Life is the art of being well deceived; and in order that the deception may succeed it must be habitual and uninterrupted.- William Hazlitt
In a well lit, richly furnished room, eight people sat around a huge conference room table, each reading an identical copy of a letter that had been delivered to each of their governments simultaneously only hours before.
“It is harshly worded”, the US Ambassador thought as she read it. While it could be argued that it was penned by either a mad man or a genius, what worried her was that it contained truths that up to now had been believed to be known only by the people who sat around the table with her.
“Even Snowden’s cowardly act of treason wouldn’t have uncovered this”, she thought, “and it exceeds Assange’s paranoid delusions of what we are doing”. She shivered as her eyes scanned the letter again.
The letter alluded to the many difficulties in the world and made direct references to what world governments had done to try to fix them in the early days and to hide them in modern times. It also revealed some government’s acts to deliberately create many of those problems.
And it revealed each nation’s greatest weaknesses – politically, societally and militarily.
It was clearly written by someone who had direct access to more information than anyone she knew.
And while she and her colleagues had convened to discuss the developments in Syria, they had become distracted by “The Letter”.
However, it was the final paragraphs that concerned her the most.
The letter wrapped up by describing the strategic intentions of each nation, outlining confidential information that was, up to this moment, known only by its respective owners.
And so the playing field had been levelled, each of her colleague’s poker hands having been laid on the table before they had had an opportunity to ante up.
What worried her the most was the final paragraph, threatening to reveal to the world the deception that they had so carefully and cleverly woven over the decades.
“But why?”, she wondered. “What would be gained by creating such a panic around the world?”
She was also agitated that this was distracting her colleagues from discussing Syria. The invasion of Syria was an important element in her leader’s domestic strategy, not its foreign policy, and it was important that she get them back on task.
“Ironic”, she mused grimly. “A foreign war with nothing obvious to gain globally plays such an essential role in our domestic policy. Too bad for the few Syrian citizens that were lost. They are merely necessary collateral damage at this point”.
Truth be told, she didn’t like someone playing the same games on her that they had been playing on their citizens for decades.
And as her eyes scanned the room, she could tell that her colleagues were probably thinking the same thing.
An announcement came over the intercom that the aircraft was scheduled to touch down in 10 minutes.
The two lone occupants of the sleek private jet, noting the announcement, began to put their paperwork away.
“I still don’t understand why we are here”, grumbled one of the occupants.
“As I explained before, it is important to discuss our offer with the most powerful man on Earth”, replied his companion.
“Then why aren’t we flying to Washington?”, countered the first occupant.
“Because that’s not where the most powerful man on Earth is”, replied his companion, looking out the window as they winged past the beautiful architecture of Paris.
To be continued.
© 2013 – Harry Tucker – All Rights Reserved
This series, a departure from my usual musings, is inspired as a result of conversations with former senior advisors to multiple Presidents of the United States, senior officers in the US Military and other interesting folks.
While this musing is just “fiction” and a departure from my musings on technology, strategy, politics and society, as a strategy guy, I do everything for a reason and with a measurable outcome in mind. :-)
This “fictional” musing is continued from ……
Serving Two Masters – August 22, 2013
Growing the Rot From Within – August 6, 2013
The Coming Storm – June 8, 2013
The Master of Distraction – May 15, 2013
Living on the Edge – How Close Do You Dare? - March 29, 2013
Preventing A Disaster – Or Preparing To Survive One - November 29, 2012)
Divide and Conquer - August 5, 2012
Financial Crisis – March 11, 2008
There is benefit to reading those first (oldest to newest) but it is not required.