Monday, January 30, 2017


Best explanation of the ramifications of the removal of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from the National Security Council in favor of Steve Bannon. It's from metafilter commenter Kafziel:
Okay, so, we used to a have a system in place for determining when to target someone for killing, especially when that person is a US citizen. The Pentagon, the Joint Chiefs, and the National Security Council all had to agree on it for the use of force to happen. It was a big deal. 
Under Obama, this system was replaced with the Disposition Matrix. The Pentagon and the Joint Chiefs were removed explicitly from the decision-making process, and the decision was left entirely in the hands of the National Security Council, based on a complicated set of priorities which are not public. This is less of a shift than it seems, because since the National Security Council has existed, the Joint Chiefs have never not been on it, and the Pentagon answers to them, so not a lot actually changed, but it still wasn't a great move for a lot of reasons. 
One of those reasons is becoming clear now, because the Joint Chiefs are no longer on the National Security council. It consists entirely of Donald Trump, Reince Priebus, and Steve Bannon. So the decision to approve the targeted killing of a US citizen lies entirely and exclusively in the hands of Donald Trump, the head of the RNC's campaign finances, and a Nazi propagandist. Without review or oversight. 
This is a very, very bad thing.
Other commenters jump right in to predict war with Iran or China. I am reassured by the lack of consensus on those predictions. But I still feel pale and faint. 

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