A re-examination of the history of U.S. intelligence during the height of the Cold War through the biography of controversial CIA director William Colby.
From his years as America's point man in Vietnam to his mysterious death in 1996, William E. Colby was one of the most enigmatic figures of the Cold War. Whether it was in CIA operations against Russia, anti-Communism in Western Europe, covert action in Southeast Asia, or its involvement in the Watergate affair, Colby stood at the center of the agency's secret activities. Lost Crusader for the first time uncovers the real story of this master spy, from his beginnings in the OSS to his tumultuous years as Director of Central Intelligence in the 1970s. Reviled by many outside the CIA for his role in Vietnam, he was later cast as a scapegoat by the Nixon White House during the Church and Pike congressional investigations of CIA activities. Based on extensive research and interviews with key participants, John Prados offers new revelations on the CIA in Western Europe and elsewhere: a fresh analysis of the notorious Phoenix program in Vietnam, and the most authoritative account of agency involvement in the bloody Indonesian coup of 1965 that overthrew Sukarno and brought General Suharto to power.Moreover, Prados has uncovered new evidence on the CIA's role in the 1963 assassination of President Ngo Dinh Diem of South Vietnam and also furnishes the first account of the action at the top level of the CIA during the final demise of South Vietnam in 1975. A masterful study of a master spy, Lost Crusader offers vital insight into the Cold War, Vietnam, and the inner workings of the CIA.