Skip to main content

tv   Book Discussion on Good Hunting  CSPAN  August 17, 2014 6:30pm-7:38pm EDT

6:30 pm
[applause] and we look forward to you joining with us next time. thank you, good night. [inaudible conversations] >> you're watching booktv on c-span2. 48 hours of nonfiction authors and books every weekend. here's our prime time lineup for tonight. up next, jack devine recounts his career with the cia and operations outside the u.s. at 7:45, comedian-turned-major of reykjavik, iceland, john gnarr talking about his country's economic situation and efforts to stop the u.s. and nato from using reykjavik for their military purposes. then the weekly standard's dan yell halper discusses "clinton inc." on "after words." and at 10, beth macy.
6:31 pm
and we'll rap up at 11:30 eastern with paul kengor and his book, "11 principles of a ray garre kin. -- reagan conservative." >> coming up next, jack devine, co-author of "good hunting," talks about his 32-year career with the central intelligence agency. he headed up the cia's efforts to arm the mujahideen in afghanistan and was involved in the iran contra affair. he also helped to track down fbi mole robert hanson. this event was hosted by the association of former intelligence officers. it's just over an hour. >> good afternoon, everybody. for those of you who have not purchased the book, you need to go out and buy the book. for those of you who already have a book in your possession, you need to turn to the photographs. [laughter] and find a wonderful photo of
6:32 pm
jack devine, a much younger, slimmer, longer-haired jack devine undercover in santiago, chile. not for the in-house audience, but for the at-home audience, i am going to read just a little bit from the handbill so those at home can follow along with us. many consider jack devine to be one of the legendary spymasters of our time. he was in chile when -- [inaudible] fell. he ran charlie wilson's war in afghanistan. he had far much to do with iran contra for his own taste, and he actually tried to stop it at one point. he caught pablo escobar in colombia. he tried to warn george tenet that there was a bullet coming back at him for iraq. in 1986 he walked into our director, bill casey, and said we had a tremendous breakthrough yesterday, we deployed the
6:33 pm
stinger missell, and we shot down three helicopters. casey responded, jack, this changes it all, doesn't it? mr. devine is a 32-year career officer with the cia. he began in the 1960s. he has a brand new book out called "good hunting: an american spymaster's story," which is on sale today, and he'll be glad to sign questions after today's session. he'll also take q&a. jack devine was already an established field operations officer when i joined cia, and if you can keep a secret, i'll share a little bit of history with this small, intimate room. [laughter] jack devibe was the kind of -- devine was the kind of clandestine service officer that i wanted to be when i grew up. please join me in welcoming jack devine. [applause]
6:34 pm
>> what jim really meant to say at the end of that is he wanted to be like me because of that picture. [laughter] and those of you that have gone to see "american hustle," they are plaid pants. i had long hair and a moustache. and i could have easily at that point in time played in the role of "american hustle." by design i didn't put the color picture, but jim thought they were pretty fashionable at the time. and i believe peter sort of tormented me once saying do you still have the pants for the museum? [laughter] you can't tell a book by its cover. and this isn't because of vanity. i love the cover of the book. and if you look at it, one of my employees took the book home and showed it to her young daughter,
6:35 pm
and she said, well, mommy, i thought he was a nice man. [laughter] and with a book you have to have some fun, and there are some private jokes in here. the picture with the pants is funny because i've often heard how can you be a spy at 6-5? we won't put the weight in, but at 6-5. those of you, and there's a lot of practitioners in here, and it's wonderful to see them all. it's not about what you look like or your size, you get it done when the invisible spaces exist. so that was sort of a private joke. but the picture has some roots that go back in my career, and as i said, i always thought i was a pretty affable person. one day when i was in a central american sort of country -- because i can't say which country -- but the ambassador was going up the elevator with
6:36 pm
tom -- [inaudible] former chief of station this south vietnam, last one out. and tom said to the ambassador, you know, i want to send devibe out for that it is task -- devit for that task, and he said you don't mean that big, sinister-looking guy? [laughter] so i went home and i mentioned this to my wife, and i said, you won't believe what the ambassador said. big, sinister-looking guy. she said, well, jack, if i walked in and saw your face and didn't know you in your office, i'd turn around and walk out. [laughter] so i went to a fellow that's in this room, and i believe he has his back to me because i asked him to, i didn't want to look him in the eye. and i said, jerry -- [laughter] you know, what do you think? he said, well, jack, did you ever see how you make a point? [laughter] so, however, what it really gets to in a way is the role-playing that operators undertake in
6:37 pm
their mission. and if you fast forward when i was running latin america division in the 1990-'92 period, as you remember, president clinton wanted to remove the dictators in haiti. and tony lake was a director, and sandy berg was deputy director. so they called me down and said, look, we want you to go down and tell the dictator to get out of town. now, this speaks to my iq. i thought it was great idea. [laughter] there's the chief down there, however, and i'll add a little note on him. so i went down, and the office had to report to the police of chief at the time. i'd gone out to the voodoo doctor and put some powder on him, and he came -- because he was fearful. god knows why.
6:38 pm
but the, when i went down, he came to the chief's house. it was just the three of us, and there was water. he wouldn't touch the water. and then for those of you that engaged in poisoning, you realize that pumpkin soup is one of of the best things to disguise poison in. in comes the maid with pumpkin soup. [laughter] so i thought he was going to die on the spot. now, when you get instructions from the white house on your script it's -- and it was in this case -- now, you say this, and he will say that. then you say this, and he says -- i've never been in an operational meeting where you can script it that way. and i'm irish. so when i went down to the room, i decided bad jack has to show up. so he was seated there, and i said, look, i want to tell you a story that a latin friend of mine told me. and the latin friend said, you
6:39 pm
know, you are like that train -- you americans are like the train roaring down the track, and we're the latins in the middle of the track, and we see you coming, and we puff out our chest. we say, bring it on. and there's a very important lesson if you're working in latin america. so i thought that was just the right poetic thing to lean across and say you do not want to be that rooster. now, i thought i made my point, but it wasn't tony's script, and they didn't leave even though i had a large bag beside the menacing message. a week later jimmy carter was at the table negotiating with the general, and they were not budging. and he received a message from the president of the united states saying you should leave the meeting. and he kept jawboning. and we were ready. the cia was ready with its covert action capabilities, and the planes were off, taking off
6:40 pm
from the runway in florida, and a spotter notified the negotiators, and they folded on the spot. and the dictator, the chief of police specifically, went to florida. where else would you go if you're a dictator and you're on the run? he got on the radio, and he said, oh, they sent this menacing guy down who threaten today kill me, my wife and my chirp. now, i promise you i never said anything about the wife and children. [laughter] so what rhyme getting -- what i'm getting at is there is a role to play. i did a piece for "homeland," a promotional piece. you know you've arrived in new york, and it was this that 30-second piece at the back of a cab. one of the questions was how much covert action -- not covert action, how much is operational work like an actor?
6:41 pm
and i never thought about the question. but it is true. when you deal with foreign governments and foreign liaisons and you're dealing with assets and agents, you really do need to act. you have to be a good one. if you get beyond -- well, we should stick with the cover. it took me two years, again an iq issue, to come up with two words: good hunting. i don't want need to explain it to people in the room, but it's a very old adage used by operators. the first thing i see it noted in history is in kipling's "jungle book." but if you look to some of the classic world war ii black and white movies where they're organizing the partisan, and there was one, frankly, i named it before i saw this, they were breaking up the meeting. the parting -- [inaudible] was "good hunting." i know i have signed cables, i don't know how many, but
6:42 pm
certainly more than a few where there's a certain point in an operation or you're doing something you say, "good hunting." and i thought that captured a key part of the business, whether it's hunting for a source of information or hunting for can si or hunting for bin laden or hunting for pablo's copar be, it's a -- escobar, it's a key part of our business. if you go inside, and mike montgomery, every time i see him we arm wrestle. he's got the strongest handshake in the u.s. federal government. he looked at another picture, and it was a picture of me in the jump tower during the training -- so the book starts at the training -- but i tried to personalize it a little bit because if you didn't, when you went through the training, the operational training, then you
6:43 pm
did the paramilitary training. and if you were pre-- post-world war ii, you had to jump out of a plane. by '6ed it was optional. i was married with kids, two weeks off after all of this? i got it, i'm outta here. so i said to my wife, you know, i think i'm just going to go to the beach. i love the beach. she said, well, you're going to miss all that camaraderie. i said, yeah, i like them a lot, i'll probably like them as time goes by -- there's a few here today -- but i said i think i'm going to enjoy the beach. and then i went to the farm, to the bar, and there was a colonel there. he said, jack, it's better than sex. and i thought, well, okay, this is getting interesting. then i took a second look at him, and i thought, look, he's missing a boat here. [laughter] so finally when i applied for different officers, and i didn't know better, i actually thought
6:44 pm
covert action took place in the covert action staff, so i put that down not knowing. and i went in and -- [inaudible] was the head of it. there was parachuting memorabilia. and i walked in, and he said, jack, have you jumped yet? it's the greatest thing a man can do. and i said, no, but i'm looking forward to it. [laughter] so not for camaraderie, but for careerism, i would jump out of a plane. i did that five times, and i will assure you, the colonel had it absolutely wrong. [laughter] but, and i didn't excel in demolitions either. chris is here, and i don't know if you remember, we were down at the demolition training, and they literally came out with an instructor was missing a couple of figures and scarred as heck. he says, you know, it's dangerous dealing with weapons.
6:45 pm
i got it, you don't have to speak any more. but then you blow up poles and detonating chords, and they burn at a certain rate. i don't remember the rate, but -- and so they would have six or seven poles, and i always thought to myself, add a couple more inches to give yourself a little more time. so pole one would go, policy two, four, five and then mine would go. they really didn't think it was as funny as i did. and in my file somewhere it says this man should not be allowed near explosives. [laughter] in 1986 i was responsible for more explosives than anybody in the history of the agency, so there's not necessarily a direct link there. but the last thing, if i can laugh at myself, was the brush pass. and today with electronics no one thinks about a physical brush pass. but i was in irving cantor's district, and we had to -- [laughter] make a -- i had a beautiful location. it was wonderful.
6:46 pm
you couldn't see it from any angle, so i had my hand ready, it was going to to be the slight of hand. the instructor walked by and didn't put his hand out. so i was livid when i got to the bottom of the steps. i am a gentleman, but i did engage in a really gross hand signal. [laughter] now, not to worry too much about it, when i get back to camp that night, they said, oh, we have a treat, and the treat is for the first time we videoed the brush passes today. and needless to say, mine was the first one. but i retained that skill, and i was in amsterdam with my wife two years ago, and the waiter was being particularly solicitous. we had a little more wine, so i gave him the 20 euro pass. i mean, any new yorker would be proud of the handoff. but you know your wife.
6:47 pm
you look across, you know something is fundamentally wrong. it's that half-smirk, half-smile that really means trouble. and she said, what did you do? i said, i did a brush pats pass. she -- brush pass. she said, yeah, but he wasn't our waiter. [laughter] anyway, things got quite serious after that. it was great fun, and i feel nostalgic today because so many folks are here from my past. i ended up the very first assignment in chile, it was the most fortunate experience from an operational point of view. there were two places in the world that were high priority. one was vietnam, the other was chile. and the reason chile was so important was that the nixon -- nixon himself and henry kissinger felt that in the cold war so many of our children and
6:48 pm
grandchild have, you know, talked about the cold war. it's really talking about the -- [inaudible] so nixon viewed it as a red -- [inaudible] chile supporting a socialist-turned-far left latin mesh be caught in the sand witch and -- sandwich. he was elected with a plurality, but he was elected in a very democratic country that had a democratic history for many years. so an instruction went from the white house to the agency to the field station chief. who's long dead, and i would like to mention he was great operator. european officer in many ways. and he wrote back a cable saying it can't be done. we don't have the infrastructure, there's not enough popular support, and it's
6:49 pm
going to be very messy. and the response came back, give it a good college try. and it was put in government language, but that was it. and they did. they gave it their best shot. and i would, and it ended in disaster. there was a rogue group, not tied to the cia, that tried to kidnap the commander of the armed forces and killed him in the process, and the entire country turned in favor of i have yenty. and the, well, there are a couple lessons, but i think i want to make a key point right here. many people confused the chile coup that took place in '73 with that misadventure. the next cable that came said cease and desist, you will not plot with the military. and that stayed in vogue until -- through the entire administration.
6:50 pm
in 1973 in september, actually in june there was a mini-coup. a few highly intoxicated tank drivers pulled up in front of the palace, the commander in chief talked them back. our analysis in the agency was, clearly, the military stood behind the constitution and would not overthrow. and that was june. late june. and what happened, and we found out only later that it was at that moment that the chilean military went back and started to plot because it wasn't about the constitution, it wasn't about the economic policies, it was they were afraid that they were losing the discipline of the military ranks and that they were going to take charge of the coup, and it wouldn't be a junior coup. and that was when it began in earnest. as circumstances would have it. i received the first -- as
6:51 pm
circumstances would have it, i received the first report that first notified the u.s. government that the chilean government was going to be overthrown. and it was three days before. and i didn't want even receive it personally -- i didn't even receive it personally. the call went to my wife who knew this asset who said i'm at the airport, and i'm leaving. there'll be a coup on september 11th, tell jack. and i was drug out of a restaurant to get that message. that was the first time. three days before we learned. and then there was a second report, and at that point we had sent a message, and the rest of the show you though -- story you know. pin they -- pinochet came to power. what surprised everybody, all the opposition parties, we
6:52 pm
contributed and i personally went out and worked newspapers and political parties and my friends to support the opposition. but that is quite different. did we contribute to the environment? yes. what was the weight of it? i would say in my analysis the government really fell of its own economic conditions and its policies, and my expectation, frankly, is that if we'd got on the an election, that he would have lost, and we might have had a different outto come. when -- outcome. when pinochet came to power, we were just not expecting the opposition to stay. it was a democratic country, they'd bring order, and then there'd be an election. you couldn't find anybody that would tell you they'd be around for 19 years. and then the human rights violations, which were huge, and that surprised etch. took us a -- everyone.
6:53 pm
took us a while to find out about it s. and when we did, the relationship chilled with pinochet. when i was getting ready to leave, the chief said, jack, what do you think? write a memo. i'm an add advocate of covert action. remember, i had the long hair and the pants, and i said, well, we ought to use covert action and get rid of pinochet. so that was where my mind was x i don't think i was alone on that. so i think in the world out there there's a view that we were strong supporters of the military government. just isn't true. foreign affairs magazine, which comes out next week, takes the chile chapter and reduces it to half the distance to fit the length of their articles. and it's title. titled "what really happened in four different places," and chile's one of them. it's such a hot button even today that it surprises me.
6:54 pm
i got ahead of myself in a way because this book isn't about the heavy into the espionage part. you can't really write about it because so many of the agents, you know, you can't write about agents. this is about the action. and for those not audiences like this, but, you know, over the years people get confused between covert and clandestine. and we all know that covert is the james bond, never meet an agent, never take a report, never do an accounting. and then the espionage is the george smiley plodding along, getting his agent, handling it as -- so there are the two different types. this is the action part. and not only do i believe it's an essential part, i believe it's going to be and should be a major role of state craft. the stimulus for the book came because of another author, and we are not going to mention him because we to not want to promote his book -- [laughter] but when tim wrote his book
6:55 pm
saying that, you know, the agency was a rogue element and that covert action never works, i was inspired, and that's the nice word, to see if we couldn't come up and point out that actually cia's made up of a lot of very fine people and that action not only works, but it needs to be applied. somewhere at the end i'm sure someone will have questions about where we are today. but that is one of the key themes in the book. on james -- on sean connery and covert action, i was in an undisclosed country. don't google, or you'll find out where i was. i was sitting in this restaurant, and in walks sean connery. and i was with my wife and the service. there's just fluttering in the room, all the women and some of
6:56 pm
the men. [laughter] and it's annoying, you know? so i'm going to blame the other service chief, and he said we're the real thing, you know? and they both broke out laughing saying, you've got to be kidding. there's 007. you're just too bure bureaucrats that we've been married to for a long time. [laughter] so, and think used to annoy me -- they used to annoy me, those movies. let me move on, because i can get bogged down in things. i went on to do other latin american assignments, and because they're in the collection point area, i can't really talk about them in detail. there's no reason to. and the reason i can write this book is -- and there's a young man here who's going out to the field, and i used to remind people when you do covert action, in your lifetime you'll have a chance to read your cables. i never thought back then. so covert action becomes public.
6:57 pm
so i was assigned to the iran branch in 1985. i wanted a change of pace, and jim mentioned early on i just got the iran branch, i knew very little about iran, and i was backed up by a deputy. and i'd mentioned him, but he's been scratch 3. scratched. and the, at that time i got a call from a european division chief, and he said, jack, you're going to be called by the creditor in a few minutes -- directer in a few minutes. okay, great. you know, you don't get a call every day. so i got a call and went up, went into the room, and they said, look, want you to go out and meet a contractor with the white house. and he's got something, he's got a source who who's really valuable who can tell us information about the hostages in beirut. and so i went out.
6:58 pm
but then i went downstairs, and there's my deputy holding a two-inch file. and he said, jack, this is bad news. we have a burn note out on it, plunked two sets of poll lay graphs, he's an armed merchant, we shouldn't be touching it. and god bless deputies like that. when i wrote the book, there was 80 people that we interviewed. some of them aren't in the book because their family members are tied to the agency and it would cause problems. a couple of them didn't say anything worth high. but there's a lot -- worthwhile. but there's a lot of people we interviewed. so i called him because we were doing rapp, and i would call them, and then i would turn him over to one of the folks in my office so you'd have an independent, non-chatty discussion but, rather, sticking to the mention. so i remember calling this fellow. and i hadn't spoken to him in 25
6:59 pm
years. it's the honest to god truth, he came off of the tractor. he was on a tractor, and he came in. it was out in the west. i said, this is jack devine. and honest to god, i heard this -- oh! i know that call, i know what that is. that the jack devine got me into something, and it's legal. it's something that we did back then that need to be addressed. and i said, relax, i'm writing a book. but the second thing i said to him was -- and it was one of beauties of writing a book -- i got a chance to you know the movie 400 dates where the guy goes around and says, look, i really lost your number, you know? and it was an opportunity to say thank you in a robust way. i did that with my first chief of station, tom. you know, they're in their 80s. they were touched, but so was i, and that was one of the benefits. and the reason i mention it is he really stopped me from going down a path not knowing the person i was dealing with. but i went down and met him, and
7:00 pm
what i found was that they had exchanged, already had one exchange for missiles for hostages. ..
7:01 pm
i am not even sure of that. i was going to report it upstairs and said don't bother. they are not going to be involved in this. they didn't tell me the second part which is the end of another part of the agency and a couple of months later actually, it was february he said you're not going to like this. will you do the shipments and it was one of those points that you think it's so bad it's not going to happen. and i remember being in the watch when the plane took off.
7:02 pm
what happened is we were asking for a million dollars roughly and that they were being charged the extra million went to central. it almost brought down. and again when you look at what goes wrong i believe that it works very well. if you get an interagency you brief it on the hills you are going to have to have american support. your chances of getting it turned into the flat are much better -- minimized.
7:03 pm
i think everybody hears about it. i went on to afghanistan. i sat 20 feet from the office and i can tell you i had no idea that it was a problem of any magnitude. if you think back to 1985, 86 we actually thought the russians were winning. they mentioned charlie wilson's war. he was a smart guy.
7:04 pm
flamboyant for sure, but the program is actually a republican president and democratic congress working with government people within the rules and regulations and the government supported by an ally in pakistan. and you have a group of people that wanted to fight for were robustly funded. that is not a good move but it is the truth. i gave charlie the maximum credit and he told me after he retired from congress he said let's have dinner i'm coming to new york. he's a great because i always found them fascinating. i want to have a state dinner at sparks the restaurant where they were murdered and of course that is where he went.
7:05 pm
so when i walked in and sat down he said you didn't like the book you are going to hate the book, you know. and i traveled with the fellow and he was on him to do something and didn't 9/11 he pulled out his notes and turned it into a good book. my concern was the people who were going to think that's how you do the covert action. you have to pass the test of being reviewed and that's where i think the buck goes wrong. and i pay great tribute to charlie that i wanted to correct the record on that. he knew this was a true story. there was an hbo series and they
7:06 pm
have charlie in the hot tub and how he got inspired to get into it and i had a small role because it was jim's when the helicopters were shot down and i ran the photo ops so they had an actor playing my role. i think it had ten or 12 spots, but the first three were stunning. i thought they were going to be against the stinger change history? i was a little annoyed. i'm not going to be there with charlie wilson. so you could hear the enthusiasm coming out. i guess he is who we thought he was all along. but the third call was okay i've got this but the thir third oned look i don't want to talk about it. so i left it. but with my wife -- the stinger
7:07 pm
don't want to point them out but there is a trouble that made them physically. we tried everything and eventually i was called out of the white house and there was a demonstration of a mock helicopter and our truth didn't have been in the field, the forces didn't have it. it was coming up the assembly line. you go out and make a right turn and blow a helicopter out. and i think everybody sat there and said we are going to have the first u.s. armament.
7:08 pm
they were not without great quick to take the first picture because the missiles pas passed along the ground $60,000. when i saw it i said find another piece of this inadequate equipment might have been a different phrase. the next came bang bang bang out of the sky and it might have played a big part in history. why did it change the work lacks about the day they started flying above the range of these things. at that point the web ends flew across the border and, you know, i probably personally signed off on buying more trucks to get the weapons across. the last leg tie in a city folk.
7:09 pm
but the chief of the divisions of tennessee said tennessee mules don't work down there. any place we give them is china. so a western rodeo they would drive 9,000 across china and we made hundreds and millions of dollars of weapons to accommodate. they gave me a little sort of fake reminder but when you think of the words you think of the stingers and then you start going down the lines of the nitty-gritty.
7:10 pm
they had it in bold print and i left afghanistan and went to r row. it's about covert action with one exception. it is because of the other part of the business as the betrayal. it's how we look for people to be trade system or recruit them and it is unfortunately what we have to look at when we are betrayed. i knew from him my very first day in office and he would argue about the importance of counterintelligence and as a kid i kept saying how important the activities were and we traded books. he gave me a book called a call for demetrius.
7:11 pm
i gave him a book of leadership from 1930. of course you are going to be republican. so, what i was getting at was sort of people are destined and end up in certain places readers with you fast-forward i haven't seen him for 25 years. he went to the bookcases and he said this is your book. i should have had him sign it to pay for one of the kids education i guess. but when we think about james come it's important to get the psychology. i have sandy review who's written a book and led with the
7:12 pm
hunt to look at it to make sure that i didn't miss parts of it. he had a drinking problem for sure. he was the son, his father was a field officer. he was estranged from his father put in the tenuous relationship. he dropped out of school, came back and i thought that he was smart and well read not as much as he thought he was. he would like to d do abc did nt des. he was smart enough.
7:13 pm
you think that you are really smarter than everybody else and you don't work hard regardless you will see people pass you by and then you can struggle with the system and what do we look for when we look for traders, when we look at people satisfied in the system in that range? so, rick was moving in a direction. and i think the fact that he had access to the russian embassy and the position he had at the cia provided an opportunity to walk in and look like it was a normal event he said he could handle the russians. he was only going to give them a little bit and he left having turned over 11 of the agents.
7:14 pm
when i was in rome we had a walk and yet it was written in the book. they tell half of the story. i didn't think it was safe to do that. where in the world can we not be somebody. do we show is there a source inside of the cia to be generated and then the policy was weak around and have a polygraph and if you have any problems you come back and we go
7:15 pm
over the questions so i walked in on monday and i ran into him in the hall and i said how did it go? he said we did it six times seven, eight times and i don't know what we have. so, i walked briskly to the haitian dictator and said what are you doing? what is interesting i'm sure he was irate but he's absolutely nothing. in spanish it's a moment that means watch out. for the first time i felt a level of presentment. he thinks we were friends but so sandy came to me years later and they said look we have to have a meeting with you. we can't have it in our offices.
7:16 pm
iran and said look, we have a mole. you've got the list down. can rick be a spy and i said yes. the only person i've met in the agency that could be and it was that instantaneous connection in a moment and that question. and the fact that in my own mind he represented in rich respect the ingredients of the trader. and we know how that ended. i find fascinating i wanted him interviewed for the buck. book. i couldn't do it for obvious reasons, but i knew the justice turned it down but i did see the one interview on television can absolutely amazing. the interviewer had brilliant question. did you ever have trouble sleeping at night and there is a
7:17 pm
momentary pause where he says i thought he was going to have a problem with no i didn't have a problem and they are you have the first. and i think it speaks to us. so, i went into the counter narcotics program where i found a new way of doing business. it was a community business. it was providing a higher level of support for the liaison than i ever thought and that is not only for the centers o but the agency at-large and i still hold that. i eventually ended up on the seventh floor which was fascinating. i will leave it for the book because i want to leave time here. my chief of staff is here and held me up during that time. i have i had a lot of people hop along the way. but she is quoted in the book and i think it captures -- you really don't touch another agent. you see a lot of the foreign service chiefs, but she
7:18 pm
describes how she would be in the office at 6:30 and started to read and to try to narrow the pineal down for only the decision papers so that the video and myself at that point early on could go to the decision papers. at the end of the day she had to take the papers home and never got through them. what did i do? i met people and did nothing but make decisions. and frankly, i loved it. but you can't do it too long without wearing you down mentally and physically but that is the job and i thought i was the only one. they put a safe in your house. i don't want to stir up security but they want you to take the documents and there are only so many ways that could go wrong, but they did. you take on a suitcase at the end of the day and i thought
7:19 pm
well am i the only one? they had two suitcases. but that was the nature of it. then i went to an undisclosed country. as i said even skimming the photographs you might be able to sort that out. i left the agency and went into the private sector. the network is the type of thing that you do and i spent a fair amount of time talking about it but it's like our business and the best case i can't talk about. what i tried in the book i'm going to read one little part. i'm not going to read a lot. i tried to turn some of the important covert actions and i tried to humanize them so they could understand the people the
7:20 pm
cia made up of the neighbors. so i worked in the stories of my family and wife and so on. but i have an op-ed that came out its dealing wit of this deao you tell your children that you are a covert operator. i was in seven different countries. i'm a pretty experienced guy in this field. but i had to policy or plan and that was back in the united states i would do this when i was traveling between washington and the jersey seashore and i would get onto the delaware bridge. if you see a father and daughter out on the bridge, you will know what's going on. anyway, the first two i caught my 13 and 14 and he said that
7:21 pm
school. it wasn't a big deal and the fact that i wasn't an embassy officer but worked for the cia. well, i picked my middle daughter that 16. i told you there's a huge difference between 14 and 16. so i sit by the way the cia operative and the response was my father is an assassin. that's why the other hour and a half to work my way back. the point that i guess i'm making is you have families and i took language school the past looms largest. but there couldn't be a book without her because there is no -- we know that is not possible.
7:22 pm
he was always wise enough, it wasn't as good as we were taking it practicing to the shore. the window rolled down and out onto route 95 and that was the end of our lesson. i tried to humanize him. before we do questions you fall in love with your own book that doesn't mean it's necessarily flawed.
7:23 pm
but intelligence is about hunting for information, about the enemies as well as for ways to naturalize and then i go on to name someone but then the very last paragraph. the language applies through the relentless pursuit or adversaries in this world. he claims they cannot outrun his destiny. so the enemies cannot outrun the long reach and that is the end of good hunting.
7:24 pm
>> [inaudible] >> go ahead. >> let's hope that there is a second edition. >> you start off by talking about junior high school and you sort of make the point that you hope someday if he were a high school student were reading this book that about what inspired him or her to the covert action in the agency and you think that a little bit of such today as the big punchline that you can close but not quite.
7:25 pm
page 99 says charlie wilson's war existed only in charlie wilson's p5 mind. get -- yet you are taking on the most powerful institutions in america, hollywood. $100 million. tom hanks, $200 million net worth. >> unlike hillary, i'm broke. [laughter] >> in "the wall street journal" review he picks up on it very first thing. everybody is getting it wrong. we all kind of worked for charlie wilson. president ronald reagan, you tell us exactly in the book but i don't use this punchline on page 99. charlie wilson's war existed
7:26 pm
only in charlie wilson's mind. it doesn't come from me. it comes from frank anderson. i'm saying it was a u.s. government program and legal. since you mentioned hollywood i don't think that we read a book through it. i think that we read a chapter or two and it just doesn't work. but he was in the business. i must tell you over the years i changed my mind. we all have problems with parts of it. but when you think about the bottom line they said every 16-year-old girl is leaving the theater wanting to be her and i
7:27 pm
think james bond -- if you want to look like sean connery, or you have a second option who doesn't want to. it helped us for people who think we are so powerful and there is a mystique about us. so hollywood -. the website's -- i think i could have controlled the world in the social networking. but now the most powerful propaganda piece was rambo iii who was hanging out with the machine gun at hacking that didn't change the opinion of the russians in afghanistan's. i talked to menendez and he will tell you right out they were not
7:28 pm
being chased by cars down the road. there is more truth than the hollywood version because how do you project that feeling that your stomach is in knots? you can't do it in the second cinematography. i also give the audience a level of sophistication. they understand hollywood. and i -- my own sense and maybe in washington i remember we had the cia memorial foundation and a number of my clients wrote checks not because they had a contract that they were just patriotic. there was a lot of patriotism and support for the cia. and we have some big bumps in our history and we continue to
7:29 pm
have been. but not all, not everything is a downside in the hollywood world. sometimes they actually get in front of the trends and that hasn't been a strong suit late lately. >> in 1987 when the major defected, fidel castro released a film about the cia operations in cuba and the portrayal of the course is that the cuban intelligence but i would think the story is more complicated. what can you tell us what can you share about the cuban intelligence and what kind of opponents they were in perhaps the u.s. success? >> most people have a higher regard for the operational skills. they have the language skills
7:30 pm
and if we go back to that period, there was a further that they were able to project and i would say that in the world we did today, talk about the islamitalked about theislamic fd threat that it poses. communism was a real threat but russia is stale. cuba is stale. back then, they represent a revolutionary threat but that has been a on by decades. they were trained by the east germans into the russians. they were very good. and they were able to protect themselves effectively. i am trying to think of an officer in the default satisfi satisfied. once you have the fervor i know
7:31 pm
that your questions about cuba the world we live in today is about terrorism and they have a losing hand. that is not saying that they won't cause a great grief but it is not a winning ideology. in overtime, and part of our struggle should be working a thought process of it and how to find within the world people that will stand up and say that isn't what it is about. i don't doubt that we can handle them. i'm very outspoken on the enhanced interrogations. i don't believe it's right. i'm an advocate of drones, big advocate. why am i an advocate of drones?
7:32 pm
because after 9/11 everyone is talking about asymmetrical warfare. how are we going to deal with these rogue states, these individuals as opposed to countries? and we were fearful and i don't doubt for one minute that there is a terrorist will that isn't weary that they are not going to be in the face of the earth two minutes later and they leveled the playing field and it should be used carefully. i don't know anyone who does.
7:33 pm
[inaudible] that cross borders with the wild west and pakistan. there is no reason that you should know my background. they don't think that they can handle this militarily. there is nobody. even the terrorists know the strength of the military. george bush senior even though i thought at the time i didn't get why he didn't go all the way and i think that in retrospect it
7:34 pm
was a brilliant strategic move. so i'm not surprised about what happened. as we are going into afghanistan bringing down the taliban, the cia with the special forces together did a brilliant job. by my standards he said he was in afghanistan dealing with the same people that we dealt with but a lot of the troubles are the same. after keeping the special forces in thand the cia below the radai think the nationbuilding. waking up this morning this is one of the biggest developments with the speed it is happening in the discussion. i think we are now looking at the virtual partition of iraq.
7:35 pm
it's a very sad day i think for all of us. i worry about afghanistan that it will revert back. i know dealing with pakistan can be problematic at times, but if they have a huge internal problem our hopes of having a residual influence is going to disappear after we leave. i caught the publisher -- once it goes to print, it's hard to get it stopped. if you take the word out as you have to put one and it has to have the same number of letters and that's tricky. [laughter]
7:36 pm
that the government has called on ukraine and he started his covert action program. it is literally out of the textbook of 48. it's not that we intended that it's just the plausible denial. they are out of body leaving. it doesn't mean believable. but a lot of the world doesn't believe they are. it's going to be a political site and psychological battle and we have to up the ante on the sanctions. i hope they are calling the cia through a lot of covert action. but i guarantee there is not in
7:37 pm
doubt in my mind that he has a huge covert action program. on iraq i did have a discussion in 2000. i better not fail the name too closely. it was one of the top people and i said when we leave it is going to fall apart. if this is the time when you have it and i'm hopeful that we did what i never felt that this wasn't going to end anything other than bad news. there is a story in "the wall street journal" that called the cia solution that says we are leaving and we better have the infrastructure. i hope i have not fixed the words tod


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on