No one who has had the misfortune of being incarcerated in the U.S. prison system can say that it was a cakewalk. But one thing John Kiriakou realized early on is that the very system that failed to support him is the same one that gave him training to survive better than most during his prison time.
From his refusal to address prison wardens and guards as “Sir” to being able to discern the lies in almost all of the communications he engaged with prison staff and officials, John’s training as a CIA counterterrorism operations officer gave him a perspective of strength. His career in the CIA was no lightweight experience and it served him well.
As John says in the Epilogue of The Reluctant Spy,
“You never leave the CIA, not really. You may resign in midcareer, as I did, or you may spend a lifetime working in its service, but the Agency always remains a presence in your life. How could it not? The CIA, preferring to operate in government’s invisible corridors, has become a lightning rod for unwanted attention over the six-plus decades since its founding. Its tightly wound culture both cements and fractures friendships, depending on the circumstances. It is a force that tugs at the sleeve of former employees, gently but insistently, even though you may have moved on.”
What were improper and inappropriate manipulations of John Kiriakou, the Whistleblower, through maneuvers that were designed to break him, came an end result that only made him stronger. And now a powerful voice for change, a force for good, John Kiriakou shares his experience in prison from a perspective the Justice Department could not have imagined in his new book to be released May 3, 2017, Doing Time Like a Spy: How the CIA Taught Me to Survive and Thrive in Prison. You can pre-order this book published by Rare Bird Books.