The Stovepipe Problem

Stovepipe Problem The real "micromanager" on Panama was the President

In the continuing exchange of recriminations about the failed coup against Panamanian strongman Manuel Noriega, the Bush Administration last week loudly accused Congress of trying to micromanage intelligence matters. At the same time, however, a National Security Council review indicates that if anyone was micromanaging, it was the President, who picked up some unhealthy habits during his year as President Ford's CIA director.

As chief spymaster, Bush learned to compartmentalize information, drawing on many sources but sharing little of what he knew or how he was leaning. As President, he continues the practice; much undigested and conflicting intelligence from Panama was...

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