Under President Obama, the Peter Principle appears to have been elevated to policy, at least in the case of architects of an American intelligence disaster.
The International Atomic Energy Agency will soon release a report on Iran's nuclear program. The findings have been leaking for days now -- and come as no surprise to those who have long-harbored well-grounded suspicions of Iran's intentions. Iran is close to achieving nuclear breakthrough: the ability to begin cranking out nuclear weapons. The Western world (not just Israel, the surrounded outpost of Western civilization in the Middle East) will now face a theocratic regime armed with nuclear weapons led by men who harbor not just loathing for Israel and America but apocalyptic fantasies of the utopia to come from nuclear war.
Lest we forget, back in 2007 a National Intelligence Estimate was released by our intelligence community. This report dismissed concerns that Iran had a nuclear weapons program. The report was concocted by three anti-Bush partisans who were focused on derailing any actions against Iran. The report also derailed efforts to sanction Iran. Many people were skeptical about the findings of the report but, as Mona Charen reminds us, Barack Obama and other Democrats greeted the report with glee and immediately used it for partisan purposes against George Bush:
Democrats, who believe that the chief threats to world peace are to be found in the Republican party, rejoiced in the report at the time. Sen. John Edwards said, "The new National Intelligence Estimate shows that George Bush and Dick Cheney's rush to war with Iran is, in fact, a rush to war. The new NIE finds that Iran halted its nuclear weapons program in 2003 and that Iran can be dissuaded from pursuing a nuclear weapon through diplomacy." Sen. Barack Obama, already running for president, said, "By reporting that Iran halted its nuclear-weapon development program four years ago because of international pressure, the new National Intelligence Estimate makes a compelling case for less saber-rattling and more direct diplomacy."
Sen. Joseph Biden declared the report "good news" because "it makes it harder for these cowboys [i.e. the Bush administration] to go to war.
So whatever became of the three "experts" who bear responsibility for Iran becoming a nuclear power and will be responsible for changing the balance of power and terror in the world? Will they also bear shame for helping a Holocaust happen?
One went off to a comfortable sinecure at Stanford and newly-elected President Barack Obama promoted the other two to even more key positions of power. Should we consider this a reward?
I wrote about this history back in 2009 at American Thinker:
The unholy three were outed by the Wall Street Journal back in 2007:
Our own "confidence" is not heightened by the fact that the NIE's main authors include three former State Department officials with previous reputations as "hyper-partisan anti-Bush officials," according to an intelligence source. They are Tom Fingar, formerly of the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research; Vann Van Diepen, the National Intelligence Officer for WMD; and Kenneth Brill, the former U.S. Ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
Additionally, Brill's work as the US Ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (the feckless group that has averted its eyes - and worse - from Iran, Syrian and North Korean proliferation efforts) was disparaged by no less than Richard Armitage who characterized it as bullshit.
What happened to the three stooges?
Well, it is government work so they have been rewarded for their failure. Nothing succeeds like failure in this topsy-turvy world.
Van Diepen has moved up in the administration of Barack Obama:
Vann H. Van Diepen has been Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Security and Nonproliferation (ISN) since June 2009. From February 2006 to June 2009, he was National Intelligence Officer for Weapons of Mass Destruction and Proliferation in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, advising the Director on those issues, serving as the Intelligence Community (IC) spokesman on them and producing National Intelligence Estimates and other IC analyses.
From September 2005 to February 2006, Mr. Van Diepen directed the State Department's Office of Missile Threat Reduction.
Ken Brill has also done well for himself - if not in the real world. He heads this government group in the Obama administration:
The National Counterproliferation Center (NCPC) is the primary organization within the U.S. Intelligence Community for combating the spread of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems.
NCPC works with the Intelligence Community to identify critical intelligence gaps in counterproliferation collection or analysis and then develops solutions to help close those gaps. Through its Innovation Fund, NCPC also works to find and fund new technologies to help combat proliferation. Additionally, NCPC works to identify "over the horizon" proliferation concerns and creates strategies to ensure that the IC is well-positioned to address them.
Did he suddenly find competence? Count me skeptical.
So we have two of the three playing key roles in the government and who are responsible for preventing the spread of nuclear weapons-because...why? They certainly failed big time in 2007 - grievously so. Now the world has to live with the consequences of their failure.
The third drafter of the NIE was Tom Fingar who parachuted out of Washington into a job at Stanford. He will at least do less immediate damage there but he did do some further damage (a parting shot?) right before he left office. He was the official responsible for briefing Barack Obama regarding future global risks before Obama assumed office.
In the Obama administration, nothing succeeds like failure. He rewards people who are politically useful to him, regardless of the damage they cause to America or the world.