January 7, 2009

THEY AREN'T POLITICIZED, THEY'RE INCOMPETENT:

Obama defends choice for CIA chief: Obama lobbies lawmakers on behalf of Leon Panetta. One critic calls the pick a 'Hail Mary pass.' (Greg Miller and Peter Nicholas, January 6, 2009, LA Times)

[I]n seeking to soothe the controversy, Obama may have ruffled other feathers. Taking a swipe at previous directors, Obama said his team would work to ensure that U.S. spy agencies were "no longer geared toward telling the president what the president wants to hear."

The remark appeared to be aimed mainly at former CIA Director George J. Tenet, infamous for telling the president that the U.S. had a "slam dunk" case against Iraq's alleged illegal weapons programs.

But the comment will probably rile the CIA rank and file.

"If Obama thinks that the community was telling the president what he wanted to hear, then he hasn't been fully briefed," said one former high-ranking agency official, speaking on condition of anonymity when discussing the political controversy.


The measure of how well a president is handling the CIA bureaucracy is how angry they are at him.

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 7, 2009 12:05 PM
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