In this remarkable tour de force of investigative reporting, James Bamford exposes the inner workings of America’s largest, most secretive, and arguably. In this remarkable tour de force of investigative reporting, James Bamford exposes the inner workings of America’s largest, most secretive, and arguably most. Oct 13, Interesting essay about James Bamford and his efforts to publish The Puzzle Palace over the NSA’s objections. Required reading for those who.
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Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. The NSA has long eluded public scrutiny, but The Puzzle Palace penetrates its vast network of power and unmasks the people who control it, often with shocking disregard for the law.
Paperbackpages. Published September 29th by Penguin Books first published September 23rd To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about The Puzzle Palaceplease sign up. Lists with This Book. Jan 30, Mike rated it really liked it Shelves: The puzzle palace is getting a little old, but it still applies.
The NSA is one of those government agencies that everybody knows about, except if you ask them what they know they scratch their head and say “not much. Puzzle Palace was one of the first books about The puzzle palace is getting a little old, but it still applies. Puzzle Palace was one of the first books about NSA and their are others now – but this is a good place to start.
Dec 26, Omar Manejwala rated it it was amazing. I was blown away when I learned how much the NSA has done over the last few decades Plus I grew up near there and never quite knew what it was.
This is as thrilling as a spy novel with the added shock factor of being true. Oct 18, Ericka Clouther rated it liked it Shelves: This book is sometimes surprising, often boring, and extremely quaint. Oh, remember before Russia hacked our election in multiple different ways and NSA officials and ex-officials testified before Congress on television several times?
Those were the good old days! Jun 02, Dr.
Barrett Dylan Brown, Phd rated it it was ok Shelves: Too much data to be light reading. Amazing how much information is available that the Media ignores. Jul 07, John Jr.
The Puzzle Palace
In the beginning, the NSA did not exist: Now, secrecy isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but on the face of it you have to suspect something is amiss in such bamfrd. As my parents would’ve said to me and maybe did at some pointif you have nothing to worry about, why hide?
This was a provocative, informative, and valuable book when I read it, which I believe was during the late s, an In the beginning, the NSA did not exist: This was a provocative, informative, and valuable book when I read it, which I believe was during the late s, and it has become so again inas anyone who’s been following the news in America is bound to realize.
Bamford gives some background on intelligence gathering, reporting for instance that, when a certain form of snooping was proposed to Secretary of War Henry Stimson earlier in the 20th century, he answered by declaring that gentlemen do not read each other’s mail. The issue wasn’t new at the time; in June of this year, a New Yorker article by Jill Lepore found a similar situation back inwhen a debate arose in Britain over the opening of Giuseppe Mazzini’s mail.
Apart from bits of history, though, Bamford mainly reports on what the agency does and how it works. Its purview is basically anything other than human intelligence HUMINT, in the government acronymmeaning it doesn’t put people in the field to find out things; instead, it gathers information through other means. The technical details, depending on your background, may make you envious of NSA employees. Some of them get to spend the day playing with cryptography of every sort, while others get every new supercomputer that comes along.
Machines that were practically mythical to ordinary techno-geeks, such as those devised by Seymour Cray, were always to be found at the NSA. Other parts of Bamford’s story add colors and shadows to the picture; we learn, for instance, of an elaborate and very costly waste-disposal system, built to keep anyone from sifting the NSA’s trash, that failed ever to work. My memory is admittedly incomplete and imperfect. For this review I haven’t consulted the book or any commentary on it, other than something I’ll mention shortly.
What I don’t remember the book doing is giving much contemporary context. America isn’t the only country that spies; what do the others do? No doubt it’d take an entire book to deal with each of the world’s more developed countries, so you can’t be surprised if Bamford leaves the issue alone.
But surely it matters, at least in a practical way. Dec 27, Ushan rated it liked it. The National Security Agency is a U. Ina US Navy-NSA surveillance ship observing the Six-Day War was attacked by Israel, 34 crew were killed and wounded before the Israelis realized their mistake; Bamford says that the official US-Israeli story about the attack doesn’t hold water; I’ve read an article claiming that the theory that the attack was deliberate has its own set of problems.
The NSA was infiltrated by Soviet spies; a British double agent was also a pedophile who built up a catalog of over index cards about local teenage girls; when he was arrested for sex offenses, a house search found his spy kit. The NSA worked hard to prevent the spread of cryptology; its head wanted a monopoly on cryptologic research, like the Department of Energy has a monopoly on nuclear research.
Something I did not know before is that no US President bothered to repeal Truman’s national emergency until September ; so in April the NSA could attempt to suppress a Seattle inventor’s cryptographic telephone on the grounds of a national emergency. Jun 06, Charles rated it really liked it Shelves: Recent revelations regarding massive data mining of phone and Internet activity hello Uncle reminded me of this read. Published in and read by me in perhaps early ‘s, the book lay out NSA’s Hugh accumulation of computing power.
Before even Bush era legal authorization this data was being collected and all foreign contacts swept for key words, slang, repeated unknown phrases – names, dates, locations.
I recall numerous newspaper references to criminals and suspected terrorists contacts Recent revelations regarding massive data mining of phone and Internet activity hello Uncle reminded me of this read. I recall numerous newspaper references to criminals and suspected terrorists contacts overseas, for example, within three days of Boston bomb newspapers were making references to suspects phone contacts.
What do people think? How would this info be available otherwise? There have been a number of other news articles regarding terrorists in Michigan, somewhere in the south. Some have been phone activity and some Internet. The idea that this is new news surprised me. I’ve been thinking this was the case since ColIntelPro.
The basic idea here is don’t do anything wrong and don’t talk to anyone if you do. The scarier idea is don’t disagree with the powers that be, but that has always been true. Oct 31, Jay rated it liked it Shelves: Interesting – even fascinating – in parts, and deathly dull in others.
The Puzzle Palace: A Report on America’s Most Secret Agency – James Bamford – Google Books
Some of the history of the NSA is amazing stuff, but dissecting the org chart of the NSA back in the early 80’s isn’t worth my palaec. Recommended only for those who want to know everything about the NSA and its predecessors up through or so – almost ancient history now. I’m guessing that there are better books to read these days on the NSA. Jul 10, Jeff Hedberg rated it really liked it. Even though this book was written back in the 80’s – so much of it smacks of being exactly the same today Nov 15, Gerald rated it it was amazing.
Long before the current scandals, The Puzzle Palace presented an insider’s view of electronic eavesdropping capability. One can only imagine how far technology has developed since then. Nov 30, James rated it it was ok. Sep 03, David rated it did not like it Shelves: Aug 06, Lauren rated it did not like it. Global communications have been monitored throughout the history of the world as civilizations try to gain information from neighboring peoples then share it in turn with other people they encounter.
With the advancement of technology, the ways to obtain information have become more advanced and easy to get. The ideas acquired from others can help advance the civilization or ultimately to keep the threat of competition at a minimal. The Puzzle Palace by James Bamford is basically a novel about t Global communications have been monitored throughout the history of the world as civilizations try to gain information from neighboring peoples then share it in turn with other people they encounter.
The National Security Agency is an organization whose sole purpose is to decode and get hold of information and secrets held by other countries. The highly secret organization was founded on April 24, in response to events during the First World War.
It was originally named the Signal Bamflrd Service and had a variety of other names since it was founded. The location of the facility has also been pyzzle frequently and is vastly guarded by fences and barbed wire.
It also seems to be a network unto its own ranging from going beyond the law to pizzle worldwide infringement names other countries to the total control over the people that work in the agency. Codebreaking and gathering information from other countries could in fact carve out an identity for the country that is trying to obtain the information. For example, the United States is one of the leading nations trying to use the technology they have to gather information on other countries; this in turn provides a profile on that country.
The United States has recently made it a point, with the creation of the National Security Agency, to try to get as much information on other countries as possible. For example, when the United States was bartering with Japan and were able to translate what they were saying because they knew the code for the Japanese transmissions. The United States therefore knew that the Japanese would be able to be brought down for less than the original bargain. As seen in the novel Blowback by Chalmers Johnson, the United States used the Joint Combined Exchange Training Program as a means of acquiring other countries training strategies and a map of the territory while covering it up to palacr like the United States was trying to help the country mobilize its own forces and bamdord them better.
The ideas of others by creating new technologies and improvements in the way society functions can all be borrowed from other countries.