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In the President's Secret Service: Behind the Scenes with Agents in the Line of Fire and the Presidents they Protectby Ronald Kessler
Never before has a journalist penetrated the wall of secrecy that surrounds the U. S. Secret Service, that elite corps of agents who pledge to take a bullet to protect the president and his family. After conducting exclusive interviews with more than one hundred current and former Secret Service agents, bestselling author and award-winning reporter Ronald Kessler reveals their secrets for the first time. Secret Service agents, acting as human surveillance cameras, observe everything that goes on behind the scenes in the president's inner circle. Kessler reveals what they have seen, providing startling, previously untold stories about the presidents, from John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson to George W. Bush and Barack Obama, as well as about their families, Cabinet officers, and White House aides. Kessler portrays the dangers that agents face and how they carry out their missions--from how they are trained to how they spot and assess potential threats. With fly-on-the-wall perspective, he captures the drama and tension that characterize agents' lives. In this headline-grabbing book, Kessler discloses assassination attempts that have never before been revealed. He shares inside accounts of past assaults that have put the Secret Service to the test, including a heroic gun battle that took down the would-be assassins of Harry S. Truman, the devastating day that John F. Kennedy was killed in Dallas, and the swift actions that saved Ronald Reagan after he was shot. While Secret Service agents are brave and dedicated, Kessler exposes how Secret Service management in recent years has betrayed its mission by cutting corners, risking the assassination of President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and their families. Given the lax standards, "It's a miracle we have not had a successful assassination" a current agent says. Since an assassination jeopardizes democracy itself, few agencies are as important as the Secret Service--nor is any other subject as tantalizing as the inner sanctum of the White House. Only tight-lipped Secret Service agents know the real story, and Ronald Kessler is the only journalist to have won their trust. From the Hardcover edition.
Examination of the CIA from the perspective of its prominent directors, veteran officers, and significant critics
When Laura Bush moved into the White House on January 20, 2001, everyone wanted to know what kind of first lady she would be. Would she be like Mamie Eisenhower? Would she follow in Barbara Bush's footsteps? Would she be another Hillary Clinton? "I think I'll just be Laura Bush," she would say.
Palm Beach is known around the world as the most wealthy, glamorous, opulent, decadent, self-indulgent, sinful spot on earth. With their beautiful 3.75 square-island constantly in the media glare, Palm Beachers protect their impossibly rich society from outside scrutiny with vigilant police, ubiquitous personal security staffs, and screens of tall hedges encircling every mansion. To this bizarre suspicious, exclusive world, New York Times bestselling author Ronald Kessler brought his charm, insight, and award-winning investigative skills, and came to know Palm Beach, its celebrated and powerful residents, and its exotic social rituals as no outside writer ever has. In this colorful, entertaining, and compulsively readable book. Kessler reveals the inside story of Palm Beach society as it moves languidly through the summer months, quickens in the fall, and shifts into frenetic high speed as the season begins in December, peaks in January and February, and continues into April. When unimaginable wealth combines with unlimited leisure time oil an island barely three times the size of New York's Central Park, human foibles and desires, lust and greed, passion and avarice, become magnified and intensified. Like laboratory rats fed growth hormones, the 9,800 Palm Beach residents--87 percent of whom are millionaires--exhibit the most outlandish extremes of their breed. To tell the story, Kessler follows four Palm Beachers through the season. These four characters--the reigning queen of Palm Beach society, the night manager of Palm Beach's trendiest bar, a gay "walker" who escorts wealthy women to balls, and a thirty--six-year-old gorgeous blonde who says she "can't find a guy in Palm Beach"--know practically everyone on the island and tell what goes on behind the scenes. Interweaving the yarns of these unfor-gettable figures with the lifestyle, history, scandals, lore, and rituals of a unique island of excess, The Season creates a powerful, seamless, juicy narrative that no novelist could dream up.
The Secrets of the FBI by New York Times bestselling author Ronald Kessler reveals the FBI's most closely guarded secrets and the secrets of celebrities, politicians, and movie stars uncovered by agents during their investigations. Based on inside access, the book presents revelations about the raid on Osama bin Laden's compound, the recent Russian spy swap, Marilyn Monroe's death, Vince Foster's suicide, and J. Edgar Hoover's sexual orientation. For the first time, it tells how the FBI caught spy Robert Hanssen in its midst and how the FBI breaks into homes, offices, and embassies to plant bugging devices without getting caught.From Watergate to Waco, from congressional scandals to the killing of bin Laden, The Secrets of the FBI presents headline-making disclosures about the most important figures and events of our time.From the Hardcover edition.
Thisfirst serious volume focusing exclusively on Joseph Patrick Kennedy --Ronald Kessler recreates the life and times of this ambitious, powerful, masterfully manipulative man. Utilizing extensive research and interviews with Kennedy family members and their intimates, speaking on record for the first time, Kessler reveals stunning details of JPK's enormous accomplishments and the terrible personal losses he suffered.
Biography of Joseph Kennedy.
Based almost entirely on sources within the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Central Intelligence Agency--prominently including FBI Director Mueller, CIA Director Hayden, and White House Counterterrorism Chief Townsend--this work by Kessler (chief Washington correspondent for NewsMax.com), aimed at a general audience, is an entirely one-sided and hagiographic account of US government counterterrorism operations in the wake of the September 11th attacks. Describing the activities of his heroic FBI and CIA agents, Kessler not infrequently descends outright into cynical apologia. To cite but one example, torture is mentioned exactly three times in the book, twice to claim that the CIA never engages in such practices, although it is admitted that they do employ sleep deprivation and stress positions, techniques considered by many reputable experts to be torture, and once to dismiss any concerns about the so-called "extraordinary rendition" program, which often hands American-held detainees over to countries that routinely employ torture for interrogation. "Why should the U.S. give them a safe haven from the laws and practices of their own countries?" asks Kessler. Annotation ©2008 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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