Berkley Novel The Cardinal of the Kremlin
Tom Clancy looks at one of the most remarkable technological competitions of our time - the race to develop "Star Wars." In a rolling sea off the coast of South America, a target disappears in a puff of green light. In the Soviet hills of Dushanbe near the Afghanistan border, an otherworldly array of pillars and domes rises into the night. To the two greatest nations on earth, no contest is more urgent than the race to build the first Star Wars missile defense system, and no one knows that more than the two men charged with assessing the Soviets' capabilities: Colonel Mikhail Filitov of the Soviet Union, an old-line warrior distrusted by the army's new inner circle of technocrats, and CIA analyst Jack Ryan, hero of the Red October affair.
Each must use all his craft to arrive at the truth, but Filitov gets there first - and that's when all hell breaks loose. Because Filitov, code-named CARDINAL has been the top US agent in Moscow for over 20 years and Soviet counterintelligence never even suspected his existence. Now, the KGB has gotten its first sniff that CARDINAL exists and won't give up until they catch him. The American laser project has also come to the KGB's attention and they begin an operation to discover how far the US has gotten. In the midst of nuclear missile reduction talks, both superpowers are developing technologies that could unravel the negotiations. From the mountains of Afghanistan to the deserts of New Mexico, from the backrooms of Washington, DC. to the halls of the Kremlin, world peace may rest in the hands of the Cardinal of the Kremlin. His rescue could spell the difference between peace and war, and it is up to Jack Ryan to accomplish it -- if he can - as, in a breathtaking sequence of hunter and hunted, Filitov's life, and Ryan's and that of the world itself literally hang in the balance.
The author shows how the CIA works with their field agents in retrieving information. Mary Pat Foley and Ed Foley are introduced as the joint heads of the Moscow operation. The main plot is the race between the two superpowers in developing a ground based anti-missile weapon.
With the exceptional realism and authenticity that have become his hallmark, Clancy puts us again on the cutting edge of modern technology, and humanizes it, taking us deep inside not only the machines but the men, and constructing a story of unrelenting suspense. In its review of Red Storm Rising, the San Francisco Chronicle said simply, "Tom Clancy is the best there is. . . He is a master," and that fact has never shown more clearly than in the pure excitement of The Cardinal of the Kremlin.