Under the benevolent banner of glasnost, could the Soviet Union really be trying "to win strategic advantages through peace-time deception"? And if so, is there historical precedent (or "mind of the state") to bear this out? Moreover, is the US susceptible to deception based on Lenin's "Tell them what they want to hear" principle? Epstein sets out to answer these questions by reaching back to Lenin's manipulation of Armand Hammer (and Khruschev's, too); the establishment of the Soviet Trust in the Twenties; the Philby/Angleton connection (wherein Philby duped America's chief of counterintelligence); the use of Fedora, a supposedly turned Russian agent to establish the credentials of KGB officer Nosenko; the (probable) use of Nosenko to discredit bonafide defector Golitsyn; the intentional abuses of SALT; and the Soviets' continuing ability to establish moles who can comment on how well their sanctioned defectors' stories are being taken. Epstein also details, through extensive interviewing of Angleton and the cadre at one time supporting him, how the CIA often falls victim to its preconceptions, which the Soviets cannily (and continually) manage to authenticate. Epstein's revelations make Angleton seem prescient, and the fact that "almost every intelligence official who has been involved with the Nosenko case had had his career wrecked" seems ominous. This clear, elegantly written caveat from the author of Legend: The Secret Worm of Lee Harvey Oswald, Agency of Fear, etc. is a matter-of-fact indictment of shortsighted domestic policies and interagency infighting--and makes a trenchant case for KGB supremacy over the CIA and the NSC and the FBI, with their all-too-willing collusion in it.