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  • Thursday, November 18, 2004


    White House to 'Gut' CIA

    Despite all the horrible things I know about the CIA, its history, its connection to coups and its very dirty tricks, I still find myself troubled about the recent reports of purges at the CIA. I guess that, for all its problems, I still think of the CIA as providing vital and necessary intelligence information to our government. I hate some of the methods, I hate the manipulation of other governments, I hate the coercion. Then why do I feel outrage that there seems to be a political and ideological housecleaning going on at the CIA? It's one more example of an administration making everyone in government toe their line or else. It's the same view that completely dismantled the Iraqi military, turning those soldiers out into a volatile economy to find work. (And how's that working out for us? We didn't even dismantle the German army at the end of WWII, fer .)

    I know the CIA is used to perform political actions against other countries all the time but I'm appalled to find that I also seem to have some harbored ideal of it gathering untainted intelligence so the government, no matter who is in power, can make informed decisions. I'm just extremely surprised that I feel any, what, loyalty? to the CIA. I just can't explain it. From White House to 'Gut' CIA:

    "According to Newsday, 'The White House has ordered the new CIA director, Porter Goss, to purge the agency of officers believed to have been disloyal to President George W. Bush or of leaking damaging information to the media about the conduct of the Iraq war and the hunt for Osama bin Ladin...'

    Bad Nooz. In the first place, the concept of 'purge' has not hitherto played much part in our history, and now is no time to start. Considerable pains have been taken to protect the civil service from partisan pressure for extremely good reasons.

    'Disloyalty to Bush,' or any president, is not the same as disloyalty to the country. In fact, in the intelligence biz, opposing the White House is sometimes the highest form of loyalty to country, since when we fight without good intelligence, we fight blind.

    I would not have been troubled to learn there was to be a 'purge' at the CIA of those responsible for giving bad information to the administration about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. Even a 'purge' of those who caved in under pressure from the White House to confirm the dubious WMD theory might be useful. (George Tenet is already gone.) But that's not what they're fixing to do here. This is not a purge of incompetent officers or of those who have caved under political pressure - this is a political purge of those 'disloyal to George W. Bush.'"

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