Wednesday, November 17, 2004

About the CIA Shakeup

Elements in the CIA were trying to undermine a sitting President. Regardless of your politics, this is incredibly unacceptable. Many heads should roll. This has nothing to do with the fact that many members of the CIA are liberals. It has to do with common sense. The CIA has a job to do regardless of who is President.

There are two major problems with this stance. Number one, almost all of the high level agents who left quit in frustration; they were not fired and not encouraged to quit. Number two, the entire reason why people are frustrated is that the administration is undermining the intelligence agency. The new CIA head is gutting the CIA of most of it's significant roles and responsibilites. Most importantly, he is diminishing his own current position. The head of the CIA would practically be a figurehead. He is trying to push this power to the new position of National Intelligence Director. Coincidentally, he has publically stated that he's going to go after that position once it's created.

Do you remember when Andrew Steiner created a high level position and then took the job himself? That's essentiall what Porter Gross is doing. This is upsetting a lot of people in the CIA, people who were already upset that they got the majority of the blame for the justification for war being wrong, despite the fact that their reports were actually extremely cautious about the presence of WMDs. Somewhere between the CIA and the Press Secretary, the information was jacked up. All of that has lead to a mass exodus, not only of high level people but people of every rank.

It also didn't help that Gross wrote a memo saying that the CIA should remain neutral when it comes to partisanship, a good piece of advice certainly. That memo he released to the public. In a memo that he didn't want the public to see, he said that agents should strive to provide information that supports the policies and political stances of the current administration (i.e. it said the exact opposite of the memo he released to the public). That memo just opened the exit door a little wider.

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