Unexamined Premises

As I Was Saying About That 'Torture' Report...

Brothers from another mother

Brothers from another mother

It’s basically a sham, a false-flag operation with the hapless Dianne Feinstein as the designed drop-box, designed to make the Bush administration look bad, the Democrats look “moral” (stop laughing) and the White House look innocent (no, really, stop laughing). For proof, you need look no further than this glowing tale of the bond between two men as lovingly depicted by the Chief Stenographers of the Obama administration, the New York Times:

Just hours before he publicly responded last week to the Senate Intelligence Committee report accusing the Central Intelligence Agency of torture and deceit, John O. Brennan, the C.I.A.’s director, stopped by the White House to meet with President Obama.

Ostensibly, he was there for an intelligence briefing. But the messages delivered later that day by the White House and Mr. Brennan were synchronized, even down to similar wording, and the larger import of the well-timed visit was hardly a classified secret: After six years of partnership, the president was standing by the embattled spy chief even as fellow Democrats called for his resignation.

That’s not to say there was no friction between the West Wing and the C.I.A.’s Langley, Va., headquarters after the release of the scorching report… Some who considered Mr. Brennan the president’s heat shield against the agency when he worked in the White House now worry that since being appointed director, he has “gone native,” as they put it.

But in the 67 years since the C.I.A. was founded, few presidents have had as close a bond with their intelligence chiefs as Mr. Obama has forged with Mr. Brennan. It is a relationship that has shaped the policy and politics of the debate over the nation’s war with terrorist organizations, as well as the agency’s own struggle to balance security and liberty. And the result is a president who denounces torture but not the people accused of inflicting it.

In other words, good old having-it-both-ways Barry, forever running against the status quo as if he had not been charge of it for the past six years. Meanwhile, pointing out that the careerist Brennan, a beloved figure of fun in the intelligence community whose name is a punchline, has “gone native” is an interesting choice of phrase.  In fact, that’s one way to put it; it’s certainly not the first time Brennan has been accused of  it. One thing he and his boss in the White House seem to share is a, shall we say, fondness for Islam and Arab culture:

Mr. Brennan, 59, who spent much of his career as an Arabic-speaking C.I.A. officer, has been a central figure in Mr. Obama’s world since the beginning of his presidency. Built like a linebacker, with a hardened face, close-cropped retreating hair and an intense gaze, Mr. Brennan looks the part of a grim counterterrorism agent. More than one Obama aide compared him to a grizzled city cop, and all of them testified to his herculean work ethic. 

A native of North Bergen, N.J., Mr. Brennan attended Fordham University, spent time in Indonesia and Egypt and earned a master’s degree in Middle East studies at the University of Texas at Austin before answering a newspaper ad for the C.I.A. He rose through the ranks to become station chief in Saudi Arabia and a favorite of George J. Tenet, then the C.I.A. director, who made him his chief of staff and later the agency’s deputy executive director.

Maybe you should have thought this terrorism thing through, Mohammed

Maybe you should have thought this terrorism thing through, Mohammed

Brennan is the man Obama has wanted at CIA from the beginning. Leon Panetta, perhaps the last decent Democrat in the country, obviously had to go, since he had a mind of his own, along with an unwelcome sense of patriotism and responsibility, while David Petraeus managed to engineer his own self-destruction, much to Obama’s relief; the president first needed to neutralize a possible political enemy by stashing him at CIA, then flushed him after the affair with Paula Broadwell (which the White House clearly knew about in advance) became public.  In between Panetta and Petraeus, another apparatchik, Mike Morell, kept the seat warm at Langley until Obama could move Brennan from Homeland Security advisor into the top job.

And there you can bet he’ll stay until the Obama administration finally comes to its nightmarish end.  A skilled bureaucratic infighter with enough Irish pugnacity (his parents were both immigrants from County Roscommon) to cow those around him, Brennan is the perfect stooge for Obama, good cop and bad cop in one thuggish package. According to the Times, which uncritically accepts any spin that David Axelrod (who, of course, is quoted in the article) wishes to feed it, Brennan is bravely taking heat from the Left for defending his Agency:

“There’s a difference between loyalty and leadership,” said Elisa Massimino, president of Human Rights First, an advocacy group. “Brennan may be showing loyalty to the agency by trying to make sure none of his people are in legal peril. Leadership would be if he used this crisis as an opportunity to make clear what the standards are going forward.”

Right.  Don’t fall for the spin. They’re all — Obama, Brennan, the hard Left, the Times — on the same side.

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