Audio history from Government Printing Office details CIA briefings for presidents

(Alex Wong/Getty Images) (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Now available in audio for intelligence buffs: the inside story of CIA briefings to presidents-elect and presidential candidates from 1952-2004.

The Central Intelligence Agency and the Government Printing Office announced Tuesday that they’ve  teamed up to offer the federal government’s first downloadable audio book, “Getting to Know the President (Second Edition): Intelligence Briefings of Presidential Candidates, 1952-2004.”

The book is a historical account of the information-sharing process between the intelligence community and presidential candidates and winners during campaigns and administration transitions. The CIA approached the printing office, which is transitioning from a traditional to electronic disseminator of government documents, about producing the first federal audio release.

It’s part of the CIA’s effort to make unclassified work  “more readily available in alternative formats to the public,” according to an agency statement.

The book is told through the eyes of former CIA inspector general and director for intelligence John Helgerson. This is the second edition, updated from the 1996 book, with reflections on the transition to President George W. Bush in 2000 and the briefings provided to his Democratic challengers in 2004.

Helgerson relies on internal documents, public memoirs and interviews with four former presidents, several former directors of Central Intelligence and directors of National Intelligence.

“Getting to Know the President” is available for free download on the U.S. Government Printing Office’s Federal Digital System. The print edition is also available in the library section of CIA.gov.

Lisa Rein covers the federal workforce and issues that concern the management of government.

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