Nothing to see here: Obama CIA drone strikes in Middle East

Where are all the protests? Oh yeah, this is an Obama World where the current administration is not bothered by the media or liberal protest outfits as they continue or greatly expand policies of past administrations that were highly ridiculed at the time.

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Obama administration uses Underwear Bomb2 for politics

Remember how the left was absolutely livid when known-CIA employee Valerie Plame was “outed” by “someone” in the Bush administration? We’ve got a much more serious situation now, since the Obama administration outed a real undercover operative working with us in the War on Terror.

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Oh, What a Tangled Web, Ms. Pelosi

In her head long rush to have former President Bush indicted for something, anything, Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi has decided that deceiving the American public is acceptable. Read more

Pelosi Denies Reports: “I did not know about torture.” UPDATE: Hoekstra “Pelosi Knew”

UPDATE: You can hear Speaker Pelosi’s comments for yourself below … but Congressman Peter Hoekstra says either the Speaker was asleep or she just wasn’t paying attention because the intelligence briefing laid it all out. Asleep or not paying attention, either way, with Nancy in charge … we are doomed. Read more

Federal court order results in release of Bush interrogation memos

The Obama administration will release interrogation memos written by Justice Department Office of Legal Counsel lawyers during President George W. Bush’s administration. A federal court required the Obama administration to release them or to provide a good reason to withhold them in response to an ACLU lawsuit.

My guess is that the documents may drop with a thud, since most of the information was previously leaked. Some people may scream for charges to be brought against former Vice President Cheney or even Bush himself, but nothing will come of this. Even the names of the operators in the memos (there are four) will be redacted.

These so called torture techniques – better described as extreme interrogation methods – actually do work, and if you are one of the individuals who think that extreme measures are never to be used to gather intelligence, we’ll agree to disagree.

LGF notes that the White House confirms CIA officers will not be prosecuted.

Here’s a news story over on Yahoo! News

The memos were authored by Jay Bybee and Steven Bradbury, who at the time were lawyers for the then-president George W. Bush‘s Justice Department Office of Legal Counsel.

The memos provided the legal framework for a program of interrogations of “war on terror” detainees that included techniques widely regarded as torture such as waterboarding, in which a detainee is made to feel like he is drowning.

The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that intense debate was underway within the new administration over whether to release the memos.

The report said Attorney General Eric Holder and others in the Justice Department had argued aggressively in favor of release, but the CIA has countered that disclosure of such secrets would undermine its credibility and effectiveness.

Allah at Hot Air notes – and I surmise – the left wing will start screaming because the names are redacted.

Think The One was going to compound the problem by putting their guys in the dock for belly slaps? What choice did he have here realistically, lefty commenters?

From Jonathan Alder over at The Volokh Conspiracy

President Obama has decided to release OLC “torture memos” drafted between 2002 and 2005. In his statement (reproduced here), he cited “exceptional circumstances” justifying the memos’ release (reportedly over the objection of some intelligence officials). He also said that those who relied upon the memos “in good faith” would not be prosecuted for their actions.

For those of you who are against extreme measures, I’ll ask you to comment on this snippet from a book I recently read.

[Wasson] “… You ask the people if they are pro-torture, and ninety plus percent say no. You then ask them what the CIA should do if they catch a senior al-Qaeda member who has carried out attacks in Afghanistan and Iraq that have killed thousands. You then tell them that the CIA has solid information an attack is looming and this man has information that could help stop it. You then ask them if they are okay with slapping this guy around and making him think he’s about to drown and all of a sudden seventy percent of them are pro-torture.

“Now” – Wassen wagged a finger at his boss – “I can get that number to over ninety percent if you give the people a third option.”

“What’s that?”

“Don’t tell me what’s going on. Just take care of it. I don’t need to know everything my government does.”

“So the options are torture, don’t torture, or stick you head in the sand.”


“That’s ridiculous.”

“That’s reality, Babs.”

Update: Is Panetta a good fit at CIA?


Probably not if you come from the Mitch Rapp school of action, not appeasement. Some feel that the media should not question Obama appointments, but plenty of questions are being asked concerning Obama’s current selection to lead the CIA, Leon Panetta – including big Democrats.

Update: Jim just let me know that Peter Brookes, former CIA intelligence officer and currently a senior fellow at the Heritage Foundation, will be on the show tomorrow (Jan. 7).

Update 2: From a former intelligence and security analyst for the CIA:

Director, CIA is not a “learn on the job” kind of position. Without the respect of the people beneath him (which he won’t have without experience in intelligence) it will be difficult for him to have any positive impact.

From Hot Air. …

The US is currently fighting an asymmetrical war on two hot fronts, but more to the point, in every corner of the world. We need our best people at the helm at Defense and in the intelligence arenas, people with insight into the problems and challenges facing America at war. Barack Obama either doesn’t understand that or cares less about security than he does about politics.

Jim Geraghty has six comments about the appointment. …

The CIA is the only government agency where the public expectation is to know everything about everything, from how many tanks Russia could put into Georgia in 24 hours to what is going on in the head of a jihadi in the mountains of Pakistan.

Does Panetta know enough about the intelligence arena? Most doubt it.

John over at Powerline Blog brings up an important factor to the liberal left. They don’t want anyone that had anything to do with – their definition of – torture within ear shot of Obama. They are afraid advisers might let him know that extreme measures actually do provide us with good, actionable intelligence.

Obama preferred someone with intelligence experience, like John Brennan. The problem is that just about everyone who fits that description had, like Brennan, some involvement in devising the intelligence strategies of the last seven years. Those strategies, including but not limited to the interrogation of terrorists, have been spectacularly successful. Normally, participation in them would be a major plus in a candidate for CIA director.

But the Democrats have committed themselves, for political reasons, to harsh criticisms of these and other aspects of the Bush administration’s anti-terror campaign. So Obama had to abandon Brennan’s nomination, and he is now stuck with someone who not only had nothing to do with the Bush administration’s highly successful policies, but was adamantly opposed to them. Panetta fits the necessary political profile, so he will be CIA Director even though he has no experience in intelligence.

Sister Toldja is convinced that it’s a political pay off, pure and simple.

So lemme see here: We’ve got an inexperienced president-elect who has appointed a woman with scant foreign policy experience to the Sec. of State position, and shortly after that, picked two people with virtually no intelligence experience (save a year) as the head of the CIA and director of national intelligence respectively. Sounds like Blair has had a distinguished military career, but just one year experience in the CIA?

Dunno about you, but this gives me so much hope about our future foreign affairs/counterterrorism efforts that I could just burst. /sarc

Since Panetta has to be confirmed, I have an exit question. Has Obama put Panetta into play to employ a reverse strategy? Panetta suites the left since he can go in to clean house and has no ties to previous extreme measures. But if the appointment fails and someone with more experience ends up leading CIA, will the left keep their mouth shut thinking The One tried?