Treason cum bureaucratese

Michael Walsh in today’s New York Post (“U.S. intelligence: fight terror with blather”) summarizes the bland, non-judgmental, non-enemy-identifying, non-defend-America oriented “U.S. Intelligence Community Worldwide Threat Assessment” that was presented this month to Congress by “The Man” himself, James Clapper, Director of National Intelligence. Of course that is the sort of thing to be expected from Obama’s anti-terror people.

Further, I must point out that no critical discussion of the Obama administration’s approach to terror should omit, as Walsh unfortunately omits, the fact that the Defense Department’s report last year on the Fort Hood Massacre made no mention of the fact that the mass murderer Major Nidal Hasan is a Muslim, let alone that he was an open advocate of violent jihad against the U.S., and that his superiors knew this, and that they did nothing about it but kept promoting him. When it comes to surrendering to our enemies and covering up their existence, the Army’s doing nothing about Hasan, and the DoD’s subsequent concealing both Hasan’s jihadism and the fact that the Army did nothing about him, are bad as it gets; and conservatives drop the ball—indeed they become part of the problem—when they fail to draw the public’s attention to these horrifying facts, and thus fail to show how Clapper’s report is part of a well-established Obama administration pattern.

Which, as I’ve pointed out several times, is exactly what happened: Congressional Republicans had nothing to say about the DOD’s Islam-silent Fort Hood report. The only Congressional criticism of the Army’s surrender to our enemies in the person of Nidal Hasan took place many months later in the Senate Homeland Security Committee’s recent report (see this and this) which brought out the facts of the Army’s non-action on the jihadist major. However, I don’t know if the HSC report directly addresses the horrifying silence of the DoD report about the Army’s non-action. Perhaps Dorothy Rabinowitz tells us in her article this week in which she summarizes the HSC report.

Here is Walsh’s article:

U.S. intelligence: fight terror with blather

The tone is surprisingly bland, the language dispassionate, almost as if it were the strategic plan of a small nonprofit, written by the Human Resources Department—rather than the US Intelligence Community Worldwide Threat Assessment as presented this month to Congress by Director of National Intelligence Gen. James Clapper:

“The United States no longer faces—as in the Cold War—one dominant threat. Rather, it is the multiplicity and interconnectedness of potential threats—and the actors behind them—that constitute our biggest challenge,” reads the introduction.

The boilerplate blather gets worse: “We in the intelligence community believe it is our duty to work together as an integrated team to understand and master this complexity. By providing better strategic and tactical intelligence, we can partner more effectively with government officials at home and abroad to protect our vital national interests.”

In peacetime, the bureaucratic tone of such unclassified documents is par for the course—but this isn’t peacetime. We’ve got newspaper reports of a “weapon of mass effect” found in San Diego; here in New York, state judges were just handed a manual outlining the state’s legal framework in the aftermath of a catastrophic terrorist attack.

In such times, real leadership involves telling the American people that the Intelligence Community is going to stop these threats. So could we perhaps have just the tiniest note of national resolution? That we’re taking the fight to the enemy, instead of crouching defensively in the old duck and cover?

With the country having been shot in the back, repeatedly, by intelligence failures, isn’t it time to declare forthrightly that victory is our ultimate objective—and that we won’t rest until our enemies are either destroyed or will fight no more forever?

Where is Gen. George Patton when we need him? Whatever happened to unconditional surrender as national policy?

Nowhere in this dismal report, which limns a witch’s brew of possible horrors, beginning with Terrorism (“Al Qaeda Remains Dangerous”); Proliferation (“We continue to assess Iran is keeping open the option to develop nuclear weapons … should it choose to do so”); and Global Challenges, including most prominently Afghanistan, Pakistan and the basket-case state of Somalia (“After two decades without a stable, central governing authority, Somalia continues to be the quintessential example of a failed state”).

Yet Minnesota—the Scandinavia of the Midwest—is still welcoming Somalis, even as some of them have gone back home to become suicide bombers.

The report also outlines newer kinds of dangers: cyberwarfare, which could knock out our integrated infrastructure; the internationalization of organized crime; economic misery; the debt crisis; energy security; even strategic health threats from mutating viruses. It’s like a horror movie without a hero.

Ever on top of things, Clapper devotes exactly one sentence to the Muslim Brotherhood, which is poised for its seat at the table in Cairo, and then only in the context of providing health services in dysfunctional states. Here, in fact, is all the Feb. 10 report has to say about Egypt:

“As of early February, the situation in Egypt remains quite fluid. Cairo has witnessed some of the largest protests in decades—the largest to take place during Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year tenure as president. Instability, fueled in large part by economic and political grievances, clearly has reached a critical point in recent weeks and will have a long-lasting impact throughout North Africa and the Middle East.”

On Wednesday, Clapper told the Senate Intelligence Committee that, in his view, the Brotherhood is a heterogeneous organization with extremist elements, willing to work within the Egyptian political system, but likely is “not in favor of the treaty” with Israel.

For this predictive perspicacity, we pay some $60 billion a year.

Lest you think all is lost, the report offers this heartening conclusion: “The intelligence community is fully committed to arming our policymakers, war fighters and law-enforcement officers with the best intelligence and analytic insight we can provide. This is necessary to enable them to take the actions and make the decisions that will protect American lives and American interests, here and around the world.”

And with that ringing assurance, I’m sure we’ll all sleep more soundly tonight.

[end of Walsh column]

- end of initial entry -

A reader in the Pentagon writes:

It just so happens that in the past two years I worked in support of General Clapper, the former Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence (USDI), before he became Director of National Intelligence. General Clapper is a Bush appointee and is not politically correct. He is incredibly smart and his speeches were Reaganesque. However, my bosses, who have had considerably more contact with him, claim that for whatever reason he suffers from frequent foot-in-mouth disease.

LA replies:

Why do I think the problem is a lot deeper than foot in mouth disease?

Mark Jaws replies:

Here is the flow downhill between Clapper and me: a three-star Air Force General who was Clapper’s Assistant; a Senior Executive Service Directorate Leader; and a GS-15 (my boss). When Clapper would address the several hundred of his employees, he came across as a crusty, no-nonsense warrior. In writing my initial email, I asked my GS-15 boss and a retired Air Force Colonel (with whom I share a cubicle) what they thought of Clapper. Both of them claim adamantly that Clapper is not—and has never been known to be—a liberal.

LA replies:

Yes, but remember how far the “center” has moved steadily left, so that a liberal is now considered a conservative.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at February 18, 2011 08:12 AM | Send

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