The President of the United States recently told the United Nations that “global warming” poses a threat to national security and may engender conflicts as populations are displaced by rising sea levels, droughts, floods, storms etc. etc. etc. However, it is now clear that there is no basis for the notion that the barely-detectable human influence on the climate is likely to prove a threat to climate, still less to national security.
The first principle to which any national security advisor must adhere is that of objective truth. Though he must have an understanding of politics, he is not a politician: he is a truth-bearer. Therefore, he begins by narrowing down the issue to a single, central question whose answer determines whether the suggested threat is real. He then tries to find the truthful answer to that question, and draws his conclusion from that. [Emphasis added.]
This summer the U.S. government has faced a deteriorating crisis in Afghanistan. Such crises tend to force policymakers to face up to the facile assumptions they have previously made. Gen. Stanley McChrystal’s report to his civilian masters on the faltering counterinsurgency campaign in Afghanistan has caused President Barack Obama and his advisers to face up to their basic assumptions about U.S. objectives and strategies for perhaps the first time. Obama and his team seem very likely to conclude from this long overdue examination of first principles that it will be impractical for the U.S. to successfully implement a counterinsurgency campaign plan in Afghanistan. McChrystal’s assessment has unwittingly tossed the U.S. military’s counterinsurgency field manual into the shredder. McChrystal’s report is brutally honest about the troubles in Afghanistan.
Click on title above for complete article, below for Phi Beta Iota comment and links to three “fix” pieces.
We were surprised this morning to learn that Ray McGovern, a CIA veteran whose credibility we respect, is saying that Leon Panetta and Barack Obama may be treating CIA with kid gloves for fear of being assassinated by the “insider” CIA that itself fears criminal prosecution for the death of over 100 detainees in CIA custody. Food for thought. Read McGovern's thoughts at The Media Consortium, “Ray McGovern Warns of ‘Two CIA's.'”
There are two sides to this matter. How many CIA's? Does CIA assassinate U.S. citizens including leaders?
Phi Beta Iota: Admiral Dennis Blair, USN (Ret) has signed off on the 2009 update and revision of the National Intelligence Strategy of 2005, and on balance we give it a solid C with the observation that there is no “break-out” in this documents. (Continued below the fold–A for school solution, F for real-world need, C over-all)