Closely Guarded

Closely Guarded

A Life in Canadian Security and Intelligence

Book - 1998
Average Rating:
Rate this:

Closely Guarded is written by a man who was privy to some of the most closely guarded state secrets in Canada. From 1942 to 1973, John Starnes was engaged in such areas as communications intelligence and, during his tenure as the first civilian director-general of the RCMP Security Service, in counter-espionage and counter-subversion. His recollection of these confidential activities and the part he played in them is supported by a wealth of formerly classified official documentation recently released under the Access to Information Act.

This is a highly personal narrative, brought vividly to life with excerpts from the letters that Starnes wrote home from London during the Second World War, when he moved in intelligence circles and met many prominent diplomats and policy-makers. His story recalls several of the key political moments of this century, including the creation of the United Nations, the glory days of External Affairs, the Six Day War between Israel and Egypt, and the October Crisis in 1970.

Starnes's memoir offers a fascinating look at Canada's security and intelligence work from the point of view of an official deeply involved in many covert government activities. It provides an insider's perspective on both the little-known world of the Canadian intelligence community and the international security and intelligence network in which Canada has participated. Written by the author of five spy novels, it will interest those who follow the history of Canada's undercover operations.

Publisher: Toronto, Ont. : Univ. of Toronto Press : 1998
ISBN: 9780802009753
Branch Call Number: 327.12 STA 1998
Characteristics: 258p


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Nov 22, 2013

A vanity press book, with more than the usual name dropping. Apart from a few details of the Suez crisis, I learned next to nothing about Canada's security history.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Subject Headings


Find it at NWPL

To Top