Gray Work: Confessions of an American Paramilitary Spy

Jamie Smith

Published by William Morrow, 2015
ISBN 10: 0062271695 / ISBN 13: 9780062271693
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The first ever, first-person story of America's private, paramilitary contractors at work around the world-from a man who performed these missions himself and has decades of stories to tell. This is a fascinating tale-and potentially the first-to describe the work of American contractors, men who run highly dangerous missions deep inside foreign countries on the brink of war. It will lift the veil and detail the ultimate danger and risk of paramilitary operations (both officially government-sanctioned and not) and show us in very intimate terms exactly what private soldiers do when the government can't act or take public responsibility. GRAY WORK combines covert military intelligence with boots-on-the-ground realism, following Jamie Smith through his CIA training and work as a spy in the State Department, to his co-founding of Blackwater following 9/11, to his decision to leave that company. As the founder and director of Blackwater Security, Smith's initial vision has undeniably shaped and transformed a decade of war. He argues that this gray area-and its warriors who occupy the controversial space between public and private-has become an indispensable element of the modern battlefield.

From the Back Cover:

In this unprecedented book, a paramilitary contractor with more than two decades of experience gives us a firsthand look into the secret lives of America’s private warriors and their highly covert work around the world. Author Jamie Smith has planned and executed hundreds of missions on behalf of government agencies and private industry in some of the world’s most dangerous hot spots—and lived to tell the tale.

They are elite warriors who run highly dangerous missions deep inside foreign countries on the brink of war. Jamie Smith knows these men well. Not only is he one of them, but he was the founding director of one of the most successful global, private military contracting firms. For the first time, he breaks his silence, pulling back the curtain to reveal in raw, intimate terms exactly what paramilitary spies and operators like him do when the government cannot act or take public responsibility.

Combining the thrilling narrative of an international spy thriller with bracing boots-on-the-ground realism, Gray Work follows Smith through grinding CIA training and his career as an operative, his work with Blackwater Security, and the creation of his own successful company. Here is the grit and gristle of modern warfare, from espionage and assassinations, rescues and renditions, from the dark corners of the Arab Spring and the fall of Qadhafi to black ops from Syria to Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, and beyond. Smith has fought terrorists and won; he was ambushed on a mission in Pakistan and took a bullet through his shoulder and to his back, and subsequently survived a grueling mountain trek that almost cost him his life.

As founding director of Blackwater Security and then as head of his own company, Smith has helped shape a decade of war. His book powerfully illustrates how the men who serve in this gray area between the public and private worlds are transforming the art and science of modern warfare. Unparalleled in its revelations and riveting in its intensity, Gray Work is as exhilarating as the best novels by Clancy, Cussler, Flynn, and Thor—and all the more so because it’s true.

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Title: Gray Work: Confessions of an American ...
Publisher: William Morrow
Publication Date: 2015
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Used: Good

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