By John Le Carré
"Haven't you learned that simply appearances matter?"
The British Embassy in Bonn is up in hands. Her Majesty's financially stricken govt is looking for admission to Europe's universal industry simply as anti-British factions are emerging to energy in Germany. Rioters are hard reunification, and the very last thing the Crown can have the funds for is a scandal. Then Leo Harting—an embassy nobody—goes lacking with a case filled with private records. London sends Alan Turner to regulate the wear, yet he quickly realizes that neither facet quite desires Leo found—alive.
Set opposed to the specter of a German-Soviet alliance, John le Carré's A Small Town in Germany is a wonderful chronicle of chilly conflict paranoia and political compromise.
With an advent through the author.
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Extra info for A Small Town in Germany: A Novel
Perhaps the Washington way makes sense to the bureaucrats, but to a working intelligence officer, the process starts with collection. So should we. Notes 1. Vernon Walters, Silent Missions (New York: Doubleday, 1978), p. 611. 2. Stansfield Turner, Secrecy and Democracy: The CIA in Transition (New Y Houghton Mifflin, 1985). 3. Robert M. Gates, From the Shadows (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1996 4. Preparing for the 21st Century, Report of the Commission on the Roles an Capabilities of the United States Intelligence Community (Washington, DC: GPO, March 1996).
These controls can be effective in preventing an individual from using the system improperly. An effort to acquire data illegally would quickly become apparent to managers. The controls that are in place today did not exist during the Vietnam War, but because of the top secret nature of SIGINT, some outsiders may continue to worry about potential abuse. The cost issue in SIGINT is a little easier to understand. The satellites that we use for intercepts are terribly expensive, are complicated, and require a rather large infrastructure for construction, launching, and maintenance.
Can SIGINT costs be reduced? Certainly, but the options may not be too palatable to oldline professionals. Reducing the size and complexity of the satellites is already under consideration. The new "small satellites" would be cheaper and simpler in construction, easier to build and launch. Reducing other costs in SIGINT is tougher. Cutting personnel, or processing capability, might sound good to budget folks, but people and computers are critical. Slowing the rate of construction and satellite launches, building satellites with long space life, and cutting unneeded layers of bureaucracy and management would help.