VIEWS: 14 PAGES: 3 CATEGORY: Science & Technology POSTED ON: 6/11/2010
On the basis of extensive archival research as well as interviews with former officers, the author describes how the Stasi succeeded in stealing technical plans, equipment, and software. Contemporary critics of current technology-control regimes should note that many nations have learned from the Stasi's mistakes and now make the transfer of "know-how" a key element of their technological-industrialeconomic espionage programs.
BOOK REVIEWS 123 the Voice of America over missions, Michigan State University professor “firewalls,” journalism norms, and Kristie Macrakis provides an interest- organizational independence. ing, if somewhat disjointed, look into Yet the book has limitations. He prob- one part of the former East German lematically conflates the generic and Ministry for State Security, the depart- constituent elements of public diplo- ment commonly known as the “Stasi.” macy––listening, advocacy, cultural di- In its time, the Stasi was one of the plomacy, exchange diplomacy, and most effective intelligence and security international broadcasting––in the organizations on the planet. The book book’s framework of underlying under review provides a look into a key themes. He gives (as he recognizes) dis- aspect of Stasi operations. Its author, proportionate attention to Washington, Kristie Macrakis, has written several USIA’s directors, and broadcast media. books on modern Germany and con- veys a deep understanding of German The author ends with a brief look at les- thought and attitudes, but her lack of sons for the future, such as the need to knowledge on intelligence matters un- include public diplomacy in foreign- fortunately limits her understanding of policy planning and for the United her chosen topic. However, the profes- States to listen as well as speak. These sional who is willing to dig past the are valuable insights. But new forces are discrepancies will find value. shaping twenty-first-century diplo- macy. Networks challenge hierarchies. The book is divided into two parts, Attention––not information––is the “High-Tech” and “Spy-Tech.” The lat- scarce resource. Globalism, nonstate ac- ter section focuses on “spy technology” tors, a mix of secular and religious “big and will fascinate the dilettante and in- ideas,” digital technologies, and new form the professional. It is in this sec- media are transforming the old order. tion that Macrakis appears more Cull is sensitive to these forces and to comfortable and writes with grea
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