Sunday, 26 April 2009
PORTER GOSS ON WHO WAS BRIEFED ABOUT INTERROGATIONS
Porter Goss is a former Republican congressperson, chairman of the House
Intelligence Committee for 7 years and head of the CIA. I think it would
be fair to assume he knows something about who was briefed on interrogation
techniques and what they were told.
Here are excerpts from his his
guest commentary in yesterday's Washington Post. See if
it squares with what Nancy Pelosi and her fellow Democrats are claiming.
Please pay special attention to the section I've put in bold print:
Security Before Politics
By Porter J. GossSaturday, April 25, 2009
Since leaving my post as CIA director almost three
years ago, I have remained largely silent on the public stage. I am speaking out
now because I feel our government has crossed the red line between properly
protecting our national security and trying to gain partisan political
advantage. We can't have a secret intelligence service if we keep giving away
all the secrets. Americans have to decide now.
A disturbing epidemic of amnesia seems to be
plaguing my former colleagues on Capitol Hill. After the Sept. 11, 2001,
attacks, members of the committees charged with overseeing our nation's
intelligence services had no higher priority than stopping al-Qaeda. In the fall
of 2002, while I was chairman of the House intelligence committee, senior
members of Congress were briefed on the CIA's "High Value Terrorist
Program," including the development of
"enhanced interrogation techniques" and what those techniques were. This was not
a one-time briefing but an ongoing subject with lots of back and forth between
those members and the briefers.
Today, I am slack-jawed to read that
members claim to have not understood that the techniques on
which they were briefed were to actually be employed; or that specific
techniques such as "waterboarding" were never mentioned. It must be hard for
most Americans of common sense to imagine how a member of Congress can forget
being told about the interrogations of Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Sheik
Mohammed. In that case, though, perhaps it is not amnesia but political
Let me be clear. It is my recollection
-- The chairs and the ranking minority
members of the House and Senate intelligence committees, known as the Gang of
Four, were briefed that the CIA was holding and interrogating high-value
-- We understood what the CIA was doing.
-- We gave the CIA our bipartisan support.
-- We gave the CIA funding to carry out
-- On a bipartisan basis, we asked if the
CIA needed more support from Congress to carry out its mission against al-Qaeda.
I do not recall a single objection from my
colleagues. They did not vote to stop authorizing CIA funding. And for those who
now reveal filed "memorandums for the record" suggesting concern, real concern
should have been expressed immediately -- to the committee chairs, the briefers,
the House speaker or minority leader, the CIA director or the president's
national security adviser -- and not quietly filed away in case the day came
when the political winds shifted. And shifted they have.
Unfortunately, much of the damage to our
capabilities has already been done. It is certainly not trust that is fostered
when intelligence officers are told one day "I have your back" only to learn a
day later that a knife is being held to it. After the events of this week,
morale at the CIA has been shaken to its foundation.
We must not forget: Our intelligence allies
overseas view our inability to maintain secrecy as a reason to question our
worthiness as a partner. These allies have been vital in almost every capture of
The suggestion that we are safer now because
information about interrogation techniques is in the public domain conjures up
images of unicorns and fairy dust. We have given our enemy invaluable
information about the rules by which we operate. The terrorists captured by the
CIA perfected the act of beheading innocents using dull knives. Khalid Sheik
Mohammed boasted of the tactic of placing explosives high enough in a building
to ensure that innocents trapped above would die if they tried to escape through
windows. There is simply no comparison between our professionalism and their
The days of fortress America are gone. We are the
world's superpower. We can sit on our hands or we can become engaged to improve
global human conditions. The bottom line is that we cannot succeed unless we
have good intelligence. Trading security for partisan political popularity will
ensure that our secrets are not secret and that our intelligence is destined to
Who do you think is more credible here? Mr. Goss or the people who
attended the briefings but now claim they didn't know what was discussed in
them. Heck, they barely are able to spell
"waterboarding". Just ask them.
What liars. What frauds. And what damage
releasing those documents has done to our national security.
JANET NAPOLITANO'S "APOLOGY"
In my previous blog I commented that President Obama has put together the
most incompetent, unworthy cabinet I've seen in my lifetime.
Here is another example.
Janet Napolitano, the ignoramus who President Obama appointed to head our
Homeland Security Department, has now "apologized" for releasing a report
that tried to scare this country into believing that the terrorist
threat we have to worry about is a combination of people who are
politically to the right and returning military veterans.
Except she didn't apologize at all. In reality, she shunted the
blame to someone else in her department - just like a weasel would
Read about it in these excerpts from an Associated
Press article. The examples of ignorance and stupidity are Ms.
Napolitano's - the bold print is mine:
Homeland secretary apologizes to veterans
WASHINGTON (AP) - Homeland Security Secretary Janet
Napolitano met with the American Legion on Friday to apologize for a right-wing
extremism report written by her agency, and the veterans group walked away from
the meeting mollified.
Apr 24, 9:42 PM
By EILEEN SULLIVAN
Napolitano blamed one of her agency's
analysts for prematurely sending out the intelligence assessment to law
enforcement, according to Craig Roberts, an American Legion member who attended
the meeting. The report says veterans returning from Iraq or Afghanistan could
be susceptible to right-wing recruiters or commit lone acts of violence.
"She essentially admitted fault within her
office," Roberts said.
The report, one of Homeland Security's periodic
assessments, warned that right-wing extremists could use the bad state of the
U.S. economy and the election of the country's first black president to recruit
members. The analysis said veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars could be
targeted by the groups.
It drew angry reactions from Rehbein, conservative
bloggers and Republican members of Congress who took to the House floor this
week to criticize Napolitano, confirmed to her Cabinet position less than 100
"Has this Homeland Security secretary gone
absolutely stark raving mad?" Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn, said Wednesday.
"I think the appropriate thing for her to do would
be to step down," Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Texas, told Fox News on Thursday.
"Janet Napolitano should resign or be fired," Rep.
John Carter, R-Texas, said on Wednesday.
The veterans issue wasn't the only flap. Earlier
this week, Napolitano drew criticism for flubbing an explanation of federal law
prohibiting people without proper documents from crossing U.S. borders into the
In an interview with CNN, Napolitano, whose career
has included stints as a U.S. attorney and attorney general and governor of
Arizona, said: "Crossing the border is not a crime per se. It is civil."
While crossing the border illegally is a crime,
most illegal immigrants caught in the United States face only civil penalties
Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., characterized
Napolitano's statements as one of the most "baffling" he has ever heard from a
senior government official.
"It is breathtaking that a Cabinet
secretary, bestowed by the public with the responsibility to protect our
nation's borders, could be ignorant of the indisputable fact that it is a
violation of the criminal code to enter our country illegally," Sessions said.
Napolitano spokesman Sean Smith said: "She may be
new to Washington, but she has been around politics for a long time, and she
knows political theater when she sees it."
Smith said Napolitano spent 16 years enforcing the
law on the Southwest border. "Americans can rest assured that she understands
what the law is along the border," he said.
She also has drawn criticism for claiming
in an interview that the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorists entered the U.S. across the
Canadian border. The Sept. 11 commission found that none came through
Canada. But others have, such as the would-be millennium bomber Ahmed
Discussing security along the U.S. border on
Canada's CBC News on Monday, Napolitano said, "To the extent that terrorists
have come into our country or suspected or known terrorists have entered our
country across a border, it's been across the Canadian border. There are real
When asked whether she was talking about the 9/11
terrorists, Napolitano said: "Not just those, but others as well."
Smith on Thursday said Napolitano acknowledged she
misspoke and had been thinking of the millennium
When you combine a small knowledge of facts with a large mouth, this is what
you get: and it is a virtual definition of Janet Napolitano.
If there were any two-party balance in congress right now, the pressure would
be enormous to remove Napolitano before that combination goes beyond
just being an embarrassment and contributes to a terrorist disaster ---
whoops, excuse me, a "man-made" disaster, since, in another display of
stupidity, she declines to use the word "terrorist".
The sooner we are a two party country again, the better. Until then I
can only hope that our enemies don't test Janet Napolitano's competence.
It's not a fair fight.
RACIAL SPOILS IN NEW HAVEN, CT.
George Will has written an absolutely excellent analysis
of the Supreme Court case in which a group of 18 firefighters claim to have been racially discriminated against by the New
Haven, CT fire department.
But before making any assumptions about which race is which, you better read on:
WASHINGTON -- Wednesday morning, a lawyer
defending in the Supreme Court what the city of New Haven, Conn., did to
Frank Ricci and 17 other white firemen (including one Hispanic) was not 20
seconds into his argument when Chief Justice John Roberts interrupted to
ask: Would it have been lawful if the city had decided to disregard the
results of the exam to select firemen for promotion because it selected
too many black and too few white candidates?
In 2003, the city gave promotion exams --
prepared by a firm specializing in employment tests, and approved, as
federal law requires, by independent experts -- to 118 candidates, 27 of
them black. None of the blacks did well enough to qualify for the 15
immediately available promotions. After a rabble-rousing minister with
close ties to the mayor disrupted meetings and warned of dire political
consequences if the city promoted persons from the list generated by the
exams, the city said: No one will be promoted.
The city called this a "race-neutral"
outcome because no group was disadvantaged more than any other. So, New
Haven's idea of equal treatment is to equally deny promotions to those who
did not earn them and those, including Ricci, who did.
Ricci may be the rock upon which America's
racial spoils system finally founders. He prepared for the 2003 exams by
quitting his second job, buying the more than $1,000 worth of books the
city recommended, paying to have them read onto audiotapes (he is
dyslexic), taking practice tests and practice interviews. His studying --
sometimes 13 hours a day -- earned him the sixth-highest score on the
exam. He and others denied promotions sued, charging violations of the
1964 Civil Rights Act and the Constitution's guarantee of equal protection
of the law.
The city claims that the 1964 act (BEG
ITAL)compelled(END ITAL) it to disregard the exam results. The act makes
it unlawful for employers to discriminate against an individual regarding
the "terms, conditions, or privileges of employment because of such
individual's race." And two Senate supporters of the 1964 act, both of
them leading liberals (Pennsylvania Democrat Joseph Clark and New Jersey
Republican Clifford Case), insisted that it would not require "that
employers abandon bona fide qualification tests where, because of
differences in background and educations, members of some groups are able
to perform better on these tests than members of other groups."
In a 1971 case, however, the Supreme Court
sowed confusion by holding that the 1964 act proscribes not only overt
discrimination but also "practices that are fair in form, but
discriminatory in operation." But what New Haven ignored is that the
court, while proscribing tests that were "discriminatory" in having a
"disparate impact" on certain preferred minorities, has held that a
disparate impact is unlawful only if there is, and the employer refuses to
adopt, an equally valid measurement of competence that would have less
disparate impact, or if the measurement is not relevant to "business
necessity." One of the city's flimsy excuses for disregarding its exam
results was that someone from a rival exam-writing firm said that although
he had not read the exam the city used, his company could write a better
New Haven has not defended its implicit
quota system as a remedy for previous discrimination, and has not
justified it as a way of achieving "diversity," which can be a permissible
objective for schools' admissions policies, but not in employment
decisions. Rather, the city says it was justified in ignoring the exam
results because otherwise it might have faced a "disparate impact"
So, to avoid defending the defensible in
court, it did the indefensible. It used anxiety about a potential
challenge under a statute to justify its violation of the Constitution.
And it got sued.
Racial spoils systems must involve incessant
mischief because they require a rhetorical fog of euphemisms and blurry
categories (e.g., "race-conscious" measures that somehow do not constitute
racial discrimination) to obscure stark facts, such as: If Ricci and half
a dozen others who earned high scores were not white, the city would have
proceeded with the promotions.
Some supporters of New Haven, perhaps
recognizing intellectual bankruptcy when defending it, propose a squishy
fudge: Return the case to the trial court to clarify the city's
motivation. But the motivation is obvious: to profit politically from what
Roberts has called the "sordid business" of "divvying us up by
Assuming that there isn't a "Sharon
Taxman"*** ending to this case (i.e. the race hustlers pull back out
of fear that they will lose and be exposed for what they are), chances are
excellent that the Supreme Court will rule in favor of Frank Ricci - as it
It has been my experience that a great many people understand what being
anti-Black is, but do not understand at all what being a racist is. They
think racism begins and ends with discrimination against Black
people. But they are wrong.
It is racism any time a race of people is either given preference, or discriminated
against. REGARDLESS of which race it is.
While it is true (to me, anyway) that racism most often works in favor
of Whites and against Blacks, there are also times when it works in favor of
Blacks and against Whites. Both are instances of racism. Neither is
And while we're on the subject, there is no such thing as "reverse
racism" - a term sometimes used to describe racism that favors Blacks over
Whites. It isn't "reverse" racism at all; it is racism. No
more or less than racism that favors Whites. Both are against entire
races, therefore both are racist. Period. End of story.
Thanks, again, to George Will for presenting this so well. I hope it wakes some folks up.
***I can't say I'm a big fan of wikipedia, but in this case they've laid out
the facts very well, so I'm using it as a reference.
HILLARY CLINTION: SECRETARY OF STATE AND PROPAGANDIST FOR OUR ENEMIES
Please read this incredibly stupid, damaging comment from Hillary Clinton,
our incredibly stupid, incompetent Secretary of State, which I picked up
at www.sweetness-light.com. Then
tell me what purpose she had for barfing it out to the world other than to score
some cheap political points at the expense of her country:
April 25th, 2009
From Irans Press TV:
US responsible for Taliban
Sat, 25 Apr 2009
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
has acknowledged that the United States had a share in creating terrorist
groups such as the Taliban.
Clinton in a congressional hearing explained how
the militancy in Pakistan was linked to the US-backed proxy war against the
Soviets in Afghanistan, Dawn reported on Saturday.
"Lets remember here the people
we are fighting today we funded them twenty years ago and we did it because
we were locked in a struggle with the Soviet Union," she said.
The US along with Saudi Arabia, UAE and
Pakistans Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) created the Taliban in 1980s to
counter then Soviets influence in the volatile region.
"And great, let them come from
Saudi Arabia and other countries, importing their Wahabi brand of Islam so
that we can go beat the Soviet Union," Clinton said.
" and it was President Reagan in
partnership with Congress led by Democrats who said you know what it sounds
like a pretty good idea lets deal with the ISI and the Pakistan military and
lets go recruit these mujahideen," she added.
Moderate Sunni and Shia Muslims believe that the
Wahabi order has nothing to do with Islam and was created by the global powers
to fuel extremism
Mrs. Clinton is almost as good as Mr. Obama at
blaming the United States and giving our nations enemies propaganda
No wonder she almost got the Democrat
Mind you, Mrs. Clinton is the same ignoramus who
is such a fan of Ms. Benazir Bhutto, who really did help create the
If Ms.Clinton's point is that there are times and circumstances when we are
forced to align with bad people, I congratulate her. This proves
her knowledge of how the world works is at least equivalent
to what students learn in a typical 7th grade history class.
But Ms. Clinton is not in a 7th grade history class. She is the Secretary of
State. What she said is a cornucopia of propaganda material for our most
dangerous enemies, the people who want to destroy our country.
Did she explain that this is a region of the world
where there are no good guys at all? A region in which establishing
any diplomatic or strategic footing inherently requires relationships with bad
people? Nope. Her comments read as if we were some kind
of great taliban benefactors, and didn't care at all about who and what
they are. Does Clinton believe that? Can she possibly
Also, do you notice that the presidential references ended at Ronald
Reagan? In reality, we had at least some relationship with the taliban
right into her husband's presidency.
In other words, Hillary Clinton's statement about the taliban, like
everything else that ever comes out of that mouth, is 100% political. And
if it damages our standing in the world and encourages our
enemies? Who cares. Score one for the Clinton machine.
I do not recall a more incompetent, unworthy presidential cabinet in my
lifetime. And Hillary Clinton is a major reason for this