007, eh?: An Inside Look at Secret Service

Spies are a perennially popular subject in books, film, and television, but when one thinks of shoe phones and poison pens, it’s not usually Canadians that we imagine wielding these gadgets. So would you believe that Canadian spies have been running covert operations largely hidden from public or parliamentary scrutiny – complete with undercover agents, secret sources, agent provocateurs, coded communications, elaborate files, and all the usual apparatus of deception and betrayal so familiar to fans of spy fiction?

The answer may surprise you.

Reg Whitaker, Gregory S. Kealey, and Andrew Parnaby look at government-sponsored surveillance and intelligence-gathering operations in their new book Secret Service, the first comprehensive history of political policing in Canada – from its beginnings in the mid-nineteenth century, through two world wars and the Cold War to the more recent ‘war on terror.’

Take a look at the Introduction to Secret Service, excerpted here, to learn more about just what the Canadian spies are spying on.


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