The document has a serious and sober title: “Worldwide Threat Assessment of the US Intelligence Community,” and it was seriously and soberly offered to the Senate Select Committee On Intelligence yesterday by DNI James Clapper. But if the people working on this were working in all seriousness, their names were Moe, Larry and Curly, and they were drunkdrafting the entire thing. Don’t take our word for it; read it for yourself.
- ITEM: They’re still banging the gong for Global Warming as a major, existential threat, although they defensively note that they’re not using climate models to reach this conclusion, a backhanded slap at Michael “Piltdown” Mann, the climate scientist at the university most famous for its kiddie-diddling football program.
- ITEM: They manage a long discussion of the cyber threat without mentioning the damage done to US national security by the intelligence organizations’ overreach — and incompetence. No mention of how A low-level contractor walked off with more documents than all the spies in the history of espionage; no mention of how the connected beltway bandits hired to vet Snowden and tens of thousands of other contractors simply pencil-whipped the work — and received ten plus million in performance bonuses for failing to do the work. Clapper? Mussolini without the timely trains.
- ITEM: The document defines modern technologies, generally, as things used for crime and therefore to be crushed, or at least, crushingly surveilled — approached it tries to mainstream for Bitcoin, biology, and 3D printing.
- ITEM: The lead item in terrorism? “Homegrown Violent Extremists.” That’s, er, you. Although the example he uses is scarcely homegrown: the Boston Marathon bombers. In fact, what they represent is a failure of US immigration policy (we need Chechens why?) and, much more so, a failure of Clapper’s polyincompent intel empire: he was tipped that these guys were up to no good by the Russian FSB.
- ITEM: Mentioning the “difficult environment” in the post-Arab Spring Middle East, without mentioning how that is the product of (1) the US cutting previous allies loose, seriously diminishing the perceived value of allying with us, and (2) the US supporting extremist Moslem Brotherhood organizations in one country after another. Holy crap, support violent extremists and (1) you get more extremists and (2) the guys who are not extremists lose interest in you as a partner.
- ITEM: The whole section about Iran is a battered-wife’s fantasy: Rouhani is a moderate. The Iranians are just building nukes for national prestige, like a big monument or something. The Iranians aren’t real sure they want to make nukes.
- ITEM: The authors of the report are economically illiterate, suggesting that inflation will ruin debtors (inflation lets debtors pay for pennies on the dollar, and ruins creditors).
- ITEM: The whole thing is written as if the recipients were retarded. (Well, it is for the Senate, so there is that). Example:
Overall international will and capability to prevent or mitigate mass atrocities will likely diminish in 2014 and beyond, although support for human rights norms to prevent atrocities will almost certainly deepen among some non-government organizations.
Got that? No? Shorter version: “The US will stand by and let people be massacred, and international do-gooders will demand we do something!!!” Got it now?
- ITEM: They’re still supporting, as noted above, the MB/extremist faction in Egypt, excuse us, the “democratically elected” terrorist group.
- ITEM: Most of the assessments demonstrate nothing more than the writers’ keen grasp of the bleedin’ obvious. Example: “Sub-Saharan Africa will almost certainly see political and related security turmoil in 2014.” No $#!+, Sherlock? Is there a year in the last fifty where that wasn’t true? Does anyone seriously expect a year in the next fifty where that will not be true?
If this document were any more lightweight, you’d need to tie it down with ropes like a Zeppelin.