Patterico's Pontifications

7/9/2009

Democrats Attack the CIA

Filed under: Government — DRJ @ 1:10 pm



[Guest post by DRJ]

The Democrats are still at war with the CIA now that Director Leon Panetta has advised Congress about a covert CIA operation that began shortly after 9/11, a program that had not previously been revealed. Some Democrats believe this is proof the CIA misled Congress as Speaker Nancy Pelosi previously claimed:

“House intelligence chairman Silvestre Reyes, D-Texas, is unhappy that the CIA conducted the program for nearly eight years before Panetta told Congress about it on June 24.

“These notifications have led me to conclude that this committee has been misled, has not been provided full and complete notifications, and (in at least one case) was affirmatively lied to,” Reyes wrote in a letter to the top Republican on the Committee, Rep. Pete Hoekstra, R-Mich.

To some Democrats, this is a gotcha moment: proof that Pelosi was right when she said in May that the CIA lied to her about waterboarding in September 2002 and that “they mislead Congress all the time.”

Six Democrats on the Intelligence Committee have demanded Panetta correct his May 2009 statement that the CIA didn’t mislead Congress and acknowledge Pelosi was right. The CIA responded that Panetta stands by his earlier statement, and even Reyes agrees with Panetta that “the Agency does not and will not lie to Congress.” Instead, Reyes is taking a middle ground that criticizes the CIA for failing to brief Congress on this program.

As Rick Klein, author of ABC’s The Note, puts it: “That’s a far cry from Pelosi’s statement in May that “they mislead us all the time,” but it leaves open the possibility they could have fallen short of those “high standards” of “truthfulness in reporting” when they briefed Pelosi back in September 2002.”

— DRJ

41 Responses to “Democrats Attack the CIA”

  1. This is the kind of crap that led to 9/11 in the first place.

    covering your back, getting someone back for embarrassing you, wild accusations… with the CIA and in the press, this is a deadly game they are playing. Only they won’t be the ones who die, and they know it.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  2. Before it was just Pelosi. Now we can state that the Dems are effectively at war with the CIA. And this most certainly does not even come close to proving that Pelosi was correct.

    JD (42a8c3)

  3. Democrats are at war with the CIA, or just some democrats. There are thirteen democrats on the House Intelligence Committee. Six seem rather silent.

    DavidL (02e14f)

  4. On the other hand, the CIA has entered the political arena from time to time. They were lucky that Bush didn’t want to play these games at the expense of security, and probably have just lost their feel for what the real limits are on how much they can screw with Washington.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  5. Rick Klein: “That’s a far cry from Pelosi’s statement in May that “they mislead us all the time,” but it leaves open the possibility they could have fallen short of those “high standards” of “truthfulness in reporting” when they briefed Pelosi back in September 2002.”

    It does… but if Panetta had conceded the point viz Pelosi, wouldn’t the Dems made that their headline?

    Karl (f07e38)

  6. What people do not understand is that the professional core of the intelligence community – the CIA, the NSA, and the score of other intelligence bureaus, have always been careful to maintain their relationship with Congressional oversight. There is of course a back and forth regarding exactly what amount of detail is briefed. But it is a very structured interaction that has gone on for many decades.

    That professional core of the intel community has a lot of experience in CYA. They would not dream of failing to brief Congress into the waterboarding program, and Pelosi’s claims to the contrary were ridiculous even before it was clear that Democrats on the intelligence committees would not support her lies.

    This is what makes Pelosi’s wild attempts to lie her way out of this hole she dug all the more incredible. Everyone that understands how Washington works knows she was lying from the moment her lips started to twitch.

    SPQR (72771e)

  7. The heart and soul of the current Democratic Party, the academics, press, and intelligentsia, have been at war with the CIA since the Cold War, and revelled in the Church Cmte hearings of the 70’s. This is just a continuation of that.

    AD - RtR/OS! (fea34c)

  8. The dems better be careful. The CIA is the one organization that can and will burn them.

    BDJ (62c101)

  9. Unbelievably, Bush/Cheney/etc. aren’t blamed mentioned in these stories.
    1. Does this mean that the CIA decided not to inform Congress and did it independently of the Bush White House?
    2. Panetta found out 5 months after Obama was sworn in. Is this good that something extremely important was kept hidden and couldn’t be leaked by a Congressional A-hole, or is this bad because elements of the CIA are literally operating independently of anyone in the government?
    3. Are there other operations that Panetta still doesn’t know about?
    4. How big of a part did this operation play in the USA not being attacked since 9/11?

    liontooth (c6d5a7)

  10. liontooth, how about your #2 is a false assumption – that this issue was “important”? The way that I read the article, someone found an operation that had either not been briefed to oversight com’tee or had not been fully briefed. And now Pelosi is trying to claim that that unbriefed or partially briefed operation – unrelated to the waterboarding briefing – justifies her lies.

    SPQR (72771e)

  11. I have no sympathy for either parties involved, dem leaders or CIA. They both played politics that endangered our military, I hope they destroy each other. Besides, we would be better without the current CIA; replace it with a new organization sans the bureaucratic rot.

    Ray (50c3a0)

  12. SPQR, You may be right, but I find it hard to believe that a covert op that was started right after 9/11 and has continued for 8 years would be insignificant, given the fact that it ‘slipped through’ congressional oversight. Especially the line about it was ‘controversial’ and now all of a sudden it’s being discontinued. Using your argument, the Republican’s should demand the matter be declassified.

    Regarding Pelosi, she is of course a sack of crap and at every opportunity Republican’s should constantly bring up she said the CIA misleads all the time. Sadly, there is no testosterone in the GOP.

    Here’s the excerpt.
    At issue is a hastily arranged classified briefing by Panetta to the House and Senate Intelligence Committees on June 24. Panetta called the briefing to inform the committee about a covert CIA operation that had begun shortly after September 11, 20001. Panetta himself had just found out about the program and believed Congress should have been informed of it long ago.

    The covert operation in question was counter-terrorism program. Intelligence officials tell me it has nothing to do with waterboarding or interrogation, but it was controversial enough that the CIA discontinued it last month, at about the time Panetta first learned of it.

    liontooth (c6d5a7)

  13. It’s all George Bush’s fault. His father was head of CIA and did awful, terrible things to Fidel Castro. Like father like son.

    If only Chimpy McBushHitler had allowed stem cell research, some wise Latina would have discovered a way to end world hunger, stop global warming, and bring peace to the Middle East. There would have been no financial crisis and GM would still be selling cars, unemployment would be at all time lows, and universal health care would be free the world over. 911 would still be a telephone number and not one single terrorist would have ever been waterboarded. And, overweight guys could get a date every now and then.

    Drat that evil Karl Rove! Without him the world would be a better place for spotted owls and fat guys. And, double drat that Sarah Palin, who does she think she is anyway? She makes Democrat women look like little Janet Renos. She’s scary and bad, bad, bad, almost a bad as Shrub. She should quit shooting innocent fish too, it’s just not nice.

    Oh yeah, Please remember to sign the petition to ban handguns. People don’t kill people, guns do. Courage.

    Ropelight (bb3af5)

  14. It would be hilarious if the program they were hiding was “Operation Convince POTUS Iraq has WMD”.

    MayBee (5ff8b1)

  15. House intelligence chairman Silvestre Reyes, D-Texas, is unhappy that the CIA conducted the program for nearly eight years before Panetta told Congress about it on June 24.

    Leon’s response really only has to be “Apparently the CIA didn’t want the NYT printing the details…”

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  16. Fun to see people who spent the past 8 years trashing the CIA defending them and vice versa.

    Brolic Johnson (280b11)

  17. CIA deserves POTUS and Libtards after their shameless drive to discredit and destroy GWB.

    HeavenSent (641cde)

  18. As Rick Klein, author of ABC’s The Note, puts it: “That’s a far cry from Pelosi’s statement in May that “they mislead us all the time,” but it leaves open the possibility they could have fallen short of those “high standards” of “truthfulness in reporting” when they briefed Pelosi back in September 2002.”

    This is a far cry from exonerating Pelosi of lying about what she knew about enhanced interrogation,her support of it,and backing up her accusation that the CIA lied to her.

    None of what Pelosi has screwed herself in the publics eye with and with the CIA has anything to do with not exposing some covert operation.

    It has to do with her politicizing National Security to cover her support of Bush’s policies with her move on/code pink voting constituents.

    First of all,how does exposing Obama’s pick for the head of the CIA as a liar help the democrats:

    Panetta to CIA employees: We told Pelosi the truth

    http://www.politico.com/blogs/glennthrush/0509/Panetta_to_CIA_employees_We_told_Pelosi_the_truth.html?showall

    CIA Director Leon Panetta just sent a stern message to his employees defending the agency against Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s criticisms.
    His message: We didn’t mislead Congress; stay focused on your job.

    Panetta’s note was sent to reporters via the CIA press office. Here’s the key graph:

    Let me be clear: It is not our policy or practice to mislead Congress. That is against our laws and our values. As the Agency indicated previously in response to Congressional inquiries, our contemporaneous records from September 2002 indicate that CIA officers briefed truthfully on the interrogation of Abu Zubaydah, describing “the enhanced techniques that had been employed.” Ultimately, it is up to Congress to evaluate all the evidence and reach its own conclusions about what happened.”


    Now we have democrats “framing” quotes from Panetta contradicting this:


    Panetta Testified CIA Misled Congress,

    Dems Say
    Letter signed by seven Democratic members of the House Intelligence Committee asks the CIA director to ‘publicly correct’ an earlier statement affirming the CIA’s truthfulness

    FOXNews.com
    Wednesday, July 08, 2009
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/07/08/house-democrat-joins-pelosi-accusing-cia-misleading-lying-congress/

    WASHINGTON — CIA Director Leon Panetta told Congress last month that senior CIA officials have concealed significant actions and misled lawmakers repeatedly since 2001, the chairman and other members of the House Intelligence Committee said in letters revealed Wednesday.

    So now on top of Pelosi being caught lying to the country on National television,the democratic appointee to head the CIA is now “looking” like he may be lying to.

    If Panetta really said this and the context of this is correct,this only compounds the problem for democrats on this issue.It does not exonerate Pelosi in any way:

    Pelosi’s own aide told her about enhanced interrogation including waterboarding:

    Report: Aide Told Pelosi of Waterboarding Use
    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was told in February 2003 by her intelligence aide, Michael Sheehy, that waterboarding was used on CIA detainee Abu Zubaydah, according to a report.

    FOXNews.com
    Wednesday, May 13, 2009
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/05/12/house-majority-leader-congressional-hearings-explore-pelosis-interrogation/

    How does Panetta being exposed as a liar help Pelosi rectify that she said she knew nothing but her own aide exposed this as a lie.

    This is a good breakdown of Pelosi’s spin and lies on this issue:

    2009 Pulitzer Prize Winner


    We were not, I repeat, were not told that waterboarding or any of these other enhanced interrogation methods were used.”


    Nancy Pelosi on Thursday, April 23rd, 2009 in a news conference.
    CIA documents say Speaker Pelosi was told about enhanced interrogation techniques
    http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2009/may/12/nancy-pelosi/cia-documents-claim-speaker-pelosi-was-told-about-/

    At PolitiFact, we normally would be reluctant to make a Truth-O-Meter ruling in a he-said, she-said situation, but in this case, the evidence goes beyond the competing accounts from Pelosi and Goss. We are persuaded by the CIA timeline, which the agency says is based on “an extensive review of (the CIA’s) electronic and hardcopy files.”
    It’s also important to note that the timeline that contradicts Pelosi was put together at the behest of an administration controlled by her own party. That document provides compelling — albeit sparsely worded — evidence that Pelosi’s recollection is incorrect.

    This slaps of desperation on the part of Pelosi and democrats that are trying to cover for her.

    It will not be a surprise to learn that what Panetta said in private (funny how top secret documents become public with no outrage from liberals when they benefit democrats) is being taken out of context to be used as talking points for their friends in the MSM.

    Either way,figuring out whether Obama’s CIA appointee is a liar,or that the CIA conducted a program that they did not brief Congress on,does not exonerate Pelosi and her spinning and lying in any way.

    Baxter Greene (8035ae)

  19. There was a big controvery over the destruction of video tapes of “enhanced interrogations” of those “high-value” detainees; perhaps what we really need is the video taping of CIA briefings of Congresskritters?

    AD - RtR/OS! (fea34c)

  20. The O’Dumbo era. One democrat lies and thousands line up to kiss their a** and lie for them. We are in deep doo doo. No one can trust their teenagers around a democrat. Slick Willie and now O’Dumbo ogling the teen daughter of a foreign president are proof of that. To be a democrat today you must be a slimey animal without any morals. Suck it up fools, you elected him and he’s ruining you financially and morally.

    Scrapiron (996c34)

  21. Everyone knows that this is Panetta covering for Pelosi while trying to maintain some semblance of control over the CIA at the behest of his masters.

    It’s more obvious than Kirstie Alley going off her Jenny Craig diet.

    But the show, that is the comedy of the current President, must go on and everyone has to pretend it remains funny.

    Despite the criticism heaped on the previous president, Bush was funny, at times, in a comedic sense. The current President is funny in a tragic sense — all the time. And so it goes.

    Ag80 (3acbfd)

  22. Don’t worry yourselves about what this particular program was. Odds are it will be revealed by the NY Times in the Sunday Edition, thereby compromising national security and jeopardizing lives, all for the sake of “blaming Bush, Cheney, Rumsfield, et al.”

    And it will have leaked from the House Reject Committee on Intelligence.

    Bill M (c5889b)

  23. #1- This is the kind of crap that led to 9/11 in the first place. Uh… presidents on vacation clearing brush and not heeding reports titled ‘Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S.’ might have a little more to do with it. But then the chaparral was dense that August in Crawford, wasn’t it.

    DCSCA (9d1bb3)

  24. Uh… presidents on vacation clearing brush and not heeding reports titled ‘Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S.’

    Why did Bill Clinton let in 19 terrorists to begin with?

    liontooth (c6d5a7)

  25. #

    #1- This is the kind of crap that led to 9/11 in the first place. Uh… presidents on vacation clearing brush and not heeding reports titled ‘Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S.’ might have a little more to do with it. But then the chaparral was dense that August in Crawford, wasn’t it.

    Comment by DCSCA — 7/9/2009 @ 10:56 pm

    People who actually know what they are talking about would not be so stupid as to cite a memo determined by DEMOCRATS and Republicans as containing “no actionable” intelligence.
    It’s called the 9/11 commission report, you might want to read it.

    Then get back to us about why your democratic hero Bill Clinton had over 10 chances to take Osama out but choose not to.Including turning down
    having Osama turned over on a silver platter from the Sudan.
    Of course Bill said he was told it was not a good idea to take the Sudan offer,by guess who genius…Susan Rice,Obama’s UN appointee.

    So keep on whining about some memo that contained no new actionable intelligence from the Clinton era,ignore the democrats massive amount of failures ,and then watch Obama ride Bush’s coattails in implementing his policies in the War on Terror.

    Baxter Greene (8035ae)

  26. Uh… presidents on vacation clearing brush and not heeding reports titled ‘Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S.’ might have a little more to do with it. But then the chaparral was dense that August in Crawford, wasn’t it.

    These talking points have been debunked so thoroughly, it’s surprising you even try to run them by here.

    First, Bush was not on vacation in August 2001. He just wasn’t in Washington. Congress was not in session that entire month, so there was no legislation being passed, so the President didn’t really need to be in Washington. If you check Bush’s schedule for that month, you’ll find pretty much every day was a working day for him. BTW, this is true of any President: they really don’t get days off.

    Second, the whole “Bin Laden determined to strike US” bit is overstated. That had been true for years. It rose to the level of “the sun comes up in the East”, as far as intelligence reports go.

    As has been pointed out, that Presidential Daily Briefing contained nothing specific, just very general bits.

    Here’s the briefing

    Why don’t you tell us all what you would have done with just the information contained in that briefing, and no benefit of hindsight.

    Steverino (69d941)

  27. International Man of Parody’s BDS is flaming up again. Alright, let’s play alomg. What should Bush have done based on the words “Bin Laden determined to strike in US”? The “vacation” meme is just tired old Leftist claptrap. Does Teh One still have contacy when he jets off to Hawaii?

    JD (584916)

  28. I do sometimes wonder whether people that refer to that memo have ever read it. Here is the relevant bit regarding NYC:

    A clandestine source said in 1998 that a bin Laden cell in New York was recruiting Muslim-American youth for attacks.

    We have not been able to corroborate some of the more sensational threat reporting, such as that from a —- service in 1998 saying that Bin Laden wanted to hijack a U.S. aircraft to gain the release of “Blind Sheikh” Omar Abdel Rahman and other U.S.-held extremists.

    Nevertheless, FBI information since that time indicates patterns of suspicious activity in this country consistent with preparations for hijackings or other types of attacks, including recent surveillance of federal buildings in New York.

    The reference to a hijacking assumes that they would hold the passengers hostage and demand the release of WTC bomber Omar Abdel Rahman. It’s based on the actual, historical precedence for terrorist hijackings. This did not happen on 9/11. Muslim youth in NY were not involved in 9/11.
    Federal buildings in NY were not targeted on 9/11.

    Seriously, “hijackings or other types of attacks” just doesn’t give you enough to act on. People would have screamed fascist bloody murder had BushCo put into place the kind of restrictions we have today on air travel. We would have had 3 1/2 years of ridicule on late night TV about taking your shoes off to fly, and John Kerry would have made his first campaign promise to repeal these “authoritarian travel regulations from the Bush regime.”

    Get a grip, people.

    carlitos (730478)

  29. These talking points have been debunked so thoroughly, it’s surprising you even try to run them by here.

    No, nothing surprises me about the troll and it shouldn’t surprise you. He lives for attention. The less he gets, the less he will waste electrons and pixels.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  30. Hey, DJR, let me know when they leak the name of a CIA operative to the press as part of their “war” on the CIA.

    timb (229fff)

  31. OMG, timmah. That is hysterical. I am sure Armitage is shaking in his boots at your accusations.

    JD (6ec4f0)

  32. Hey, asshat, since he copped to it without lying, then I doubt it. But, when you guys get outraged at Libby and Rove calling around town to disseminate a covert operative’s name, then I’ll remember to be outraged when the CIA lies to Congress, admits it, and then it’s called a Democratic attack on the CIA.

    Seriously, do you ever tire of being wrong?

    timb (229fff)

  33. DCSCA now attempts to pump hot air into a long deflated meme above. The International Man of Parody parodies himself.

    timb, who was it that leaked the name of the CIA interrogator of KSM to the New York Times? And by the way, it was Armitage who first mentioned her name and she was not a “covert operative”.

    So we know who the asshat is. You.

    SPQR (72771e)

  34. SPQR – It is what it does.

    JD (5d42dc)

  35. Talk about being wrong timbo, look at your own self why don’t ya?

    Aldrich Ames outed Valerie Plame back in 1994, years before she arranged to send her sleazeball husband on the junket to Africa. Plame had made the transition from covert field work to middle management long before her husband’s lies made the newspapers.

    You’re the asshat here.

    Ropelight (bb3af5)

  36. I’ll never forgive Rove and Libby for putting Valery on the cover of Vanity Fair….
    Oh, wait…that was her husband who did that.
    Well, he must have been compelled to by a Rovian mind-meld.

    AD - RtR/OS! (60efa6)

  37. Don’t hold your breath for Timmah! to come back and respond to your answers – he just drops his little turdlets and returns about a month later to spew more of the same.

    Dmac (e6d1c2)

  38. I think we should be more respectful of Tim. After all, he is 40 years old.

    Of course, Michael Jackson was 50 but that’s different.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  39. Absolutely. Michael is Black…or, used to be.

    AD - RtR/OS! (60efa6)

  40. I was in the 46th floor of a skyscraper in Boston the morning of 9/11 and feared for my life not knowing what the next target would be. I am thankful that the Govt. did the right thing by searching high and low and using all the means available to them to protect me and my fellow Americans from further attacks. Thanks again GW

    holding my breath on 46 (dfe628)

  41. I’ll remember to be outraged when the CIA lies to Congress, admits it,…

    The article never made the claim that the CIA admitted they lied to Congress. Clearly you’re a product of government run schools. I can only imagine what the ‘products’ of government run health care will be like.

    liontooth (c6d5a7)


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