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The CIA: Fun for the Whole Family

First of all, let me say. I love my country (that’s the USA, in case you are a first time reader) and appreciate the efforts of all those in the trenches (literally and figuratively) who keep us safe. And I have no desire to get my name on any sort of list. So if any of those aforementioned first time readers are employed by a government agency of some kind, please note this blog is posted in good fun. There are plenty of bloggers who are happy to leap into the debate over whether the actions or inactions of our various spy organizations are a good or bad thing, or somewhere in between. Often that seems to depend upon one’s views on the use of assorted tools like water assisted conversational prompters… or party lines where all parties are not aware of all parties on said line. Sorry if that last sentence didn’t make sense. I’m trying to avoid setting off any flags in government web-crawlers. 😉
Me, I’m not going there. I’m just happy to poke fun at their latest endeavor at winning the hearts and minds of our people… in this case our young people. To be accurate, their kid’s site isn’t really new. It was created in 2007. It’s almost as if they had some foreknowledge of the need for a bit of image reconstruction. Oh, wait… that’s right… they’re spies. They see stuff coming way in advance. Okay, back on subject, they created a cute (well, I’m sure it’s meant to be cute) kid’s page with links for kids in K-5th Grade, 6-12th Grade, and Parents & Teachers. Oh, and games… did I mention their site had games for your kiddos? In fairness to them (the slightly disturbing recruiting effort on the 6-12th Grade page notwithstanding) it does have some helpful info for parents who want to keep their kids safe on the Internet and how to get them to say no to drugs. It also includes lesson plans for teachers on subjects such as:
  • Examples of Problem Solving
  • Gathering and Analyzing Information
  • Myths About CIA vs. Reality
  • Intelligence’s Role in War
  • Codes and Code-Breaking
  • The Importance of Accurate Communications
To quote from the introduction on their kid’s page, “The CIA is an independent US government agency that provides national security “intelligence” to key US leaders so they can make important, informed decisions. CIA employees gather intelligence (or information) in a variety of ways, not just by “spying” like you see in the movies or on TV (though we do some of that, too). On the following pages, you can read more about us, play some games, and help us solve some puzzles. Throughout this section, you’ll also see some top secret things you won’t find anywhere else.”

Anyway, a twitter message with a link to their Kid’s Page floated across my screen, and something about it struck me as both funny and slightly disturbing. So what do you think? Is it cute, helpful or just a little creepy? Well, there’s a black helicopter hovering over our house. Gotta run. Have a day.

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