Ed Kilgore thinks John Brennan is being shockingly insubordinate:
Remind Me Who It Is the CIA Works For?It's not just the current director, of course -- six former directors and deputy directors have written a Wall Street Journal op-ed titled "Interrogations Saved Lives" and asked us to visit ciasavedlives.com; the most visible of them is an angry, defiant Michael Hayden, who's all over the media. Also highly visible is former top CIA official Jose Rodriguez, a Limbaugh and Hannity favorite.
So the redacted summary of the "torture report" is out.... But it seems the CIA has decided it doesn't have to take it (per a report from The Telegraph's Raf Sanchez):
In the moments before the Senate's report into torture by the CIA was released, the agency's director, John Brennan, released a statement of his own.... does the current leadership of the CIA get to have its own position on the basics that contradicts the president's?
... on the fundamental point - was America right to brutalise these terror suspects in an effort to extract information that could prevent the next September 11? - Brennan refuses to give ground.
"Interrogations of detainees on whom [enhanced interrogation techniques] were used did produce intelligence that helped thwart attack plans, capture terrorists, and save lives." He also disputes the Senate’s claim that America’s spies misled the public about the torture program....
If Brennan issues another such statement, it really ought to be quickly followed by a letter of resignation.
It seems to me that the members of the CIA community are acting like law enforcement in America's racial hot spots: they're not ashamed of what they do, they're going to fight to keep things the way they are, and they're impervious to criticism.
Under Bush and Cheney, this community was like law enforcement for Ferguson residents -- rotten all the way up to the prosecutor's office, and beyond. Now the members of this community are like the cops here in New York, as represented by their union -- they insist that they're right, and they response to criticism from Mayor de Blasio with defiance. De Blasio, for his part, walks a fine line, tempering criticism of cops with praise. He knows he has to work with these guys. He knows, and they know, that he'll be gone after one or two terms, but they'll still be here. They're part of the permanent government. He's not.
That's where we are in Washington with regard to the CIA. We want to believe that the Agency will be stung by this report -- from a congressional committee! But they're the CIA. They think we owe them.