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From Secrets to Policy

Eighth Edition


October 2019 | 616 pages | CQ Press
“[The text is] one of the most useful, one-volume, introductory works on intelligence today. [Intelligence] does an excellent job of working through the intricacies of U.S. intelligence.” 
—Richard J. Norton, United States Naval War College

Mark M. Lowenthal’s trusted guide is the go-to resource for understanding how the intelligence community’s history, structure, procedures, and functions affect policy decisions. In the fully updated Eighth Edition of Intelligence, the author addresses cyber security and cyber intelligence throughout, expands the coverage of collection, comprehensively updates the chapters on nation-state issues and transnational issues, and looks at foreign intelligence services, both large and small.

Tables, Figures, and Boxes
1. What Is “Intelligence”?
Why Have Intelligence Agencies?  
What Is Intelligence About?  
Key Terms  
Further Readings  
2. The Development of U.S. Intelligence
Major Themes  
Major Historical Developments  
Key Terms  
Further Readings  
3. The U.S. Intelligence Community
Alternative Ways of Looking at the Intelligence Community  
The Many Different Intelligence Communities  
Intelligence Community Relationships That Matter  
The Intelligence Budget Process  
Key Terms  
Further Readings  
4. The Intelligence Process—A Macro Look: Who Does What for Whom?
Processing and Exploitation  
Analysis and Production  
Dissemination and Consumption  
Thinking About the Intelligence Process  
Key Terms  
Further Readings  
5. Collection and the Collection Disciplines
Overarching Themes  
Strengths and Weaknesses  
Key Terms  
Further Readings  
6. Analysis
Major Themes  
Analytical Issues  
Intelligence Analysis: An Assessment  
Key Terms  
Further Readings  
7. Counterintelligence
Internal Safeguards  
External Indicators and Counterespionage  
Problems in Counterintelligence  
Economic Espionage  
National Security Letters  
Key Terms  
Further Readings  
8. Covert Action
The Decision-Making Process  
The Range of Covert Actions  
Issues in Covert Action  
Assessing Covert Action  
Key Terms  
Further Readings  
9. The Role of the Policy Maker
The U.S. National Security Policy Process  
Who Wants What?  
The Intelligence Process: Policy and Intelligence  
Key Term  
Further Readings  
10. Oversight and Accountability
Executive Oversight Issues  
Congressional Oversight  
Issues in Congressional Oversight  
Internal Dynamics of Congressional Oversight  
The Courts  
Key Terms  
Further Readings  
11. The Intelligence Agenda: Nation-States
The Primacy of the Soviet Issue  
The Emphasis on Soviet Military Capabilities  
The Emphasis on Statistical Intelligence  
The “Comfort” of a Bilateral Relationship  
Collapse of the Soviet Union  
Intelligence and the Soviet Problem  
The Current Nation-State Issue  
Key Terms  
Further Readings  
12. The Intelligence Agenda: Transnational Issues
U.S. National Security Policy and Intelligence After the Cold War  
Intelligence and the New Priorities  
Health and the Environment  
Peacekeeping Operations  
Support to the Military  
Key Terms  
Further Readings  
13. Ethical and Moral Issues in Intelligence
General Moral Questions  
Issues Related to Collection and Covert Action  
Analysis-Related Issues  
Oversight-Related Issues  
The Media  
Further Readings  
14. Intelligence Reform
The Purpose of Reform  
Issues in Intelligence Reform  
Key Terms  
Further Readings  
15. Foreign Intelligence Services
Other Services  
Other Services in Brief  
Further Readings  
Appendix 1. Additional Bibliographic Citations and Websites
Appendix 2. Major Intelligence Reviews or Proposals
Author Index
Subject Index

“Lowenthal provides a well-written, comprehensive overview of the intelligence community and the unique business of intelligence work.”

Kimberly A. Urban
Virginia Commonwealth University

“[Intelligence] is an excellent introduction to the U.S. intelligence community that offers compelling insights from a seasoned insider.” 

Antony Field
California State University, San Bernardino

“Lowenthal’s Intelligence: From Secrets to Policy is a comprehensive, authoritative, and well-written text suitable for both undergraduate and graduate courses as well as a useful guide for practitioners.”

John W. King
Notre Dame College

“[The text is] one of the most useful, one-volume, introductory works on intelligence today. [Intelligence] does an excellent job of working through the intricacies of U.S. intelligence.”

Richard J. Norton
United States Naval War College
Key features

The Eighth Edition is the most accessible and comprehensive version to date, featuring the most current topics in this constantly moving and evolving field. New topics include:
  • A shift in the emphasis of U.S. intelligence away from transnational issues and back to nation states, particularly China and Russia
  • Artificial intelligence and machine learning as collection issues and transnational intelligence issues
  • How intelligence is faring under the Trump administration
  • Social media and big data as collection issues
  • Threats to intelligence collection systems
  • Security clearances and intelligence leaks
  • Foreign intelligence services: Britain, China, Russia, Israel, Australia, Germany


  • A comprehensive, unbiased treatment of US Intelligence in the market gives readers a firm understanding of the role that intelligence plays in making national security policy and insight into its strengths and weaknesses. 
  • Up-to-date coverage of recent events and trends keeps the topics current and relevant.
  • A clear and concise writing style makes this book suitable for students at every level of experience.
  • Each chapter concludes with a list of readings recommended for a deeper examination of relevant issues. 
  • Additional bibliographic citations and websites are provided in Appendix 1 for further learning. 
  • Appendix 2 lists some of the most important reviews and proposals for change in the U.S. intelligence community since 1945— ensuring students are up-to-date on issues inherent in intelligence

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ISBN: 9781544325064