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Intelligence and International Security

Richard J. Aldrich


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Comment on this article Intelligence has rarely been off the front pages of our newspapers during the first decade of the twenty-first century. Intelligence activity has constituted a major component of warning failures, it is interwoven into increasingly preemptive national security strategies, and it has provoked intense ethical debates. Government spending in this area has broadly doubled since 2001. Yet for International Relations scholars in their ivory towers this real-world subject has not yet begun to resonate. A brief inspection of the dominant International Relations textbook, The Globalization of World Politics edited by John Baylis and Steve Smith (2008) , reveals that, even in its latest edition, there is barely a paragraph on this subject. One could make similar observations about most of the standard undergraduate International Relations texts in Europe and North America. Indeed, this lacuna extends even to security studies, since here, too, no widely used text boasts a chapter on intelligence ( Baylis and Wirtz 2007 ; Williams 2008 ). Remarkably, intelligence and indeed covert action only enjoy a cameo role, appearing in International Relations texts as a minor subset of Foreign Policy Analysis ( Kegley et al. 2006 ). By contrast, international historians are ahead of the game. In the mid-1980s, Christopher Andrew and David Dilks identified intelligence as the ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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