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June 26, 2013

The CIA Wants Your Kids: test

Micah Zenko:

The U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) is a sprawling network of roughly 210,000 civilian and military employees across seventeen agencies as well as approximately 30,000 private contractors. With a budget of $75 billion between the national and military intelligence programs, the IC is authorized to carry out a range of activities and programs, including monitoring suspected nuclear weapons programs, killing suspected terrorists, and analyzing ongoing events for everyone from President Obama to soldiers deployed in Afghanistan.
In an effort to counter some myths and misperceptions, create positive associations, and recruit future employees, eleven of the seventeen agencies of the IC have web pages dedicated to "kids," which are equal parts informative, entertaining, creepy, and borderline inappropriate. (Beware that some of these pages have broken links, depriving American children fascinated by the National-Geospatial Intelligence Agency.)

Most U.S. government agencies also have websites for children, which are intended to provide useful information in an entertaining format. For example, the Consumer Products Safety Commission features a self-described "goatboy!" named Kidd Safety: "I'm eleven years old and live in Goatlahoma. Don't try to find it on a map. It is in the middle of nowheresville." Kidd Safety emphasizes wearing safety gear during playtime, and gives tips on ways to make your home less dangerous. A related "Hey Kids!" page includes this daunting challenge for young children: "Find out how to help save lives and protect yourself and your family."

Posted by Jim Zellmer at June 26, 2013 12:46 AM
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