Vitabu vyenye kuzungumzia intelijensia na ujasusi.

The _Analyst

JF-Expert Member
May 26, 2017
Wakuu salaam,

Nimekuwa nikimfatilia sana the Bold na hivyo nikajikuta nikipenda kufuatilia intelijensia.

Binafsi mimi ni msomaji wa vitabu lakini visivyo vya hadithi za kutungwa(non fiction) japo nimekuwa nikisoma vitabu vyenye mlengo tofauti na intelijensia.

Hivyo naomba wataalamu na wasomaji wa mambo yanayohusu ujasusi na intelijensia wapendekeze na kuorodhesha vitabu bora kabisa kuhusu ujasusi na intelijensia kwa manufaa ya wate ambao tungependa kufuatilia maswala ya ujasusi.



JF-Expert Member
Jan 14, 2010
KOLYMSKY HEIGHTS By Lionel Davidson.

THE cold war was never this cold. "Kolymsky Heights" tells the story of an American agent's penetration of Russia's most closely guarded secret. Lionel Davidson, the author of seven previous novels, has produced here an icy marvel of invention. It is written with the panache of a master and with the wide-eyed exhilaration of an adventurer in the grip of discovery. Mr. Davidson has not only rescued one of the most familiar narrative forms of the era, the spy thriller; he has also renewed it.

The "cold," long a metaphor both for armed East-West hostility and for the personal alienation of those engaged in espionage, is the literal condition of this novel. It is set in Siberia, in the former gulag. Russia's great secret, set in motion by an order of Stalin's 40 years ago, has survived the collapse of the Soviet Union because it is locked, literally, in the ice. Thus Mr. Davidson's story is spawned by the cold -- and the cold is the story's engine. Of all the many obstacles the indomitable agent must overcome, none is as savage as the weather.

The hero of "Kolymsky Heights" is Johnny Porter, outdoorsman, scholar and the Central Intelligence Agency's reluctant recruit. He is a man of the North himself, and his fiercest struggle is against the cold in his own heart. Porter is a Gitksan Indian, a member of a loose network of indigenous peoples inhabiting northern Canada and Alaska. He is well educated in languages and science, an expert in the cultures of the far Northern tribes -- all crucial qualifications for the mission to Siberia. But what really sets him apart, and what gives Mr. Davidson's story its freshness, is Porter's self-consciousness as an Indian. That is what enables him to transcend conventional notions of loyalty, to fall in love across a boundary and to accept a humanist's plea to put the good of human beings above any national ambition.

It is amazing to realize that after all these years of enmity between the United States and the Soviet Union, the single most significant geopolitical fact about these two nations has been all but ignored both in politics and in literature: the two countries face each other across a narrow strip of water. If we look at the globe conventionally, with the equator dominating the middle range of the eye, our two nations are on opposite sides of the world. But if we view the globe from a polar perspective, we and the Russians are the nearest of neighbors.

Mr. Davidson dramatizes the fact that the easternmost Russian point of land in the Bering Strait, Big Diomede Island, is separated from the westernmost American point on Little Diomede Island by two and a half miles. Sometimes the sea between them is frozen solid. We know, of course, that ice in the Bering Strait was the land bridge that enabled the primordial Asian migration to the Western Hemisphere, but we pay little attention to the fact that direct descendants of those same aboriginal peoples still populate both sides of the strait. And not only that; the indigenous peoples whose home territory is that frozen region -- American or Canadian citizens on one side, Russian on the other -- are ethnically related. Berlin was a favored locale for cold war spy novels because its East-West border was so dramatic, but that drama pales compared to the wildly imaginative use Mr. Davidson has made of the frozen border to the north -- precisely because to the people most at home there, it is not much of a border even now.

The form of "Kolymsky Heights" is conventional enough -- a dark journey myth or, in native terms, a spirit quest. A lone hero sets out to solve a riddle. In this case, the first clue comes from a spy-in-the-sky satellite. What was that explosion at a remote weather station in Siberia? Who are those strange, not quite human creatures just visible in the enhanced photos? And what is the meaning of the coded messages and the particular man they ask for?

That man is Porter. He sets out on the quest. He must survive tests at sea, racking illness, successive feats of extraordinary impersonation and technical challenges of science and engineering. And most threatening of all, he must respond as a man to a woman whose unexpected feeling for him can either ruin everything or save him -- or both.

"Kolymsky Heights," true to the genre, bristles with arcane information about polar navigation, language, biology, genetic engineering, Arctic geography -- and, most crucially, how to assemble a truck from scratch. Mr. Davidson is masterly, and there is pleasure both in learning what he has to teach and in discovering its relevance to his story. Spy novels are like intricate puzzles, exercises in mind expansion that proceed by teasing out a solution that, through most of its evolution, seems quite impossible. In "Kolymsky Heights," one reversal after another leads to an inevitable but wholly unexpected resolution.

Key to that resolution is the love story between Johnny Porter and Tanya Komarova, a Russian medical officer in the Kolyma region of Siberia. Of course, what makes Porter a superb secret agent -- his detachment and cynicism -- renders him nearly incapable of love. But in that "nearly" hides the real secret of this novel. For all its wizardry and technicality, for all its depressed contemporaneity and for all its narrative punch too, the real sting of "Kolymsky Heights," after the war and in the cold, is its way with the mystery of love. Watching and Waiting

In the beam of a searchlight, a man in a gas mask went up the ladder. At the top he flung in what seemed to be a stun grenade, producing the bang, and shortly thereafter a canister of tear gas -- smoke streamed out, anyway. Then the man paused, head well down, before suddenly rushing the place; with a sharp rat-tat, and another pause, before he reappeared and came down the ladder.

Porter positioned himself in his own aerie to be nearer fresh air, prepared to take a deep breath and hold it. He knew he could hold it for two minutes. The man hadn't taken as long as two minutes.

He was waiting there when it happened. He saw the walls turning milky white, heard the scrape of the ladder and the man coming up. He gave it 10 seconds, filled his lungs and actually saw the stun grenade come arcing in. It struck the low roof, bounced sharply onto his chest and exploded in his face.

For some moments, the flash was the last thing he saw. It blinded, deafened, almost paralyzed him.

He still hung onto his breath. From "Kolymsky Heights."

James Carroll is writer in residence at Emerson College in Boston. His most recent novel is "The City Below." His op-ed column on politics, culture and religion appears weekly in The Boston Globe

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