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Red Team


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About the Author

Micah Zenko is a Senior Fellow in the centre for Preventive Action at the Council on Foreign Relations. He lives in New York.


War on the Rocks "An excellent book... There are few business or government officials who could not derive some insights from the wide breadth of examples Zenko exploits so effectively." Soundview Executive Book Summaries "A gripping, deeply informed overview of red teaming...Red Team is filled with harrowing stories of red-team failures but also successes in the domains of both national security and the private sector, where companies, for example, red team against hackers. These stories reinforce the crucially important strategies (e.g., red teams should inform, not decide) and best practices (e.g., red teams should be semi-independent but sensitive to the constraints of the organization) proposed by Zenko to help the world avoid another catastrophe such as 9/11." Small Wars Journal "You will... come away with a comprehensive understanding of what a Red Team is and how best to use one... For anyone interested in using a Red Team, developing one for their organization or have been tasked to participate on a Red Team this book is a must read." Red Team Journal "[An] important book... The time, intellectual effort, and monies allocated to the project were well spent, for the work is likely to become a significant milestone for the discipline. Red teaming is now poised to be widely introduced to mainstream American business and current affairs readership... an impressive accomplishment. It has allowed for a glimpse of the entire red teaming universe to be provided to the reader in one work. As a reviewer, and someone who knows something about this discipline, I admittedly found myself learning quite a bit about red teaming applications with which I have not been associated in the past. What Dr. Peter Perla's book The Art of Wargaming did 25 years ago to help mainstream an understanding of military wargaming, we can only hope Dr. Zenko's new work will now do for the red teaming community." Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster, director of the Army Capabilities Integration Center and deputy commanding general for future at the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command "[Zenko's] valuable analysis and advice will be of particular interest to executives, and anyone charged with strategic planning." Carlos Lozada, editor of The Washington Post Book Party blog "The most depressingly timely book on terrorism I read this year." Jami Miscik, former Deputy Director for Intelligence, CIA "In today's complex world, decision makers need smart, sophisticated, and insightful options. Red Team shows policymakers and CEOs alike that the way to make the best use of your organizational talent is to break down your organization." James Fallows, Correspondent for the Atlantic "Everyone has heard the cliches about 'playing devil's advocate' or 'avoiding groupthink.' Red Team is an impressively clear, convincing, and practical-minded study of how organizations can put in-house contrarians to the most valuable use." Moises Naim, Distinguished Fellow, Carnegie Endowment, author of The End of Power "Complacency, groupthink, inertia, tunnel vision. These are the most common after-the-fact explanations of big failures in politics, government, war, and business. In these pages Micah Zenko offers a lucid analysis backed by many fun-to-read examples of common mistakes as well as a useful compendium of best practices. Red Team is must-read for decision makers everywhere." Lockboxx Blog "An enlightening and warming book to read, as it codified many of the theories and beliefs red teamers have but have never put into any formal canon... an enjoyable and educational book, both from the perspective of a professional penetration tester and the perspective of a CEO...Micah's six best red team practices are pretty spot on..." Booklist "An excellent book." Kirkus "Zenko explains, in absorbing detail, the value of red teams, groups formed to act as devil's advocates...Zenko offers readers much to consider and an effective way to take action." Washington Post, Book Party blog "Zenko offers a compelling argument for forcing ourselves to think differently, which is ultimately the main purpose of a red team. Even if we won't know exactly what to expect, we might be better equipped to respond when the unexpected strikes."

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