07.28.2017

07.28.2017

I could see this happening as it was happening in 2011-13 by reading people like Gareth Porter. If I could see it, Obama could see it – he’s a smart guy. So he he has no excuses, he gets no pass. Obama just wanted to get paid and leave town.

How CIA and Allies Trapped Obama in the Syrian Arms Debacle
And why it ultimately benefitted terrorists like Al Qaeda.
By GARETH PORTER • July 27, 2017

One of the keys to understanding its origins is that the program was launched not because of a threat to U.S. security, but because of a perceived opportunity. That is always a danger sign, prompting powerful national-security bureaucrats to begin thinking about a “win” for the United States. (Think Vietnam and Iraq.)

[…]

The payoffs of U.S. alliances in the Middle East have centered on the military bases in Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar that allow the Pentagon and the military brass to plan and execute military operations that guarantee extraordinary levels of military spending. But enormous Saudi arms purchases and the financing of any covert operations the CIA doesn’t wish to acknowledge to Congress have long been prime benefits for those powerful organizations and their senior officials.

[…]

But for a second time, Obama also agreed to a CIA program of helping to arm the anti-Assad forces; it was a way of placating his own national security apparatus and U.S. allies while avoiding an open commitment to the war.

[…]

The reason was simple: Powerful national security bureaucracies were threatening to blame Obama for the failure of their heroic effort to save the anti-Assad war.

The lesson of the entire affair is clear: A malignant alliance between powerful national security bureaucracies and the Middle Eastern allies with whom they enjoy mutually profitable relations are pressuring the White House to approve actions that threaten the real interests of the American people—including strengthening terrorists. The only way to reverse that situation is to direct public attention to that malignant alliance of interests, which has thus far gotten a free ride.

Bolding mine. “Powerful national security bureaucracies” is, I believe, Gareth Porter’s way of saying The Deep State.

 

Why Zuckerberg and Musk Are Fighting About the Robot Future
It looks like the two tech titans are arguing about AI’s impact on humanity. Really they’re protecting their personal brands.

I’ve argued before that “artificial intelligence” has become so overused that the term is almost meaningless. Like “algorithm” before it, technologists, businesspeople, and journalists wield the idea like a magic wand that turns ordinary computer software and devices into world-saving (or world-ending) marvels. And given AI’s long history of wonder and dread in science fiction, people are primed to expect it to usher in utopia or dystopia.

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