Causes and effects

The WAY of the WORLD: A Story of Truth and Hope in an Age of Extremism


Causes and effects
by A. H. Ladan

The WAY of the WORLD
A Story of Truth and Hope in an Age of Extremism
By Ron Suskind
Harper, 2008

From Pulitzer Prize—winning journalist and bestselling author Ron Suskind comes a startling look at how America lost its way and at the nation's struggle, day by day, to reclaim the moral authority upon which its survival depends. From the White House to Downing Street, from the fault–line countries of South Asia to the sands of Guantánamo, Suskind offers an astonishing story that connects world leaders to the forces waging today's shadow wars and to the next generation of global citizens. Tracking down truth and hope within the Beltway and far beyond it, Suskind delivers historic disclosures with this emotionally stirring and strikingly original portrait of the post-9/11 world. -- Publisher

Within the pages of this book are hidden the causes and effects of diminished democratic processes: violating civil rights, ignoring the constitution, and the Imperial Presidency based on the behavior and whims of ‘person of the president’ versus the office of the presidency, ignoring experts opinion of advisors and intelligence analysis and discarding its checks and balances! 

Suskind writes: “Bush is a guy who needs to make things personal … he was warned, and he didn’t heed the warnings. … Bush with his distaste for analysis and those who contradict him … seemed unconcerned, unlike other presidents, that isolation would prompt errors in judgment, …A man who trusts only what he can touch placed in a realm where nothing he touches is authentic.”

Bush’s fanatical and one dimensional perception of the world, its leaders and international events shaped his attitude which has been viewed as angry, dangerous, impatient and insecure, self-indulgent and reckless with a phony smile that harbors resentment.  Suskind writes:”… and with all the set back, … the president still won’t admit even to himself … that you can’t run the world on instinct from inside a bubble.”

The WAY of the WORLD simultaneously deals with several characters, their stories, their ambitions and their struggles.  It deals with the CIA’s demise, relinquished independence and its new role as part of a bigger apparatus.  It deals with CIA expert/agents who have been so disenchanted and disillusioned; they have left the agency en masse for the private sector and as hired guns/spies. 

Suskind writes: ”CIA, as America’s primary intelligence agency, doesn’t exist as it once did.  It now lies beneath the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, a fast-growing, thousand-plus-employee agency, and is ever more insubstantial beside the growing intelligence division of the Department of Defense, which controls 80 percent of America’s $50 billion annual budget for intelligence.  … Old agents and intelligence managers in both of CIA-operations and analysis-have fled to private firms.”

The consequences of the so called ‘brain drain’ has been severe and tangible: “The United States hasn’t caught a top terrorist of any value in two years.  Even if many Muslims hate al Qaeda, they don’t want to help the United States.  If someone were to see something pertinent in Pakistan or Saudi Arabia or Yemen these days, he’d most likely look the other way.  Let America get its comeuppance.”  The Way of the World tries to shed light on why and how America is no longer a country that people want to help but a country “they’d just as soon see humbled.”    

The false pretense, under which the United States invaded Iraq, is one of the most significant reasons we have lost all credibility and moral authority in the world.  We are looked upon with suspicion around the globe and our words ring hollow and meaningless.  
Suskind: “It is one the great lies in modern American political history.  He wants simply to say we’re sorry, and we’ll learn from our mistakes, as all truly great nations must.”

Another event Suskind writes about is the alleged London terrorist cell and their plan to blow up a dozen planes carrying explosives over U.S. cities.  The British had been working on a terrorist cell in a suburb of London for over a year.  The group had been in contact with their cohorts in Pakistan and across Britain.  The U.S. had been informed, the Department of Homeland Security, was in high gear, the CIA was utilizing its resources in Pakistan and the massive National Security Agency surveillance complex had been working around the clock.

“The United States is too anxious and trigger-happy, the Brits complained; …Blair had told Bush about: ‘the error of relying on the capability you have rather than developing the capability you need;’  “But waiting didn’t feel right to Bush;…it could take six months …until this plot became operational.  Blair was flying to Washington …Blair would come through, Bush thought.”

He trusted his feelings, his hunches, for the president, advisors and briefing papers were boring-as-hell.  “What no one understands, no one but Cheney, is how hard some days are.  People are not bending to his rightful desires as they used to.  He remembers what it felt like, in the two or three years after 9/11, to possess native authority and he misses it.”

The meeting with Blair did not please the president who “expresses his desire to snap the trap shut, Blair is unmoved. …It is not just that this is a UK operation, Blair says, and that nearly two thousand British operatives have been working it for nearly a year.  It’s also that if they’re patient, at some point they’ll be ‘at ready’ when the plotters seek ‘green light’ from al Qaeda’s chiefs. … we can run the thread right into Zawahiri’s beard.”

Bush realized he was NOT going to get what he wanted from Blair, so after the meeting he told Cheney about his dissatisfaction.  Suskind: “Cheney receives the message clearly, as he’s received many others over the years.  He knows how concerned Bush is about the coming midterm elections;…And now Bush wants something done.  This is how their relationship works, especially on the most sensitive matters that Bush will want to deny if he’s ever confronted.”

The WAY of the WORLD: “After the searing experience of being in the Nixon Whitehouse, Cheney developed a view that the failure of Watergate was not the break-in, or even the cover-up, but the way the president had, in essence, been over briefed.”  Cheney was providing Bush with plausible deniability.

Bush took off for his ranch in Crawford; Cheney started the ball rolling on the execution of the plan to give the president what he wanted “snap the trap shut’.  Jose Rodriguez, the director of operations at the CIA, and the head of all clandestine operations around the world, secretly slipped into Islamabad.  His presence must be kept secret, especially from British intelligence.  “His mission is to secretly pass information to a selected Pakistani intelligence official, who will summarily arrest one Rashid Rauf, the Pakistani contact for the British airline plotters.  Rodriguez then has to get out undetected …As a whisper of arrest spreads; … British intelligence knows the Pakistanis would never have moved on Rauf without first checking with them.  His arrest lights a fuse that will swiftly implode their investigation.  Top U.S. officials are perplexed. The Department of Homeland Security intelligence chief tells the Brits he and DHS are surprised as well.  No one, beyond a half-dozen people in the entire U.S. government, several of them among Cheney’s national security, knew who was responsible.”

The WAY of the WORLD: “The Bush administration has done its best to highlight and harness fear-the relentlessly cited August airline plot; …with the oft-repeated line ‘If you don’t think we should be listening in on the terrorists then you ought to vote for the Democrats;’ …people are finally beginning to see that fear is not a source of strength; …Five years along, we are still running around like headless chickens; …Our actions look reckless and badly aimed.

"The world’s on edge, in tatters, and frankly we are less safe than we were four or five years ago.”


Haj Seyd Mammad

Dear A.H. Ladan

by Haj Seyd Mammad on

Thank you for your review.

A few weeks back, when the book first came out, Keith Olbermann of MSNBC interviewed Ron Suskind, and there was a huge claim on the forgery of a letter that was used by the Bush administration to justify the Iraq War.

I made a blog out of the interview, and I am provideing the link in case if you missed it:


Tks again for the article :)