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When Should State Secrets Stay Secret?
Accountability, Democratic Governance, and Intelligence

$33.99 (P)

Award Winner
  • Date Published: May 2015
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107616530

$ 33.99 (P)
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About the Authors
  • Contrary to popular assumption, the development of stronger oversight mechanisms actually leads to greater secrecy rather than the reverse. When Should State Secrets Stay Secret? examines modern trends in intelligence oversight development by focusing on how American oversight mechanisms combine to bolster an internal security system and thus increase the secrecy of the intelligence enterprise. Genevieve Lester uniquely examines how these oversight mechanisms have developed within all three branches of government, how they interact, and what types of historical pivot points have driven change among them. She disaggregates the concept of accountability into a series of specified criteria in order to grapple with these pivot points. This book concludes with a discussion of a series of normative questions, suggesting ways to improve oversight mechanisms based on the analytical criteria laid out in the analysis. It also includes a chapter on the workings of the CIA to which a number of CIA officers contributed.

    • Covers oversight in all three branches of government and breaks new ground by describing and analyzing how they interact with each other
    • Includes extensive interviews with members of the intelligence community, Capitol Hill staff, and members of the media
    • Presents a breadth of coverage and historical detail with a richness of description
    Read more

    Awards

    • Winner, 2016 Choice Outstanding Academic Title

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2015
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107616530
    • length: 252 pages
    • dimensions: 226 x 150 x 23 mm
    • weight: 0.36kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. An analytical approach: intelligence, accountability and oversight
    2. Organizing secrecy: the CIA and institutional control
    3. External accountability: the development of congressional oversight
    4. Congress and oppositional oversight
    5. An independent judiciary? The domestic implications of intelligence and the politics of secret oversight
    6. Conclusions.

  • Author

    Genevieve Lester, Georgetown University School of Foreign Service
    Genevieve Lester is a research fellow and lecturer at the University of California, Washington Center, and a non-resident fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington DC. She was a visiting assistant professor and coordinator of intelligence in the School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University, Washington DC, and a senior fellow at the Center for Security Studies also at Georgetown. Her areas of interest are international relations and security with an emphasis on intelligence and accountability.

    Awards

    • Winner, 2016 Choice Outstanding Academic Title

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