Tuesday, April 25, 2006

The latest CIA Leaker Case

As someone who works in the Intelligence field, I have many thoughts on the latest leak case. When we work with classified information, we know that it can only be released to those with the appropriate security clearances and on a proper “need to know” basis. Every member of the military and intelligence community is trained in these basic operational security concepts. Clearly there has been a small fifth column within Central Intelligence for the last four years. Whether it encompasses the leaked Al-Qaqa explosives story from Iraq the week before the 2004 elections (anyone else remember that one on 60 Minutes and the NY Times?) or the Abu Ghraib stories. From the secret prisons in Europe to the NSA intercepts of Al-Qaeda and their contacts located in the United States. From stories railing against “Rumsfeld micromanaging the war” to the “lousy pre-war “Bush Lied” intelligence”. From vehemently defending yet another CIA analyst (Valerie Plame’s use of husband Joe Wilson) and the Niger yellowcake issue, to now back around again to the latest Iranian intelligence leaks and how the US military is incapable of acting successfully against their WMD programs. At the same time, the main stream media has gone into full CYA mode, claiming that Mary O. McCarthy is a brave patriot once again letting the truth out from underneath the secretive Bush Administration. As to how the media deals with the case- we really can’t be too surprised that they are circling their wagons to defend one of their own. If it doesn’t make the President or Republicans look bad, the story will be buried on page A16 and more important stories such as the latest opinion polls will be given front page treatment. As Mark Levin has succinctly stated in his National Review blog, “The media will continue to downplay this story as they cover-up their own role in exposing our nation's secrets, including the supposed existence of CIA prisons in Europe. They're fixated with the weather and gas prices — and anything else that will divert the public's attention from the stunning revelation that a Sandy Berger crony has apparently been leaking top-secret information from her high post at the CIA. She'll be called a "whistleblower" and praised as some kind of patriot (a patriot, in the eyes of the media, is anybody who undermines this administration and the war effort by leaking national security secrets to them). They will downplay that McCarthy was a Clintonoid who somehow managed to land a top post at the CIA, ultimately winding up in the CIA's Inspector General's Office, from where she could monitor CIA internal investigations of, well, leaks, among other things.” What might have been motivating the fired CIA officer? The Just One Minute blog has several thoughts and has done some good background research into McCarthy: “The Times noted her $2,000 campaign contribution to John Kerry in their Friday coverage, but overlooked another $5,000 contribution that she had made to the Ohio DNC; they also overlooked her husband’s maximum contribution to John Kerry.” Others in the media (other leakers) have claimed it was possible that Mary McCarthy had grown increasingly disenchanted with the methods adopted by the Bush administration for handling Qaeda prisoners. How my heart bleeds for her! If every governmental employee or military officer could simply enact policies which we personally approve of, we really wouldn’t need those pesky little things like elections and a constitutional republican form of government. When President Bush took office in 2001, Ms. McCarthy’s career seemed to stall. A former Bush administration official who worked with her said that although Ms. McCarthy was a career C.I.A. employee, as a holdover from the Clinton administration she was regarded with suspicion and was gradually eased out of her job as senior director for intelligence programs. Wow! I wonder why?! She left several months into Mr. Bush’s first term. Rand Beers, who at the time was Mr. Clinton’s senior intelligence aide on the National Security Council, said he had hired Ms. McCarthy to be his deputy. Does that name ring a bell? Well, guess what? Rand Beers joined the John Kerry campaign for President as his national security advisor. (As an aside, yet another reason to thank G-d that President Bush won reelection). It is illegal to take classified intelligence data and distribute said data outside of proper channels. This is especially true in a time when the nation is at war. This was not simply the illegal leaking of information, this was a deliberate decision to wage a political war against the democratically elected government serving President Bush. If she leaked as has been reported, she should be arrested and charged with as many criminal counts as possible. Not only to punish her, but to serve as a marker for what our intelligence agencies demand in securing the Nation’s most closely held secrets.

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