The Role of Secret intelligence in the international Relations of Europe in the Twentieth Century
The introduction describes the main thrust of the essays included in the collection and the project of the book taken as a whole. An overview of the development of European states system in the twentieth century is sketched out as the editors describe the focuses of subsequent essays and highlight concurrences between authors. One recurring theme, which the editors here mention, is the damaging impact of high politics on the processes of gathering and analyzing secret intelligence. All of the chapters highlight the critical importance of prevailing circumstances in which intelligence operates including technology; the form of government and subsequently, the nature of decision-making; ideological and cultural pressures on the collation of analysis of information; financial limitations; and the deadweight of tradition. A thorough understanding of these myriad factors requires interdisciplinary expertise, the editors argue, thus the varied backgrounds and disciplines of the authors included in the collection.
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