US Intelligence agencies have a history not preventing US Presidents from making big, expensive mistakes in foreign military engagements. President Kennedy was encouraged to allow the failed “Bay of Pigs” invasion and to engage in military support in Vietnam. President Johnson did not conduct the Vietnam War with the information required regarding massive military equipment being given to North Vietnam, or the extent of their true capabilities. Johnson’s mistake was to engage and expand, but not conduct the war to ensure a quick win. George W Bush was encouraged to send ground forces to Afghanistan, when special operations would have been more effective and less expensive. Bush was also misled when he invaded Iraq with ground forces, because of rumors of “weapons of mass destruction”.
The Intelligence community tends to just “try things”, without thinking it through. They gather rumors and collect a paper trail to support their theories. It’s a bit like law enforcement with the same mixed bag of results. It really requires good judgment and a clear view of the “big picture”. It requires satellite surveillance and confirmation of enemy actions.
Part of the problem is timing and judgement. The Bay of Pigs invasion was initiated, in part, by the Cuban refugees themselves, who wanted to take their country back from Castro. There were not enough of them. They were not trained and their invasion plan was not well thought out. The CIA likes to affect outcomes in foreign countries with local insurgents, but it always seems to fail. It failed in Cuba, Vietnam, Iran, Lebanon, Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria an all of Africa and the Middle East. The US won the cold war with the USSR, but the Communists took over almost every country, including the US.
Where were the “cold warriors”? They didn’t recognize the threat that Obama posed in 2008. He was raised by Communists and Muslims. I have to give our Intelligence Agencies an F for the course. I’m sure they earned A’s preventing specific terror attacks, but they missed the big picture and allowed excessive immigration to tilt to the “Left”. I’m sure that our agencies did report facts that were edited down by their politicized bosses and ignored by past Presidents.
The lack of judgment pervades these failures. When World War II ended in 1945, it was clear that the USSR would be a problem. They grabbed the Baltic countries and tried to grab more. That prompted the US to intervene in Korea and other spots. But by 1960, the US needed to change its strategy, but we didn’t. We should have either bombed Hanoi into oblivion immediately or not intervened at all. We certainly should not have engaged in a “limited war”.
Communism is a failed economic system built on a lie. It is preferred by dictators and destroys the economies wherever it spreads. The role of the US should have been to emphasize the failure of socialism and Communism as a warning to the citizens of all foreign countries and that’s all we should do. If these foreign citizens are tricked into electing a Communist, they will eventually discover that they made a mistake. They should then correct this error themselves.
If we really believe that all nation-states are sovereign, we must allow the citizens of these countries to make and correct their own mistakes. All we should do is warn them. Nation-building is not our job.
Trump is right to sell armaments to the Saudis, so they can defend themselves. Trump is right to update NATO to include the war on terror. Trump will be right when he ends the UN Refugee Program in the US. Trump will be right when he jails and deports criminals and revokes US citizenship for terrorists. The failed interventionist policies promoted by our Intelligence Agencies need to die from attrition.
Norb Leahy, Dunwoody GA Tea Party Leader