The Intelligence Community Rebellion?

The back and forth of the NSA Director’s unauthorized meeting with Donald Trump, and the deceptive intelligence dossier on Trump’s supposed romp in a Moscow hotel room has spawned the notion at The Conservative Treehouse of a closing act of a shadow war within the intelligence community led by the “white hats” in the DoD intel apparatus.  There are certainly white hats in every government agency, and the intel community is no exception.  But Sundance wildly overestimates the white hats’ effect outside of a few select leaders.  He even goes so far as to promote a thesis that the DoD itself has seceded from the political elites.  Yes, a shadow war is ongoing, but we are in no way near to the closing act, and Sundance’s conclusions do not reflect the reality of the depth of elite power broker penetration in our agencies, even DoD.

As Bill Gertz notes, leftist academics in the intelligence agencies at the national level are a reflection of the demise of American universities.  For many, a major in political science coupled with leftist ideology has been the ticket for important positions in the national security apparatus.  It also contributes to flawed, PC strategies emanating from an establishment steeped in credentialism over critical thinking.  This is no different in the DoD intelligence community.

In the wake of the 9-11 attacks, universities capitalized on the need for national security professionals and promptly developed programs spun off of the basic poli-sci curriculum.  For whatever reason, it filled young beta men and womyn’s skulls with the idea of being some sort of future George C. Marshall or William “Wild Bill” Donovan, except without the business, scientific, or organizational skills needed to fight a war.  The term Cold Warrior became a pejorative.  The not so veiled meaning is a Neanderthal brute, who applies force indiscriminately and is incapable of flexibility and adjusting operations on the fly.  But the supreme irony is that instead of learning lessons of the past to stand on the shoulders of the previous generation of warriors, the military and civilians in DoD were the primary purveyors of material denigrating the accomplishments of warfighters.

For example, the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) has roughly 16,000 military, government civilian, and contractor personnel.  This overwhelming number of people supposedly performing combat support duties for the war effort (along with other agencies), some still found the time to provide:

·      Questionable assessments to make a case for Obama’s disastrous Fast and Furious operation.

·      Some gathered information and produce intelligence over a couple of decades enabling the Clintons’ uranium deals with the Russians.

·      And finally, lefty true believers or those cowed by authority allowed classified material to jump from secure systems to Hillary’s unsecured server.

Of course there are many fine people in the agency, but in a sign that things have gone off track, then director Lt. Gen. Flynn instituted a program to get the talent where it was needed – at the combatant commands.  His effort to move people outside the DC swamp and to the major HQs met with weeping and gnashing of teeth.  In my opinion, Flynn’s operational approach, which of necessity, would lessen the institution’s presence in DC, was one of the reasons he was pushed out of the job.

But like any entrenched agency in the Beltway, the business end of things is what really matters for military intelligence types.  Contractors abound in DoD further reinforcing the capital cronyism of war.  Things have so gotten out of hand that clashes between CIA funded and DoD sponsored rebel groups in Syria appear to be the standard modus operandi in an already complex fight.  No doubt John McCain and the Gang of Eight are happy that they are semi-successful business developers in order to keep our veterans and other operators fully employed.

But wait, there’s more.  The left has its own shadow network involved in keeping defense contractors’ stock prices stable.  Let’s not forget Hillary’s consigliere Sid Blumenthal, who prior to the attack in Benghazi, was shilling for The Osprey Group to go into Libya and offer some assistance to turn the chaos into something resembling ordered mayhem.  Chaos, by the way, caused directly by Hillary and her boss’s feckless national security policies.  At any rate, if Sundance thinks the institution of DoD is rebelling against the power elite he needs to pick up a copy of Defense News.

It would be one thing if these deep state schemes were strictly on the part of some fringe group of slimy analysts and their civilian overseers, but this is not the IRS.  Defense and civilian intelligence assets are stateside and deployed to combat zones under flag officer leadership.  If we are to believe the mantra that the War on Terror will be won by this same intelligence cabal, then the logical conclusion is that commanders and operations officers are a bunch of reactive, malleable non-leaders who sit up high in the command post and receive intelligence via academic roundtables and make grand pronouncements about…something.  Sadly, this has been the case in all too many instances.

Look at it this way.  The 50 or so intelligence analysts at CENTCOM who came forward to say the intelligence on ISIS was cooked are part of a large combatant command with a robust intelligence and operational staff.  CENTCOM also has a military general officer as the J-2 and of course, it has a commanding general.  That it was so bad even two senior analysts in the J-2 directorate wrote to the DoD Inspector General speaks volumes about the military leadership’s fealty to Obama.

So, the flag officers now forming part of Trump’s national security staff are a good start, but only a start.  The closing act of this shadow war may not come for years having to overcome the closed loop economy otherwise known as DC, of which DoD is a big part.  With Trump’s election we have every reason to be optimistic, but we must also be realistic about the depth of the swamp not only in the US, but in our commands around the world.  And looking at the situation through rose colored glasses doesn’t help.  Just ask Hillary and the Democrats.

John Smith is the pen name of a former U.S. intelligence officer.