Thursday, December 28, 2006

Intelligence Oversight

We all rest a little easier in our beds, as the Democrats unveil the new leadership of the Congressional Intelligence Committee.

In the space of a few minutes, Chairperson Silvestre Reyes managed to describe Al Qaeda as a Shia organisation, and Iran as a Sunni state, before admitting that he had no idea what Hizbollah was or where it was based.

Other concepts Democrats find it hard to distinguish between include “right” and “wrong”, “mine” and “yours”, and most recently “victory” and “surrender”.

Not that the Republicans did much better. To quote the woman in charge of CIA spy recruitment: “The Sunni are more radical than the Shia. Or vice versa.”

What is it with Americans and abroad? I know many of them don’t have passports, but then again, when you live in a country as big as the US, there’s not much reason to leave. Just about any combination of climate and dusky-maiden skin-tone is available right here. Even so, surely they should be able to find a couple of dozen people out of their whole political class who know more about the world than what they’ve gleaned off of a handful of Snapple Facts?

Let’s hope these knuckleheads do a little background reading before they re-open for business in January.

Sylvestre Reyes displays his unrivalled grasp of foreign affairs, yesterday. Is that your final answer?


rob said...

Oh, you reckon do you? If they found one with half a brain, he would be discredited and fired faster than he could blink.

SnoopyTheGoon said...


I am butting in to call upon you on an unrelated subject - that of a commenter using my nickname. The only reason I am using this medium is the lack of your e-mail address.

A month or two ago I and a few other bloggers encountered a stalker using various nicknames and addresses, including, as it looks, my mickname.

More details later if you will call on our blog's team address simplyjews at gmail dot com.

Please do me a favor and erase all the comments made under my nickname.

Ivan the Terrible said...

Rob - you're a sad old cynic. That must be why I like you...

And Snoopy - welcome aboard. Sorry to hear that your name has been hijacked. I can undertake to remove any future comments from your troll, but I don't know when I'll be able to go back through the archives to get rid of the old ones. I'll do my best tho' as the opportunity arises.

Desargues said...

No American official would ever need to know Kazakhstan from Tadjikistan, were it not for the 700 or so military bases and installations the Republic (or is it the Empire? I forget) has around the world. In fact, even thsi may not be a good enough reason to learn about the aborigines and their woes. The public officials manning the avanposts of the British Empire sure didn't care who was a Sunni and who was a Hindu, and it didn't prevent them from running one helluva organization--until the natives began to get uppity, that is, under the influence of French ideas such as liberty and national self-determination.

So yeah, I don't really care whether Reyes or any of these other sub-mediocre dimwits know their Zarqawi from their Alawi. What I care about is whether they have a good grounding in a classical education, like their British counterparts used to have. Running an empire is hard work, and the white man's burden hangs heavy on their stooping shoulders. They better convince me they're good enough to deserve their imperial mantle, if you pretend to teach the lesser breeds about freedom and democracy; but a training in PR and mastering the art of courting lobbyists does not make one a statesman. It only makes you a whore in that show business for ugly people--politics. A cheap, ugly ho, in other words. A chickenhead, as we'd say around here, in Baltimore.

Snoopy, when you post genuine comments, there's a hyperlink to your Blogger account. When your detractors copy your moniker, they can't get the link--there's only one account in your name. That should help smoke out the trolls.

Thomas Pauli said...

Now I know why in the English language "Intelligence" means a totally different thing than being intelligent.

Thomas Pauli said...

Now I know why in the Inglish language "Intelligence" means a totally different thing than being intelligent.

Razzamatazz said...

I too was born too soon. Does that mean I don't have a destiny? I've managed for sixty eight years without one although in my dreams I once had a Destiny's Child.

Colin Campbell said...

I don't remember US Presidents having a great corner on their knowledge of world geography and geopolitics in their public pronouncements. Given that, the current crowd are competing for dopey pronouncements with one of the best foreign policy dimwits ever.

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