View Full Version : The CIA and the New "Cold" War

01-15-2010, 09:59 AM
The CIA is giving data to the global warming scientists, while the poor are burning books in the UK to keep from freezing to death. By James Heiser

The CIA and the New "Cold" War (http://www.jbs.org/jbs-news-feed/5854-the-cia-and-the-new-qcoldq-war)

James Heiser | John Birch Society (http://www.jbs.org/)
14 January 2010

As the Northern Hemisphere experiences a winter that leaves many people wondering how much more global warming we can endure before we all freeze to death, The New York Times online edition ran the headline — “C.I.A. Is Sharing Data With Climate Scientists (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/05/science/earth/05satellite.html)”— which, at first, sounds incredibly important. Clearly the government must be taking climate change really, really seriously if the CIA is giving scientists access to its spy satellite photography!

But then one stops to think: “Oh, wait. This is the same Central Intelligence Agency that leaves one doubting whether they know the meaning of the term ‘actionable intelligence’ when it comes to stopping terrorists”— Nidal Hasan comes to mind (http://themoderatevoice.com/52387/report-u-s-intelligence-agencies-knew-hasan-was-trying-to-contact-al-qaeda/) —“so what sort of intelligence are they sharing with global warming gurus?” One might as well conclude that their collaboration is evidence of global cooling — and that if they did have any evidence of global warming, they would lose it.

Some of us are old enough to remember when the job of the CIA involved the messy work of spying on other nations while trying to stop them from spying on us. Now, rather than waging a shadow war against the Soviet Bear, part of their mission is protecting polar bears.

According to The New York Times,

The monitoring program has little or no impact on regular intelligence gathering, federal officials said, but instead releases secret information already collected or takes advantage of opportunities to record environmental data when classified sensors are otherwise idle or passing over wilderness.

Secrecy cloaks the monitoring effort, as well as the nation’s intelligence work, because the United States wants to keep foes and potential enemies in the dark about the abilities of its spy satellites and other sensors. The images that the scientific group has had declassified, for instance, have had their sharpness reduced to hide the abilities of the reconnaissance satellites.

Controversy has often dogged the use of federal intelligence gear for environmental monitoring. In October, days after the C.I.A. opened a small unit to assess the security implications of climate change, Senator John Barrasso, Republican of Wyoming, said the agency should be fighting terrorists, “not spying on sea lions.”

Now, with the intelligence world under fire after the attempted airliner bombing on Christmas Day, and with the monitoring program becoming more widely known, such criticism seems likely to grow.

And well it should. After almost a decade of ‘coordination’ of national intelligence agencies it seems as if the government has not gotten one bit better at stopping terrorists. (Of course, this is usually the point where someone is supposed to adopt a knowing look and tone of smug superiority as they declare, “Oh yes, but then we don’t know how many plots they’ve stopped.” Uh huh. And maybe they’ll be able to claim the same thing now with regard to global warming. As we continue to freeze in the midst of the coldest winter in years, the refrain can begin: “Wow! The earth was really in trouble until the CIA stepped in.”)

Suddenly I understand 24. Oh, I already understood the popularity of the show as the escapist fantasy of Chickenhawk neo-cons. (As an aside, one cannot appreciate how stultified our nation’s political discourse has become until you encounter the “Of-course-torture-works-I-saw-it-on-24” argument.) What seemed bizarre was how proud various individuals involved with the show are of its being “carbon neutral (http://climateprogress.org/2009/03/05/jack-bauer-24-carbon-neutral-rupert-murdoch-news-corp-global-warming/).” What’s next? Handwringing over the danger of lead poisoning from Bauer's bullets? And worrying whether his sadistic efforts at torturing suspects will contribute to the spread drug resistant staph infections?

Of course, some of the tried and true old CIA excuses are easily adapted to fighting climate change. Consider this passage from The New York Times article:

A senior federal official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, defended the scientific monitoring as exploiting the intelligence field quite adroitly.

Ralph J. Cicerone, president of the National Academy of Sciences and a member of the monitoring team, said the program was “basically free.”

“People who don’t know details are the ones who are complaining,” Dr. Cicerone said.

Unfortunately, it seem that Dr. Cicerone forgot the punchline: “Of course, if I told you the details, I’d have to kill you.”

Meanwhile, Earth slides into the icebox while the CIA does its best to help the global warming crowd turn down the thermostat.

Back in the real world, the question is: “Is it time for another mini ice age?” Thus Dailymail.co.uk reports (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1242011/DAVID-ROSE-The-mini-ice-age-starts-here.html):

The bitter winter afflicting much of the Northern Hemisphere is only the start of a global trend towards cooler weather that is likely to last for 20 or 30 years, say some of the world’s most eminent climate scientists.

Their predictions – based on an analysis of natural cycles in water temperatures in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans – challenge some of the global warming orthodoxy’s most deeply cherished beliefs, such as the claim that the North Pole will be free of ice in 
summer by 2013.

According to the US National Snow and Ice Data Centre in Colorado, Arctic summer sea ice has increased by 409,000 square miles, or 26 per cent, since 2007 – and even the most committed global warming activists do not dispute this.

The scientists’ predictions also undermine the standard climate computer models, which assert that the warming of the Earth since 1900 has been driven solely by man-made greenhouse gas emissions and will continue as long as carbon dioxide levels rise. ...

Among the most prominent of the scientists is Professor Mojib Latif, a leading member of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which has been pushing the issue of man-made global warming on to the international political agenda since it was formed 22 years ago.

Prof Latif, who leads a research team at the renowned Leibniz Institute at Germany’s Kiel University, has developed new methods for measuring ocean temperatures 3,000ft beneath the surface, where the cooling and warming cycles start.

He and his colleagues predicted the new cooling trend in a paper published in 2008 and warned of it again at an IPCC conference in Geneva last September.

Last night he told The Mail on Sunday: ‘A significant share of the warming we saw from 1980 to 2000 and at earlier periods in the 20th Century was due to these cycles – perhaps as much as 50 per cent.

'They have now gone into reverse, so winters like this one will become much more likely. Summers will also probably be cooler, and all this may well last two decades or longer.

‘The extreme retreats that we have seen in glaciers and sea ice will come to a halt. For the time being, global warming has paused, and there may well be some cooling.’

Having endured the “New Ice Age! No wait... Global warming!” shift in the last generation, lurching back to the “New Ice Age” is a bit of a nasty turn. Come on, guys! Pick a script and stay with it. In fact, I’d be tempted to think they could learn something from their friends in the Hollywood crowd about doing precisely that, but, well, they don’t seem to know very much about writing consistent scripts, either.

One is tempted to give Jack Bauer and his colleagues an opportunity to interview the IPCC and get to the bottom of all this. However, the folks at Icecap.us (http://www.icecap.us/) have come across a more practical solution. Call it “recycling.”

It has been reported in the London press that poor old-age pensioners are having to resort to buying books at thrift shops to burn to keep warm during the prolonged bitterly cold weather in the United Kingdom. In response to this humanitarian crisis, Freedom Action is calling on former Vice President Al Gore to join an effort to collect and airlift copies of his science fiction bestsellers to British people in dire need.

“We are collecting copies of Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth, Our Choice, and Earth in the Balance and will send them to Oxfam in the UK to distribute for free to vulnerable people trying to survive the cold weather,” said Myron Ebell, Director of Freedom Action. “We call on Mr. Gore to co-operate in our effort to relieve human suffering by providing copies of his books for burning in stoves and fireplaces.”

“It is appropriate that Al Gore’s books should be used to help keep poor people warm,” Ebell explained, “since the principal reason the British government is totally unprepared to deal with the brutally cold weather is because they have fallen for the global warming myths propagated by Gore himself in his bestselling books. Burning Gore’s otherwise worthless books to keep people from freezing is their highest and best use.”

Well, there you go. I guess I was wrong: Gore’s books are not utterly worthless after all.