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War as Openly Covert Operation

Couched in terms of sacrifice, the linked NYTimes article partially reveals the extent to which the US is openly conducting war as a covert operation whereas in times past covert wars were hidden from general view.1 As with the notoriety and renown of the secret prisons run by the CIA to render suspected terrorists, keeping the presence of CIA operatives in Afghanistan a secret is a liability. When the secret of a secret becomes an open secret, public backlash is all but eliminated.

With the secret known as a secret, the public can mourn the death of US Intelligence officers without being outraged those officers were there to be killed in the first place.

1 The fact of US engaging in war as a covert operation is not new. Cuba in the 1950s and Central America in the 1980s are two notable examples.


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