peteg's blog - noise - books - 2019 12 26 AmaryllisFox LifeUndercover

Amaryllis Fox: Life Undercover: Coming of Age in the CIA.

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Kindle. Prompted by a review in the Asian Review of Books that I only skim read. It's meh: an ahistorical memoir of a relentlessly successful American girl who joined the CIA as a knee-jerk response to 9/11. There is little discussion of policy. Much is montage. The framing story of meeting Al Qaeda in Karachi was clearly a bolted-on sex up. There's far more to learn about what national service is and can be from Daniel Ellsberg and Liz Pisani. The writing is workmanlike. Her tic "my truth" implies she never mastered anything abstract or objective, as does her restlessness at the theory she encounters in her undergraduate days at Oxford.