#Benghazi: CIA polygraphing witnesses to keep them from talking? Updated.

August 2, 2013
American blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

American blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

Late yesterday, CNN and journalist Jake Tapper (1) broke jaw-dropping news about the Benghazi massacre, in which four Americans died. First came the revelation that the consulate and the CIA annex were headquarters for around 35 people, many of them CIA operatives. In addition to the four killed, seven were reported injured, some severely. I don’t know CIA operations, of course, but having 35 people in place sounds like something major was underway. We’ll come back to that.

The head-turner in this, however, is the news of how the CIA is handling its agents involved in Benghazi — polygraphing them to make sure they don’t talk to Congress or the press (Emphases added):

Sources now tell CNN dozens of people working for the CIA were on the ground that night, and that the agency is going to great lengths to make sure whatever it was doing, remains a secret. 

CNN has learned the CIA is involved in what one source calls an unprecedented attempt to keep the spy agency’s Benghazi secrets from ever leaking out.

Since January, some CIA operatives involved in the agency’s missions in Libya, have been subjected to frequent, even monthly polygraph examinations, according to a source with deep inside knowledge of the agency’s workings.

The goal of the questioning, according to sources, is to find out if anyone is talking to the media or Congress.

It is being described as pure intimidation, with the threat that any unauthorized CIA employee who leaks information could face the end of his or her career.

In exclusive communications obtained by CNN, one insider writes, “You don’t jeopardize yourself, you jeopardize your family as well.”

Another says, “You have no idea the amount of pressure being brought to bear on anyone with knowledge of this operation.”

“Agency employees typically are polygraphed every three to four years. Never more than that,” said former CIA operative and CNN analyst Robert Baer.

In other words, the rate of the kind of polygraphs alleged by sources is rare.

“If somebody is being polygraphed every month, or every two months it’s called an issue polygraph, and that means that the polygraph division suspects something, or they’re looking for something, or they’re on a fishing expedition. But it’s absolutely not routine at all to be polygraphed monthly, or bi-monthly,” said Baer.

Think about that: the CIA is administering “lie-detector” tests to make sure its employees aren’t telling the truth. Wha…??

Once again, I’m reminded of the immortal words of Vince Lombardi:

Whatever’s going on, it’s clear the CIA doesn’t want anyone to know about it, not even their (supposed) overseers on Capitol Hill. Representative Frank Wolf (R-VA), whose district includes CIA HQ, noticed a suspicious change in behavior soon after Benghazi:

In the aftermath of the attack, Wolf said he was contacted by people closely tied with CIA operatives and contractors who wanted to talk.

Then suddenly, there was silence.

“Initially they were not afraid to come forward. They wanted the opportunity, and they wanted to be subpoenaed, because if you’re subpoenaed, it sort of protects you, you’re forced to come before Congress. Now that’s all changed,” said Wolf.

Polygraphing and implied threats would tend to do that, no?

Can’t wait to see Jay Carney try to dismiss this as a “phony scandal.”

Back to the question of what all those CIA personnel were doing in Benghazi, in addition to the publicly stated reason of trying to help the Libyan government reacquire weapons lost during their civil war. Thirty-five people would imply a big operation, I should think. What are the other possibilities? One that occurred to me was some sort of operation aimed at al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), a formal ally of al Qaeda, and other North African jihad groups. Keep in mind that Obama’s Big Adventure in Libya unleashed thousands of weapons from Qaddafi’s arsenals, along with jihadists who wanted to spread true Islamic government to other lucky countries. Mali was nearly destroyed because of Obama’s blundering. Maybe this station in Benghazi was involved in efforts to contain and eliminate this plague. It would certainly be a good location.

But then why the effort to hide it from Congress? (2)

Analyst Tom Rogan (h/t Adam Baldwin) considers the possibilities and, in addition to AQIM, speculates that the Benghazi outpost (as rumored) was involved in arming Syrian rebels or other covert operations there:

2) Another possibility is that the CIA was using Benghazi as a jump-off point for Special Activities Division (SAD) operations inside Syria. Flying from Benghazi into a forward staging position in Turkey would require a relatively short hop across the Mediterranean. Therefore, from a geo-strategic point of view (and in the context of the operational security concern), it would make a near-ideal staging post for covert deployments. Reliable reporting (see Ambinder and Grady’s The Deep State) indicates that the US Government has deployed covert military/intelligence teams inside Iran on a number of occasions over the past few years. In addition, prior to the 2003 invasion of Iraq, we know that the US deployed small groups of personnel deep inside Iraq in order to gather targeting intelligence. So, if this possibility is the case, it wouldn’t be something new. In addition, it would make at least some sense. The Obama Administration only announced that they would provide weapons to select Syrian rebels in mid-June. It’s therefore very possible (and quite likely) that CIA officers were on the ground in Syria before that date – gathering intelligence on the best rebel forces to support and developing foundations for the future establishment of a weapons logistical train.

Again, keeping this secret would be rational, if only to keep from provoking a Syrian retaliation and putting our clients in Libya on the spot. Rogan concludes that this Libyan operation, whatever it was, must have required a presidential finding –Obama’s signature–  and notification of senior members of Congress.

But, I ask with a raised eyebrow, if that’s the case, if senior members of Congress, which would include the chairmen and ranking members of the intel committees, already knew, and assuming Tapper is right, why is Langley pressuring everyone to shut up — even to Congress?

Good question. There are lots of good questions about Benghazi and, so far, too few answers.

via the Tatler

Footnotes:
(1) That’s right, progressives: not someone you can dismiss as a tool of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy. Hurts, doesn’t it?
(2) In fairness, I can think of one good reason: Congress leaks like a sieve. If we are conducting operations against AQ/AQIM, admitting to Benghazi might jeopardize other efforts. Of course, bungling and CYA could also explain it.

UPDATE: Hiding witnesses and creating aliases??

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Benghazi Consulate Massacre: questions about the CIA’s mission there

November 13, 2012

One of the interesting revelations in all the tawdry news surrounding former CIA Director Petraeus’ affair with Paula Broadwell (1) concerns the mission of the CIA annex in Benghazi, the location to which diplomats were whisked after the consulate was overrun and where two former SEALs lost their lives defending them. According to Petraeus’s former mistress, the CIA was running a secret prison at the site, and the attack may have been a raid to rescue the prisoners. Speaking at an alumni symposium at the university of Denver, she:

…confirmed the reports on Fox News that the CIA annex asked for a special unit, the Commander in Chief’s In Extremis Force, to come and assist it. She also said that the force could indeed have reinforced the consulate, and that Petraeus knew all of this, but was not allowed to talk to the press because of his position in the CIA.

“The challenge has been the fog of war, and the greater challenge is that it’s political hunting season, and so this whole thing has been turned into a very political sort of arena, if you will,” she said. “The fact that came out today is that the ground forces there at the CIA annex, which is different from the consulate, were requesting reinforcements.

“They were requesting the – it’s called the C-in-C’s In Extremis Force – a group of Delta Force operators, our very, most talented guys we have in the military. They could have come and reinforced the consulate and the CIA annex. Now, I don’t know if a lot of you have heard this but the CIA annex had actually taken a couple of Libyan militia members prisoner, and they think that the attack on the consulate was an attempt to get these prisoners back. It’s still being vetted.

“The challenging thing for Gen. Petraeus is that in his new position, he’s not allowed to communicate with the press. So he’s known all of this – they had correspondence with the CIA station chief in Libya, within 24 hours they kind of knew what was happening.”

“Commander in Chief’s In Extremis Force” refers, I believe, to a force controlled by the regional commander, in this case the head of Africom, not forces directly controlled by the President. It should also be noted that, later in her talk, Broadwell gave some support to the infamous YouTube video as one source for the disaster: the Libyan jihadis, seeing the disturbances in Cairo and elsewhere, decided this would give them good cover for their real motive.

The CIA denied had earlier denied refusing to render aid to its Benghazi station, and now denies maintaining a secret prison, but Jennifer Griffin, a reporter who’s been doing real journalism on Benghazi, maintains that there was a CIA prison there and that it contained more than just a couple of Libyans:

According to multiple intelligence sources who have served in Benghazi, there were more than just Libyan militia members who were held and interrogated by CIA contractors at the CIA annex in the days prior to the attack. Other prisoners from additional countries in Africa and the Middle East were brought to this location.

The Libya annex was the largest CIA station in North Africa, and two weeks prior to the attack, the CIA was preparing to shut it down. Most prisoners, according to British and American intelligence sources, had been moved two weeks earlier.

The CIA, though, categorically denied these allegations, saying: “The CIA has not had detention authority since January 2009, when Executive Order 13491 was issued. Any suggestion that the agency is still in the detention business is uninformed and baseless.”

So no we have a massive case of “he said, she said,” only involving much more than marital infidelity. James Taranto quotes Griffin to ask some pertinent questions:

Griffin concludes with the question: “What was the CIA really doing in Benghazi . . ., and who in the White House knew exactly what the CIA was up to?” Did the CIA act in contravention of the executive order, and if so, did the president approve? Did the order create a need to keep up appearances that led to the deaths of Americans in the field?

So now, on top of the Benghazi massacre, we need to know if our CIA Director was sharing highly classified information pertaining to our war with Islamism with his mistress. And, implied in Griffin and Taranto’s questions, did the President even know? Apparently Attorney General Holder, to whom the FBI reports, knew about the investigation for months… but didn’t tell Obama that his CIA chief was potentially severely compromised? Really?

But, then again, people apparently don’t tell Holder about important things, either.

This administration’s talent for being left in the dark is impressive, no?

Maybe it’s time for the relevant committees of Congress to shine some light on that darkness.

Footnote:
(1) I honestly don’t give a rat’s rear-end about Petraeus’ infidelity, other than it disgraces an otherwise stellar career and shows a profound lack of judgment and sense on the part of someone entrusted with a critical role in our nation’s security. We are owed answers here, and I don’t care who Congress has to subpoena to get it.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Benghazi Consulate Massacre: lawmakers briefed on al Qaeda role two days after the attack

October 29, 2012

US Consulate, Benghazi

And yet the White House and its spokespeople maintained for weeks afterward that the attack on September 11th was the result of a mob demonstrating against a video, a spontaneous “happening,” like a 60s love-in. They went so far as to have our UN Ambassador, Susan Rice, proclaim this on all five Sunday shows the week after the attack. Secretary Clinton swore to get the maker of the video. And Obama himself repeatedly blamed the video in his speech before the UN General Assembly on September 25th.

So why, then, were the FBI and the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) telling lawmakers it was likely an al Qaeda operation on September 13th, just two days after the massacre?

Two days after the deadly Libya terror attack, representatives of the FBI and National Counterterrorism Center gave Capitol Hill briefings in which they said the evidence supported an Al Qaeda or Al Qaeda-affiliated attack, Fox News has learned.

The description of the attack by those in the Sept. 13 briefings stands in stark contrast to the now controversial briefing on Capitol Hill by CIA Director David Petraeus the following day — and raises even more questions about why Petraeus described the attack as tied to a demonstration.

The Sept. 13 assessment was based on intercepts that included individuals, believed to have participated in the attack, who were celebratory — as well as a claim of responsibility.

FBI and NCTC also briefed that there were a series of Al Qaeda training camps just outside of Benghazi, where the attack occurred and resulted in the deaths of four Americans. The area was described as a hotbed for the militant Ansar al-Sharia as well as Al Qaeda in North Africa.

Fox News is told there was no mention of a demonstration or any significant emphasis on the anti-Islam video that for days was cited by administration officials as a motivating factor.

The FBI and NCTC did not immediately respond to a request from Fox News for comment.

(Emphasis added)

This raises several troubling issues, including the recurrent question of why the administration stuck to its ludicrous story about an obscure video being at fault for weeks after the event, even when their own counter-terrorism people were saying otherwise. Remember, the only target of this… “fable spinning” was us, the American people. Everyone else, including al Qaeda, knew the truth.

My own guess is that the Obama administration, facing a tight election and having promoted itself as the slayers of bin Laden and the team that beat al Qaeda, now found themselves facing proof that not only were they wrong, but fatally so. In a panic they latched onto some reports about this video, which had been mentioned in jihadist forums in the weeks preceding the attack, and decided that would be their scapegoat, so they could avoid blame for their incompetence. And once the lie was told, they couldn’t abandon it without looking even more foolish, until they were finally forced to, and then lied about having lied.

The main issue raised by this report, though, is the role of CIA Director Petraeus, who apparently insisted to Congress that fault had to lie with the video and its maker, and that the deaths of our people were the result of demonstrations that got out of hand. We have to ask ourselves, and Congress must ask Director Petraeus, why he…

…characterized the attack as more consistent with a flash mob, where the militants showed up spontaneously with RPGs. Petraeus downplayed to lawmakers the skill needed to fire mortars, which also were used in the attack and to some were seen as evidence of significant pre-planning. As Fox News previously reported, four mortars were fired — two missed the annex, but the mortar team re-calibrated and the next two mortars were direct hits.

Fox News is told that Petraeus seemed wedded to the narrative that the attack was linked to a demonstration and was spontaneous as opposed to pre-meditated.

Fox News is told that Petraeus was “absolute” in his description with few, if any, caveats. 

Petraeus, of course, is the architect of our victory in Iraq in 2007-08, literally saving was was becoming a losing effort, and so he has a lot of credit banked with Congress. One can understand their anger at being given such a faulty, even nonsensical, report by someone they trusted, presented as fact when it flew in the face of information being reported by other intelligence agencies.  It calls into doubt his judgment, and perhaps his integrity.

There are many, many questions unanswered about the massacre in Benghazi, from the decisions leading up to it, to the events and decisions made that night and the evident coverup that’s taken place since.

To that list of questions we now have to add the role of the CIA Director.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Benghazi Consulate Massacre: Petraeus throws Obama under the bus

October 26, 2012

I’ve said before the intelligence community will not play the sap for Obama. And now The Weekly Standard reports (via JWF) that CIA Director Petraeus has thrown his boss under the bus:

Breaking news on Benghazi: the CIA spokesman, presumably at the direction of CIA director David Petraeus, has put out this statement: “No one at any level in the CIA told anybody not to help those in need; claims to the contrary are simply inaccurate. ”

As Bill Kristol writes, the decision to do nothing in Benghazi had to have been a presidential decision. (If not, that has its own scary implications.)

This is unraveling fast. You can bet more will come out before the election.

The spooks won’t play the sap.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Benghazi Consulate Massacre: CIA refused help?

October 26, 2012

“You’re on your own.”

Message from the Obama Administration to all overseas personnel: If you get into a jam, the cavalry isn’t coming:

Fox News has learned from sources who were on the ground in Benghazi that an urgent request from the CIA annex for military back-up during the attack on the U.S. Consulate and subsequent attack several hours later was denied by U.S. officials — who also told the CIA operators twice to “stand down” rather than help the ambassador’s team when shots were heard at approximately 9:40 p.m. in Benghazi on Sept. 11.

Former Navy SEAL Tyrone Woods was part of a small team who was at the CIA annex about a mile from the U.S. Consulate where Ambassador Chris Stevens and his team came under attack. When he and others heard the shots fired, they informed their higher-ups at the annex to tell them what they were hearing and requested permission to go to the consulate and help out. They were told to “stand down,” according to sources familiar with the exchange. Soon after, they were again told to “stand down.”

Woods and at least two others ignored those orders and made their way to the Consulate which at that point was on fire. Shots were exchanged. The quick reaction force from the CIA annex evacuated those who remained at the Consulate and Sean Smith, who had been killed in the initial attack. They could not find the ambassador and returned to the CIA annex at about midnight.

At that point, they called again for military support and help because they were taking fire at the CIA safe house, or annex. The request was denied. There were no communications problems at the annex, according those present at the compound. The team was in constant radio contact with their headquarters. In fact, at least one member of the team was on the roof of the annex manning a heavy machine gun when mortars were fired at the CIA compound. The security officer had a laser on the target that was firing and repeatedly requested back-up support from a Specter gunship, which is commonly used by U.S. Special Operations forces to provide support to Special Operations teams on the ground involved in intense firefights. The fighting at the CIA annex went on for more than four hours — enough time for any planes based in Sigonella Air base, just 480 miles away, to arrive. Fox News has also learned that two separate Tier One Special operations forces were told to wait, among them Delta Force operators.

(Emphases added)

And why were they denied help? From the Los Angeles Times:

U.S. military commanders decided against sending a rescue mission to Benghazi during the attack against the American diplomatic mission last month because they didn’t have enough clear intelligence to justify the risk to the troops, Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta said Thursday.

Panetta, in his fullest comments yet on the attack that killed the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other Americans, said Pentagon officials were aware of the assault by armed militants soon after it began Sept. 11. But he said they never had more than fragmentary information during the course of the attack.

The “basic principle is that you don’t deploy forces into harm’s way without knowing what’s taking place,” Panetta told reporters at a Pentagon briefing. “This happened within a few hours, and it was really over before we had the opportunity to really know what was happening.

He said he, Army Gen. Carter Ham, head of U.S. Africa Command, and Army Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, all believed“very strongly that we could not put troops at risk in that situation.

(Emphases added, h/t The Anchoress)

I have a one-word response to Secretary Panetta, but I’ll leave it to the reader’s imagination.

No opportunity to know what was happening? Go read that FOX article, again. They were in constant radio contact with the CIA annex, from which the brass in DC were told at least twice that they needed help — and I bet they got plenty of detail about what was going on. They knew enough to move a Special Forces team from Central Europe to Sigonella — and then told them to stand down?

Remember, the attack started at 9:24 PM local time. Woods and Dougherty, the former Navy SEALs who defied orders in order to rescue their fellow Americans, weren’t killed until 4 AM, when they were taken out by a mortar round. That’s more than seven hours after the fighting started, yet Panetta says they didn’t know enough?

This is disgraceful. My father was in the US Navy in China in the 1930s. The place was a bigger mess than Libya: weak government, bandits everywhere, civil war. It regularly happened, he would tell me me, that Americans and other foreigners would find themselves in danger, so his ship’s CO would form an armed shore party to go deal with it.

No hesitations over not having enough intelligence, no qualms about risks. American lives and property were in danger, you’re the military and you go protect them.

And don’t tell me Panetta and Ham made these decisions on their own. We know the White House was in the loop. On something this big, the decision to intervene would have gone to Obama. Maybe he was getting warnings from the DoD about not risking “another Mogadishu,”, which, yes, is something he would have to take into account, but that was his moment to exercise leadership and say “find a way.”

But he didn’t. While our consulate burned and our people begged for help before dying, our forces were told to stand down.

Imagine what those people were thinking. Did they hold out hope that help would yet come? Or had they resigned themselves to their fates and decided to sell their lives dearly, knowing they had been disowned by their own government?

At the memorial service on the return of our dead to America, Vice President Joe Biden asked the father of Tyrone Woods, one of the SEALs killed in Benghazi, “Did your son always have balls the size of cue balls?”

I don’t know, Joe. But I do know your boss and his administration have none.

LINKS: More at Hot Air (and here), Pirate’s Cove, Q and O, and Power Line. Legal Insurrection thinks this revelation came from the CIA, which is refusing to take the fall. Earlier on Public Secrets, “Where was the military help?

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


This can’t be good

January 13, 2010

A White House so paranoid and nervous that they’re blaming their handpicked (and highly respected) general for the slowness of the surge deployment to Afghanistan?

The Blame Game – Part XXVI

“WASHINGTON — Senior White House advisers are frustrated by what they say is the Pentagon’s slow pace in deploying 30,000 additional troops to Afghanistan and its inability to live up to an initial promise to have all of the forces in the country by next summer, senior administration officials said Friday. [snip]

One administration official said that the White House believed that top Pentagon and military officials misled them by promising to deploy the 30,000 additional troops by the summer. General McChrystal and some of his top aides have privately expressed anger at that accusation, saying that they are being held responsible for a pace of deployments they never thought was realistic, the official said.”

Ask yourself this: what possible motive would President Obama’s hand-picked general have for misleading the President about the pace of deployment to Afghanistan? There is none.

Now ask yourself what possible motive would the Obama administration would have for selling the public on a pace of military deployments that was unrealistic?

Yet we find administration sources accusing members of the United States military of lying to them in the pages of the New York Times. It’s more than tacky. More than dishnorable. It’s downright scary.

Yeah, you ain’t kidding. Click through to read also about the “speculation” that the intelligence community set Obama up to look bad by withholding information about the Pantybomber. Some of these guys must be wearing tinfoil hats:

Not that I think it’s impossible for elements of the intelligence community to sabotage an administration’s agenda, but typically this is done to conservative administrations. Witness all the leaks against the Bush policies, the controversy over the execrable Joe Wilson and his wife, Valerie Plame, and the laughable 2007 National Intelligence Estimate that torpedoed Bush policy toward Iran and now is disavowed by the Obamatons.

In Obama the intelligence bureaucracy got the guy they wanted and, while they are very unhappy with Obama’s willingness to let his creature Holder torment them, the kinds of things they’re being accused of don’t fit the pattern.

And to accuse a well-regarded general of placing petty revenge ahead of the nation’s interests and his solders’ safety? Scary and crazy.

Sometimes I think Obama may be a replay of the worst of both Carter and Nixon.

(hat tip: Ed Driscoll)


A screw-up of colossal proportions

November 9, 2009

Why was this man still in the Army?

Officials: U.S. Aware of Hasan Efforts to Contact al Qaeda

U.S. intelligence agencies were aware months ago that Army Major Nidal Malik Hasan was attempting to make contact with people associated with al Qaeda, two American officials briefed on classified material in the case told ABC News.

It is not known whether the intelligence agencies informed the Army that one of its officers was seeking to connect with suspected al Qaeda figures, the officials said.

Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-MI) said the CIA had, so far, refused to brief the intelligence committees on what, if any, knowledge they had about Hasan’s efforts.

This is infuriating. If indeed no one in intelligence told the Army they had a potential jihadi in their midst, then this is the same kind of boneheaded, mindboggling, stupid lack of communication that lead to 9-11. The one major lesson that should have been learned from that atrocity was the need for constant communication and information-sharing between the security services. Instead, we got a new and unnecessary cabinet department in Homeland Security, a reshuffled bureaucracy, and crucial information that sits in some desk-jockey’s inbox gathering dust.

And 12 people are dead because of it; twelve families have had gaping holes ripped in their lives that will never close.

Congressman Hoekstra has every reason to be angry at CIA Director Panetta and DNI Blair for refusing to provide a briefing on what their agencies  knew. I should hope Congressman Reyes, the House Intelligence Committee Chairman, is angry, too. It’s time for subpoenas to start flying. If this report is true, or if Intelligence passed on the information and the Army did nothing, then heads should roll and careers be ended.

My God. Will we ever learn? And how many more have to die before we do?

(hat tip: Exurban League)

LINKS: Hot Air, Sister Toldjah.


Quote of the day

August 25, 2009

I don’t have much patience or understanding for people who play games with national security for political benefit, so let me dismiss the political strategy of this outrage by saying it once again demonstrates the danger of believing your own political spin, and taking the lovestruck panting of a sycophantic media seriously. Real Americans are not anxious to punish the people who shut down al-Qaeda’s domestic operations. While liberals wave the Justice Department’s report on CIA interrogation techniques at the rest of the world and tearfully beg them for forgiveness, the rest of us are wondering why we don’t reduce the deficit by selling the rights to these interrogations on pay-per-view.

You can read the rest here.


Jane Harman follow-up

May 5, 2009

While she may have traded her influence for foreign help to advance her career, my local congresscritter Jane Harman can honestly say she has more integrity than Nancy Pelosi*, for she opposed waterboarding when Congress was first briefed on it by the CIA, unlike La Nancita, who was briefed on it, supported it, then claimed she didn’t know they would actually do it.

So, while I disagree strongly with Jane on the use of harsh interrogation techniques, she gets points for consistency and integrity for this.

Now, if she could only do something about that secret deals with foreign intelligence services thingy….

*(Not a high standard to meet, I know.)

 


Nancy Pelosi wants a witch hunt. Give it to her.

April 27, 2009

witch burning

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is at the forefront of Democrats who want to prosecute and persecute former Bush Administration officials for the "enhanced interrogation methods" used on al Qaeda prisoners in the wake of 9/11. You know, those methods that likely enabled us to prevent a second-wave attack on Los Angeles. Whereas the Obama White House and Senate Majority Leader Reid want to limit the farce to congressional hearings, La Nancita wants a full-bore truth commission, as if the United States were a nation recovering from a brutal dictatorship, like Argentina or South Africa.

Then again, in Nancy’s Leftist fantasyland, maybe that’s just what she believes.

But she should be careful, since the flames she seeks to fan against those eeeevvviiillll BushChimpHitler officials might burn her, too. Pelosi herself was ranking minority member of the House Intelligence Committee during the time in question and, as former CIA Director and former Chair of that same committee Porter Goss, pointed out, the chairs and ranking members of both the House and Senate committees were briefed several times by the CIA on terrorist interrogations and fully supported them.

Yet now Nancy is shocked, shocked to discover that wars are nasty — she wants her witch hunt, blast it. She can just smell the political hay to be made from bashing Bush and the Republicans some more, but they are not going to let her get away with this case of convenient amnesia.

You want a truth commission, Mrs. Pelosi? Fine. Bring it on. Let’s have that full-throated discussion of "harsh" interrogation of terrorists who believe they’re doing Allah’s work when they carve off heads or fly planes into buildings and who’d dearly love to set off a nuclear weapon in the US. Let’s clear away the cobwebs of convenient amnesia to let the world know just how much you and your party members supported those same techniques, funding them year after year and even wondering why we weren’t doing more. Let’s bring out all the details of how those techniques saved Americans from horrible deaths and find out what the American people support: a government that recognizes that its highest, first duty is to protect and defend its citizens, or one willing to gut its intelligence service and put the people at risk, all in the name of a preening sanctimony that’s nothing more than a cover for a partisan hack job.

So, let’s have that truth commission, Speaker Pelosi. Just remember, truth hurts.

RELATED: Noemie Emery has an excellent article with the same message: Let the hearings begin! Victor Davis Hanson worries about the damage the Leftist witch-hunters will do to the nation, and not just to its security: The Damnation of Memory.

 


Sunday links fiesta

April 26, 2009

It’s a busy weekend here at Public Secrets Secret HQ(tm), but I thought I’d point out a few links worth following:

Gird Your Loins Watch:

Is Pakistan in danger of collapse? Proving once again that appeasement is futile when the other fellow wants everything, the Taliban are now within 60 miles of Islamabad and closing. Questions of the day: Can the Pakistani government hold out for even six months, and what happens to Pakistan’s nukes when the state finally fails?

On a related note, Mark Steyn recalls that Britain once transferred global dominance and the defense of civilization to America. Now that President Obama seems intent on ushering in a post-American era, who leads now?

 

WTF??

Former CIA director and head of the House Intelligence Committee Porter Goss blisters the Obama Administration for putting partisan political gain ahead of our national security. (Related: Should President Palin prosecute former Obama Administration officials? It’s only partly tongue-in-cheek.)

Has the Obama Administration declared war on the practice of law, itself?

And are they moving to end the right to counsel for individuals facing police interrogation? The answer is no; Patterico has the details. What the administration is doing is bad enough — we have to be extra careful not to fall prey to Obama Derangement Syndrome.

 

Miscellaneous:

Did you know the six states with the highest unemployment rates also have the highest tax rates, while the six with the lowest unemployment also have the lowest taxes? Correlation or causation?  Thinking

Congressman Henry Waxman shows a scary ignorance of basic science. And, in the economy-killing cap and trade bill he’s pushing for the administration, is Waxman bribing giving incentives to his colleagues? Finally, to follow up on an earlier global warming entry, here’s more on that quiescent sun.

 

Needed laughs:

Some chuckles to bring the weekend to a close. The latest NewsBusted, starring Jodi Miller:

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, folks. Happy

 


I’m the author, but I’m not responsible

April 30, 2007

At least, that’s what former CIA Director George Tenet seems to be saying:

And yet, as usual, it looks like I’m going to take the heat for what appears in those pages just because I happen to be the author.

Really? Poor baby. That’s so unfair.

 

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