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3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (432 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: George Tenet Narrator: Eric Conger Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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In the whirlwind of accusations and recriminations that emerged in the wake of 9/11 and the Iraq war, one man’s vital testimony has been conspicuously absent. Candid and gripping, At the Center of the Storm recounts George Tenet’s time at the Central Intelligence Agency, a revealing look at the inner workings of the most important intelligence organization in the world during the most challenging times in recent history. With unparalleled access to both the highest echelons of government and raw intelligence from the field, Tenet illuminates the CIA’s painstaking attempts to prepare the country against new and deadly threats, disentangles the interlocking events that led to 9/11, and offers explosive new information on the deliberations and strategies that culminated in the US invasion of Iraq.

Beginning with his appointment as Director of Central Intelligence in 1997, Tenet unfolds the momentous events that led to 9/11 as he saw and experienced them: his declaration of war on al-Qa’ida; the CIA’s covert operations inside Afghanistan; the worldwide operational plan to fight terrorists; his warnings of imminent attacks against American interests to White House officials in the summer of 2001; and the plan for a coordinated and devastating counterattack against al-Qa’ida laid down just six days after the attacks.

Tenet’s compelling narrative then turns to the war in Iraq as he provides dramatic insight and background on the run-up to the invasion, including a firsthand account of the fallout from the inclusion of “sixteen words” in the president’s 2003 State of the Union address, which claimed that Saddam Hussein had sought to purchase uranium from Africa; the true context of Tenet’s own now-famous “slam dunk” comment regarding Saddam’s WMD program; and the CIA’s critical role in an administration predisposed to take the country to war. In doing so, he sets the record straight about CIA operations and shows readers that the truth is more complex than suggested in other versions of recent history offered thus far.

Through it all, Tenet paints an unflinching self-portrait of a man caught between the warring forces of the administration’s decision-making process, the reams of frightening intelligence pouring in from around the world, and his own conscience. In At the Center of the Storm, George Tenet draws on his unmatched experience within the opaque mirrors of intelligence and provides crucial information previously undisclosed to offer a moving, revelatory profile of both a man and a nation in times of crisis.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Fascinating.”

    New York Times

  • “Very readable.”

    Los Angeles Times

  • “[A] remarkable, important…memoir.”

    Washington Post Book World

  • “The drums have been sounding for the long-awaited book by former CIA director George Tenet.”

    Washington Post

  • “Compelling.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • “Tenet’s new book…is delicious and edifying.”

    Associated Press

  • “Listeners ready to move beyond the headlines and into a wider world of nuanced complexity will be more than satisfied.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • A #1 New York Times Bestseller
  • A USA Today Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Glen | 2/11/2014

    " Interesting to hear the other side. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Samantha | 2/5/2014

    " I thought this book was interesting but not fascinating. I expected a lot more. I always thought that George Tenet would be an engaging personality but it doesn't come through in this book at all. It's not a biography but more of a book about his CIA career. I still thought it would be more about him and his thinking instead it's more about events. Yes, he does play cover his butt in it but what do you expect? I wanted more insight on how he changed the CIA, his interactions with Congress and the President with his cabinet and how he discussed things with his advisors and assistant directors. There wasn't much in there about his thoughts based on the intelligence he received about the Iraqi War. I wanted to hear about their investigations with 9/11. I just expected more from him. I enjoyed the inside view of the events but I wanted to know the thinking. I would recommend getting this book from the library or from bargain books. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Tim | 1/28/2014

    " The slam dunk confession of the former Director for the Central Intelligence Agency. A revealing testimony of the search for the Weapons of Mass Destruction that cost the DCI his job and many others, not to mention the lives of may agents and civilians throughout the globe. A carefully worded declassification factual book that gives some insight in the pressures of the most powerful cloak and dagger public servant in the world. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Nate | 1/26/2014

    " I tend to be a very non-government intervention person, but hearing about the work that Tenet did at the CIA made me more appreciative of the type of work that they must do and the political forces that often pervert their mission. Of course this is revisionist history, but Tenet comes off as a very contentious person who tried to do the best he could. A very interesting and informative read. Read by the author, which always helps. "

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About the Author
Author George Tenet

George Tenet was the director of Central Intelligence from 1997 to 2004. He holds a BSFS from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service and an MIA from the School of International Affairs at Columbia University. He was appointed to the faculty of Georgetown University in 2004 and lives outside Washington, DC, with his wife, author Stephanie Glakas-Tenet, and their son.