‘We Might Succeed at Regime Change, but We Almost Always Fail after the Fact’

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The United States has long sought to export its system of liberal democracy abroad. In places where military juntas and dictators have risen – and U.S. national interest aligns – American intelligence, particularly the CIA, has sought to effect regime change through covert measures to include information campaigns and direct action. The Cipher Brief’s Levi Maxey spoke with Rob Richer, the former Associate Deputy Direct of Operations at the CIA, about how the U.S. might subtly, or not so subtly, go about removing unfriendly regimes abroad, and the challenges of guiding what comes after.

 The Cipher Brief: What are the criteria for determining that regime change is necessary at the policy level?

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