The Secret History of the Five Eyes

The Untold Story of the International Spy Network

By Richard Kerbaj (Author)


Pub Date 1/7/2025

ISBN 9781454952510

Format Hardcover, Jacketed



The Secret History of the Five Eyes

The Untold Story of the International Spy Network

by Richard Kerbaj
This is the definitive account of the Western world’s most powerful—but least known—intelligence alliance, which remains central to the defense of the free world in a dangerously uncertain time.

The Five Eyes—a spy network between the intelligence agencies of the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand—has been steeped in secrecy since its official formation in 1956. Yet the Five Eyes’ very existence is not legally binding—it functions as a marriage of convenience riddled with distrust, competing intelligence agendas, and a massive imbalance of power that favors the US. Richard Kerbaj draws on interviews with intelligence officials, world leaders, and recently declassified archives to reveal the authoritative but unauthorized stories of the alliance. In bypassing the usual censorship channels, he tells this extraordinary account of the Five Eyes’ unlikely cast of characters who played a crucial role in its history, and exposes the network’s hidden role in influencing global events that continue to shape our daily lives.
"Puts Richard Kerbaj in the front rank of modern authors on espionage. It is, by turns, gripping and shocking and sheds completely new light on the most important intelligence alliance in the world."
—Tim Shipman, bestselling author of All Out War

"An impressively detailed account of a remarkable alliance"
—Jeremy Bowen, The New Statesman

"A scandalous tale of mistrust and and misjudgment."
—The Observer

"Unencumbered by any sense of an agreed or official narrative."
—The Sunday Times

"This thought-provoking and informative book suggests that the era of globetrotting lone agents such as James Bond is long gone."
—Sydney Morning Herald

"The stories Kerbaj tells reveal ... a story of failure - of missing warnings that could have prevented atrocities, of misusing intelligence to start a war."

"Scintillating ... full of scoops ... by focusing on the human relationships which are the beating heart of the Five Eyes, Kerbaj has made a singular contribution to the intelligence discourse. It's a service to democracy."
—The Australian

"Kerbaj ... has chronicled the history of the Fives Eyes spy network. His list of interviewees speaks for itself - several former heads of MI5, MI6, GCHQ, the CIA, four former British and Australian prime ministers, and myriad other current and former spooks. But this account is unencumbered by any sense of an agreed or official narrative (the usual price for this level of journalistic access)."
Gabriel Pogrund, Whitehall Editor, The Sunday Times

Nigel Nelson, Political Editor, The Mirror

"Examines decades of intelligence sharing."
—The Telegraph

"An extraordinary development."
—The Times

—The World News -

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Richard Kerbaj is a BAFTA-winning and twice Emmy-nominated filmmaker and writer who has specialized in investigating crime and national security-related stories for more than fifteen years. He has written extensively about the impact that counterterrorism and counterespionage have had on intelligence agencies, including MI5, MI6, GCHQ, and the CIA, in their battle against ISIS and al-Qaeda, Russia’s widespread disinformation campaigns, and China’s industrialized thefts of Western intellectual property. He lives in London.

Title Details

Pages 448 pages

Trim 6 x 9 x 0 Inches

Territories US Only

Category Reference