Pompeo is the one particular person ever to have run each the Central Intelligence Company and the State Division — and, as he writes, “the one member of the president’s core national-security crew who made it by way of 4 years with out resigning or getting fired.” How did he do it? He trusted in God, labored arduous, kneecapped his enemies and kissed the president’s ring. Pompeo professes to like the methods by which Trump wielded energy, and that love burns with a tough, gemlike flame all through these pages. There isn’t any zealot like a convert.
However love is just not the guiding mild of “By no means Give an Inch.” Hatred animates this ebook. It is received extra venom than a quiver of cobras.
Earlier than plunging into the snake pit, let’s flip to some passages that can be fodder for future historians. Pompeo tells us again and again that he likes “pipehitters”—coldblooded killers in fight, take-no-prisoners allies in authorities. He discovered each of them in his 16 months on the CIA, the place he bolstered the clandestine service and intensified its deadly operations. First, he made Gina Haspel, “a conservative’s conservative,” his deputy of him and ensured she would succeed him. (Haspel, he writes, had been unjustly “punished” for overseeing torture on the CIA’s black websites, and he “needed to proper that ship” by rewarding her.) Then he embraced Michael D’Andrea, a hard-nosed counterterrorism chief often known as the Darkish Prince, who “got here to work day by day with a figurative knife in his enamel.” Pompeo favored his type of him. “They inform me you are an a–hole, a s—head, and inconceivable to work with,” Pompeo stated at their job interview. (The ebook doesn’t delete the expletives.) “Mr. Director,” D’Andrea replied, “I’m not inconceivable to work with.” He was employed on the spot to run Iran operations, together with a profitable plan to assassinate the murderous Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani. Killing America’s enemies was a spotlight of Pompeo’s CIA, and he’s very happy with it.
As Trump ricocheted between threatening to destroy North Korea with fireplace and fury and sweet-talking it into disarmament, he despatched Pompeo to see Kim Jong Un. The assembly started with Kim saying: “Mr. Director, I did not suppose you’d present up. I do know you have been making an attempt to kill me.” Pompeo says he replied, “Mr. Chairman, I am nonetheless making an attempt to kill you.” Smiles throughout. The tyrant swore he would quit his nuclear arsenal. Trump believed him. Spoiler alert: Kim was mendacity.
The hermit kingdom wasn’t the one nation the president considered attacking. As Pompeo delivered his day by day Oval Workplace intelligence briefing in 2017, Trump questioned aloud: “How would we do if we went to battle with Mexico?” Pompeo writes that Trump was “merely testing and increasing the vary of concepts that is perhaps helpful in fulfilling his important guarantees from him to the American folks.” Whereas he does not clarify how attacking Cancun would clear up the immigration disaster, he does offer you a whiff of the sycophancy that got here along with his service. In response to Trump’s impulse to purchase Greenland, which wasn’t on the market, Pompeo recollects that it “was among the best concepts” the president ever had.
His on a regular basis proximity to the president as his intelligence briefer helped Pompeo ascend to Foggy Backside in 2018. And right here begins this ebook’s descent into purest vitriol.
Pompeo disdained America’s profession diplomats. He describes them, by turns, as un-American, deceitful denizens of the “deep state,” and “overwhelmingly arduous left.” Trump’s third nationwide safety adviser, John Bolton, is a scheming leaker who “needs to be in jail,” he writes. Barack Obama’s overseas insurance policies, in Pompeo’s view, made him all however a terrorist fellow traveler. I’ve portrays Obama’s spy chiefs John Brennan and James Clapper as masters of disinformation and the chief perpetrators of the “Russia Hoax” — the crime of reporting, first to president-elect Trump after which to the American folks, the intelligence neighborhood’s conclusion that the Kremlin monkey -wrenched the 2016 election for its chosen candidate.
Pompeo spurned the CIA’s intelligence analysts when their conclusions clashed along with his preconceptions. They inconveniently discovered that Mohammed bin Salman, the crown prince of Saudi Arabia, was complicit within the 2018 homicide of Washington Publish contributing columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Pompeo’s sympathies lie squarely with the Saudi ruler. In spite of everything, he contends, Khashoggi was not a “journalist” (he places the phrase in sarcastic quotes) however a political activist. After the killing sparked outrage, Trump despatched Pompeo to reassure the crown prince of America’s assist of him — and to provide “the center finger to the Washington Publish, the New York Instances, and different bed-wetters who did n’t have a grip on actuality.” As you will have guessed, Pompeo hates reporters: They’re, in his phrases, “wolves” and “hyenas,” and their work of encouraging leaks, he says flatly, “is illicit.”
If Pompeo certainly runs for president, he could wish to modulate the tone he has chosen on this tome. It is like being locked in a room and compelled to pay attention to twenty hours of Tucker Carlson reruns at prime quantity. Nevertheless it’s definitely extra entertaining and substantial than most marketing campaign books. On the proof of “By no means Give an Inch,” Pompeo is an effective husband, a superb father, a superb Christian and an incredible patriot. However no reader can fail to understand—as Trump did—that he actually is a imply son of a bitch.
Tim Weiner has gained the Pulitzer Prize and the Nationwide Ebook Award for reporting and writing on nationwide safety. He’s engaged on a historical past of the Twenty first-century CIA.
Preventing for the America I Love
broadside. 438pp. $32.99
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