Top Secret

Cold War Trickery for Your Bookshelf

UD - The C.I.A. Manual of Trickery and Deception You've always had a lot of tricks up your sleeve, exhibited good situational awareness, and done your best to keep clandestine when it counts.

But enough about the office.

Still, you could always use a little refresher course. And if it's from the CIA, well, all the better.

Now presenting the latest exhibit in the colorful history of American espionage: The Official CIA Manual of Trickery and Deception, a once-classified 1950s-era guide to misdirection and subterfuge.

The manual is the work of John Mulholland, who was, naturally, America's top magician (at least before Copperfield ran off with the Statue of Liberty). His mission: to instruct CIA agents (and now, you) in sleight of hand and undercover communication.

So you'll learn such Bond-worthy trade secrets as how to slip pills and powders into an adversary's drink (or your own, should you find yourself in a legendary blind date). And, just as importantly, you'll find out what not to do—for instance, if you want to make someone's beard fall out, slipping chemicals into his boots isn't worth the trouble. (Score one for Castro.)

You'll also want to take note of the style advice ("conjurers must be smartly groomed and remain polished, refined, confident, and poised") and more general admonitions ("It is infinitely more difficult to succeed with a trick before a suspicious woman").

But you didn't need a magician to tell you that.


The CIA Manual of Trickery and Deception

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