Thwarting Enemies at Home and Abroad
How to Be a Counterintelligence Officer
William R. Johnson
Book published by Georgetown University Press
A classic in counterintelligence, Thwarting Enemies at Home and Abroad is a unique primer that teaches the principles, strategy, and tradecraft of counterintelligence (CI). CI is often misunderstood and narrowly equated with security and catching spies, which are only part of the picture. As William R. Johnson explains, CI is the art of actively protecting secrets but also aggressively thwarting, penetrating, and deceiving hostile intelligence organizations to neutralize or even manipulate their operations.
Johnson, a career CIA intelligence officer, lucidly presents the nuts and bolts of the business of counterintelligence and the characteristics that make a good CI officer. Although written during the late Cold War, this book continues to be useful for intelligence professionals, scholars, and students because the basic principles of CI are largely timeless. General readers will enjoy the lively narrative and detailed descriptions of tradecraft that reveal the real world of intelligence and espionage. A new foreword by former CIA officer and noted author William Hood provides a contemporary perspective on this valuable book and its author.
William R. Johnson worked in U.S. Army intelligence in World War II. He went on to serve in various positions around the world with the CIA, including head of the Agency's Far East counterintelligence operations and Saigon base chief, until his retirement in 1977, when he and his wife Pat returned to Colorado. Mr. Johnson died in 2005.
“Johnson's book is easily the best introduction to the frequently misunderstood world of counterintelligence. This classic work, packed with timeless principles and highly readable, is a vital addition to the bookshelf of any intelligence professional.”
—David N. Edger, former CIA operations officer, and visiting professor, University of Oklahoma
“Counterintelligence, without question, is the toughest job in the world of spying. And, historically, we haven't been as good at it as we should. That needs to change. One glaring shortcoming in recent years has been the lack of a good treatise on the 'art' of counterintelligence. William Johnson's book, which has been out of print for years, fills that gap. He gets it right. Only a respected CI pro like [Johnson] could have described so clearly our arcane business of dangles, doubles, defectors, and deception. Thwarting Enemies at Home and Abroad will not only be a fascinating read for the general public but will also serve as a text for a whole new generation of CI trainees.”
—James M. Olson, former chief of CIA counterintelligence and author of Fair Play: The Moral Dilemmas of Spying