As part of the Central Florida Intelligence Community Center for Academic Excellence’s (CF-ICCAE) programming for the upcoming year, we will be starting a Book Club in order to enrich student learning about intelligence using materials that, while interesting and even potentially exciting, may not fit into the general course curriculum.

All students- graduate and undergraduate students of all majors- are welcome to attend the meetings, and we will have copies of each book available on a first-come, first-served (FCFS) basis. These can be picked up at the ICCAE office in Howard Phillips Hall, Room 314. Note that receiving a copy of the books and not attending the meeting without prior notice may disqualify you from receiving further copies.

We will begin the semester with in-person meetings, though depending on university regulations or other considerations, may switch to online meetings.

The next meeting is: Wednesday, January 18th at 4:00PM, room TBA.

The book we will be discussing is:

Surprise, Kill, Vanish: The Secret History of CIA Paramilitary Armies, Operators, and Assassins by Annie Jacobsen

(From the jacket) When diplomacy fails and war is unwise, the president calls on the CIA’s Special Activities Division (SAD), a highly classified branch of the CIA and the most effective black-operations force in the world. Originally known as the president’s guerrilla warfare corps, SAD conducts risky and ruthless operations that have evolved over time to defend America from its enemies.

With unprecedented access to forty-two men and women who proudly and secretly worked on CIA covert operations from the dawn of the Cold War to the present day, along with declassified documents and deep historical research, Pulitzer Prize finalist Annie Jacobsen unveils- as never before- a complex world of individuals working in treacherous environments populated with killers, connivers, and saboteurs.

Is the CIA’s paramilitary army America’s weaponized strength or a liability to its principled standing in the world? Every operation reported in this book, however unsettling, is legal.

If this book interests you and you can make the meeting, feel free to come down to Howard Phillips Hall, Room 314 to pick up a free copy (while supplies last!)