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Director of National Intelligence Unaware of Hezbollah's Existence?

Director of National Intelligence Unaware of Hezbollah's Existence?

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The Director of National Intelligence serves as the head of the Intelligence Community (IC). It is the DNI who is responsible for overseeing and directing the implementation of the National Intelligence Program budget. The DNI acts as the principal adviser to the President, the National Security Council, and the Homeland Security Council for intelligence matters related to US national security.  And America’s current DNI, James Clapper, has proven himself as incompetent.

Retired Lieutenant General James Clapper had a career in the military serving this great nation with distinction. His military service was immaculate. Unfortunately, the retired three-star has failed in his current position as the Director of National Intelligence.

On February 16th, Director Clapper released yet another intelligence gap-laden threat assessment for the Senate Committee on Armed Services.  In the thirty-one page threat assessment, not once does it mention the terrorist group Hezbollah or any of Iran’s asymmetric militant entities within the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corp (IRGC) or Al Quds.

This comes during a time when Hezbollah operatives were recently arrested in Thailand. Last month, Hezbollah and IRGC operatives were arrested in Azerbaijan for plotting attacks against foreign targets. Inside the United States, one Iranian-controlled asset was recently arrested for plotting an assassination attempt against the Saudi Ambassador.

Hezbollah, a Lebanon-based terrorist organization with Iranian state support, has been identified as the most threatening terrorist organization among many counterterrorist professionals, but nothing in the most recent DNI National Threat Assessment would depict them as such, considering they are not mentioned once in the report.

Director Clapper has either failed in his duties or he has been persuaded by political correctness. Either way, the most recent National Threat Assessment is incomplete. Those that were briefed on the most recent assessment have not been provided the truth regarding worldwide threats. Our policy makers can easily be argued as currently  “operating in the dark.”

This is not the first time Director Clapper misinformed an audience or demonstrated unprecedented ignorance.  As Fox News reported in February, the Obama administration was forced to correct one of his statements when he claimed that the Muslim Brotherhood was “largely secular.”  In December, during an interview with Diane Sawyer, Clapper stated that he was unaware of a terror incident in London that had just been intercepted by authorities.

Republican Senator Lindsey Graham has demanded the resignation of Director Clapper for his incompetence.  Director Clapper not only fails in his duties to provide accurate threat assessments, he is also required to analyze this data in an attempt to fulfill his predictive analysis obligations–a task he has proven himself unfit to complete. During the Libyan crisis, Clapper specifically stated that he believed Qaddafi “will prevail.”  We know how the Libyan uprising actually turned out.

With the Director of National Intelligence proven completely incompetent, how can Americans trust the security of this great nation? How can we ensure ourselves that the tension throughout the Middle East is not worse than it actually has been identified? How can we actually trust our government?

There is no question that the world we live is in utter chaos. Economics, political upheavals, terror, rogue nuclear ambitions, etc. are all national security concerns. Director Clapper has misinformed not only our elected officials but also this nation’s citizens. His failures have proven himself as a poor Director of National Intelligence or a soft puppet swallowing too much political correctness. Either way, Clapper has failed in maintaining his sworn obligations as the DNI.

Kerry Patton, a combat service disabled veteran, is a senior analyst for WIKISTRAT and owner of IranWarMonitor.com.  He has worked in South America, Africa, the Middle East, Asia, and Europe, focusing on intelligence and security and interviewing current and former terrorists, including members of the Taliban.   You can follow him on Facebook or at www.kerry-patton.com


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