Friday, November 18, 2005

Stansfield Turner weighs in >link<

Admiral Turner is badmouthing Dick Cheney and President Bush. Why am I not surprised?

For those of you who may not remember, Admiral Stansfield Turner was President Jimmy Carter's CIA chief. Turner was a big believer in "electronic intelligence." He shared Carter's disdain for "human intelligence" (that is, spies in the field) and did his best to shut down our country's overseas HUMINT operations. This was consistent with the Church Committee's efforts in Congress to stop abuses by the CIA.

The result? Turner's CIA completely missed the coming of the Iranian revolution and the rise of the Mullahs to power. Turner's CIA also missed the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. Turner's damage to the CIA lasted long after Jimmy Carter was run out of office. It took decades to build and develop our HUMINT capabilities; it only took a few months for Turner to clean house and fire all our HUMINT operatives. President Reagan came to office with a CIA that was bat blind and focused on one task: protecting itself.

The CIA has become just one more government bureaucracy that spends an unbelievable amount of money but gets very little done. Ah, but an agency filled with analysts, electronic monitoring gear, and filtering software (and an occasional person with spycraft abilities) is well suited for survival in Washington, DC. The CIA is one agency you DON'T want to cross politically. "The Company" knows how to leak information with harmful consequences better than anyone else ... just look at the Veronica Plame ordeal and the pain that the CIA has inflicted on the Bush Administration if you have any doubts.


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