Eyes on Spies

Eyes on Spies

Congress and the United States Intelligence Community

Author: Amy B. Zegart
ISBN: 978-0-8179-1284-0
Publication Date: 9/8/2011
Pages: 144

WHY CONGRESS'S BIGGEST INTELLIGENCE OVERSIGHT PROBLEMS LIE WITH ...CONGRESS

Ten years after 9/11, the least reformed part of America's intelligence system is not the CIA or FBI but the US Congress. In Eyes on Spies, Amy Zegart examines the weaknesses of U.S. intelligence oversight and why those deficiencies have persisted, despite the unprecedented importance of intelligence in today's environment. She argues that many of the biggest oversight problems lie with Congress—the institution, not the parties or personalities—showing how Congress has collectively and persistently tied its own hands in overseeing intelligence.

Supporting sound logic with extensive data, the author offers a comparative analysis of oversight activities of intelligence with other policy areas to show that Congress is not overseeing nearly as much in intelligence as in other policy domains. Electoral incentives, she reveals, explain why. Zegart also identifies two key institutional weaknesses: one, the rules, procedures, and practices that have hindered the development of legislative expertise in intelligence and, two, committee jurisdictions and policies that have fragmented Congress's budgetary power over executive branch intelligence agencies. She concludes that, unfortunately, electoral incentives on the outside and the zero-sum nature of committee power on the inside provide powerful reasons for Congress to continue hobbling its own oversight capabilities.

In Stock
Buy This Book »
Available Formats:
  • Cloth $19.95

Amy B. Zegart

Amy Zegart is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and an affiliated faculty member at the Center for International Security and Cooperation. Before coming to Stanford, she served as professor of public policy at UCLA’s Luskin School of Public Affairs and as a fellow at the Burkle Center for International Relations. continued




Review and Rate this Item
Be the first to submit a review on this product!
Review and Rate this Item

Reviews

Review by: A. McNitt, Choice: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries - April 1, 2012
An excellent book on oversight in general, and why Congress finds it difficult to control the intelligence agencies. Recommended.


Sign Up

Sign up to receive our monthly newsletter and notifications of all our new book releases


sign up for the newsletter
Strategika
Eureka
Caravan