In the unsung-good-news department:
“DoD needs to demonstrate that it can improve the management of clandestine HUMINT before undertaking any further expansion,” the Senate Armed Services Committee wrote in a report on the new legislation.
Longstanding problems with defense human intelligence cited by the Committee include: “inefficient utilization of personnel trained at significant expense to conduct clandestine HUMINT; poor or non-existent career management for trained HUMINT personnel; cover challenges; and unproductive deployment locations.”
The Committee noted further that “President Bush authorized 50 percent growth in the CIA’s case officer workforce, which followed significant growth under President Clinton. Since 9/11, DOD’s case officer ranks have grown substantially as well. The committee is concerned that, despite this expansion and the winding down of two overseas conflicts that required large HUMINT resources, DOD believes that its needs are not being met.”
Instead of an ambitious expansion, a tailored reduction in defense intelligence spending might be more appropriate, the Committee said.
While in my home country:
Facing indictment for breach of trust and fraud, Israel’s foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, resigned his post Friday afternoon amid mounting political pressure, upending the campaign landscape five weeks before national elections.
Lieberman is best known as running for the Knesset on a platform of banning Arab parties (which passed the legislature but was struck down by courts), or for trying to require Arab-Israelis to swear a loyalty oath to a Jewish State, or for flushing the toilet while being interviewed for the radio, and for his deputy foreign minister who forced the Turkish envoy to sit in a small chair to humiliate him. The party he created just merged with the Likud to create a super-majority for super-conservatism.
Unfortunately, much like the similarly respectable Silvio Berlusconi, Lieberman is already predicting he'll be back to his job soon.