Get the Truth: Former CIA Officers Teach You How to Persuade Anyone to Tell All Paperback – 26 April 2016
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About the Author
Michael Floyd began his career as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Army Military Police, then served as a Special Agent with the Central Intelligence Agency and the National Security Agency. He now provides training and consulting services for Forbes Top 10 families and large corporations throughout North America, Europe and Asia. He is widely recognized as a leading authority on interviewing, detection of deception and elicitation in cases involving criminal activity, personnel screening and national security issues.
A former security specialist with the Central Intelligence Agency, Susan Carnicero has 20 years of experience in interviewing, interrogation and polygraph examination, focused primarily on national security, employment and criminal issues. Susan is the developer of a behavioral screening program currently used within the federal government and in a variety of private industries. She is widely considered a leading authority on interviewing, detection of deception, and elicitation.
PETER ROMARY is an attorney and partner in QVerity, Managing Partner of QVerity Legal, and an Adjunct Professor at Campbell University School of Law. He is an internationally recognized expert in the areas of detection of deception, interviewing, elicitation, risk management, threat assessment and management, conflict resolution, and litigation risk management. He has worked as a contractor, lectured, and consulted for government and private-sector clients in the U.S. and abroad. For his work he has received, among others, some of the highest honors from 14 states as well as the Ellis Island Medal of Honor and the John Sanders Award, which is the highest honor awarded by the Association of Student Governments representing the 220,00 students University of North Carolina System. Romary holds both English and US law degrees.
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- Paperback : 288 pages
- ISBN-13 : 978-1250080592
- Product dimensions : 14.25 x 1.98 x 20.8 cm
- Item Weight : 227 g
- Publisher : St. Martin's Griffin; Reprint edition (26 April 2016)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #800,353 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Only rank amateurs, the authors claim, would ever try to extract confessions and information by upping the voltage or giving the thumbscrews another turn. The only approach that has any chance of success is exactly the opposite.
Those who really know what they’re doing try to take all traces of violence or confrontation out of an interrogation, turning it instead into an interview based on chummy sympathy and understanding. Good interrogators will lower their voice, talk slowly, claim empathy with their suspects and then — well, and then just keep on talking lowly and slowly seems to be the gist. Because what appears to work best is an interrogator who chats on and on, quietly, reassuringly, understandingly, often repetitively.
‘We all make mistakes, Brian. Nobody’s saying we don’t make mistakes because, you know, Brian, we all make mistakes,’ and so on and on and on.
The comforting drone of the interrogator’s monologue may sound mindless, but it is carefully created and should contain five key features. These are:
1. rationalising the action (you needed the money);
2. projecting the blame (it was their fault for not paying you enough);
3. minimising the seriousness (we’ve all nicked Post-it notes);
4. socialising the situation (this kind of thing happens a lot, it’s nothing we haven’t seen a million times);
5. and emphasising the truth (if you could explain what happened when you took the money, that would be great and would help us all move on).
The skilled interrogator will mimic thorough understanding of the worst crimes to keep up the pretence of being on the suspect’s side, even when dealing with acts of terrible violence, gross betrayals, fraud, theft, murder. At the same time, the interrogator will be intent on keeping that suspect locked into a mode of short-term thinking — keeping the focus on particulars and specifics, trying like crazy to stop the suspect considering the long-term consequences of telling an implicating truth and being found guilty.
The appendix of the book includes a commentary that touches on the applicability of this approach to jurisprudence, selling and negotiation.
Particularly valuable is the discussion of the extent to which the interrogator should lie to build rapport with their subject. Less good are allusions to the schlock psychology of mirroring, touching elbows and so forth. Simple tips like bringing donuts and sandwiches to the meeting are enough.
All of this coincides with my experience and that of my father (a successful counter-terrorist). The book declares that it is not a position paper on the CIA’s so-called “advanced interrogation techniques”. Nevertheless, it is an overdue counterweight to the US’s unfortunate reputation for brutality.