The NYT’s story about how the CIA has had Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s brother Ahmed Wali on the payroll for much of the past eight years is intended to shock because Ahmed Wali has frequently been linked to drug trafficking. Well, he is also linked to his brother, which is why he is important. As the intentions and maneuverings of Afghanistan’s ruling kleptocracy more-or-less headed by Hamid must be a major concern for Washington, I would expect the CIA to make every effort to have an informant within the inner circle. Indeed, given the level of corruption within the Afghan government, I would be shocked if they hadn’t been able to pick up a top level source. I would also assume that every room in the presidential palace is wired for sound and even video to keep tabs on those rascals. Let’s face it, Afghanistan is not a nice place and we shouldn’t be there at all but as long as the US has 60,000 troops in country the CIA should be making every effort to learn what is actually going on, if only to protect our soldiers and diplomats.