Punting on Propaganda
Last week in a hearing of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, Sen. Joe Lieberman pressed senior U.S. intelligence officials on their efforts, if any, to counter the dissemination of radical Islamic ideology both here and abroad.
- FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III testified that the Bureau has no counter propaganda effort of note, save for its Muslim-American outreach program that "addresses" radical Islam.
- DHS Secretary Chertoff testified that there was no organization under his control that participated in the war of ideas.
- The head of the National Counterterrorism Center said that one of the "four pillars" of the U.S. war strategy is the "war of ideas," but that there was no office that dealt with these issues in the US.
Smith-Mundt - the law that protects US citizens against propaganda we used to aim at our adversaries – has so far proven to be an insurmountable challenge to any effort to defeat Jihadist propaganda. That those leading the fight against radical Islam still cling to the idea that the audience for information can be divided by geography is a clear sign that al-Qaeda and its ilk are destined to win the information war.