Wednesday, February 05, 2020


Not long after Mitt Romney announced that he intended to vote for the first article of impeachment in the trial of President Trump, right-wingers began responding:

Here's the September 2019 Breitbart story cited above:
Joseph Cofer Black, a national security adviser for the 2012 Mitt Romney campaign, sits on the board of directors of Burisma Holdings, the Ukrainian oil and gas giant that paid at times more than $83,000 per month to Hunter Biden, former Vice President Joe Biden’s youngest son.

The American Thinker, which first brought the story to light, noted it is “an odd coincidence that Mitt has as CNN puts it ‘been a lone Republican voice expressing concern about President Donald Trump’s July phone call with Volodymyr Zelensky in which Trump asked Ukraine’s President to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his family.’”
The link above is legitimate -- Black does sit on the Burisma board. But would Romney convict because of one guy he relied on for foreign policy advice in a couple of long-ago presidential campaigns? Your right-wing uncle thinks so.

But if your uncle was right-wing during the early George W. Bush era, Black is precisely the kind of person he was likely to admire, and to accuse you of not admiring, you dirty little terrorist-coddling hippie.

From a 2017 Daily Beast story by Eli Lake:
Early in his career, Black was credited with doing much of the street work that led to France’s apprehension in Khartoum, Sudan, of the master terrorist known as Carlos the Jackal. After the 9/11 attacks, according to Bob Woodward’s first book in his series about the Bush presidency, it was Black who briefed the president on the CIA’s war plan for Afghanistan. He’s also the guy who promised to leave al Qaeda’s operatives with “flies walking across their eyeballs.”

In his memoir, former CIA chief George Tenet relays a story about how after the 9/11 attacks, Black insisted on staying at his office with his staff at the Global Response Center, even though the center was located in an exposed area of the agency's headquarters, on the sixth floor—a possible target for terrorists. Tenet had wanted to evacuate the center, but Black rebuffed him. "Well, they could die," Tenet remembers telling Black about his staff. Black’s response: "Well sir, then they are just going to have to die."

In December, 2002, Black transferred to the State Department as the ambassador-at-large for counterterrorism. In 2004 he left government, and the following year he became a vice chairman of the controversial security contractor, Blackwater USA, managing a subsidiary company known as Total Intelligence Solutions....
Yup -- he may have overlapped with Hunter Biden at Burisma, but he also worked at Blackwater under Erik Prince, Trump's pal and Betsy DeVos's brother.

More, from a 2005 BBC story:
Gary Schroen flew out [to Afghanistan] soon after the [9/11] attacks on New York and Washington, helping to set up the 2001 invasion, he told US National Public Radio.

He recalled his orders from the CIA's counter-terrorism chief.

"Capture Bin Laden, kill him and bring his head back in a box on dry ice," he quoted Cofer Black as saying.

As for other leaders of Bin Laden's al-Qaeda network in Afghanistan, Mr Black reportedly said: "I want their heads up on pikes."

Contacted by the radio network, Mr Black would not confirm that these were his exact words but he did not dispute Mr Schroen's account.
Of course, Black never got those heads. But right-wingers in America used to thrill to tough talk like this. Now, though, your right-wing uncle thinks Black is just another Deep State traitor.

No comments: