March 18, 2006

Even More On Frank Carlucci

Ten years ago, Frank Carlucci was not only pre-empting George W. Bush's "Axis of Evil" speech...
Countries like Iraq, Iran, North Korea have achieved enhanced importance from an intelligence point of view.
... but also taking aim at intelligence whistle-blowers...
I have been consistently troubled by the leaks that come out of our intelligence community. All you have to so is ask yourself, if you were a North Korean or Iraqi, knowing what you know about the leaks, would you sign up with our clandestine service?
...fore-shadowing 9/11 and the Iraq War...
How much better it is to know about a terrorist attack before it happens, and stop it, than it is to retaliate after the fact, or to deal with a proliferator before he has an active program, or to head off a regional dispute before it reaches the confrontation stage.
... and even planting the seeds of Donald Rumsfeld's "smaller but smarter" war strategy:
Today, intelligence is more than a force multiplier... information dominance is going to be the key to future warfare.
He even hinted at the WMD lies to come:
On the policy side, it's of course a truism to say that policy is only as good as the intelligence on which it's based. Policy can also be bad if it is based on bad intelligence.
Ah, hindsight is a wonderful thing!

Here's Frank on covert action:
Covert action is a subject that's been given attention disproportionate to its size. I have viewed it from many perspectives, from the perspective of a Foreign Service officer on the ground, from somebody in the agency, from the perspective of policymaker.

I've seen successes and I've seen failures. I think we need to preserve the capability. We obviously need to try and change the image. The image, I guess, is one of a standing force of people who are ready to pull off a coup any time they're called upon to do so, or conduct a paramilitary operation. We all know that's not the way that it works.
Sure we do, Frank. Whatever you say.

At one stage, Carlucci totally contradicts himself. First he says:
There can be no clear cut line of command in the intelligence world because there is shared responsibility between the DCI and the Secretary of Defense.

The Secretary of Defense cannot abdicate his responsibility. In effect, the intelligence community will always have to work for two bosses.
Then later he says:
There's one aspect of oversight that has troubled me for sometime, and that is the ambiguity about whom the intelligence community works for. Does it work for the executive branch, or does it work for the Congress? I don't think you can serve two masters.
It's interesting that Carlucci was also involved in Health (he was Deputy Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare) because that's an association I keep finding in the Bush neo-con community over and over again: backgrounds in state health or associations with private companies in the health field. Why is that? Nothing to do with Avian Flu, I'm sure...

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