News you may have missed #677: Analysis edition

Che Guevara after his arrest in BoliviaBy IAN ALLEN | |
►►New book ties Johnson administration to Che Guevara’s death. Michael Ratner and Michael Steven Smith are the co-authors of a new book about the US role in the killing of Cuban revolutionary Ernesto “Che” Guevara. In their book, Who Killed Che?, Ratner and Smith draw on previously unpublished government documents to argue the CIA played a critical role in the killing. “The line of the [US] government was that the Bolivians did it, we couldn’t do anything about it. That’s not true”, Smith said. “This whole operation was organized out of the White House by Walt Whitman Rostow. And the CIA, by this time, had become a paramilitary organization”.
►►CIA digs in as US withdraws from Iraq and Afghanistan. The CIA is expected to maintain a large clandestine presence in Iraq and Afghanistan long after the departure of conventional US troops as part of a plan by the Obama administration to rely on a combination of spies and Special Operations forces to protect US interests in the two longtime war zones, US officials said. They added that the CIA’s stations in Kabul and Baghdad will probably remain the agency’s largest overseas outposts for years.
►►Indian Army ‘preparing for limited conflict with China’. Noting that India is increasingly getting concerned about China’s posture on its border, James Clapper, US Director of National Intelligence, said this week that the Indian Army is strengthening itself for a “limited conflict” with China. “The Indian Army believes a major Sino-Indian conflict is not imminent, but the Indian military is strengthening its forces in preparation to fight a limited conflict along the disputed border, and is working to balance Chinese power projection in the Indian Ocean,” he said.

CIA not surprised by Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia, documents show

Alexander Dubček

Alexander Dubček

Newly declassified CIA documents from 1968 show that the Agency had warned the Lyndon B. Johnson administration that the USSR was preparing to invade Czechoslovakia later that year. Some of the documents have been released before, but were presented for the first time in an organized, searchable format last Friday, at a symposium held at the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library, on University of Texas campus. The symposium, entitled “Strategic Warning and The Role of Intelligence: Lessons Learned from the 1968 Soviet Invasion of Czechoslovakia”, included participants from academia, as well as from the CIA and other intelligence agencies. Among documents presented at the gathering was a May 10, 1968, CIA memo, which termed Soviet-Czechoslovak relations a “crisis” and warned that the possibility of an armed Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia could “no longer be excluded”. Read more of this post

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