Sex, Lies, and the CIA
Many insights here. I love your honesty and insider view on the advantages/challenges of being a woman inside the agency. Excellent.
People, process and product. Great read, very good insights into the dynamics of this work. Also, working under committee rules is always a disaster waiting to happen. Too many competing issues, biases come into play. Field people know what they know while the people at the office back home don’t have a feel for what it’s like in the field. They will of course claim they want to be in the field, but once there they are not in tune with their surroundings because they’ve spent too much time in the office and are used to working under committee rules.
It seems universal that bureaucracy supports mediocrity, sadly. Your agency was not alone in that regard - DoD has its own issues both with harassment in the ranks and with the side effects of risk-aversion in leaders. There is a certain type of person that appears to have poor hearing; when they hear "take no unnecessary risk," it becomes "take no risk," and likewise appear to hear "yes" in place of "no."