Interesting Questions at American Thinker

Friday, November 04, 2005

All this raises two important questions for George Tenet, who was Director of Central Intelligence during all the time that “Plamegate” was going on:

• Why did the CIA, under your direction, treat the Vice President’s query about Iraqi efforts to purchase yellowcake in Niger so casually?

• When Joe Wilson started blabbing in public about his CIA mission to Niger – and lying about what he reported to the CIA upon his return – why didn’t you say something rather than allow the President’s credibility to be shredded?

(American Thinker today.)

personally, I'd love to hear the answers.


terrye said...

Tenet did make some kind of statement in July that was supposed to counter Wilson.

But I have wondered about a lot of things like this.

For instance, a great deal of classified information gets leaked. Obviously the administration is aware of it after the fact at what do they do? Is there all kinds of behind the scenes snooping going on at the CIA?

Rick Ballard said...


Read this piece over at Captain Ed's for another former insider's viewpoint. After being gutted by Congress in the late '70's the CIA became almost an adjunct of State. Lots of "connected" hires of second raters - just like State. Second raters form factions based upon advancement via affinity groups and those factions understand that measurable results are their bane. They truly and legitimately fear administrations that demand results because they never in their sorry lives have ever accomplished anything measureable. The CIA shrugged off its miserable performance in missing the call on the collapse of the Soviet Union and GHWB didn't call them on it. Clinton and his "mistakes were made" circumlocution were heaven sent for the meritless faction and GWB might not have bothered them had not that pesky OBL fellow not shown up.

It's not that there are no competent people within the CIA for there surely are. It's just that advancement by connection has always played a larger role than it should - just as it does at State. We have plenty of other intelligence agencies that are competent at their work and do an excellent job in filling in the gaps created by the incompetent faction. That said, we will be safer when Goss has finished having the deadwood fired or transferred to Tonga. Until he is done we can anticipate more "black ops" conducted by the incompetents against the administration. The revelation concerning the "secret" detention centers was certainly no accident.

David Thomson said...

“For instance, a great deal of classified information gets leaked.”

That is the understatement of the century. First of all, intelligence agencies are laughingly famous for even classifying newspaper articles. Daniel Patrick Moynihan often ridiculed them for such indulgences in overkill. Our government would come to a complete halt if everyone legalistically interpreted the classified information rules. The general public would also be ill served if this occurred. A prosecutor can indict just about every single Washington insider if they so desired. I’m literally talking about hundreds, if not thousands of people, could be sent to jail!

markg8 said...

I'd like to know if the US or UK governments bothered to ask the French run Somaïr and Cominak uranium mining & milling companies in Niger directly about this in 2002 like they had Wilson, the marine general, and the ambassador do with the Nigerien government? Would they be so thorough with the Nigeriens and not talk to the people who had hands on control? Doesn't seem likely.

Why haven't we heard about that end of the story? The large quantity of yellowcake in question was said to be 500+ tons. That would have been a very big noticable chunk of their annual production to squirrel out of
that operation. Somebody had to have talked to them and gotten some kind of response but to answer my own question I suspect we haven't heard anything about it because it didn't match the case they were building against Saddam.

So like the evidence the DOE scientists in TN provided that said the aluminum tubes were almost certainly intended for missiles and not centrifuges it got buried.