[What follows is a snippet from a fascinating article headlined One Year Ago — NYT Apologizes For Misreporting On Skripal Incident updated today on Dr Ludwig de Braeckeleer's Intel Today website:]
Does the CIA collect Intelligence and advise the President, or does the CIA actually write foreign policies?
As I am currently writing a short book on the Lockerbie tragedy, I will tell you a story about Bill Clinton that clearly answers this fundamental question. (...)
[I]n March of 1998, US President Clinton visited President Mandela in Johannesburg.
South African government sources say that after discussing a variety of issues, Mandela asked for Clinton’s aides to leave so that he could speak with the American president privately.
After the doors closed behind the American aides, Prince Bandar [bin Sultan of Saudi Arabia] unexpectedly dropped in for five minutes to participate in a talk about the Libyan sanctions.
“We were surprised to find how little Clinton knew about this matter,” [Jakes] Gerwel Mandela’s chief of staff] noted.
“[US National Security Advisor] Sandy Berger almost had a heart attack over having the president talk on something he hadn’t been briefed on before. It was clear he actually knew very little about the matter.” [Strategic Moral Diplomacy]
Obviously, the facts about the Lockerbie negotiations had not been relayed to the US President.
For example, President Clinton was not even aware that Libya had committed in writing to a trial under Scottish law as first suggested by Professor Black in 1994, and to the two accused being imprisoned in Scotland if convicted.