Wednesday, February 24, 2010

US vision of the future

In the wake of the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001, President George W Bush instigated a process aimed at overhauling the US intelligence system. In 2004, the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act created the office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI), who took over some of the government and intelligence functions that had previously been handled by the time-honored CIA. As of a month ago, the DNI is Dennis Blair, appointed by Barack Obama.

I was gladly surprised to discover that we can obtain, for free, a 120-page document entitled Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World, presenting the profound thoughts of this office concerning the future of our world. Just click this image and follow instructions:

Before starting to read this fascinating report, make sure you've understood the significance of the acronym BRIC [Brazil, Russia, India and China], which reappears constantly.

The report is good reading in that it highlights the fragility of US thinking. We've always known that the giant has feet of clay. But it's alarming to discover that maybe his brain, too—his so-called "intelligence"—is made out of porcelain.

In the vulgar verbiage of the authors of this futuristic fairy story, Europeans will be "losing clout" in 2025. I feel like giving a sharp clout on the snout of the dumb Yank who wrote such rubbish. The notorious CIA (which reports henceforth to the DNI) has made so many blunders, however, that we might expect a certain amount of US intelligence drivel for some time to come. It's not tomorrow that we'll be removing the inverted commas from "US intelligence". But I insist upon the fact that this nice bedtime reading can be freely downloaded. It won't even cost you what it's worth: peanuts.

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