This will no doubt come as shocking news… to Barack Obama and his press secretary.
A new report claims that scores of intelligence analysts (read: spies) have begun talking out of school and are complaining that their reports on major terror groups have been “inappropriately altered” to paint a brighter picture before being passed on to the President and other leaders. Who could have possibly suspected that this was going on? (Well, aside from everyone else, I suppose.) Either way, the details are troubling. (Fox News)
The Daily Beast reported late Wednesday that more than 50 analysts had supported a complaint to the Pentagon that the reports had been changed to make the terror groups seem weaker than the analysts believe they really are. Fox News confirmed last month that the Defense Department’s inspector general was investigating the initial complaint, which the New York Times reported was made by a civilian employee of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA).
The assessments in question are prepared for several U.S. policymakers, including President Obama.
The Daily Beast report, which cited 11 individuals, claimed that the complaint being investigated by the Defense Department was made in July. However, several analysts reportedly complained as early as this past October that their reports were being altered to suit a political narrative that ISIS was being weakened by U.S.-led airstrikes in Syria.
The intelligence reports, according to the analysts, were either being ignored, sent back for revisions if they were insufficiently positive in tone, or altered. Among the alterations, they claim, were the removal of entire sections which fundamentally changed the conclusions being drawn. All in all, the general tone along the chain of command was one of discouraging any Debby Downers who claimed that ISIS was stronger or more effective in their efforts than we were hearing on the news and plumping up the effectiveness of US led airstrikes in the region.
Plenty of independent journalists on the international beat have been, shall we say, a bit skeptical about the sunny reports we were hearing in the fall and winter of 2014. Our airstrikes were definitely doing some damage and occasionally taking out some leaders, but without hard intel data it was tough to document. Still, how many hints did we really need? As a reminder, just take a look at this map from the end of last summer. (Daily Mail)
Does it really look like we were kicking their butts in any significant fashion? ISIS had a lot more than You Tube videos going for them.
Moe Lane offers a bit of perspective on how we allowed the intel to get cooked this thoroughly.
What’s happening now is that the military cadre that interacts with the Executive Branch is too ready to tell the Executive Branch what it wants to hear, and the Executive Branch is collectively too arrogant – or just too stupid – to realize that this is happening.
The cure? Go out and vote next year. And for the love of God, don’t vote in a way that elects another Democrat. There’s wet rot in that party’s support beams at this point.
If we were anywhere near having ISIS under control the world wouldn’t be dealing with the worst refugee crisis since World War 2 right now. That’s not to say the fight is over, but perhaps the Leader of the Free World should be getting some slightly less filtered information. Of course, that’s assuming that he really wants to hear it.