Saturday Morning Drone Mini-Post.

Nob Akimoto

Nob Akimoto

Nob Akimoto is a policy analyst and part-time dungeon master. When not talking endlessly about matters of public policy, he is a dungeon master on the NWN World of Avlis

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11 Responses

  1. Avatar Kolohe says:

    I’m with Goldsmith. This is the most unified and disciplined executive branch since Bush 1. Nobody ‘goes rogue’ in this administration; anything that happens is with the full knowledge, and usually the leadership, of the White House.

    Emmerson made some hay last year by going on the record on how awful a Romney Administration would be – which may have been true, but it was not his place to make such comments. Indicates to me there’s some background affection for the Obama administration on the part of Emmerson.Report

  2. Avatar BlaiseP says:

    I remember when the USA first went into Afghanistan. I said at the time we should never call these guys anything but criminals in public: charge them with air piracy, murder and the like. We should scrupulously avoid making them look like a legitimate enemy. Keeping the rhetorical focus on their criminal aspects, get various Muslim clerics to issue fataawa against them and the governments which harboured them. If I had been managing the PR war, I would have put Bush out there at the Lincoln Memorial with a thousand Muslims, especially the families of Muslim victims (there were dozens of them in the Twin Towers) and had Bush yell at the top of his lungs “They have murdered OUR MUSLIMS in contradiction of your own Prophet’s commandments. Whatever justification you might have, Al-Qaeda cannot say this is jihaad

    An intelligence war is a war for hearts and minds. It’s not just a one way street. When the CIA went into Laos and recruited the Hmong, there were two aspects to that effort. The Hmong had been persecuted by the Vietnamese for centuries and arguably the CIA was only exploiting that hatred. But the CIA made friends there and gained the trust of a people who were barely out of the Bronze Age.

    The worst aspect of the Drone War is how we’ve seemed to turn this into a one-way street. It’s a PR disaster. Pretty much anyone who’s examined this problem understands those drones don’t drop missiles on people without information from local operators.

    Thus, what enables the wise sovereign and the good general to strike and conquer, and achieve things beyond the reach of ordinary men, is foreknowledge.

    Now this foreknowledge cannot be elicited from spirits; it cannot be obtained inductively from experience, nor by any deductive calculation.

    Knowledge of the enemy’s dispositions can only be obtained from other men.

    And this foreknowledge cannot be elicited from drones. Until CIA gets back to its original mission, obtaining knowledge from other men, it doesn’t matter how good the resolution on the drone cameras might be. The I in CIA means Intelligence. Intelligence wins wars. Technology doesn’t.Report

  3. Avatar NewDealer says:

    You pretty much described non of my Saturday.

    Also, what is so special about the Financial Times? Is it for people who are too snobby for the New York Times or the Guardian?

    Again, I wonder what people’s preferred news media says about them. Not in a politically ideological way but more in a cultural way. Does reading the Financial Times signify being or wanting to be part of a different cultural mileau than people who read the New York Times or Guardian? Does the FT attract people with a different educational background and jobs?Report

  4. Avatar b-psycho says:

    …WTF is black pudding, really?Report