Wednesday, 28 July 2010

There's a Bigger Problem

My brother wanted to point this out...from the Bama headlines..."local minister upset". Not to go into too much graphic detail...but out of the Wal-Mart over at Cullman...some local minister noted that some highly disturbing pictures were on the men's underwear package.

Naturally...he ran to the store manager them into this complaint...and the grace of the underwear recalled.

I sat and pondered over this....kinda wondering about how bad the picture was on the cover of the underwear...and thinking it was probably designed by some Chinese guy anyway. Then, it hit me....only three out of ten of us Bama guys wear underwear this really isn't much of a big deal.

Now, if there's ever was an upsetting picture of a half-naked woman on a bag of chewing tobacco or dog food...that's a different story, and we need immediate action (or reaction, depending on who you are).

Further Wiki Shock?

Yes, there were two other developments today.

First, some folks found messages with names of cooperative Afghanistan guys. So their lives are now endangered. My guess is that the US government will have to offer to remove them from Afghanistan and resettle them (at our cost) into the US. WikiLeaks hasn't said anything yet...but their big claim over the weekend was that nothing was going to harm individual's safety. So they were fairly wrong about that claim.

Second...and a bit more interesting. As folks read message after message...they start to realize the vast value of this 90,000 message worthless. Alot of these reports concern Sergeant Joe's team who met up with Sergeant Bob's team in some village....and the two of them wrote some three page message about local threats, local customs, and local screw-ups.

People tend to think that only 'experts' or analysts write intelligence messages...and that's simply not the truth. Anyone, from a lowly a four-star general....could write a message.

At some point in my career....I was the Caribbean area analyst. I contributed around one paragraph (five lines) per a intelligence summary. Half of the stuff I wrote...involved unclassified wire service updates over some possible coup or some military equipment purchase or some treaty discussion. I'd usually add two lines onto the story...discussing what this meant or added to the situation. Naturally, it turned out to be totally unclassified because of the wire service contribution in the first place.

I'm guessing at least ten percent of the material you read in the messages...will follow the same line of effort....forty lines of unclassified observations...and maybe four lines of analysis that might border being classified.

The curious thing here...will the Taliban put their "Karl, Marty, and Woodrow" into a fancy cave somewhere...and ask them to review the 90,000 messages and tell them the secrets that the Americans know? Yes, I'm guessing they will be that stupid.

So the best thing to do? Bring in 300 Army guys and ask them to start writing 300,000 fake messages. Then find some dopey Army private to release them to WikiLeaks...and hope to keep the Taliban analysts (Karl, Marty, and Woodrow) tied down for years trying to figure what's really important or not.

You can imagine Ossama standing there....and then getting this funny feeling that they know his underwear size, his best turban, and his favorite Porky Pig cartoon....but they can't find him? Something ain't right.