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Securing the City

Inside America's Best Counterterror Force--The NYPD

The NYPD is the best and most ambitious antiterror operation in the world. Its seat-of-the-pants intelligence is the gold standard for all others.

Christopher Dickey, who has reported on international terrorism for more than twenty-five years, takes readers into the secret command center of the New York City Police Department's counterterrorism division, then onto the streets with cops ready for the toughest urban combat the twenty-first century can throw at them. But behind the tactical shows of force staged by the police, there lies a much more ambitious and controversial strategy: to go anywhere and use almost any means to keep the city from becoming, once again, Ground Zero. This is the story of the coming war in America's cities and New York's shadow war, waged around the globe to stop it before it begins.

Drawing on unparalleled access to Police Commissioner Ray Kelly and other top officials, Dickey explores the most ambitious intelligence operation ever organized by a metropolitan police department. Headed by David Cohen, who ran the CIA's operations inside the United States in the 1980s and its global spying in the 1990s, the NYPD's counterterrorism division had uptotheminute details of new attacks set in motion to target Manhattan in 2002 and 2003.

New York's finest are now seen by other police chiefs in the United States as the gold standard for counterterrorism operations and a model for even the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security. Yet as New Yorkers have come to feel safer, they've also grown worried about the NYPD's methods: sending its undercover agents to spy on Americans in other cities, rounding up hundreds of protesters preemptively before the 2004 Republican convention, and using confidential informants who may be more adept at plotting terror than the people they finger.

Securing the City is a superb investigative reporter's stunning look inside the real world of cops who are ready to take on the world and at the ambiguous price we pay for the safety they provide.

Courtesy of the author

Christopher Dickey, Newsweek's award-winning Paris bureau chief and Middle East editor, reports regularly from Baghdad, Cairo, and Jerusalem, and writes the weekly "Shadowland" column -- an inside look at the world of spies and soldiers, guerrillas and suicide bombers -- for Newsweek Online. He is the author of Summer of Deliverance, Expats, With the Contras, and the novel Innocent Blood. He lives in Paris.

"A fascinating, and frightening, look into the world of antiterrorism. Securing the City kept me riveted." -- Kathy Reichs, author of Devil Bones

"If you're concerned about a terrorist threat to America, you need to read this eye-opening and extraordinary book. Dickey reveals the little-known existence of the New York Police Department's counterterror force, the first line of defense against another 9/11. This book should be read by the FBI, the CIA, and by every cop in America. An essential addition to the literature on global terrorism." -- Nelson DeMille, author of The Gate House

"The United States needs a new counterterrorism strategy -- one that is vigilant, creative, sustainable, and aligned with the country's constitutional values. Securing the City is not only a fascinating inside portrait of the New York Police Department's response to the terror threat after 9/11, it is also an important contribution to public policy. The federal government has much to learn from the leadership culture and street work of the NYPD, as Christopher Dickey's penetrating reporting makes clear." -- Steve Coll, author of Ghost Wars and The Bin Ladens

"Dickey offers a rich inside account of the most extensive antiterrorism effort in any American city. A long-time expert on extremism and the Middle East, Dickey offers amazing detail as well as a broad history of the threats to U.S. national security. There are many important lessons to be learned in Securing the City." -- Robin Wright, author of Dreams and Shadows: The Future of the Middle East

"Christopher Dickey has written a work of meticulous reporting that reads like a John Le Carré novel, illuminating the shadowy world of terrorists, and that of the New York City cops who hunt them down. A terrifying, and yet reassuring, read." -- Michael Korda, author of Ike and With Wings Like Eagles

"Revealing and nerve-rattling." -- The New York Times

More books from this author: Christopher Dickey