Friday, January 09, 2009

Fred Burton’s Ghost: Confessions of a Counterterrorism Agent

Finished it last night while others watched the Gators beat the Paperclips.

I’ve been posting the Stratfor columns for a while now and Fred Burton is their vp for counter-terrrorism and corproate security. He was formerly deputy chief of the DSS. I didn’t really even know that the DSS was until I read the book even though I’ve met him a couple of times at speaking engagements (his, not mine…who wants to come hear a dry lawyer talk to a bunch of contractors about liens?).

It is the Defense Security Service. It is a federal agency under the State Department which operates CIA/FBI/Secret Service-like agency for the State Department. Lots of security work for our embassies, ambassadors and other diplomats abroad and in charge of protecting foreign dignitaries while here.

Update. That link I posted for DSS may have been wrong. It's parent organization, the DS is here.

There is a video about the book which I haven’t viewed but can be seen here.

It is written in style a counter-terrorism agent would employ along with the help of competent editors. A few too many references to the “Dark World” in which he operated for my taste.

He served under Reagan, Bush the Elder and Clinton. Interesting insights into several things: how the counter-terrorism operation used to work and how they work today, Arms for Hostages/Iran/Contra, guarding Arafat when it was once one’s job to get him, to Burton’s role in the capture of what has to be at least one the top five pre-9/11 terrorists.

Update: How embarrassing. Correction from the author: Diplomatic Security Service.


Anonymous said...


Thank you for reading my book.

To clarify, the DSS is the Diplomatic Security Service.

All the best,

Fred Burton

Scooter said...

Thanks for the correction. Keep up the great work.