Israel First: More on Dr. Lani Kass – Giraldi

"My recent account of the career of Dr. Lani Kass was based on what has appeared about her in the public record and media, including her own comments regarding national defense and security policy.  To recapitulate, Kass was born, raised, and educated in Israel.  She has a PhD in Russian studies and is fluent in Russian and Hebrew in addition to English.  Kass reportedly reached the rank of major in the Israeli air force before moving to the United States and working her way up through the US defense establishment.  She is currently the most senior civilian adviser to Air Force Chief of Staff Norton Schwartz and is believed to have access to most American defense secrets.  Kass is best known to the public for her role in promoting Air Force cyberwarfare, but she also appears to have been a major player in counter-terrorism policy and in war preparations directed against Iran even though she has no actual substantive background in those areas.  She believes that the US is engaged in a long war against Islamo-radicalism and that "winning" against Iran is necessary but the American people must be willing to pay the price to succeed."


In this piece Giraldi raises the question of how this person could have been given a clearance for access to US defense secrets.  Normally, the security clearance adjudicators, a humorless lot, would turn thumbs down on someone like her, not because she is an immigrant, but because she is, at the very least, a former foreign intelligence officer.  I know of no other case like this.  The only way she could have been cleared is that some as yet undisclosed person or persons with a great deal of power in DoD simply over-ruled the adjudicators.  This must have happened repeatedly as her level of access to secrets has steadily risen.  

Ironically, the situation would be quite different if she were here on assignment as an Israeli intelligence officer at the embassy or some such thing.  In that case she would have some access granted by the US but it would be carefully limited.  pl

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34 Responses to Israel First: More on Dr. Lani Kass – Giraldi

  1. Hannah K. O'Luthon says:

    So far as I can tell, Giraldi’s thrusts have been ignored outside the defense-security technocratic
    establishement and the blogosphere. Such will almost certainly continue to be the case until such time (probably when hell freezes over) as some politician deigns to mention the problem. Should such a miracle take place, I would bet all my chips on the success of the AIPAC-Israel lobby counterattack against the military-security faction. Accusations of antisemitism and neo-McCarthyism will quickly place Giraldi’s view “beyond the pale”. This is not the way I would like things to be, but rather the way, in my opinion, that they stand. One might ask the survivors of the U.S.S. Liberty about such matters.

  2. J says:

    Phil, Colonel,
    Correct me if my memory is wrong. ‘Another’ Israel firster ‘FORMER FOREIGN INTEL officer’ that had all the barricades lowered for his access to a U.S. Security Clearance and access to U.S. Classified — Former U.S. Ambassador Martin Indyk. Indyk also during his U.S. Ambassador tenure had his access to U.S. Classified ‘pulled’ because he had met with an Israeli ‘Intel persona’. Indyk is a ‘FORMER AUSTRALIAN INTEL asset’.
    IMO, FORMER FOREIGN INTEL assets and they have the safety barricades ‘specially lowered’ for them, has set a very dangerous precedent for our U.S. National Security.
    What next? Will we one day see the NSC filled with FORMER FOREIGN INTEL assets? I cringe at the thought of a former SVR in our NSC thanks to the precedent set by the Israel firster FORMER FOREIGN INTEL assets like Kass and Indyk. Cringe, cringe, shudder, shudder.

  3. David Habakkuk says:

    What does it say about the judgement of Admiral Mullen that he should employ as principal Middle East advisor someone like Lani Kass?

  4. Patrick Lang says:

    Yes. That is how people like her get security clearances. pl

  5. Phil Giraldi says:

    J- Martin Indyk did indeed have his clearance lifted when he misused classified information while Ambassador to Israel. Earlier, he had received a fasttrack nationalization as an American citizen so Clinton could appoint him ambassador. He worked for AIPAC and was the director of WINEP. The only good thing I can say about him is that he is a relative moderate on the Middle East in spite of his background. Moderate means he hasn’t called for sending all Palestinians to a gulag. Didn’t know he had an intel connection…

  6. J says:

    Phil, Colonel,
    One other thing, whenever ‘Israeli INTEL’ is mentioned, two words immediately come to mind — Swiss Cheese.

  7. The beaver says:

    So I am NOT surprised that Michael Oren, American-born Israeli is at the Embassy in DC. I can only paraphrase: “They are going for the jugular” with their hands everywhere from Silicon Valley to the inner sanctum of the govt 🙁

  8. Fred says:

    From your linked article: “The Industrial War College was, as the name implies, an institute set up to coordinate industrial production with Defense Department needs”.
    That would explain why US manufacturing is outsourced to China; and lets not forget the indictments against Mr. Norzette:
    “Dr. Lani Kass is now the principal adviser to Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen regarding the Middle East. She recently was involved in a very important meeting, one that concerned Israel.
    The meeting took place because of concerns that the United States has been losing the “war of ideas” in the Muslim world. ”
    And Isreal has been ‘winning’ the war of ideas with the Muslim world? God help us.

  9. Adam L Silverman says:

    COL Lang, Mr. Giraldi: if I recall correctly, Dr. Steven Hatfill, the first major suspect in the post 9-11 anthrax letters case, is originally from South Africa and worked for the apartheid era South African government in Intelligence or Security. There is, also, apparently some question as to whether one of his doctoral level degrees, I can’t recall if its the medical or the PhD, is suspect. None of these security questions excuses the horrid treatment he received at the hands of the DOJ and FBI or the media.

  10. JoaoAlfaiate says:

    The comments on this blog are most thoughtful. I too am discouraged that the msm doesn’t seem to care that an official with access to America’s most highly classified information very likely has an ongoing relationship with a foreign intelligence service. Perhaps we all ought to do our best to get this story out.

  11. J says:

    Our MSM and Politicians too often forget or ‘choose to forget’ is that whenever U.S. Classified is COMPROMISED to Foreign Intel whether it be Friend or Foe, puts U.S. citizens in jeopardy, be they U.S. Civilian or Military. When you have friends like Israel and its Intel apparatuses that willingly stab our U.S, National Security in our backs (over and over), THEY (Israeli Intel Apparatuses) then become an ENEMY of our U.S. Citizenry.
    The only other nation that comes to mind that our politicians would have let get away with the crap that Israel has, is the U.K.. However with the U.K., we BOTH have exchanged crap back-n-forth at times in both of our histories. However the U.K. have put British lives on the line for our U.S., and we have done the same for them. Israel has never done such for our U.S., it’s always been U.S. lives jeopardized on behalf of Israel.

  12. Patrick Lang says:

    Adam S.
    If wiki can be trusted Hatfill is american born and raised. The African business sounds quite bogus and is probably a creation of his imagination. Nevertheless, the extent of his lies made him a probable target in the investigation. pl

  13. walrus says:

    Information has again been posted on Smallwarsjournal.
    The general tenor of the few comments to my original submissions were:
    1. “How dare you!” Followed by denigration of the sources and the usual Anti – semitic jibe.
    2. “I know her and she is wonderful.”
    3. “So what? Everyone in the Pentagon has a political axe to grind.”
    As a dual national myself, I could not possibly see myself in such a role because the personal conflicts of interest at that policy level are in my opinion, simply massive and no amount of mental gymnastics is going to reconcile them.
    On a technical level, I’m starting to get the impression that American policy towards its allies is being influenced by the realisation that anything that is shared with Australia or Britain will be automatically demanded by Israel. A pertinent case in point is the source code (computer programs) within the F35 joint strike fighter which has been denied to all purchasers, of which Israel is one and Australia another. I can only think of one reason for this, and that is fear of the information being “re – exported” in Israeli products.

  14. The beaver says:

    Hatfill did go to Zimbabwe but as far as studying in S.A, he made that up on his résumé- confirmed by his lawyer as per

  15. par4 says:

    @JoaoAlfaiate; Don’t waste your time waiting for the MSM to report anything truly newsworthy. They have lost all credibility over the last few decades. The days of ‘Uncle Walter’ are long gone.

  16. Matthew says:

    Col: Can either you or Phil help me with these tea leaves…..
    I had a chance to talk to Michael O’Hanlon at a function last night. He catagorically stated that we have no decent military option in Iran and even he (an Iraq War booster) stated that he opposes military action.
    Does this represent the chattering in DC or does this mean that politically war with Iran is non-viable, so we should expect some false flag action to force our reluctant country into it?

  17. Patrick Lang says:

    Short of a truly massive commitment of strategic assets, there is no viable military course of action against Iran. The Israeli thing is a joke.
    That is what Gates is talking about in calling for a long term plan for dealing with Iran. pl

  18. J says:

    Regarding the obvious Hasbara eee over at Modoweiss and his/her Israeli venom about the Dreyfus affair, I’d love to see eee’s IP location. Hmmmm…Herzliya perhaps?

  19. Jackie says:

    Beaver and J,
    Do you think “eee” was getting double or triple time for his/her valiant Hasbara ops at mondoweiss?

  20. The real question is who adjudicated the background info collected for Dr. Kass from the time she was cleared for some level of classified material and separately who has determined her “need to know” for various sensitive issues involving Israel and DOD policy and conops? And what exactly are the restrictions on Israli transmittal to Russian INTEL of US classified information? If the Israelies are receiving NOFORN is that in fact being retransmitted to Russia on a regular basis? China? Iran? The latter is mentioned because of documented Israeli efforts to support Iran during the Iran Iraqi War in the 80s!

  21. Right at the end of this article from Haaretz their an interesting little quote:
    Netanyahu amenable to Palestinian state within temporary borders – Haaretz – Israel News:

    He called on the U.S. not to wait for the UN Security Council and impose severe sanctions against Iran on its own. “We prefer that the U.S. lead the confrontation with Iran,” Netanyahu said, “but Israel always reserves the right to self-defense.”

    (Emphasis in above quote added by me)

  22. walrus says:

    What is more interesting is the virtual smallwarsjournal IP.

  23. Redhand says:

    The comment by Walrus cuts straight to the heart of this problem: “As a dual national myself, I could not possibly see myself in such a role because the personal conflicts of interest at that policy level are in my opinion, simply massive and no amount of mental gymnastics is going to reconcile them.”
    There is no way a person like Kass can be expected to advocate anything contrary to her dual loyalties. Even in the absence of wrongful disclosure of classified information, the built-in conflict this person has is absolutely viral. She has no business whatsoever being in this position.
    Even more amazing is that the brass apparently doesn’t have a problem with this.

  24. VietnamVet says:

    All of the passions and hatreds humans bear will continue into the 21st century. Atomic Weapons will be obtained by states wealthy enough to afford them. The real question is what will happen to States in the era of Globalization.
    First, as more jobs go overseas, the ranks of the underemployed will continue to swell. Any nation is subject to revolt when the unemployed single males reach 30-40%; especially in a once rich nation bilked out of its wealth by financial shenanigans.
    Second, is the rise of the Multi-Nationalist: People more at home at Davos, Switzarland than Flint, Michigan, Tom Friedman acolytes. If I would hazard a wild guess, Dr. Lani Kass loyalties lie with her family and like minded persons who work for multi-national companies in particular in Israel. Since she climbed up so far at DOD, a hubris that she is one of the selected few, right is might, and finally a skill at expressing what the boss wants to hear. A Person who sets the Revolving Door spinning.

  25. The beaver says:

    He or she can be just in our backyard – most don’t work from Herzliya because the owner or admin of the blog can easily trace and track the IP.
    Most of them are the sons and daughters of the ‘refuseniks” who have managed to travel out west and are working selling arts or beautician “mud” during the day and do this in their spare time to make some cash. I read somewhere that “Yvette” has allocated some funds in his ministry of disinformation for such activities. Mind you, there are some trainees of Herzliya doing the same function but I believe they are “psy ops” working in the technology field (as usual dual citizenships) in the US and they are very active when IDF is doing something in Gaza and/or around West Bank. Plus there are some volunteers amongst those loyal to the fatherland and I experienced it when two blogs went up, three yrs ago, to axe Wolfowitz from the World Bank. You wouldn’t believe where those volunteers were working …and they were stupid enough to use their workplace equipment to spew their diatribes about how anti-semitic the bloggers were for asking Wolfy to step down.

  26. Patrick Lang says:

    I run IP traces on a lot of you. Some of this is from Herzliya. pl

  27. The beaver says:

    I believe that your blog must be one of the US TOP 10 on Herzliya’s list. The reasons are obvious and you must know them :-). Since you moderate before posting, it is not the same as some other blogs where everyone and his brother will intervene and we end up with some garbage.

  28. Jack Parsons says:

    Y’know, there are lists wandering around of Bush-era officials, including Chertoff/Abrams/Wolfowitz, have dual citizenship with Israel.
    Now that I research it, of course all I find are lists on suspect websites. Of course, I don’t have access to files in either country, but it would be nice to find things like the date the passport was issued.
    If Chertoff really is a dual citizen with any other country, swearing him in was a far greater offence than Dr. Kass is capable of.

  29. Adam L Silverman says:

    Mr. Parsons: As far as I know almost all of those lists are suspect and ultimately track back to websites like “Be Wise as Serpents” (Aryan Nations) or “” (run by an Moroccan Army officer who fled to Sweden for asylum after the Moroccan authorities went after him for being a jihadi). People on that list include members of Congress, the State Department, Department of Defense, etc. My favorite is that one of the female ambassadors on the list, I can’t remember which one, has no accompanying picture – she’s not Jewish, she’s African-American, which isn’t a bar to being Jewish but is very, very rare.

  30. “Beaver
    I run IP traces on a lot of you. Some of this is from Herzliya. pl
    Posted by: Patrick Lang”
    I thought these guys were professionals. Why wouldn’t they be using proxy servers or cut-outs?

  31. Patrick Lang says:


  32. “EAGLE
    I think I would have to agree that even the professionals get sloppy. On other sites there was much discussion of the Dubai hit: was it that they botched it or that they were smarter than all of us and did it the way they did because they knew everything? I think they were sloppy.
    Organizations age and grow flaccid and complacent with their prowess.

  33. Shi says:

    It wasnt age or prowess that made Mossad sloppy. It was arrogance and the utter assurance that anything they do/did would never be punished or suffer consequences by the intl PTB (cause they won them too)- so why sweat?
    Alas Mossad’s estimate on Dubai murder has, once again, proven accurate. No repercussions but a bit of PR scolding for the sheeple

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