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Summary

The history of espionage is far older than any of today's intelligence agencies, yet the long history of intelligence operations has been largely forgotten. The codebreakers at Bletchley Park, the most successful World War II intelligence agency, were completely unaware that their predecessors in earlier moments of national crisis had broken the codes of Napoleon during the Napoleonic wars and those of Spain before the Spanish Armada. 

Those who do not understand past mistakes are likely to repeat them. Intelligence is a prime example. At the outbreak of World War I, the grasp of intelligence shown by US President Woodrow Wilson and British Prime Minister Herbert Asquith was not in the same class as that of George Washington during the Revolutionary War and leading 18th-century British statesmen. 

In this book, distinguished historian Christopher Andrew recovers much of the lost intelligence history of the past three millennia - and shows its relevance today.

©2018 Christopher Andrew (P)2018 Audible, Ltd

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A valuable perspective

Excellent piece of work, providing a valuable perspective on the past and the future. Well narrated

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Enthralling

I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this--I picked it up because it seemed an interesting subject, and it was good and long. It's certainly long but never dry, an anecdote-stuffed wander through world history from an unusual perspective. The most enthralling non-fiction audiobook I've listened to in ages.

The James Mason-esque reader is a fun touch, he sounds just like one of the cynical, clever spies whose devious exploits he relates!

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comprehensive

A good overview of the intelligence through the ages. it has some very interesting fact that definitely force the reflection on today's world.
Only criticism is the massive emphasis on code breaking which is key for intelligence but not the only component of it.