Posts Tagged ‘Hayden’

Obama Proves OWN Partisan Bias In Targeting Bush Officials

April 26, 2009

From Hotair:

Obama’s DNI reminds Obama that “enhanced interrogation” worked

posted at 8:44 am on April 22, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Barack Obama’s top man in the intelligence community sent the President a memo defending the use of enhanced interrogation techniques, which the White House edited before releasing to the press de-emphasizing that defense.  Dennis Blair, the Director of National Intelligence, pointed out that most of what we know about al-Qaeda came from using those techniques on Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and Abu Zubaydah, countering leaks last week from the Obama administration that claimed the methods produced no data:

President Obama’s national intelligence director told colleagues in a private memo last week that the harsh interrogation techniques banned by the White House did produce significant information that helped the nation in its struggle with terrorists.

“High value information came from interrogations in which those methods were used and provided a deeper understanding of the al Qa’ida organization that was attacking this country,” Adm. Dennis C. Blair, the intelligence director, wrote in a memo to his staff last Thursday.

Admiral Blair sent his memo on the same day the administration publicly released secret Bush administration legal memos authorizing the use of interrogation methods that the Obama White House has deemed to be illegal torture. Among other things, the Bush administration memos revealed that two captured Qaeda operatives were subjected to a form of near-drowning known as waterboarding a total of 266 times.

The New York Times, which got a copy of the memo, also notices some odd redactions from the version released by the White House:

Admiral Blair’s assessment that the interrogation methods did produce important information was deleted from a condensed version of his memo released to the media last Thursday. Also deleted was a line in which he empathized with his predecessors who originally approved some of the harsh tactics after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

“I like to think I would not have approved those methods in the past,” he wrote, “but I do not fault those who made the decisions at that time, and I will absolutely defend those who carried out the interrogations within the orders they were given.”

In other words, the Obama administration covered up the fact that even their own DNI acknowledges that the interrogations produced actionable and critical information.  When Dick Cheney demanded the release of the rest of the memos relating that information, he wasn’t just going on a fishing expedition.  Cheney filed a request to declassify those memos in March, and the CIA has yet to decide on his request, but we can no longer doubt that records exist showing the success of those interrogations.

Obama has occasionally suggested a truth-and-reconciliation approach to probing the use of torture by the Bush administration, but this establishes that Obama isn’t terribly interested in “truth”.  Withholding the truth that waterboarding produced information that saved hundreds of American lives, perhaps thousands, shows that Obama values public relations more than he does the truth.  He wants to argue that none of this was necessary to secure the nation against terrorist attacks.  In order to make that argument, he redacted Blair’s memo, including his defense of his predecessors, whom Blair acknowledges had to face some tough decisions to uncover plots against America.

Four former CIA directors opposed releasing the memos arguing that such a release would undermine national security.

WASHINGTON – Four former CIA directors opposed releasing classified Bush-era interrogation memos, officials say, describing objections that went all the way to the White House and slowed release of the records.

Former CIA chiefs Michael Hayden, Porter Goss, George Tenet and John Deutch all called the White House in March warning that release of the so-called “torture memos” would compromise intelligence operations, current and former officials say. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity in order to detail internal government discussions.

Even Obama’s OWN CURRENT CIA director pulled back from releasing the memos, said administration needed to consider the possibility that the memos’ release might expose CIA officers to lawsuits on allegations of torture and abuse, and urged more censorship.

Obama now has a proven track record of releasing – in the name of “openness and accountability” – only that information which harms his opposition, while refusing to release and even censoring any mitigating information.

Wow.  The most radically liberal Senator in Congress is breaking his promise to be bipartisan and above the political divide as a “new politician,” which was at the heart of his campaign.  He is turning out to be the most divisive president in modern history.  What can I say?  I’m speechless with shock – that there were enough fools in the country who thought he’d turn out any differently to get this leftwing ideologue elected.

And let’s be clear: the buck stops at Obama.  He’s the one responsible for this partisan witch hunt, this criminalizing of political differences.  If the radical left is driving the agenda, Barack Obama is still the man serving as their tool.

Update, April 27: Porter Goss – CIA director from September 2004 to May 2006, chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence from 1997 to 2004 – described himself as being “slack-jawed” over the Democrats blatantly obvious lies and demagoguery over this issue.

An article from Atlas Shrugs entitled “Obama Crossed the Line” raises the legitimate anger that should result from Obama’s actions:

If Obama commits treason, is it legal? Obama was not brought up in the USA and lacks American DNA. The fact that he was raised in the largest Muslim country in the world and that his mother was a communist and his Kenyan father was no lover of America tells us a lot about where Obama’s sympathies lie. It tells me that for Obama, it’s payback time, and payback is a bitch.

The problem with starting a process of partisan witch hunting is that it won’t stop.  You can hunt conservatives down now, Obama; but just realize that you’ll be the witch next.

CIA Memos: Obama Releases What Makes Us Look Bad, Conceals What Makes Us Look Good

April 22, 2009

President Obama released legal memos revealing our interrogation methods of terrorists, essentially referring to the Bush years following 9/11 as a “dark and painful chapter in our history.”

Thus we found out that:

Prisoners could be kept awake for more than a week. They could be stripped of their clothes, fed nothing but liquid and thrown against a wall 30 consecutive times.

In one case, the CIA was told it could prey on one prisoner’s fear of insects by stuffing him into a box with a bug. When all else failed, the CIA could turn to what a Justice Department memo described as “the most traumatic” interrogation technique of all, waterboarding.

What Obama refused to allow the American people to learn was that these things worked and kept us safe.

Cheney Calls For More CIA Reports To Be Declassified
Mon Apr 20 2009 16:20:53 ET

In a two part interview airing tonight and tomorrow night on FOX News Channel’s Hannity (9-10PM ET), former Vice President Dick Cheney shared his thoughts on the CIA memos that were recently declassified and also revealed his request to the CIA to declassify additional memos that confirm the success of the Bush administration’s interrogation tactics:

CHENEY: “One of the things that I find a little bit disturbing about this recent disclosure is they put out the legal memos, the memos that the CIA got from the Office of Legal Counsel, but they didn’t put out the memos that showed the success of the effort. And there are reports that show specifically what we gained as a result of this activity. They have not been declassified.”

“I formally asked that they be declassified now. I haven’t announced this up until now, I haven’t talked about it, but I know specifically of reports that I read, that I saw that lay out what we learned through the interrogation process and what the consequences were for the country.”

“And I’ve now formally asked the CIA to take steps to declassify those memos so we can lay them out there and the American people have a chance to see what we obtained and what we learned and how good the intelligence was, as well as to see this debate over the legal opinions.”

In short, Obama wanted to release only the stuff that made America and the Bush administration look bad. He DID NOT want to release the stuff that made America and the Bush administration look good. And that should really bother you.

Mind you, we shouldn’t have released ANYTHING.

WASHINGTON – Four former CIA directors opposed releasing classified Bush-era interrogation memos, officials say, describing objections that went all the way to the White House and slowed release of the records.

Former CIA chiefs Michael Hayden, Porter Goss, George Tenet and John Deutch all called the White House in March warning that release of the so-called “torture memos” would compromise intelligence operations, current and former officials say. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity in order to detail internal government discussions.

The Obama mentality seems to be that the terrorists aren’t our enemy; George Bush is the real enemy, and anything that discredits him – even if it provides aid to terrorists and allows them to be more successful in the future even as our own ability to stop them is undermined – is worth pursuing.

Former CIA Director General Michael Hayden – a career intelligence professional unlike the career political hack Obama appointed to head the CIA – offered the following in an op-ed entitled, “The President Ties His Own Hands On Terror“:

[On the impact of the CIA as an institution]: “The release of these opinions was unnecessary as a legal matter, and is unsound as a matter of policy. Its effect will be to invite the kind of institutional timidity and fear of recrimination that weakened intelligence gathering in the past, and that we came sorely to regret on Sept. 11, 2001.”….

[On the ability of the terrorists to resist American interrogations in the future]: “[P]ublic disclosure of the OLC opinions, and thus of the techniques themselves, assures that terrorists are now aware of the absolute limit of what the U.S. government could do to extract information from them, and can supplement their training accordingly and thus diminish the effectiveness of these techniques as they have the ones in the Army Field Manual.”….

[On the morale and effectiveness of our CIA officers in the future]: “The effect of this disclosure on the morale and effectiveness of many in the intelligence community is not hard to predict. Those charged with the responsibility of gathering potentially lifesaving information from unwilling captives are now told essentially that any legal opinion they get as to the lawfulness of their activity is only as durable as political fashion permits. Even with a seemingly binding opinion in hand, which future CIA operations personnel would take the risk? There would be no wink, no nod, no handshake that would convince them that legal guidance is durable.”…

The money quote of the Hayden piece has got to be this:

“fully half of the government’s knowledge about the structure and activities of al Qaeda came from those [harsh] interrogations.”

In short:

WASHINGTON (AFP) – A former head of the US Central Intelligence Agency insisted Sunday that harsh interrogation techniques widely condemned as torture had succeeded in battling Al-Qaeda and saving American lives, something he characterized as “an inconvenient truth.”

Michael Hayden, who was replaced as CIA chief earlier this year by President Barack Obama, assailed Obama’s decision last week to release “Top Secret” memos detailing the interrogation techniques as “really dangerous” for US intelligence efforts.

We had darned good reason for waterboarding terrorists such as Abu Zubaydah. Our guys washed the defiance right out of those murderers’ hair.

I demand that Barack Hussein address the nation and assure us that the comfort of a terrorist is more important to him than an American city, and that he would rather that ten million Americans perish in a terrorist attack than that one terrorist with “ticking time bomb” knowledge be waterboarded. Let’s lay it on the line. Let’s allow the American people to decide, “Our lives and the lives of our families aren’t worth the ‘torturing’ of a terrorist. The president is right.” Or NOT.

But that won’t be the kind of honesty we’ll get. We won’t get any real honesty at all. Rather, in the guise of “openness,” and “transparency,” Obama will only let us have enough information to lead us to a false conclusion that America and George Bush really were evil.

Finally, if we are attacked again, I further demand that Barack Hussein be impeached and removed from office for refusing to uphold his sworn Constitutional duty to defend and protect America. I demand that he be held personally responsible for his dismantling of our intelligence capability. And I demand that he – rather than the officials who tried to protect us following the worst attack in American history – be criminally prosecuted for depraved indifference by abandoning measures that successfully protected the citizens of this country in favor of political ideology.