"“We have lent a huge amount of money to the U.S. Of course we are concerned about the safety of our assets. To be honest, I am definitely a little worried.” "

Chinese premier Wen Jiabao 12th March 2009

""We have a financial system that is run by private shareholders, managed by private institutions, and we'd like to do our best to preserve that system."

Timothy Geithner US Secretary of the Treasury, previously President of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.1/3/2009

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Cindy Williams, interesting lady and some interesting organisations and some interesting ideas and interesting connections

On December 3rd 2007, John Donnelly published an interesting and little remarked article in the Boston Globe - Military deep into civilian duties

This article was prompted by Secretary of Defense Robert Gates speaking in Kansas the previous week about the DOD doing work that he claimed should should be done by the State Department. (Note speaking on May 14th at the Academy of American Diplomats in Washington, Gates said that he's encouraged by moves to bolster the support agencies that can provide support to fight the war on terror. )

Gates pointed out that the entire US corps of foreign service officers - about 6,600 people - is smaller than the personnel in one aircraft-carrier strike group.

In November 2005, an internal Pentagon document, Directive 3000.05, called for reconstruction projects to become a core part of combat operations, extending the military's reach into areas of governance, rebuilding infrastructure, and restoring areas of commerce.

John Donnelly pointed out that as a consequence the Pentagon also has quietly approved internal policy changes that embrace nation-building tasks in fragile states and conflict areas, duties that were once scorned by President Bush and his top team of military advisers before the Sept. 11 attacks as going beyond the scope of US national security interests.

In November 2005, an internal Pentagon document, Directive 3000.05, called for reconstruction projects to become a core part of combat operations, extending the military's reach into areas of governance, rebuilding infrastructure, and restoring areas of commerce.

The rationale behind such an expansion, defense officials say, is that in the war on terrorism the military will often set up base in dangerous locations and should be able to offer a range of services to both military and the local community.

Bill Donnelly pointed out that in 2002, the military's share of US official development assistance was 5.6 %; In 3 years by 2005, it had quadrupled to 21.7 %, or $5.5 billion of which US$4 Bn was for Iraq based projects .(Source Center for Global Development, a Washington think-tank).

He also quoted critics of USAFRICOM which was launched in February 2007 - Defense officials say the initial focus will be to work with African militaries on building up noncombat evacuations, emergency food deliveries, and crisis management. Those outside the DOD query the long term goals of the military role in Africa and other parts of the developing world which remain undefined. (See post Monday, June 18, 2007 - USAFRICOM - Building the New Empire and the very,very odd folks at IASPS )

As a consequence of this article appearing Cindy Williams from Massachussets Institute of Techniology (MIT) wrote a letter to the Boston Globe.
"The military, and affairs of State - "

"What the article fails to mention is that much of the Pentagon's new foreign assistance money goes not to the humanitarian or civilian reconstruction projects Donnelly highlights, but to training and equipping military and police forces in countries such as Pakistan.

Before the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the State Department played the lead role in shaping such security assistance programs. Today the State Department takes a back seat to the military.

This increasing detachment of international security assistance from the State Department's wider foreign policy framework is one more reason to be concerned about the increasingly military face of US assistance abroad

More can be learnt of Cindy Williams at her MIT website which lists several articles which can be read with profit about allocation of the military / Homeland budgets in the US.

Cindy is also a Director of (to Lord Patel) a hitherto unknown body ...

The National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA) is a non-profit, independent coalition of top public management and organizational leaders who tackle the nation’s most critical and complex challenges. With a network of more than 600 distinguished Fellows and an experienced professional staff, the Academy is uniquely qualified and trusted across government to provide objective advice and practical solutions based on systematic research and expert analysis. Established in 1967 and chartered by Congress, (which presumably means where their $$$'s come from) the Academy continues to make a positive impact by helping federal, state and local governments respond effectively to current circumstances and changing conditions.

"Our society has reached a point where its progress and even its survival depend on our ability to organize the complex and to do the unusual."

--James Webb second NASA administrator and a principal founder of NAPA.

The brief biography of Cindy Williams provided by NAPA --Senior Fellow and Principal Research Scientist, Security Studies Program, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Former Assistant Director, National Security Division, Congressional Budget Office. Former positions with The MITRE Corporation: Director, C2 Integration Environment; Associate Technical Director, Continental Command, Control, and Communications Division; Department Head, Strategic Air Command Systems Department; Associate Department Head, Strategic Defense Initiative. Former positions with U.S. Department of Defense: Director, Strategic Offensive Forces Division, Program Analysis and Evaluation, Office of the Secretary; Operations Analyst. Former positions with RAND Corporation: Mathematician, Strategic Forces Project; Project Leader, Force Operations Team, Automated Wargaming Center. (They fail to mention that she is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations who have many intersting expert Fellows)

For those interested in these sort of things they might find pursuing this interesting body and it's interesting people worth further interest.

Meanwhile here is a picture of Michelle Obama with her friend Ex Weatherwoman and Sidley Austin Partner Bernardine Dohrn at a political rally.

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(C) Very Seriously Disorganised Criminals 2002/3/4/5/6/7/8/9 - copy anything you wish