In his interview with Jason Leopold in May 2010, Jon Kiriakou explained how his book got approved by the CIA Publication Review Board. He describes someone who–given the mention of the transition team and the seniority at CIA–must be John Brennan, advising him to wait to resubmit his book until after the Obama Administration cleaned out the CIA.
Kiriakou: I called a very senior CIA officer, former CIA officer, who was very quietly supportive of me.
Leopold: Can you identify that person?
Kiriakou: I can’t, unfortunately. But he said, ‘I’m on the Obama transition team. We’re going to win this election next week. And we’re going to be making wholesale changes over there. Everybody’s gonna go. So make your changes and don’t resubmit until I tell you to.’ A week later Obama wins. About six weeks pass, Director Hayden resigns. Several people a layer or two, three layers beneath him also resign, My friend calls me back and says ‘resubmit it.’ This is immediately after Panetta is named Director. I resubmitted it. A week later, I got a one page letter saying ‘the book is cleared in its entirety.’
So not only was this guy who appears identical to John Brennan “quietly supportive
of Kiriakou,” but this John Brennan lookalike also played a key role in getting Kiriakou’s book approved.
Which is mighty interesting, because John Brennan was also centrally involved in this investigation, particularly in the hiring of Pat Fitzgerald in March 2010 to respond to CIA’s demand for IIPA charges.
According to the officials, the dispute centered on discussions for a interagency memorandum that was to be used in briefing President Obama and senior administration officials on the photographs found in Cuba.
Justice officials did not share the CIA’s security concerns about the risks posed to CIA interrogators and opposed language on the matter that was contained in the draft memorandum. The memo was being prepared for White House National Security Council aide John Brennan, who was to use it to brief the president.
The CIA insisted on keeping its language describing the case and wanted the memorandum sent forward in that form.
That resulted in the meeting and ultimately to Mr. Vieira withdrawing from the probe.
Now, I’m not suggesting that Kiriakou was targeted just to get back at John Brennan.
But I am saying that it is–at the very least–ironic that a world class leak hypocrite would be supportive of the guy who got nabbed in this investigation.
On the one hand, after all, Brennan had an antagonistic role with at least one of the whistleblowers the Obama Administration has targeted.
Yet, at the same time, he’s a noted leaker himself, such as for the breathless account of the Osama bin Laden targeting, and, more recently, providing on the record details that the Administration had declared a state secret.
The CIA got their IIPA charge. I’m not sure whether Kiriakou is the guy everyone thought they’d get.