My Atlantic colleague Max Fisher has posted a terrific piece thinking through how America's intelligence operation may have tilted too much towards terrorist killing rather than terror network penetration.
Fisher builds on the Los Angeles Times' Ken Dilanian's important revelations about the roll up of one of America's legendary spy operation centers. One US source told Dilanian: "Beirut Station is out of business."
The fact that Hezbollah may have tracked informants who met with CIA operatives at a pizza joint after the CIA used the codeword "PIZZA" to signal the place to meet sounds eerily similar to a CIA clerk accidentally issuing a "readable" electronic communication that listed most or all of America's intelligence assets inside Iran. Of course, according to the Pulitzer Prize New York Times writer James Risen who disclosed this CIA mistake in his book State of War, Iran rolled up that network -- much like Hezbollah will roll up (i.e., kill) all those who were compromised by this alleged "pizza" spycraft mistake.
The only caveat that I would humbly add to this coverage and to these assessments -- both of what Risen reports happened in Iran and the latest revelations about blunders in Beirut -- is that intelligence is a very complicated game.