Friday, June 01, 2007

Tic Tacs #6

Miami Herald: "Iran aid to Taliban hints at policy shift. U.S. officials suspect that Iranian weapons shipments to the Taliban may be retaliation for U.S. foreign policy."

Secrecy News: National Intelligence Council Sponsors Wiki on Global Disease. Students at Mercyhurst College created a wiki-based resource on global disease to support the National Intelligence Council, while demonstrating the utility of the wiki approach for intelligence analysis. "The fundamental question had to do with the impact of chronic and infectious diseases on US national interests over the next 10-15 years," said Prof. Kristan J. Wheaton, whose class produced the wiki.

Counterterrorism Blog: "A few days ago, I spoke with a U.S. official working for one of the new embedded provisional reconstruction teams (EPRTs) in Iraq. (...) The EPRTs are different. Rather than operating separately from and parallel to the military, they are embedded within the military structure. Six EPRTs operate in Baghdad, three in Anbar, and one in Babil. Their structure is similar to that of the PRTs (run by a foreign service officer, featuring a U.S. Army deputy, a USAID member, a bicultural advisor, and other staffers) but rather than functioning in the top-down manner of the PRTs, the EPRTs are designed to make more of a difference at what the official called the "granular" level. That is, the EPRTs are integrated into the military's tactical operations, and are designed to advance reconstruction efforts on a street by street, neighborhood by neighborhood basis.

Thomas P.M. Barnett: "The talks are cordial, but go nowhere. ARTICLE: "U.S. and Iranian Officials Meet in Baghdad, but Talks Yield No Breakthroughs," by Kirk Semple, New York Times, 29 May 2007, p. A8. Why should they? We hold talks to see what Iran can do to save our asses in Iraq but refuse to use that venue to discuss any quid pro quo Tehran might desire. These talks aren't designed to work. They're designed to check a box. That's my weekend column. "

No comments: