Commentary Magazine


Topic: deputy director

Still Mirandizing

Well, as I suspected would be the case, we did Mirandize the Times Square bomber. We are told he has chosen to talk, but what if he didn’t? Would we have been content to let him clam up as the Christmas Day bomber did for five weeks?  And, of course, we are preparing him to be tried in a federal courtroom. We have learned, however, that he may not be the lone wolf (and certainly not the aggrieved ObamaCare critic Mayor Bloomberg stupidly suggested he might be):

Shahzad, a recently naturalized U.S. citizen living in Connecticut., was taken off an airliner bound for the Persian Gulf sheikhdom of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates about 53 hours after the attempted bombing, authorities said.

Asked if Shahzad had implicated himself under questioning by federal agents, Holder said, “He has done that.” He said Shahzad “has provided useful information to authorities.”

Shahzad was initially questioned under a public safety exception to the Miranda rule and was cooperative, FBI Deputy Director John Pistole said at the news conference. He said Shahzad was later read his Miranda rights and “continued talking.”

Although Shahzad was arrested after the plane he had boarded returned to the departure gate, Holder said there was no risk that he would get away. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said authorities could have ordered the plane to return to the airport if it had taken off.

Concerned that he got on an airplane and wasn’t on the no-fly list? Well, Eric Holder says everything worked fine: “There was never any danger of losing him.”

Although we are treating Shahzad as an ordinary criminal, it appears he’s part of an international plot:

In Pakistan, an intelligence official said authorities arrested at least two people in the southern port city of Karachi in connection with the Times Square bombing attempt. The official, who is not authorized to speak on the record, identified one of those arrested as Tausif Ahmed, who was picked up in a busy commercial neighborhood called Gulshan-e-Iqbal.

Again, we return to the question: is the criminal-justice model really appropriate for such enemies? At some point, the American people and Congress will decide that the administration’s tactics are ludicrously ill-suited to the war we are fighting.

Well, as I suspected would be the case, we did Mirandize the Times Square bomber. We are told he has chosen to talk, but what if he didn’t? Would we have been content to let him clam up as the Christmas Day bomber did for five weeks?  And, of course, we are preparing him to be tried in a federal courtroom. We have learned, however, that he may not be the lone wolf (and certainly not the aggrieved ObamaCare critic Mayor Bloomberg stupidly suggested he might be):

Shahzad, a recently naturalized U.S. citizen living in Connecticut., was taken off an airliner bound for the Persian Gulf sheikhdom of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates about 53 hours after the attempted bombing, authorities said.

Asked if Shahzad had implicated himself under questioning by federal agents, Holder said, “He has done that.” He said Shahzad “has provided useful information to authorities.”

Shahzad was initially questioned under a public safety exception to the Miranda rule and was cooperative, FBI Deputy Director John Pistole said at the news conference. He said Shahzad was later read his Miranda rights and “continued talking.”

Although Shahzad was arrested after the plane he had boarded returned to the departure gate, Holder said there was no risk that he would get away. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said authorities could have ordered the plane to return to the airport if it had taken off.

Concerned that he got on an airplane and wasn’t on the no-fly list? Well, Eric Holder says everything worked fine: “There was never any danger of losing him.”

Although we are treating Shahzad as an ordinary criminal, it appears he’s part of an international plot:

In Pakistan, an intelligence official said authorities arrested at least two people in the southern port city of Karachi in connection with the Times Square bombing attempt. The official, who is not authorized to speak on the record, identified one of those arrested as Tausif Ahmed, who was picked up in a busy commercial neighborhood called Gulshan-e-Iqbal.

Again, we return to the question: is the criminal-justice model really appropriate for such enemies? At some point, the American people and Congress will decide that the administration’s tactics are ludicrously ill-suited to the war we are fighting.

Read Less

No Climate Concession Here

Obama’s State of the Union offered what is being lauded by both liberals and conservatives as a climate-change compromise. The will to compromise is a necessary but welcome development, but don’t be fooled. Obama said:

… we need more production, more efficiency, more incentives. And that means building a new generation of safe, clean nuclear power plants in this country. It means making tough decisions about opening new offshore areas for oil and gas development. It means continued investment in advanced biofuels and clean coal technologies. And, yes, it means passing a comprehensive energy and climate bill with incentives that will finally make clean energy the profitable kind of energy in America. I am grateful to the House for passing such a bill last year. And this year I’m eager to help advance the bipartisan effort in the Senate.

Though Republicans have supported offshore drilling and nuclear energy, this rhetoric pushes toward the same old goal. Such Democratic concessions are the cheap candy offered to entice Republicans toward more efforts like the stalled House cap-and-trade bill. And that sort of cap-and-trade bill is in no way a win for conservatives or for Americans.

The foreign media are reading Obama’s call for a “comprehensive energy and climate bill” as “code in Washington for a broad set of proposals that would also include establishment of a cap and trade program.” And only last week, the White House Council on Environmental Quality’s deputy director said, “There continues to be very strong support among a range of legislators for comprehensive climate legislation that includes cap and trade.” By “range,” he must mean shades of Left.

Obama’s State of the Union offered what is being lauded by both liberals and conservatives as a climate-change compromise. The will to compromise is a necessary but welcome development, but don’t be fooled. Obama said:

… we need more production, more efficiency, more incentives. And that means building a new generation of safe, clean nuclear power plants in this country. It means making tough decisions about opening new offshore areas for oil and gas development. It means continued investment in advanced biofuels and clean coal technologies. And, yes, it means passing a comprehensive energy and climate bill with incentives that will finally make clean energy the profitable kind of energy in America. I am grateful to the House for passing such a bill last year. And this year I’m eager to help advance the bipartisan effort in the Senate.

Though Republicans have supported offshore drilling and nuclear energy, this rhetoric pushes toward the same old goal. Such Democratic concessions are the cheap candy offered to entice Republicans toward more efforts like the stalled House cap-and-trade bill. And that sort of cap-and-trade bill is in no way a win for conservatives or for Americans.

The foreign media are reading Obama’s call for a “comprehensive energy and climate bill” as “code in Washington for a broad set of proposals that would also include establishment of a cap and trade program.” And only last week, the White House Council on Environmental Quality’s deputy director said, “There continues to be very strong support among a range of legislators for comprehensive climate legislation that includes cap and trade.” By “range,” he must mean shades of Left.

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Intelligence For Dummies

Personnel with foreign language skills are critical to the success of U.S. foreign policy. And they are especially valuable when they don’t speak or understand the languages of our adversaries. That is what “diversity” is all about.

Confused? Here is Donald Kerr,  Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence, explaining the paradox on May 16 at the Second Intelligence Community Heritage Summit.

In this work there are countless stories about the importance of diversity. There’s one I recently learned from an FBI intelligence analyst who had worked on Saddam Hussein’s debriefing team in Iraq. While Saddam was being interviewed, a key component of the strategy was to keep him isolated from people outside of the FBI agencies who were questioning him, but he was fluent in several languages. Not deeply so, but sufficiently, and the interviewers needed to find guards who could speak a language that he wouldn’t understand. It turned out to be really difficult. He knew bits of Spanish, but not the rapid fire Spanish of Puerto Rico. So Puerto Rican speakers would really flummox him, they certainly do me. And that’s what the FBI settled on for his guards. U.S. military members who were native Puerto Ricans in terms of the Spanish that they spoke.

So the importance of diversity comes up in even the most unexpected circumstances.

In this global conflict, this struggle with violent extremism, the clarion call for diversity, diversity of experience, of culture, of interest, has to be our call to action.

Kerr revealed some other sensitive secrets in his talk. Among them is a new danger.

We have to watch our words. . . .We have to avoid words like jihadist, mujahedeen. We have to be clear. It’s not just political correctness, it’s to avoid legitimizing the action of terrorists.

Our spies have recently made some other new discoveries. Here’s an amazing one. CIA analysts have been working the problem for years, and here’s what they found: there’s a big country near Japan, and like the United States, it is also “diverse.”

We need to understand China, not as a vast assemblage of 1.3 billion people, but to recognize that there are differences in different parts of China. We know there are different languages, different dialects and different cultures. That’s part of what we need to understand as well.

Is Kerr’s speech the final straw? Is it time to abolish the intelligence community and start from scratch?

Personnel with foreign language skills are critical to the success of U.S. foreign policy. And they are especially valuable when they don’t speak or understand the languages of our adversaries. That is what “diversity” is all about.

Confused? Here is Donald Kerr,  Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence, explaining the paradox on May 16 at the Second Intelligence Community Heritage Summit.

In this work there are countless stories about the importance of diversity. There’s one I recently learned from an FBI intelligence analyst who had worked on Saddam Hussein’s debriefing team in Iraq. While Saddam was being interviewed, a key component of the strategy was to keep him isolated from people outside of the FBI agencies who were questioning him, but he was fluent in several languages. Not deeply so, but sufficiently, and the interviewers needed to find guards who could speak a language that he wouldn’t understand. It turned out to be really difficult. He knew bits of Spanish, but not the rapid fire Spanish of Puerto Rico. So Puerto Rican speakers would really flummox him, they certainly do me. And that’s what the FBI settled on for his guards. U.S. military members who were native Puerto Ricans in terms of the Spanish that they spoke.

So the importance of diversity comes up in even the most unexpected circumstances.

In this global conflict, this struggle with violent extremism, the clarion call for diversity, diversity of experience, of culture, of interest, has to be our call to action.

Kerr revealed some other sensitive secrets in his talk. Among them is a new danger.

We have to watch our words. . . .We have to avoid words like jihadist, mujahedeen. We have to be clear. It’s not just political correctness, it’s to avoid legitimizing the action of terrorists.

Our spies have recently made some other new discoveries. Here’s an amazing one. CIA analysts have been working the problem for years, and here’s what they found: there’s a big country near Japan, and like the United States, it is also “diverse.”

We need to understand China, not as a vast assemblage of 1.3 billion people, but to recognize that there are differences in different parts of China. We know there are different languages, different dialects and different cultures. That’s part of what we need to understand as well.

Is Kerr’s speech the final straw? Is it time to abolish the intelligence community and start from scratch?

Read Less

Martin Luther King Day at the CIA

Back in April, CIA director Michael Hayden declared racial and ethnic diversity to be a “a mission-critical objective.” The agency is evidently making significant progress toward that end. “[O]ne-third of the officers who have joined CIA since the beginning of this fiscal year identify themselves as racial or ethnic minorities, a significant increase over the figures for the past two fiscal years,” reported CIA Deputy Director Stephen R. Kappes to a standing-room-only crowd at the agency’s celebration of Martin Luther King day.

But is the affirmative action program truly proceeding smoothly? There are hints that it is not. As the CIA becomes more diverse, it evidently has had to work harder to build “diversity awareness.” Among other initiatives, the agency’s Office of Diversity Plans and Programs has been compelled to enhance its efforts at “engendering an environment based on trust and wedded to inclusion.”

How does it accomplish that? It sponsors “’Love ‘em or Lose ‘em’ and ‘SatisfACTION Power’ workshops,” which it then follows up with intensive “reinforcement activities.” In other words, the CIA has had to invest a great deal of energy in establishing a reign of political correctness among its spies.

Connecting the Dots is left wondering if time and resources would be better spent teaching agents the languages that terrorists speak, like Farsi, Urdu, and Arabic, where it continues to have critical shortages.

Connecting the Dots also wants to know if the politically-correct “reinforcement activities” the CIA inflicts on its own agents are more painful than the interrogation techniques its employs against America’s adversaries.

Another questions might also be posed: does any or all of this CIA affirmative-action activity make the United States safer today than we were on September 12, 2001?

Back in April, CIA director Michael Hayden declared racial and ethnic diversity to be a “a mission-critical objective.” The agency is evidently making significant progress toward that end. “[O]ne-third of the officers who have joined CIA since the beginning of this fiscal year identify themselves as racial or ethnic minorities, a significant increase over the figures for the past two fiscal years,” reported CIA Deputy Director Stephen R. Kappes to a standing-room-only crowd at the agency’s celebration of Martin Luther King day.

But is the affirmative action program truly proceeding smoothly? There are hints that it is not. As the CIA becomes more diverse, it evidently has had to work harder to build “diversity awareness.” Among other initiatives, the agency’s Office of Diversity Plans and Programs has been compelled to enhance its efforts at “engendering an environment based on trust and wedded to inclusion.”

How does it accomplish that? It sponsors “’Love ‘em or Lose ‘em’ and ‘SatisfACTION Power’ workshops,” which it then follows up with intensive “reinforcement activities.” In other words, the CIA has had to invest a great deal of energy in establishing a reign of political correctness among its spies.

Connecting the Dots is left wondering if time and resources would be better spent teaching agents the languages that terrorists speak, like Farsi, Urdu, and Arabic, where it continues to have critical shortages.

Connecting the Dots also wants to know if the politically-correct “reinforcement activities” the CIA inflicts on its own agents are more painful than the interrogation techniques its employs against America’s adversaries.

Another questions might also be posed: does any or all of this CIA affirmative-action activity make the United States safer today than we were on September 12, 2001?

Read Less

Bring the Boys Home

All Americans, Right and Left, want America to exit from Iraq. No one wants to see another year of carnage, of American casualties, of mourning families. But when and how should we bring them back?

Last March, Barack Obama was roundly criticized, and compelled to apologize, for saying that “[w]e’ve wasted a lot of our most precious treasure, which is American lives, “over there” in Iraq. If Obama’s choice of words was poor, his point was sound — but only in an ironic sense. For if his own proposal for a hasty withdrawal from Iraq were ever implemented, the lives of our boys and girls would indeed have been wasted as Iraq disintegrated into chaos, becoming the kind of breeding ground for terrorists that would undoubtedly compel us one day to return.

Now another presidential candidate, John Edwards, has set forward his own proposal for wasting American lives. According to a story by Michael Gordon in today’s New York Times, Edwards says “that if elected president he would withdraw the American troops who are training the Iraqi army and police as part of a broader plan to remove virtually all American forces within 10 months.” This of course goes further than Hillary Clinton and Obama; both of them say they would keep American trainers and counterterrorism forces in Iraq for some unspecified period.

What would be the likely consequences of following Edwards’ — or for that matter, Hillary Clinton or Obama’s — advice? Gordon points out that a January 2007 National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) on Iraq “warned that the withdrawal of American troops over the ensuing 12 to 18 months would probably lead to ‘massive civilian casualties and forced population displacement.’” True, some NIE’s lately have been very wide of the mark; but given the impressive but still precarious nature of the security improvements brought about by the surge, the January 2007 assessment remains pertinent.

But there are ways to bring some forces home now without wasting the precious lives of our soldiers. The Philadelphia Inquirer reports today that the Air Force’s usage of remotely piloted drones has significantly increased over the past year, and the total flight time has now reached 500,000 hours in the sky.

Air Force officials said Predator flights steadily increased last year, from about 2,000 hours in January to more than 4,300 in October. They are expected to continue to escalate when hours are calculated for November and December, because the number of combat air patrols increased from about 14 per day to 18.

“The demand far exceeds all of the Defense Department’s ability to provide [these] assets,” said Lt. Col. Larry Gurgainous, deputy director of the Air Force’s unmanned-aircraft task force. “And as we buy and field more systems, you will see it continue to go up.”

The pilots flying these craft, operating out of bases in less-than-dangerous locations like Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada, are able to do some very dangerous things.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJ7nw1v3LUc[/youtube]

If anything, the boys who can do such things stateside are the ones to bring home. But Connecting the Dots is still left with one question: is it really possible that next November American voters would go for a man with a plan to bring home even the U.S. trainers of the fledgling Iraqi army and police? Would that be an act of statesmanship, or of dishonor and even madness?

All Americans, Right and Left, want America to exit from Iraq. No one wants to see another year of carnage, of American casualties, of mourning families. But when and how should we bring them back?

Last March, Barack Obama was roundly criticized, and compelled to apologize, for saying that “[w]e’ve wasted a lot of our most precious treasure, which is American lives, “over there” in Iraq. If Obama’s choice of words was poor, his point was sound — but only in an ironic sense. For if his own proposal for a hasty withdrawal from Iraq were ever implemented, the lives of our boys and girls would indeed have been wasted as Iraq disintegrated into chaos, becoming the kind of breeding ground for terrorists that would undoubtedly compel us one day to return.

Now another presidential candidate, John Edwards, has set forward his own proposal for wasting American lives. According to a story by Michael Gordon in today’s New York Times, Edwards says “that if elected president he would withdraw the American troops who are training the Iraqi army and police as part of a broader plan to remove virtually all American forces within 10 months.” This of course goes further than Hillary Clinton and Obama; both of them say they would keep American trainers and counterterrorism forces in Iraq for some unspecified period.

What would be the likely consequences of following Edwards’ — or for that matter, Hillary Clinton or Obama’s — advice? Gordon points out that a January 2007 National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) on Iraq “warned that the withdrawal of American troops over the ensuing 12 to 18 months would probably lead to ‘massive civilian casualties and forced population displacement.’” True, some NIE’s lately have been very wide of the mark; but given the impressive but still precarious nature of the security improvements brought about by the surge, the January 2007 assessment remains pertinent.

But there are ways to bring some forces home now without wasting the precious lives of our soldiers. The Philadelphia Inquirer reports today that the Air Force’s usage of remotely piloted drones has significantly increased over the past year, and the total flight time has now reached 500,000 hours in the sky.

Air Force officials said Predator flights steadily increased last year, from about 2,000 hours in January to more than 4,300 in October. They are expected to continue to escalate when hours are calculated for November and December, because the number of combat air patrols increased from about 14 per day to 18.

“The demand far exceeds all of the Defense Department’s ability to provide [these] assets,” said Lt. Col. Larry Gurgainous, deputy director of the Air Force’s unmanned-aircraft task force. “And as we buy and field more systems, you will see it continue to go up.”

The pilots flying these craft, operating out of bases in less-than-dangerous locations like Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada, are able to do some very dangerous things.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJ7nw1v3LUc[/youtube]

If anything, the boys who can do such things stateside are the ones to bring home. But Connecting the Dots is still left with one question: is it really possible that next November American voters would go for a man with a plan to bring home even the U.S. trainers of the fledgling Iraqi army and police? Would that be an act of statesmanship, or of dishonor and even madness?

Read Less

Has the U.S. Intelligence Community Been Penetrated Yet Again?

Zalmay Khalilzad, Bush’s UN ambassador and a straight-shooter if there ever was one, spoke the truth yesterday when he called the new National Intelligence Estimate of Iran’s suddenly non-existent nuclear-weapons program “a goal against ourselves.”

Why, after countless reforms, and so much handwringing, is U.S. intelligence in such sad shape? More importantly, what should be done about it?

On December 6, Donald Kerr, the PDDNI, that is, the Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence, laid out his agency’s 500-day plan to set things right. “What is required, first and foremost,” he said in congressional testimony, “is integrating the foundational elements and removing the barriers — in the areas of policy, management/budgeting, technology and acquisition, information, collection and analysis, and culture.” To this end, we need “to promote and build an intelligence community (IC) identity or sense of ‘jointness’ by creating programs that provide for cross-agency work assignments and training.”

The 500-day plan enters almost immediately into a discussion of the vital importance of “Equal Opportunity and Diversity.” It offers high praise for the intelligence community’s Diversity Strategy Implementation Workshop, an event held this past October that was an “an important step in the accomplishment of the IC-wide EEO and Diversity Cross-Cutting Emphasis Area Plan (CCEAP) by providing each of the IC Agencies with the mechanisms and direction. . . .”

I won’t bore you with the rest, but it is an astonishing compendium of bureaucratic gibberish guaranteed either to put you to sleep if you simply read it, or to give you nightmares if you pause to think about its implications.

What do we really need to do about the CIA? The memoirs of Secretary of Defense (and former CIA director) Robert Gates, From the Shadows, a significant book for understanding our present dilemmas, has some passages about Bill Casey, Ronald Reagan’s first CIA director, that should hit a nerve in anyone thinking about what do about U.S. intelligence today:

What truly set Bill Casey apart from his predecessors and successors as DCI . . . was that he had not come to CIA with the purpose of making it better, managing it more effectively, reforming or improving the quality of intelligence. What I realized only years later was that Bill Casey came to CIA primarily to wage war against the Soviet Union.

Above all, Casey wanted information and analysis that informed or provoked action. Nor for him assessments that simply were “interesting” or educational. He wanted information that would help target clandestine operations better, or be useful for U.S. propaganda, or assist military operations, or put ammunition in the hands of negotiators. For Casey, the United States and CIA were at war . . . and speed and relevance were his benchmarks for effective analysis.

Casey had his undeniable and glaring faults as a CIA director. But how does he stack up against the current crew, who may more accurately be called moles from the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission disguised as spies?

Gates has another passage in his memoir describing what he found in the CIA when he became chief of staff to Casey in 1981. This is what he wrote in a memo to his boss:

As a result of the lack of innovative and creative personnel management, I believe this agency is chock full of people simply awaiting retirement: some are only a year or two away and some are twenty-five years away, but there are far too many playing it safe, proceeding cautiously, not antagonizing management, and certainly not broadening their horizons, especially as long as their own senior management makes it clear that [risk-taking] is not career enhancing. How is the health of CIA? I would say that at the present time it has a case of advanced bureaucratic arteriosclerosis: the arteries are clogging up with careerist bureaucrats who have lost the spark. It is my opinion that it is this steadily increasing proportion of intelligence bureaucrats that has led to the decline in the quality of intelligence collection and analysis over the past fifteen years — more so than our declining resources . . . or congressional investigations or legal restrictions. CIA is slowly turning into the Department of Agriculture.

That was twenty-six years ago, and to judge by the intelligence-community’s 500-day plan to fix itself, things have only gotten worse in the interim.

If the United States gets clobbered again as we were on September 11, we are not going to even see it coming unless we toss out, or “re-educate,” Chinese style, our current PDDNI, Donald Kerr, and all the other bureau-technocrats who signed on to the preposterous “500 Day Plan for Integration and Collaboration,” which more appropriately might be called a “500-Day Plan to Turn the Entire Intelligence Community Into the U.S. Equal Opportunity Employment Commission and Possibly Get A Lot of Americans Killed Along the Way.”

Zalmay Khalilzad, Bush’s UN ambassador and a straight-shooter if there ever was one, spoke the truth yesterday when he called the new National Intelligence Estimate of Iran’s suddenly non-existent nuclear-weapons program “a goal against ourselves.”

Why, after countless reforms, and so much handwringing, is U.S. intelligence in such sad shape? More importantly, what should be done about it?

On December 6, Donald Kerr, the PDDNI, that is, the Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence, laid out his agency’s 500-day plan to set things right. “What is required, first and foremost,” he said in congressional testimony, “is integrating the foundational elements and removing the barriers — in the areas of policy, management/budgeting, technology and acquisition, information, collection and analysis, and culture.” To this end, we need “to promote and build an intelligence community (IC) identity or sense of ‘jointness’ by creating programs that provide for cross-agency work assignments and training.”

The 500-day plan enters almost immediately into a discussion of the vital importance of “Equal Opportunity and Diversity.” It offers high praise for the intelligence community’s Diversity Strategy Implementation Workshop, an event held this past October that was an “an important step in the accomplishment of the IC-wide EEO and Diversity Cross-Cutting Emphasis Area Plan (CCEAP) by providing each of the IC Agencies with the mechanisms and direction. . . .”

I won’t bore you with the rest, but it is an astonishing compendium of bureaucratic gibberish guaranteed either to put you to sleep if you simply read it, or to give you nightmares if you pause to think about its implications.

What do we really need to do about the CIA? The memoirs of Secretary of Defense (and former CIA director) Robert Gates, From the Shadows, a significant book for understanding our present dilemmas, has some passages about Bill Casey, Ronald Reagan’s first CIA director, that should hit a nerve in anyone thinking about what do about U.S. intelligence today:

What truly set Bill Casey apart from his predecessors and successors as DCI . . . was that he had not come to CIA with the purpose of making it better, managing it more effectively, reforming or improving the quality of intelligence. What I realized only years later was that Bill Casey came to CIA primarily to wage war against the Soviet Union.

Above all, Casey wanted information and analysis that informed or provoked action. Nor for him assessments that simply were “interesting” or educational. He wanted information that would help target clandestine operations better, or be useful for U.S. propaganda, or assist military operations, or put ammunition in the hands of negotiators. For Casey, the United States and CIA were at war . . . and speed and relevance were his benchmarks for effective analysis.

Casey had his undeniable and glaring faults as a CIA director. But how does he stack up against the current crew, who may more accurately be called moles from the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission disguised as spies?

Gates has another passage in his memoir describing what he found in the CIA when he became chief of staff to Casey in 1981. This is what he wrote in a memo to his boss:

As a result of the lack of innovative and creative personnel management, I believe this agency is chock full of people simply awaiting retirement: some are only a year or two away and some are twenty-five years away, but there are far too many playing it safe, proceeding cautiously, not antagonizing management, and certainly not broadening their horizons, especially as long as their own senior management makes it clear that [risk-taking] is not career enhancing. How is the health of CIA? I would say that at the present time it has a case of advanced bureaucratic arteriosclerosis: the arteries are clogging up with careerist bureaucrats who have lost the spark. It is my opinion that it is this steadily increasing proportion of intelligence bureaucrats that has led to the decline in the quality of intelligence collection and analysis over the past fifteen years — more so than our declining resources . . . or congressional investigations or legal restrictions. CIA is slowly turning into the Department of Agriculture.

That was twenty-six years ago, and to judge by the intelligence-community’s 500-day plan to fix itself, things have only gotten worse in the interim.

If the United States gets clobbered again as we were on September 11, we are not going to even see it coming unless we toss out, or “re-educate,” Chinese style, our current PDDNI, Donald Kerr, and all the other bureau-technocrats who signed on to the preposterous “500 Day Plan for Integration and Collaboration,” which more appropriately might be called a “500-Day Plan to Turn the Entire Intelligence Community Into the U.S. Equal Opportunity Employment Commission and Possibly Get A Lot of Americans Killed Along the Way.”

Read Less




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