The Importance of Intelligence In order to conduct good foreign policy, officials must have accurate, reliable information. When the intelligence agencies fail to get quality information, policy often fails as well. In 1960, for example, the CIA dramatically underestimated popular support for Fidel Castro’s regime in Cuba. Castro’s military easily crushed the Bay of Pigs Invasion, embarrassing the United States and creating a foreign policy disaster for new president John F. Kennedy. But astute intelligence work in 1962 provided Kennedy with the information he needed a few years later during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Recently, much has been made about what President George W. Bush and his advisers knew and did not know before deciding to invade Iraq in 2003.Domestic Influences Although the executive branch plays the primary role in conducting foreign policy, the legislative and judicial branches play roles as well.
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