Books by John Dinges

Most recent–about an era of mass repression in South America…and the story of the anti-Marxist assassination alliance that frightened even Henry Kissinger.

The Condor Years: How Pinochet and His Allies Brought Terrorism to Three Continents
The New Press 2004, 2005. Full description and reviews.

My first book, with the incomparable Saul Landau. The United States helped to install the dictator in power and was his prime defender. General Pinochet repaid the favor by committing the first act of state-sponsored terrorism in the US. Capital –the car-bomb assassination of Orlando Letelier. Newlyweds Michael and Ronni Moffitt were riding in the car; Ronni died from flying shrapnel.


Assassination on Embassy Row, by John Dinges and Saul Landau
Forbidden Bookshelf 2014 (Updated with Afterword and new introduction)
Hardback available used (Pantheon 1990).

He was a second tier dictator and a third rate drug trafficker; he was also the CIA’s main asset in Panama. So when he turned against the U.S. and –worse–began to ridicule the president, George H.W. Bush unleashed the full force of the U.S. military to invade one of the smallest countries in the world. 

Our Man in Panama: The Shrewd Rise and Brutal Fall of Manuel Noriega
(Times Books, a division of Random House (c) 1990, 1991.

When I became Managing Editor of NPR News, our priority was to make NPR’s journalism the best in broadcast media, and to have our reporting compete with the New York Times. Sound Reporting was the guidebook.

Sound Reporting: The National Public Radio Guide to Radio Journalism and Production,
Marcus D. Rosenbaum & John Dinges, Editors
Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company 1992

Before all that, before journalism, I was sent to study theology at the University of Austria at Innsbruck. Our Gurus were Karl and Hugo Rahner, Hans Urs von Balthasar, Avery Dulles, Johannes Baptist Metz, and, remarkably, the future pope and erstwhile liberal thinker Josef Ratzinger. Three fellow seminarians  and I compiled and translated articles that represented the best contemporary thinking on the phenomenon of religious faith. I have always been convinced it was this book that gave the Des Moines Tribune a good enough reason to hire a guy with zero journalism training for a tryout on the copy desk. It showed I was literate, had unconventional intellectual leanings and was probable trainable. That’s how I became a journalist. I was so happy I thought I’d died and gone to heaven.

Toward a Theology of Christian Faith, Avery Dulles et al, Michael Mooney, Joseph Koechler, John Dinges and Michael Scheible, editors. P. J. Kenedy & Sons New York 1968.

My books on Amazon