Rhodri Jeffreys-Jones

D - Z


Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. The FBI: A History. New Haven,CT, and London: Yale University Press, 2007.

Clark comment: Jeffreys-Jones's interpretation of FBI history is not uninteresting; however, it often seems that he is trying too hard to shoehorn his two main themes (racism and civil liberties) into his narrative.

Although he finds rather strange ("historical sleight of hand") the author's locating the FBI's beginning in 1871 rather than 1908, Peake, Studies 52.1 (Mar. 2008) and Intelligencer 16.1 (Spring 2008), judges this work to be "a balanced review of the FBI's organization and functions from ... 1908 to the present." Hickman, I&NS 24.4 (Aug. 2009), comments that if this book "fails to persuade in some of its novel vantage points and observations, it still should provoke spirited debate."


Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. "The FBI's Continuing Challenge: Centralized Intelligence vs. Civil Liberties." Chronicle of Higher Education 51, no. 20 (21 Jan. 2005).

The joint Congressional inquiry into the 9/11 attacks "recommended the creation of a cabinet-level director of national intelligence. At a stroke, the time-honored functional split between the FBI and CIA would be eradicated. Implicitly, civil liberties would be subordinated to the more urgent need to fight terrorism.... The Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act, of December 2004, created the post of director of national intelligence, or DNI, but the law reflected political compromises and is vague in vital areas.... Intelligence turf wars and controversy are likely to continue."


Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. "The Historiography of the CIA." Historical Journal 23 (Jun. 1980): 489-496. [Petersen]

[CIA/Overviews; RefMats]

Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. In Spies We Trust: The Story of Western Intelligence. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2013.

O'Loughlin, Telegraph (London), 3 Aug. 2013, comments that this work is "not really ... 'The Story of Western Intelligence'. It deals only cursorily with the intelligence agencies of non-Anglophone Cold War players.... What this book does do -- and it does it well -- is examine the complex history of American and British intelligence cooperation." For Moravcsik, FA 93.1 (Jan.-Feb. 2014), this work helps "illuminate how contemporary espionage took shape" and how Anglo-American intelligence cooperation "fell into decline" and why that relationship "is no longer special."

To Ehrman and Manosevitz, Studies 58.2 (Web only, Jun. 2014), this book "just doesn't work out." It is "interesting" but "flawed and ultimately unconvincing." The author "concentrates on espionage and human intelligence operations," and "largely ignores cooperation between NSA and GCHQ.... It is odd, too, that Jeffreys-Jones has no substantial discussion of how the United States and Britain work closely with Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.... The book is also marred by astonishing errors that cast doubt on the quality of the publisher's fact checkers and author's grasp of US history."

West, IJI&C 27.3 (Fall 2014), uses such descriptions as "Jeffreys-Jones has skewed the facts," "Jeffreys-Jones's facts are distorted," and Jeffreys-Jones's has a "tendency for embellishment" before arriving at the conclusion that the book exhibits a pattern of "almost wild assertions, sometimes amounting to political dynamite, that Jeffreys-Jones fails to detail or substantiate."


Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. "The Montreal Spy Ring of 1898 and the Origins of 'Domestic Surveillance' in the United States." Canadian Review of American Studies 5 (Fall 1974): 119-134.

Petersen: "Discusses Secret Service counterintelligence operations."

[Canada/Spies; Historical/U.S./1865-1918; Other Agencies/Treasury][c]

Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. "Review Article: Manual Indices and Digital Pathways: Developments in United States Intelligence Bibliography." Intelligence and National Security 9, no. 3 (Jul. 1994): 555-559.

Reviews Petersen; Electronic Database of the Russell J. Bowen Collection; CIABASE; NameBase.


Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. "Rise, Fall and Regeneration: From CIA to EU." Intelligence and National Security 24, no. 1 (Feb. 2009): 103-118.

From abstract: "The rise of the CIA and its Cold War analytical successes provided Europe with a model of how a federal polity might conduct foreign intelligence. The shortcomings and recent decline of the CIA are instructive, too, and have the additional effect of adding urgency to the need for the European Union to develop its own intelligence capability."


Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. "The Role of British Intelligence in the Mythologies Underpinning the OSS and Early CIA." Intelligence and National Security 15, no. 2 (Summer 2000): 5-19. And in American-British-Canadian Intelligence Relations 1939-2000, eds David Stafford and Rhodri Jeffreys-Jones, 5-19. London and Portland, OR: Frank Cass, 2000.

Abstract: "Two mythologies helped to underpin the OSS and early CIA. One was the Miracle Thesis [attributed by the author to Ray Cline], which held that US intelligence was inadequate in the interwar years, but miraculously recovered in World War II with British help. The moral of this tale was that you cannot always rely on miracles, so it is best to have an ever-ready peacetime intelligence capability. The second myth stemmed from the Conspiracy Thesis, according to which the British manipulated American intelligence in furtherance of their own imperial designs. Though contrary to the first myth, this one, too, played into the hands of CIA boosters, as it suggested that a full US intelligence capability was necessary to the defence of American sovereignty."

[CIA/40s/Gen; WWII/OSS/Gen]

Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. "The Socio-Educational Composition of the CIA Elite: A Statistical Note." Journal of American Studies 19, no. 1 (1985).


Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. "US Intelligence and Cult of the Confidence Man" The Chronicle Review 22 Mar. 2002, B12.


Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. "United States Secret Service." In Government Agencies, ed. Donald R. Whitnah, 592-597. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1983.


Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. "Why Was the CIA Established in 1947?" Intelligence and National Security 12, no. 1 (Jan. 1997): 21-40.

The author tackles the debate between those who see the CIA as a child of the Cold War and those who find the Agency's origins rooted in the Pearl Harbor debacle. His conclusion: Yes. The most interesting line of thought pursued here is that in seeking to single out the "major causes of the CIA's establishment, it is necessary to distinguish between the executive and Congress." Jeffreys-Jones argues that President Truman and those around him were focused on the Soviet threat. On the other hand, "Pearl Harbor was the burning issue" for the members of Congress.


Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri. "W. Somerset Maugham: Anglo-American Agent in Revolutionary Russia." American Quarterly 28, no. 1 (1976): 90-196.


Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri, and Christopher Andrew, eds.

A. "Special Issue on 'Eternal Vigilance? 50 Years of the CIA.'" Intelligence and National Security 12, no. 1 (Jan. 1997): entire issue.

Click for Table of Contents.

B. Eternal Vigilance? 50 Years of the CIA. London: Frank Cass, 1997.

First published as a special issue of I&NS (see above).


Jeffreys-Jones, Rhodri, and Andrew Lownie, eds. North American Spies: New Revisionist Essays -- Perspectives on Intelligence History. Lawrence, KS: University of Kansas Press [from Edinburgh University Press], 1992.

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