snafu—“situation normal: all f--ked up,” as soldiers used to say—was the default position for American policy.
So is this snafu an image problem, or is the real problem the reality behind the curtain—a curtain that needed to be pulled back?
1941, U.S. military slang, acronym for situation normal, all fucked up, "an expression conveying the common soldier's laconic acceptance of the disorder of war and the ineptitude of his superiors" ["Oxford English Dictionary"]. As an adjective from 1942. In public explanations the word typically was euphemised to fouled.
: It's a very snafu set-up here
: He gave it a good shot, but snafued horribly
[WWII armed forces; fr situation normal, all fucked up]