Green Room

Democrats to investigate “secret” program reported by NYT in 2002

posted at 12:49 am on July 14, 2009 by

Via The Hill:

With their Speaker behind them, House Democrats are pushing ahead with plans to hold a series of hearings investigating instances in which intelligence officials may have misled members of Congress.

Senior Democratic aides said that a major announcement could come by the end of week, but it was already clear on Monday that House Democrats are seizing on weekend news reports that former Vice President Dick Cheney hid information from Congress.

The New York Times reported on Sunday that the CIA, under the direction of Cheney, developed a secret counterterrorism program and then was directed by the vice president to conceal it from Congress.

The Wall Street Journal first reported that the program was a classified initiative to kill or capture al Qaeda operatives.

Unfortunately for Democratic witch-hunters, their pals at the national security-defying New York Times apparently blew this secret back in December 2002:

The Bush administration has prepared a list of terrorist leaders the Central Intelligence Agency is authorized to kill, if capture is impractical and civilian casualties can be minimized, senior military and intelligence officials said.

The previously undisclosed C.I.A. list includes key Qaeda leaders like Osama bin Laden and his chief deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri, as well as other principal figures from Al Qaeda and affiliated terrorist groups, the officials said. The names of about two dozen terrorist leaders have recently been on the lethal-force list, officials said. “It’s the worst of the worst,” an official said.

President Bush has provided written legal authority to the C.I.A. to hunt down and kill the terrorists without seeking further approval each time the agency is about to stage an operation. Some officials said the terrorist list was known as the “high-value target list.” A spokesman for the White House declined to discuss the list or issues involving the use of lethal force against terrorists. A spokesman for the C.I.A. also declined to comment on the list.

Despite the authority given to the agency, Mr. Bush has not waived the executive order banning assassinations, officials said. The presidential authority to kill terrorists defines operatives of Al Qaeda as enemy combatants and thus legitimate targets for lethal force.

Could it be that CIA Director Panetta does not have a good grip on the history of his agency’s post-9/11 efforts? Could it be that his Democratic colleagues have such a knee-jerk hostility to the CIA that they would jump on bad info to attack the CIA and Fmr. Vice-Pres. Cheney as a modified limited defense of Speaker Pelosi’s prior bogus attacks on the CIA regarding briefings on interrogation tactics? Could it be that the geniuses of the NYT forgot they already blew the program?

(Hint: Yes, Yes and Yes.)

(Credit to Andrew Breitbart and Guy P. Benson for the links.)

Update: Here’s Guy’s take at NRO.

Recently in the Green Room:

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

I wonder what Cheney’s reaction will be.

Patrick on July 14, 2009 at 4:49 AM

Pelosi and the Democrats vs the Intelligence communities – it’s not a fair fight!

PatMac on July 14, 2009 at 6:28 AM

One would think someone would have at least done a friggin google search on this before going on national TV and calling Cheney a liar. What a bunch of losers!

Johnnyreb on July 14, 2009 at 6:30 AM

This rediscovery of the 2002 NYT’s article is an eye opener for me. Why was this article suppressed from the American public by the SRM? It seems that the state run media modi operandi of withholding all the facts if those facts don’t support their liberal political view is more commonplace then they would like the public to believe.

Who is to be held accountable for this faux pas ? How many more of these lame flatland issues will be excused or dismissed due to there (CIA/DOJ) investigative incompetence? Did the CIA/DOJ know the facts of this 2002 NYT’s article beforehand or did they just disregard the facts it? It’s not like fabricating, falsifying or misrepresenting the facts is a one time offence from these prevaricating adults in charge now.

How much traction will this 2002 NYT’s article get?

Does this mean that the eggs aimed at Dick Cheney will now land on Eric Holder’s and Leon Panetta faces will be anybodies guess. Does this mean that CIA Director Panetta and Attorney General Eric Holder are incompetent or politically corrupt?

Where is Jake Tapper and Major Garrett on this revelation on this issue?

Will Jake Tapper or Major Garrett ask Obama’s spokesman Robert Gibbs about whether the subject of the Central Intelligence Agency authorization to kill any Taliban or al Qaida terrorist (enemy combatant?)is on or off the table now?

Americannodash on July 14, 2009 at 8:56 AM

Diversion. And it’s working at least a bit.

Daggett on July 14, 2009 at 9:11 AM

One would think someone would have at least done a friggin google search on this before going on national TV and calling Cheney a liar. What a bunch of losers!

Johnnyreb on July 14, 2009 at 6:30 AM

They’re desperate for a diversion and some meatarugula for the base.

the_nile on July 14, 2009 at 9:13 AM

And to think these idiots are now in charge of national security. 2010/12 can’t get here soon enough.

txag92 on July 14, 2009 at 9:13 AM

So, if we’re not going to kill them anymore, just why are we in Afghanistan?

moonsbreath on July 14, 2009 at 9:16 AM

Fox better run hard with this, make a laughing stock out of the Democrats, Panetta and their State Media, the NY TImes

jp on July 14, 2009 at 9:17 AM

So, if we’re not going to kill them anymore, just why are we in Afghanistan?

moonsbreath on July 14, 2009 at 9:16 AM

note Obama is still doing Drone attacks, to kill AL-Qaeda and Taliban leaders in Afghan and Pakistan and elsewhere

jp on July 14, 2009 at 9:18 AM

I have a better idea. Let’s investigate Obama’s army of czars and the constitutionality of their offices and activities. Do we need policy and de facto laws created by extra-constitutional entities, hidden from legislative and public scrutiny?

For instance, there where many reasons that Carol Browner was appointed Assistant to the President for Energy and Climate Change, not the least of which is that she wouldn’t survive the Congressional approval process. Yet, she, not Lisa Jackson, is the driving force in the EPA and we are subject to her directives.

obladioblada on July 14, 2009 at 9:24 AM

I wonder what Cheney’s reaction will be.

Patrick on July 14, 2009 at 4:49 AM

“Bring it, candy-a** beotches!”

GISAP on July 14, 2009 at 9:26 AM

Obama’s poll numbers are tanking. His cap and tax is floundering. The public is waking up to the nightmare of socialized medicine.

Obama Administration response: “Cheney lied!!!!!!”

Pathetic. This diversion won’t work and it won’t take our eyes off the Left’s plan to destroy this country.

sdillard on July 14, 2009 at 9:31 AM

Double top secret program, huh?

mchristian on July 14, 2009 at 9:32 AM

I would love to see VP Cheney testify on Capitol Hill to these dumocrats. I imagine that his testimony will follow
1) Given all the leaks going on, concealment was warranted
2) The NY Times reported on it in 2002, so why are you complaining in 2009?
3) Don’t you think it is good policy to go after and kill (where capture isn’t possible) those who have demonstrated harm to the US and want to hurt us again?

Democrats seem more interested in scoring political points than protecting the US. That, to me, is anti-patriotic.

rbj on July 14, 2009 at 9:34 AM

How funny is this?

CIA classified material purposely leaked by the NYT to embarrass the Bush administration comes back to haunt their buddies on the left.

And horror of horrors, the classified material told of our intent to kill Al Qaeda members and a host of other terrorists after the attack on our homeland on 9/11.

And ……… Democrats are trying to defend their position? LOL.

fogw on July 14, 2009 at 9:36 AM

note Obama is still doing Drone attacks, to kill AL-Qaeda and Taliban leaders in Afghan and Pakistan and elsewhere

jp on July 14, 2009 at 9:18 AM

I guess I should have put a /sarc tag on what I wrote.

I’m just playing the Dem’s game. If killing top leaders and not specifically notifying Congress was against the law then (the case they’re trying to make against Cheney). They still haven’t been notified of this order to kill under Obama, since Panetta ordered this program stopped. So, my snarky question is why are we there if we can’t kill the top leaders?

moonsbreath on July 14, 2009 at 9:41 AM

Isn’t that what we’re supposed to do? Kill the bad guys? We do not need to know everything when it comes to covert actions to take out the terrorists! Kill em and ask question later! End of story!!!!!

Eyvonne on July 14, 2009 at 9:44 AM

The getalifes are in charge now.

Del Dolemonte on July 14, 2009 at 9:45 AM

Uh huh. When it dawns on them that they’re taking al Qaeda’s side in all this and your average American is perfectly content with the idea of offing AQ’s leadership, they’ll quietly push the issue out of the limelight, wait a few years, and announce their findings at 11:30pm on some friday when the news is dominated by some other event. Just like they did with their investigation of the supposedly “sexed up” intel dossiers on Saddam Hussein’s WMD capabilities.

commenter on July 14, 2009 at 9:57 AM

They don’t have to be right. Their goal is to get the words “CIA” and “lies” together in headlines as many times as possible. Then they’ll do what I said in my last post and secretly declare victory. Your average American with their gerbil-level attention span will never realize what happened.

commenter on July 14, 2009 at 9:58 AM

Democrats seem more interested in scoring political points than protecting the US. That, to me, is anti-patriotic.

rbj on July 14, 2009 at 9:34 AM

What political points? Anyone with half a brain sees this for what it is so no points there. The only points they will score is with their rabid, brainless drones and what good is that to them? It’s not like the drones will vote for someone else.
The way I see it is that this whole effort will be driving away the people with brains and the dems really need them because they don’t yet have enough drones to lock up elections.

jmarcure on July 14, 2009 at 10:15 AM

Maybe we need to have Nancy Pelosi checked for signs of senility or Alzheimers…..

conservativegrandma on July 14, 2009 at 11:10 AM

Sweet. Wish there was more accountability in the media. I also wish I had a million dollars.

mperek on July 14, 2009 at 11:12 AM

Another Friday misdirection play! BOHICA Baby.

Eagles Dominion on July 14, 2009 at 11:32 AM

Seems to me this is proof why we need to keep Secrets from Democrats and Liberals. They try and use it for political reasons and this puts real life’s in danger of those who are operatives. They are making the point that they cannot be trusted with sensitive information because they will make it public like they are now. How stupid. I think most Americans can figure this out. The Democrats are more interested in protecting their own ass and not the security of the rest of us Americans. God Help US!!!

Ed Laskie on July 14, 2009 at 11:37 AM

Considering the fury of the Democrat’s attack on Cheney for trying to kill al Qaeda honchos, you have to wonder whose side they’re on? Since their Messiah has banned the use of the word terrorist, maybe we should refer to al Qaeda types as Democrat party activists.

lonesomecharlie on July 14, 2009 at 11:46 AM

Hmmmm…

Whats interesting is all the CURRENT leaks… and VP Cheneys silence on the subject…

And these are CLASSIFIED briefs.

/puts on his evil genius hat…

Is this a Trap, set up by Cheney and the CIA to discover who is leaking?

Romeo13 on July 14, 2009 at 12:31 PM

CIA vs. Pelosi: An intelligence agency against an intelligence vacancy.

Jim Treacher on July 14, 2009 at 2:07 PM

This post has been promoted to HotAir.com.

Comments have been closed on this post but the discussion continues here.

Allahpundit on July 14, 2009 at 5:46 PM