I'll finish this review when I'm done. Gotta find out how he got along with the Kennedy brothers.

Final Review

As I expected, Hoover didn't get along with the Kennedy's too keenly. The post-Hoover FBI didn't fair well either as subsequent directors failed to command the fear that Hoover did.
Enemies is a fast paced read that will keep you turning pages. It deals mainly with national security issues rather than domestic policing, however I recommend it for anyone interested in the FBI or the security of the US. I liked it enough that I look forward to reading Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA.

This book was a Goodreads First-Reads giveaway.
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Reading Progress

04/17/2012 page 307
55.0% "J. Edgar Hoover wrote to his field agents to be on guard againest the forces he had labeled BLACK HATE: "The negro youth and moderates must be made to understand that if they succomb to revolutionary teaching, they will be dead revolutionaries."
The next evening, Martin Luther King was assasinated in Memphis."

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message 1: by Henri (new) - added it

Henri Niskala The history of CIA is terrible to read; because of the huge mistakes they made and what they actually did all over the world, being the hammer of greed and capitalist governments, inflicting pain and suffering. Not to speak of the amounts of cash thrown literally out of the window because of stupidity.
I can very well recommend the book.

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