My New York Post column on the klown kar that is the Obama administration’s IC leadership is up. Excerpt:
No matter how things shake out in Egypt, one thing has become depressingly clear: Something is very wrong with the American intelligence services.
First it was CIA Director Leon Panetta, telling a House committee there was a “strong likelihood” that Mubarak would step down Thursday night — an erroneous prediction that, the CIA later admitted, turned out to be based on “press reports,” not agency field work.
Then it was Panetta’s nominal boss, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, telling Congress that the violent pro-jihad Muslim Brotherhood is “largely secular” and has “eschewed violence.”
As Casey Stengel once said, “Can’t anybody here play this game?”
Re: the Egyptian revolution that completely blindsided Washington, pardon my continuing skepticism. When a military strongman is deposed by a junta that has suspended the constitution, dissolved parliament, and banned trade-union strikes, it’s pretty hard to frame that as a triumph for democracy, even if the military has promised free elections in six months.
And don’t even get me started on the Foggy Bottom Follies, so ably eviscerated by Niall Ferguson in the Daily Beast. (It was a real pleasure watching him explain the facts of life to Joe, Mika, Willie, Mark Halperin, and Jonathan Capehart on today’s Morning Joe.) If any collateral good has come out of this, it’s that Hillary Clinton’s reputation for smarts and savvy is now as discombobulated as her hairdo.