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26 May 2010

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Jackie

Col.,
When you pointed out on the Clapper comments that the Hagel was Chuck Hagel I was all for him. I think he is honest. Maybe not being career military is a plus. Please don't take this as an insult, as I know you had a military career, but I think they see a boogeyman under every bed.

Patrick Lang

Jackie

I told a former Superintendent at VMI that he should not hire or appoint any former career military officers (including me). He followed my advice. God bless him. Why? We are all too much alike. pl

Clifford Kiracofe

Well yes but...

What is the purpose of the "product"?

It seems to me the political caste/permanent foreign policy elite does not want product that runs contrary to their policy agenda.

Thus, intelligence is cooked (with many different techniques and recipes) to back up the policy agenda: WMD in Iraq, for example.

The policy agenda of the political caste and foreign policy elite is not necessarily what is "best" for our republic or in our "national interest."

Rather, the policy agenda of the US political caste/foreign policy elite reflects primary concern for an international policy agenda/consensus worked out by transnational elites.

Politicians bill this as "American leadership" of the "international community" and so on...

But this is not the same as building a foreign policy/national security policy to advance authentic US NATIONAL (state) interests.

A product oriented toward defending and promoting the US national interest may prove embarassing or counterproductive for the politicians/foreign policy elite engaged in building a so-called "New World Order."

If the policy agenda shared by leading transnational networks is "shaping" a "New World Order" by utilizing principally US military power, whether the American people like it or not, one can argue intelligence will be "shaped" to support that role for the US military.

Thus, a career military officer as DNI is logical for such an imperial program/policy agenda. One could place a civilian into the slot but he/she would have to be known beforehand as willing to "go along with the program."

Phil Giraldi

When I get together with old friends from the CIA clandestine service we frequently speculate on why the Agency is so good at operating against American politicians and so bad at operating against America's foreign enemies. We suspect it's because the field operators live in a smoke and mirrors world where nothing is as it appears to be. People are promoted based on what kind of legend they can spin around themselves and what kind of networking they establish, rarely on actual achievement. CIA in my time had the least transparent promotion system in government with cronyism run wild. I once queried a Chief of European Division about that and he replied that it was necessary because "we might know something about the candidate that we don't want to put down on paper."

Having also been an Army case officer, my recollection is that there was not the same level of deviousness in military promotions because the vetting process was much more thorough and by the book.

But the question is not really should the DNI be military or civilian - it is whether the position makes any sense at all as it is currently configured. Is it just another layer of bureaucracy or is it a position that actually can coordinate the activity of 16 different intelligence agencies? In any event, as Colonel Lang and others have noted, the candidate must have the full backing of the president to make it work. There have been some press reports that the White House has an uncomfortable relationship with the military. Does anyone have a good insight into whether Obama pays much attention to his intelligence people or is it a replay of the Clinton administration?

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