Intelligence failures

The new issue of the Weekly Standard carries a set of articles on intelligence failures of various kinds related to the terror wars, all worth reading. Jeffrey Gedmin’s article discusses the tour of mostly European journalists visiting Israel for the first time — of special interest to us because it included Joel Mowbray, whose dispatches we have featured over the past two weeks: “Europe meets Israel.” Here the failure of intelligence is represented by European public opinion regarding the war.

On a related note, Dan Darling writes about the unpleasant surprises found in “Hezbollah’s arsenal.” Here Darling expressly points out Israel’s intelligence failures regarding the weapons wielded by Hezbollah. I would argue that the situation Darling describes also represents a failure of Israeli strategic intelligence. How did the country’s leaders allow it to be placed in this position?

In “Intelligence dominance,” Richard Shultz and Roy Godson discuss the necessity of improving the actionable intelligence available to our forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. The article is based on interviews with folks who seem to know what they’re talking about.

Finally, on a subject that hits close to home for me, Professor David Gelernter asks why so many American Jews hate the president who stands by Israel: “When will they ever learn…” Professor Gelernter suggests that the answer has something to do with the phenomenon that we dubbed Chaitred — the generalized, irrational hatred of President Bush articulated first by Jonathan Chait in a September 2003 New Republic article. We linked to Chait’s article and our series of posts on it in “Thoughts on Chaitred.” My answer to the question explored by Professor Gelertnter, slightly different from Professor Gelernter’s, is that the true religion of the American Jews within Professor Gelernter’s sights is liberalism, and that this liberalism represents an intelligence failure of another kind.

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