Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Review intelligence

David Brooks has some insightful and thoughtful things about the CIA. His description of the problem as a kind of false "scientific objectivity" is probably more true than people are willing to admit. The CIA is not the National Weather Service of global affairs. The stablishment of a presidential intelligence review commission is an opportunity to fundamantally rethink intelligence. I agree. Richard L. Russell thinks that the Iraq intelligence problem can be placed at the door of the Directorate of Operations (DO), and it should be investigated and restructured.

Discussions - 1 Comment

I really don’t understand what the referent for "the Iraq intelligence problem" is supposed to be for this administration. That there were no WMDs and the CIA led the administration to believe that there were? That’s a misreading of the record, it seems to me. All of the appropriate hedges were made, and if anything, the administration was even more wrong than the CIA on this score.

On the other hand, in some of its moods, the administration justified the invasion because Iraq was a rogue state; whether it had WMDs is irrelevant for this argument, since the problem is that rogue states -- to the extent that they exist -- might develop them and pass them to terrorists. If there turn out not to have been any WMDs after the invasion, that doesn’t alter the case for war at all.

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