Christopher Dickey


Dickey, Christopher. Securing the City: Inside America's Best Counterterror Force -- the NYPD. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2009.

Brzezinski, Washington Post Book World, 1 Feb. 2009, notes that the author chronicles the creation of "an elite and controversial counter-intelligence unit within the NYPD" following the 9/11 attacks. He also "offers a scathing critique of the federal counter-terrorism system from a comparative, and in many ways competitive, perspective." New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly hired David Cohen, "a senior CIA administrator," who built a "600-person unit." The book "contains a wealth of detail that would have been extremely difficult to obtain from typically less forthcoming federal agencies." However, he "might have dug a little deeper in addressing the persistent but vague allegations in Washington that the NYPD counterterrorism unit cuts legal corners and that some of its methods are unconstitutional."

For Garber, Studies 54.2 (Jun. 2010), this work "is engaging and edifying when describing details of how this unique expansion of a local law enforcement agency was envisioned and carried out. Unfortunately, Dickey doesn't do that often enough." The book's "major inadequacy" is that the author "virtually omits treatment of the deep-seated conflicts between the NYPD's Intelligence Division and its Counter Terrorism Bureau." Although the writing is clear, the language "at times veers toward the hackneyed"; and the book "has no apparent organizational scheme. In addition, the sparse endnotes are employed virtually randomly."


Dickey, Christopher. With the Contras: A Reporter in the Wilds of Nicaragua. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1987.


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