ANTHONY CORDESMAN SLAMS 9/11 COMMISSION RECOMENDATIONS
Noted military analyst cautions against " sweeping generalizations " with " more weaknesses than strengths ".
President Bush has endorsed the creation of a " National Intelligence Czar "
post. Why ? Because it's easy, it's popular and it's mostly meaningless window dressing anyway. It will do little good but it won't harm anything either, beyond wasting a few tens of millions of dollars.
A real policy " czar " in Washington never has to be called that because they have something more important than a title and a flowchart - they have the political "juice " to make bad things happen to other bureaucratic players who cross them. Thomas C. Mann, for example, was LBJ's " Czar" for Latin American policy by virtue of holding various administration posts simultaneously and having LBJ's full support. It was Mann, not Dean Rusk or McGeorge Bundy, who decided U.S. policy in the Western hemisphere during the Johnson administration up to and including intervention in the Dominican Republic. Somehow, I doubt that the National Intelligence Director position will do much more than dilute the DCI's already tenuous authority over the rest of the known 14 agencies of the IC
Legal authority and presidential directives are important of course but mostly in the hands of heavyweights who need to buttress their position or turf against fellow rivals. The Reagan administration was famous for the use ( and misuse) of national security decision directives by principals and their deputies at DoD, State, CIA and the NSC to hijack policy initiatives. DCI's like Bill Casey and Allen Dulles were exceptionally powerful, shapers of policy as well as administrators because they had special political relationships that went beyond their official job descriptions. Dulles of course worked hand in glove with his brother, John Foster Dulles, the Secretary of State; Casey was a key political adviser to Ronald Reagan as well as sharing a hardline anti-Soviet viewpoint with Caspar Weinberger, Jeane Kirkpatrick, William Clark and other officials eager to implement " The Reagan Doctrine ".
The IC needs reform that's something more substantive than an election year, Washington insider, musical chairs reorg.