Hacking the easy things first

There are suggestions by the CIA that Russia hacked the Democratic National Committee and John Podesta’s email for the purpose of helping Trump win the election. The FBI disagrees. The CIA also apparently claims the Republican National Committee was hacked, but the Russians deliberately withheld release of any information gathered by that hack.

Reince Priebus denies the RNC was hacked, and says that after conferring with the FBI.

An alternative explanation for the hack of the DNC and Podesta is that some entity other than Russia easily found the means to get into those servers via Hillary Clinton’s unprotected private server. There’s more public evidence pointing to that than there is to the Russians.

Update: Dec 13 10:50AM
Top U.S. spy agency has not embraced CIA assessment on Russia hacking

Congratulations, Mr. President

Well done!!

And THANK YOU to the SEALs who carried this raid out.

I hope we will find out more about the sources of the intelligence that led to Osama’s execution, and whether Pakistan cooperated.

Rumor has it that the intelligence resulted from “enhanced interrogation,” and the deceased was living just 50 miles from Islamabad: In the same town as Pakistan’s version of West Point, alongside many Pakistani military officers.

Inquiring minds want to know if waterboarding worked and if Pakistan should be trusted or vilified.

Leon Panetta?

The appointment of Leon Panetta to head the Central Intelligence Agency appears to be a sop to the MoveOn/Code Pink/Bill Ayers/AmeriKKKa segment of Obama’s base.

Ostensibly because he is a good far-leftwing bureaucrat, Panetta can be depended upon to end any aggressive interrogation techniques, such as waterboarding; to stop the extraordinary rendition program, so maligned under President Bush; and to end wiretaps of foreigners, approved by a Senate vote in which Obama concurred.

But expectations of Panetta should be tempered. His record is contradictory. The extraordinary rendition program was started on the Clinton/Panetta watch. That’s the same watch on which Osama bin-Laden could have been extradited from Sudan, but was left to plot 9/11 because of insufficient evidence to convict him of anything.

Osama’s civil rights were protected. We just never got a chance to read him his rights. If only Leon Panetta and Bill Clinton had applied their extraordinary rendition policy to bin-Laden, or approved water boarding of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed prior to 9/11.

What are the chances the second time around?

If, as DCIA, Panetta is effective in assigning a JAG to every CIA interrogation, he will have diverted CIA resources to oversight and compliance. If he is ineffective he will have diverted CIA resources to obfuscation and ass-kissing. In either case, it is not exactly a “slam dunk” (the phrase of a Clinton DCIA holdover) that Panetta’s appointment will enhance the civil liberties of Americans or improve our physical security. Given his manifest lack of qualifications for this job, it’s a bit like expecting a hen to guard the fox-house.

If Obama wanted some partisan, Clinton-retread, intelligence naif to reform the CIA, why not Sandy Berger? Though Berger’s trade-craft is less than stellar, he has at least some experience with clandestine ops. Yes, he was caught after stealing classified documents from the National Archives and subsequently destroying them, but he did manage to get away with it. Panetta doesn’t even know which end of the undergarment to stuff documents in.

This appointment must be regarded as curious given two wars in progress, a recent terrorist attack in India, and with Iran intent on producing a nuclear weapon. I’d have preferred Obama pay back his far-left supporters in a less critical post.

Dispensing with Justice

Bill Clinton lies under oath to Federal authorities about sex between consenting adults. He’s impeached for this perjury, but not convicted.

Clinton advisor Sandy Berger steals and destroys top secret national security documents under subpoena by a Senate Committee, and then lies about the crime under oath to Federal authorities.

Cheny advisor Scooter Libby is convicted of lying under oath to Federal authorities about some conversations with third parties in regard to a crime that was never committed. And even if it had been committed, senior State Department official Richard Armitage has confessed to it.

So which one should face 25 years in prison, which one should have his law license suspended, and which one should be fined $10,000?

Fade to Martha Stewart covering Joan Baez’ Blessed Are… “…what comes to one must come to us all isn’t justice for all.”

Un-Levin’d Thread

Here is a comprehensive look at the topic of Dan Mulhern’s anti-interview with Senator Carl Levin yesterday on WJIM.

This is a long post, as I am going to try and collect in one place the key documents and links a reader will need to understand that the [sic] another in the many attempts to rewrite history to serve an antiwar political agenda.

The key question: In the late ’90s and early years of this decade, did the CIA do a good job in predicting 9/11 or assessing Saddam’s WMD? Those two numbers and three letters provide the context for the sham “controversy” surrounding former Undersecretary Douglas Feith. Did the CIA see 9/11 coming? Did the agency produce any reports asserting boldly that Saddam did not have the WMD that everyone thought he did?

Was the CIA, in 2002, an agency to be trusted to get the big ones right?

Of course not. The professionals of the agency tried, but they failed. After 9/11 the professionals at the DoD decided to look hard at the intelligence product coming out of the CIA concerning al Qaeda and Saddam. Now partisans are attempting to argue that DoD shouldn’t do such a thing —a conclusion that would be hilarious if it wasn’t so dangerous.

Read the whole thing: The DoD, The CIA, 9/11 and WMD (Bumped With Updates)