I’m on vacation in Mexico with family and finally got a chance to dive into Vince Flynn’s new novel, Extreme Measures. The book is fiction, but I think it captures the fickle nature of the relationship between politicians and the intelligence community.
The main characters – Mitch Rapp and Mike Nash – work for the CIA and let’s just say that they are fluent in the language of violence and certainly know how to move around in places where it is spoken. Terrorists continue to plot against the United States showing patience and resolve, but American politicians have very short memories.
Sept. 11 was a turning point for both characters – the novel takes place years later – and just after that fateful September day, politicians and leaders demanded assurance the intelligence community was doing everything possible, including extreme interrogations, to ensure that America would not be attacked again.
Time marches on and since the intelligence community has been successful in the years since Sept. 11, many in government begin to turn on the intelligence community who have done such a good job. Remember, CIA operatives are not in it for the money or fame, they do this kind of work to protect the citizens of the United States.
Sometimes you need to meet violence with extreme violence, and many in Washington know the public face of the government must be quite different than what Rapp and Nash do on a daily basis. Sometimes we don’t want to know what they do or how they do it, but we need to understand that some select few need to sacrifice to provide these services to keep America safe.
If you have not read any of Flynn’s stuff, pick up a copy of Extreme Measures. It’s a quick read, one of those books you can get through in two days while on vacation and you’ll probably really enjoy it.