Is the Harman Story an Attempt to Silence Her about Torture?
Laura Rozen has been reporting an angle of the Jane Harman story that has been largely neglected elsewhere–the possibility that this story is coming out now as a way to hit Harman, the fiercest critic of the torture program.
A former senior U.S. intelligence officer said he heard during work on the Hill in the 2004 time period of whispers among members of the intelligence committees and their staffs that Harman was allegedly caught up in some Israel-related case that would likely prevent her from getting the chairmanship of the committee she sought. He also said that it was clear that Goss and Harman (and their staffs) fiercely disliked each other.
But he wondered if the timing of this story was about changing the subject, from what Bush-era officials had authorized, to what the Congress was complicit in. "Is this about taking pressure off the revelations of waterboarding and the memos?" he speculated. "And the fact," he added, "that no real intelligence came out of this whole effort?" referring to the enhanced interrogation/torture regime revealed in the memos, which he said produced no actionable intelligence.
(For his part, Stein said in an online chat Monday afternoon that he had had the story for a while, and only decided to move on it now.)
But the former intelligence official familiar with the matter noted that Goss has given only one on-the-record interview on these CIA controversies since leaving the CIA director job. In the December 2007 interview, he said that Congressional leaders, including Representatives Pelosi and Goss himself, Sen. Bob Graham (D-FL) and Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL), and later Rep. Harman, Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) and Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS), had been briefed on CIA waterboarding back in 2002 and 2003. "Among those being briefed, there was a pretty full understanding of what the CIA was doing," Goss told the Washington Post. "And the reaction in the room was not just approval, but encouragement."
Who was the lone lawmaker the article identified as objecting to the program?
The story is plausible not just because Porter Goss–both a former Congressman and former DCI–might fit as one of the sources for all the intelligence reporters covering this story. But also because we know Porter Goss was doing a masterful job working the press to distract from his role in the torture tape destruction (that’s what his on-the-record interview was all about). In addition, Porter Goss is deeply implicated in the Bradbury torture memos and the torture tape destruction (and is one potential candidate to be the "senior agency official [who] failed to provide a full account of the CIA’s detainee-treatment policy at a closed hearing of the House intelligence committee in February 2005, under questioning by California Rep. Jane Harman"). And it’s quite likely that Jane Harman knows quite a bit about just how implicated he is.
With Laura’s reporting in mind, take a look at the NYT’s latest on Harman, written by intelligence reporter Mark Mazetti and a courts reporter Neil Lewis (with assistance from DOJ reporter Eric Lichtblau). The article serves as a vehicle for Alberto Gonzales’ excuse for talking to Porter Goss about the wiretap on Harman.
A person who is familiar with Mr. Gonzales’s account of the events said that the former attorney general had acknowledged having raised with Mr. Goss the idea that Ms. Harman was playing a helpful role in dealing with The Times.
But Mr. Gonzales’s principal motive in delaying a briefing for Congressional leaders, the person said, was to keep Ms. Harman from learning of the investigation before she could be interviewed by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Of course, Gonzales’ excuse makes no sense, since Harman was apparently never interviewed by the FBI.
A spokesman for Ms. Harman said the congresswoman had never been interviewed by the bureau.
In addition to serving as a vehicle for Gonzales’ unconvincing excuse, however, the article also serves as a vehicle for two men implicated in the torture program–John McLaughlin and Michael Hayden–to pile on the evidence that Jane Harman actually did intervene formally with the NYT.
One former official said Thursday that Michael V. Hayden, then the director of the security agency, and John E. McLaughlin, then the acting director of the C.I.A., prepared talking points for Ms. Harman to use in her discussion with Mr. Taubman.
Ms. Harman’s spokesman said she “has absolutely no recollection of any talking points for a phone call that took place five years ago.”
Pile on, gentlemen! Everyone’s doing it!
Look, there are no good guys in this story. Both Harman’s story and those of the torture apologists are full of contradictions and obvious holes. But it does seem increasingly likely that this story is designed to try to silence one of the people–Harman–who knows who said and did what with regards to torture.
Update: This post makes this case much more persuasively than I have.
This all so interesting. Especially, as I find myself intrigued by the Rosen suit against AIPAC for defamation.
Lots of finger pointing to go around. But I will note, Harman is at the center on both sides of all of this. Which, in itself, is interesting. Lot’s of pies with finger holes.
And if I was the FBI, trying to track the possibility of a spy within the government for a while, I really wonder if I would talk to Harman? I would listen and listen…for a while. Using the “enough rope” approach to evidence gathering.
Rosen’s threat to Aipac if I go down you go down. Spend money and shut down the trial or else.
Rosen led the charge against Charles Freeman. Can you imagine any other person who is up for espionage charges pulling that off. Rosen is ruthless
You’ll get no argument from me!
(But I know that you know that!)
So why did Gonzales shut down an investigation into Harman’s “completed crime”
Sorry, I don’t get it. If Goss was the former intelligence officer on the Hill, what would be his motive in admitting and promoting his admission that this was an attempt to shift heat to the Dems. That seems counterproductive.
And this ‘warning’ to Harman seems like it could backfire and get her to take the rest down with her.
If Harman 1) is tied up trying to save her career and 2) has really damaged credibility right now bc she can’t muster a straight answer on this topic and bc she’s now implicated in potential spying, then she can’t get up and say, “Porter Goss (or whoever) lied to Congess in February 2005 to cover up problems with the torture program.”
And that may make a difference to whether there’s an investigation, which may in turn make a difference to whether Goss goes to jail.
Scott Horton interviews Jeff Stein
Stein must be on another planet when he says that there has been “lots” of coverage on the Aipac espionage investigation and trial.
Shamelessness of Jane Harman
Juan Cole had a bit to say about the Harman issue (has a bit to say about the Liz Cheney outburst
Pelosi was Briefed on Harman’s Wire Tap
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi says she was briefed several years ago that Rep. Jane Harman (D-CA) had shown up in a wiretap. Pelosi denies that she was pressured by Israeli-American billionaire Haim Saban to appoint Harman chair of the House Intelligence Committee.
But then at the end of the interview, Pelosi says that Harman did not get the job because of internal term limits. She said, “The only reason Jane was not chosen is because she already had two terms. It had nothing to do with wiretaps or Iraq.”
Iraq? Who said anything about Iraq? The accusation was that Harman was to be rewarded for getting off the hook two career employees of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee who are being tried for espionage.
Makes you wonder what Harman had to do with getting up the Iraq War, which seems to be another strand in all this. Pelosi admitted to disagreements with major campaign funder Saban over Iraq.
Curioser and curioser.
Laura Rozen has more.
Makes you wonder what Harman had to do with getting up the Iraq War, which seems to be another strand in all this.
Haim Saban had a lot more to do with getting up the Iraq war. That’s what he was doing getting Kenneth Pollack a platform at Brookings.
Have folks found out any more about the “torture” contractors? Where they were from? Yesterday on the Rehm show Elissa Massimo said that the torture contractors pushed hard for the use of the (cough) “enhanced interrogation techniques”
10:00Release of C.I.A. Interrogation Memos
The latest on the Obama Administration’s review of interrogation tactics and pressure to publicize what was gained from the techniques.
Marc Thiessen, speechwriter for former President Bush
Elisa Massimino, Washington director, Human Rights First
Jameel Jaffer, Director of ACLU National Security Project
Jess Bravin, reporter, Wall Street Journal
EW, you indicate that the source for the above is Goss — it looks much more likely that it is Gonzales himself. And that he is providing this spin to direct away from inevitable obstruction of justice insinuations about any actions he may have taken in calling off the FBI.
For the reporters to use the phrasing “a person who is familiar with Mr. Gonzales’s account of the events” and speaking to Gonzo’s motives at the time, my interpretation fits better.
Of course, Goss was probably another of the rather numerous sources called upon by Mazetti and Lewis in this piece.
Leen, meant to mention @ 5, nice diary.
enjoy the spring flowers FDLfolks. At least we have spring
Yes, there was NO real news in Stein’s piece. It bothered me that so many people defended Stein’s reporting, too, because the biggest problem I could see was the timing.
Why NOW? Why would Stein let himself be used like this? He had to have some awareness of this.
There was a little new reporting in the Stein piece — not much — but your point still holds.
The new bits were (a) that Gonzo purportedly quashed a purported investigation, and (b) that Harman joined in the NYT-suppression effort.
Your point on timing though is well taken. We can’t really take Stein’s word for it that he “had the story” for a while and then just pulled it all together. No reporter is going to admit being a tool. His sources fed him the new information, as they were savvy enough to know that those new tidbits were enough — beyond the 2006 Time piece — to cause an editor to pull the trigger on the story. That leaves the “who,” “why,” and “why now” questions. The leaked info was clearly designed to do harman maximum harm. And, as Josh is pointing out, the “completed crime” conclusion is not the most solid one.
The idea that Harman could cause sufficient harm to the Bushies regarding torture is one I’m having difficulty with. It may be that I’m too influenced by my deep antipathy toward Harman to believe that she really stood up against torture (that strikes me as quite out of character) as well as the fact that she simply has little to no credibility here. There already was a series of he-said, she-said stories about who said what and who sort-of objected when briefed on Teh Program. And I think the truth is probably that there were at most some concerned mumblings, and that once the congressional leadership briefings were news, everyone had an interest in trying to make themselves look better than their actual, complicit conduct warranted. But I suppose it’s possible that the Bushies think that she could be a potential problem on this front and that demolishing her already threadbare credibility would be worth the effort.
It’s conceivable as well that this was a more generalized warning shot, fired from the dead-enders, to serve as a reminder that there was sufficient complicity by high-power Dems that you guys shouldn’t go stirring the pot any more (and that thanks to our trusty TSP, we have lots of dirt to throw around to boot). That one strikes me as being the more credible (and of course it could always be a two-fer). The Bushies were in their way clever. Briefings of congressional leaders certainly don’t make the illegal legal nor do they cure basic separation-of-powers problems. But they do spread around just enough complicity to provide political cover — which has held up until now. (And I’m convinced that one of the reasons for Obama’s Hamlet routine regarding The Decision That Isn’t His to Make is that influential Dems will look very very bad if enough rocks are lifted.)
PS: One thing I’m sure of, though, and it’s this. Harman’s little Freudian brain-fart during her media blitz — admitting that she remembered enough of the conversations “[she] may or may not have had” to be certain that she talked to an American citizen in the U.S. — very much proves what a kabuki act her call to release the transcripts is. My reasoning runs like this: She remembers enough to know that what she said looks very, very bad. She wants to change the subject to outrage over spying on Members of Congress (through means approved, of course by her and others of her ilk). She knows that she spoke to an U.S. citizen who was in the U.S. during the call. Ergo, she knows that the wiretap had to have been illegal under FISA at the time. That makes her particularly confident that the DoJ will not release the transcript.
She’s an interesting combination of stupid and clever. I hope she’s wrong. I’d love to hear the tape.
Yes, you’re right, there were two pieces that appeared to be knew — but are they substantive and at this point provable?
We know now what we already knew about Gonzo — that he allowed the continued corruption of the DOJ and used his role and the DOJ as an adjunct political function rather than as the law enforcement role of the executive branch. Hardly news in this respect.
We also know there’s conflicting info about Harman and the NYT; I’m still not entirely convinced of what transpired. The NYT is culpable in its own right because it simply should have hung up on any and all elected officials or politicians who called them to halt the publication of the wiretapping story and simply run the damned thing. (Hell, if a politician calls you, it’s another damned story to run after the first piece…)
I think there’s several other stories here which need more investigation. If Harman called for the tape to be released, where is it? Why is she so confident? We still haven’t gotten to the bottom of Jello Jay Rockefeller’s comments about being wiretapped. We also don’t know how many times Congresspersons have been wiretapped all along and there’s nobody asking the question in the mainstream media, in spite of at least one Senator and one Representative alluding to it.
Pelosi does not incite my faith, but for all we know, she’s been wiretapped too and she’s probably been smart enough to know it, and it probably explains why she give such bizarre answer to all of this mess. What do they have on her, or any other member of Congress? Is this the real bottleneck to getting any traction in Congress now — as you said, to lift the rocks, as they know ugly things will crawl out?
All the more reason for a special prosecutor.
Of course I should have added that the other really new bit was the wiretap and transcript.
Your notes of caution about the veracity of the report — particularly of characterizations — are prudent. But on the NYT front, there’s no more discrepancy. Bill Keller issued a carefully worded non-denial denial. “She didn’t speak to me” and “I have no recollection that she influenced my decision.” (The latter one rather unmasks the misleading nature of the first; leaving aside the no recollection” dodge, why would he even be talking about her influencing his decision if the fact that he did not speak to her truly answered the question, which was not, “did Harman speak to Bill Keller, but rather did Harman attempt to influence the NYT? And it’s a bit like responding to the charge that you broke my pot after you borrowed it with “I never borrowed the pot, but it was broken when I got it.) In any event, the truth came out — in the news pages of the Times — that Harman put the arm on the Washington bureau chief, who doubtless weighed in on Keller’s decision. I would posit as well that the Washington bureau chief informed Keller that a Democratic congresswoman agreed with the Administration, perhaps naming her. Keller is weasely bastard, when he’s not just plain lying, so read any statement from him with extreme care.
It bothered me that so many people defended Stein’s reporting
I was one of those people, and I’m sorry it bothered you. But some of the attacks on his reporting were simply not correct. Others, which I didn’t defend, are questionable.
Treating the story as a hit job that must be discredited in every possible way because the targets are “Democrats” (deliver the party from such “Democrats”!) opens the door to intellectual dishonesty. Neither you nor really drational have necessarily stepped through the door; drational’s DK diary focused on the genuinely questionable parts of Stein’s account.
All sources have agendas, anonymous sources even more so. Stein’s statement about the timing — that he’s had the information for a while and has just now been able to turn his attention to it, whatever that means, is also open to question.
Harman and Pelosi were both briefed on torture. Harman’s better-than-nothing letter of protest is being devalued by her alleged willingness to interfere with the AIPAC case for political reward. The Rosen and Weissman case is threatened from several angles. Pelosi has a strong political interest in not becoming the focus of who-knew-what-when torture investigations. Goss, on the other hand, is at serious risk for prosecution and jail time. So is Gonzales.
The multiple agendas at work here, plus the return fire from the Times, a traditional source of CIA and Israel lobby ass-covering, makes it seem possible that we are in for, in Jim Henley’s words, a Cynic’s Superbowl.
You need not apologize, we’re simply on other sides of an opinion.
As you point out there are many issues open to question in Stein’s reporting. I don’t have a blind support for Harman, but I do see how easily and in many ways she could have been co-opted; it’s why she is permanently damaged goods.
That Stein reports as if in a vacuum is not acceptable.
There is one other “player” in this mix not named or pointed out, and that’s Stein’s editor(s). What were they thinking?
As a managing editor, believe me, I’d be extremely conscious of the holes in the reporting which cry for more information, and the timing. Always the timing. It would not be beyond me as a managing editor to question a story when pitched — before it is even drafted — who the sources were, and why they were coming forward now. Been there, done that. Concerns me, though, that Stein is an editor; did it not occur to him at all how this looked?
The obvious contradiction (if this is all true) of Harman cutting deals with AIPAC in exchange for their putting pressure on Pelosi to pick HER for chairperson of the House Intel Committee, while at practically the same time, she was the most outspoken of the critics of the Bush administration’s use of torture, is puzzling, to say the least.
It’s safe to say that AIPAC would be perfectly content to watch the CIA, etc., inch by inch, flay the hide off Abu Zubaydah and Khalid Mohammed, and anyone else, if there was the slightest chance that some useful intelligence would be gained from doing it. Given that, why on earth would they even come bartering, to Harman, for their support for her as chair of that committee?
Although one might wonder exactly who the interrogators were; were they contractors? were they contractors from another country?
The blowback on this so-called news, though, is that it exposes the reasons why a truth commission run through Congress, or an investigation by Congress, is probably not the best approach to addressing torture of detainees. This is why it has to get run through a prosecutor — preferably an independent counsel, but at a minimum a special prosecutor, outside of Congress.
Gen. Kaminski said the other night with righeous rage that it should be an international commission since soldiers of the “willing” and the entire world are at risk of torture and torture blowback. I agree America can admit to torture and expose our torturers but the entry of this systematic nazi topdown torture policy affects the entire world-our black prisons are in nations unaffected by our shame and they are still full of Cheney’s prisoners that may not even be on the books. The world community has to take part in the condemnation.
I don’t think a world commission will satisfactorily cover the issues from an American perspective; the wingnuts would go batshit about it, for starters. What a world commission needs to do is review the treaties or other understandings which have allowed the U.S. and other entities to rely on access to airspace and airports for the purposes of rendition during attempts to violate Geneva Conventions. There so much documentation about the use of Shannon Airport, for example, that the whole of the EC should be in an uproar about it. Instead it has been allowed to support secondary use of torture products because it was the Americans who did it, not the Irish/UK. While there is an Obama administration, precedent should be set that all suspicious planes are checked for renderees/unreported transfers of humans.
Don’t get me started on the black sites; somebody in Poland needs their asses handed to them for Szymany.
Speaking of Szymany, the sartorial gaffe made back in Jan 2005 by Dick Cheney (wearing a parka and ski cap to a solumn ceremony at Auschwitz) was — according to IC scuttlebutt — a result of the Veep’s visit to the black site near Szymany airport.
Oh jeebus, I had not heard that.
Would Deadeye really be that bloody stupid and arrogant???
He’ll probably explain it away with reference to the missile defense system with which they bought the Polish cooperation. “Oh, I had to see for myself whether this was worth U.S. investment…”
Wow, that’s interesting. I wonder if he was also wearing latex gloves under his regular ones. Because he’d been…..participating.
Would be almost too good to be true, since that’s exactly the attitude that was conveyed.
As with any creative process, sometimes the most telling aspects are serendipitous.
Your puzzlement and last question somewhat answers your question.
Because Israel knew that Al Qaeda had never been a threat to them, and thus, were little to no help to us in our post-9/11 frenzy.
However, Israel did have quite good intel on their big enemy Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. Their participation (since they are a key liaison service) — by omission or commission — in our WMD intelligence “shortcomings” is a topic considered waaay too hot for the MSM.
Rayne, I doubt that foreigners were used for the actual process. Bush, Cheyney, Rice, etc., surely knew that they were crossing a huge ethical Rubicon, when they approved the torture. I can’t believe that they would have given that kind of a hammer to people over whom they, ultimately, had little or no power. There would have been too good a chance that they could have come forward at a later date, or just simply have blackmailed someone higher up.
Were any of the sessions filmed? It’s certainly possible, maybe even probable. There is, after all, that little arrogance-thing, in the hearts and minds of people who’ve done this in the past. What if the tapes exist, or got into the hands of the wrong people?
Moreso than memos (which Rice, for one, seems to have kept her signature off of…) involving direct orders to waterboard, they would be damning to the nth degree.
And Klynn, I get that you’re saying that Harman’s “outrage” was Kabuki, to make people think that she would NEVER whore herself out to AIPAC to join their recruits who were trying to derail the espionage case against two of their top staffers. (It looks like they’re about to succeed…) Is that correct?
EW, one thing I’m curious about is how does the timing of the wiretapping (whether directly or indirectly) tie in with the snooping done on behalf of Bolton? Weren’t there 10 people or so that he requested info on from the NSA? Their names were never released, but it was widely speculated that he was trying to get dirt on opponents. I’m not suggesting the two cases of snooping here are related, but we know the NSA was hoovering data sufficiently for Bolton to paw through it for dirt. Who’s to say they didn’t go rooting around in the Harman data to get dirt on her as well?
Also, I posted this over on your Crazy Pete thread, but it is worth repeating here given Goss’ statement quoted above… Bob Graham was interviewed, primarily about his book on civic action, on NPR’s On Point yesterday. The website has not yet posted a transcript or a podcast, but when they do fast forward to the last 5 minutes or so. He is asked about Goss’ claim that he was briefed on enhanced interrogation. Graham states that he was Chairman of the SSCI from mid-2001 through the end of 2002 and that he was never briefed on enhanced interrogation techniques.
Now either Goss or Graham is lying. They both have asses in dire need of cover here, so I’m not placing any bets. But, either way, one of them is lying.
The podcast is up now, go to 40:48 for the torture part…
I’m still not satisfied with any explanation that has been given for Graham’s sudden move from Presidential candidate to retiring from the Senate within a few months. I don’t buy the excuse of his health.
I think he either was having something being used against him or he realized that unspeakable things were done under cover of a contrived “approval” of the Gang of Eight while he was a member. This second option becomes a lot more understandable when you consider his comments yesterday. I think he realized he was lied to and manipulated and decided he just didn’t have the leverage to fight it, so he just walked away in disgust. Let’s hope there was also a desire to bide his time until he could expose just what was done and that he’s now starting down that path, carefully.
Yep. I was struck by the forcefulness of his denial, coupled with his claim that he couldn’t speak for anyone but himself. Plus, he went out of his way to point out BushCo’s habit of ensnaring people in their “net” to help ensure they got the cover they needed.
Given Goss’ role, he is the one more likely to lie, since the truth can already convict him. That isn’t yet the case with Graham.
Jim – are you perplexed (I am) at Graham’s stated memory infirmity on that period? Because my recollection is that he was Mr. Journal maker and keeps notes on everything. Seems to be a disconnect on his inability to recall this area…..
Agreed. Entirely uncharacteristic. He also took great pride in being perhaps the Senate’s best informed member on national security. These briefings would have been of the very highest priority for him.
What memory infirmity are you referring to? In yesterday’s interview, Bob Graham was unequivocal in his denial, downright emphatic in fact.
Perhaps you can remind me, my memory is hazy, but I seem to recall a story about Graham being one of the few lawmakers to review all the classified docs prior to the vote on the Iraq War blank check from Congress and he didn’t like what he saw. Is that right? If so, he doesn’t strike me as a BushCo patsy.
That’s a great point. Graham kept a diary listing every single freaking thing he did, like
7:45 Had breakfast – eggs, toast, coffee.
8:02 As leaving for work, picked up newspaper from driveway. Morning dew on it.
And this was in the age BEFORE Twitter.
Thanks for this post EW. I have also suspected the motivation of whomever is leaking this….
I hate Harman for the wiretapping issues, but it seemed like a hit job out of the gate.
EW – I’m wondering about that reference to continuing briefings of Pelosi after she was off the Intel committee and I wonder if there might not be a different kind of explanation. They were pretty much picking and choosing who they told what. If Pelosi hadn’t made much of a fuss when they first told her about torture, I can see where they might have used cover of her being a part of the ACTUAL Gang – the gang of 8 rather than 4 – to keep briefing her from time to time as some additional cover. That might be especially true if Harman, while compliant on the eavesdropping, made crosswise noises about torture.
So if your old Intel committee Dem didn’t raise problems with it, but your new Intel Dem is raising problems (and now the IG is investigating and you have that dead detainee who was frozen to death in Nov 2002 etc.) and it just so happens you have statutory cover for giving the old, TortureNotABigDeal Dem briefings bc she is now minority leader, why not do it? She’s a known quantity now. Remember in her “my oh my, what could I have done even if I had [wink wink] known” wail, she never mentions – “well, I guess I could have at least written a letter like Jane Harman did” Not that she was asked.
I don’t know and I readily admit I have an stronger personal bias against “off the table” Pelosi than I do against Harman and when it comes to playing multi dimensional chess, given how dysfunctional the Republican Senate is (let’s face it, it’s a Dem Senate in name only) Pelosi is playing an ez match if she wanted to pretend to be in favor of investigations that would take the Senate signing on too.
I don’t find Harman’s defense of the illegal program at all forgivable and I wanted Winograd to take her out, but I will say these things in Harman’s favor –
1. She at least papered the torture issue; and
2. She offered up excellent legislation after the wiretap scandal broke to address the situation – really a very good bill and approach that focused on more resources for the FISA courts and more clarity. I could have easily supported it, but it got no support from Pelosi and Dem leadership (which might also have been Harman playing multidimensional chess, I don’t know, but her bill was a decent one I thought)
Meanwhile, Pelosi is almost inchoerent on what she knew (I didn’t know, I knew but I didn’t know they were actually do it, even if I had known they were actually doing it what could I have done, etc.) and while I understand the Senate report is theirs, it seems like important things like when the Pelosi got briefings should be on there too. Pelosi raced to take impeachment off the table. She never papered an objection to anything. She and Harman both were far too silent while MPs took the blame for abu ghraib and Rummy, Haynes and DOJ walked away – DOJ even participating in sending soldiers to jail to cover DOJ’s misfeasance – all while briefed members of Congress stood back and silent and all while lawyer after lawyer knew all or part of the real story.
Two good points that give me pause. I had forgotten that Harman’s objections were reportedly reduced to writing. Now that Teh Torturecats are out of their bags, maybe we can has that letter now? I’d like to try before I buy, especially with a weasel like Harman (how could someone who was chummy enough with Hayden to give bipartisan cover to the Risen-Lichtbau suppression effort and to be the beneficiary of Hayden-drafted talking points re her AIPAC imbroglio be a real torture foe?. Your second point, though, is really news to me. I didn’t realize her bill was a good one. No easing of warrant-approval requirements? No retroactive immunity?
I couldn’t agree more on the hapless, tied-into-knots Pelosi. I love the notion that she gets a double-secret briefing from the CIA on interrogation techniques in the Warren Terra but thought it was merely hypothetical. The botox has seeped into the gray matter.
These people are not very intelligent.
Expresses my reservations and take completely; thanks, Mary.
Great job on your DK post. I will add the observation, that someone at CIA also has a great deal to gain by shutting down the torture issue and the Israeli spy issue at the same time. Jane becomes the negative sum for the United States, not just the Dems.
Somewhere this is quite the fish to catch.
Another thing that comes to mind in all this: Pelosi’s knowing that Harman was being ‘tapped in her conversations with AIPAC…and keeping shut about it. I mean, it WAS an ongoing government investigation into espionage charges, and if she had told Harman that it was going on, that might have completely blown it. But, my, my, what a Kremlinesque vignette…to have this happening.
Apologies for my error in #13, where I said that AIPAC would be content to watch the CIA torture Zubaydah and Mohammed if there were the slightest chance of gaining information. Re-reading that, I was terribly naive.
They would be content, even delighted, for the simple reason that, since it’s a dead lock that Israel has been doing the same, and worse, to Palestinians, it would be pure gold to the Israelis, to watch the U.S. Government ordering systematic torture and thereby losing whatever vestigial claim to the moral high ground that they had left. That would be plenty of “gain”, itself. And what a hammer! The Israelis, confronted with their own acts, can readily point to what their bestest allies, the administration of Perle and Wolfowitz, etc., were doing.
And, writing this, it occurs to me that every act of torture and every word of debate about it, increases the fog around morality and human decency. Ironically, it’s a bit like the holocaust deniers:
“It didn’t happen…and if it did, it was way exaggerated, and frankly, just so-fucking-what?”
Which is basically what Limbaugh, and yesterday, Cheyney’s daughter, among others, are saying about OUR evils, as we type.
Until Harman declares her Gang of 8 Vote, why should she have any credibility?
I thought Harman went all let’s get out the info about wiretapping after she was found to have “completed a crime”. wonder what the timeline is from the time she was caught in the legal wiretapping of Aipac officials? I thought she went all open on the wiretapping after this.
I think she was attempting to cover her ass…”multidimensional chess”
How fierce a critic of the torture program was Harman? There’s a difference between being a fierce critic and having some good dirt on others. Was Harman a “reformer”? If so, how much?
From what I’ve read, Harman doesn’t mind a bit of rough interrogation — if things aren’t “pretty”, that’s fine with her. It’s yet another reason people living in her district supported her Democratic challenger in early 2006.
Needless to say, Harman was fully behind the Iraq invasion, whether or not it was the result of forced (and false) confessions.
BTW, SebastianDangerfield, at #22, gets today palm d’endorphin for
“freudian brainfart”. :o)
If it IS an attempt to silence her, it backfired. With what is already out in public about the AIPAC phone call, she has no chance at re-election. Heck, she’ll be lucky to hold her seat. The charges that could come out of that conversation are felonies with jail time.
She has nothing to lose and my bet is her attitude will be not to fry alone. She’ll hide behind her anti-torture stance (which actually appears to be a principled stance on her part, as opposed to crass politics), equivocate on AIPAC and try to keep the focus on the actions of her tormentors.
Time for ALL the dirty politicians to start feeding on each other!
Boxturtle (No need to push, folks. Should be plenty for everybody)
What Perris said. Blackmail only works when you make the threat. Once the story is out, the pressure is gone.
Unless the WHOLE story is not out.
I think this is not so much about Harman (who is now powerless) as about other ranking Dems who might have dealt with Saban and Aipac. It ensures compliance with no torture prosecutions lest they want their conversations disclosed. Whomever was dialing Harman’s office was big enough to get her on the line, and if he was dealing Saban dollars, could probably talk to a lot of Dem leadership.
Makes sense. Anybody else dealing with AIPAC around that time would be vulnerable as well.
Boxturtle (We threw Jane to the wolves. The wolves are still hungry. Toe the line. Questions?)
if so this has to be a spectacular miscalculation, just about everyone I know would do the exact oposit and go on the attack.
26 – this issue has actually been one that has been dealt with some, to much political dismay, by the Israeli courts. They found that Palestinians were being tortured and abused in detentions and issued a ruling that made most of it illegal (no “good faith reliance” defense).
Obama and Holder are both making me crazy with the “good faith reliance” spew. Not even from the issue of whether there could have been such reliance from a comparison of what was being done v. what the memos said, but from the much more intrinsic issue of what they are saying can be done, all within the Executive branch and in secret, to illegally change law, illegally execute and implement the illegal changes, then claim a piece of paper from those who illegally changed the law provides cover to those involved in the illegal implementation, as long as they stayed withing the 4 corners of the document. And all involving some of the most abhorrent acts that can disenfranchise the validity of any government.
It’s one thing if Obama wants to say that he personally believes that anyone at CIA who acted within the four corners of the documents [or even if he wants to go a bit further than that in some ways] should be pardoned because of the circumstances and situations and the egregiously bad advice they recieved while operating in such circumstances and situations and that, but to say that criminal acts of assualt and injury can be blessed by a secret piece of paper and an assertion of reliance on that piece of paper, they should never go there. It sets a horrible precedent and it pretty much nullifies not only any CAT and GC credibility for our country, but it even undercuts any Executive respect for our own Constitutional standards reflected in the 5th, the 8th, prohibitions on attainder, etc.
Saying there can be “good faith reliance” on a piece of paper that is issued by the Executive, saying that you can piss on the Constitution at the Executive’s request, and just killing prosecution and consequences by that approach is the same as saying that the Constitution can always be overriden by a piece of paper from OLC. That’s crap. An Executive who wants to insulate employees of the Exec from consequences should have to ante up an put his name to the pardon for their actions. If he’s not ready and willing to do that, they should be prosecuted. He shouldn’t manipulate the prosecutorial process for crimes of intentional assault and confinement and abuse by the creating out of whole cloth the concept that there can be good faith reliance on a piece of paper that allows you to abuse a detainee in our custody who has never been subjected to trial or commission.
It is such a horrible, horrible precedent.
Mary”An Executive who wants to insulate employees of the Exec from consequences should have to ante up an put his name to the pardon for their actions. If he’s not ready and willing to do that, they should be prosecuted. He shouldn’t manipulate the prosecutorial process for crimes of intentional assault and confinement and abuse by the creating out of whole cloth the concept that there can be good faith reliance on a piece of paper that allows you to abuse a detainee in our custody who has never been subjected to trial or commission.”
Damn your good.
If Obama and Holder mean what they have repeatedly said “no one is above the law” Walk the talk because the peasants and the whole world are watching. The world has heard that argument that those who did the torturing were just “following orders”. This argument does not hold water in the peasants world.
How can any of these people wonder why there is such deep deep disrespect for our so called justice system. Obama will be unable to drag the nation forward if he does not hold especially the people who created the legal framework for this torture to take place.
He may need to get out on the streets more.. the peasants are aware of what is going on. They know the rules of law are not being applied in a just and honorable way
OT: Philip Zelikow hit it out of the park today.
(On SASC report, p. 106)
BoxTurtle, are ANY charges going to come of it? I mean, as I said upthread, it’s looking like the charges against the two AIPAC top-enders will be dropped, and if that happens, is Harman still liable for an indictment for influence-peddling?
With all of the shit that’s gone on in the last eight years, that would be an amazing demonstration of the love of legality, on someone’s part.
Let’s cut to the chase: What is going on just now in Washington is that the Obama administration is trying to decide just how much of the bushCo evils they want to muckrake into. And what will be the political cost-benefit to them, for doing it? I would love to see George Bush and his minions, Nurenburg-like, sitting in the dock, but if it’s going to cost us a lot of the political capital that we ARE GOING TO NEED to deal with getting the fuck out of Bush’s Mesopotamian tarpit, and then, we hope, Afghanistan, then I say we should just keep reminding everyone of what they’ve done (It shouldn’t be hard..) and leave them to their little corporate boardroom sinecures. By this time next year, we are going to have some much larger issues to deal with, and we will need every degree of clout that we can muster, to do it.
A caveat: it’s looking as if there MIGHT be enough anger on the part of most of the voters to support a congressional move on retribution, beginning with the torture issue. The dems in congress could take Obama off the hook some, by THEIR enthusiasm for it. If this continues to coalesce, I would view it as a political target of opportunity and then, we can go for it. What you think?
I think Harmon will be sacrificed to show it is not a partisan witch hunt. Pelosi doesn’t like her and she’s dead meat in her next primary anyway.
What will likely happen is a Bush holdover lawyer in DOJ who is acceptable to the GOP will be assigned the case. After raking her through the muck as much as possible, the lawyer will conclude he’s got a very tough case to prosecute. And drop charges.
Boxturtle (Prediction worth exactly what you paid for it)
29 – it was while she had a real prospect of a lot of backlash from her Bush support and also a big primary issue, but it was decent. It got not traction though (maybe she knew it wouldn’t and that she was ’safe’ in offering it?) She did also co-sponsor with Nadler a bill to try to roll back some of the worst of the MCA.
But she played Kabuki on most of this stuff, with one set of actions undercutting another so she could play it both ways. So I’m not exactly a fan, but she did, back in 2003 when it wouldn’t have been the most popular of moves, paper her objections. That’s something that I haven’t seen from the “Speaker but notsomuch a Writer”
Mary says: “…But she played Kabuki on most of this stuff, with one set of actions undercutting another so she could play it both ways. So I’m not exactly a fan, but she did, back in 2003 when it wouldn’t have been the most popular of moves, paper her objections. That’s something that I haven’t seen from the “Speaker but not so much a Writer”…”
A letter doesn’t really do it for me. Feinstein even found a conscience when she went against cluster bombs, but she provides a powerful boot when it comes to supporting the military and supporting acts like the MCA. Different players for different issues — but the result always seems to end up the same.
With Harman — I really don’t think she’s got the nerve or backbone to have caused any trouble. She would have so many Dem boots coming down on her neck from the Senate she wouldn’t have a chance to squeal… Personally, I don’t think the NSA, CIA etc needed to come down heavy on her… her ‘complicit’ colleagues in both Houses would have been more than willing to do that for them.
Vent – would it be too much to ask for Obama to get his damn duck in a row at least, on something that he’s known ever since he decided to run would be a huge issue?
He’s been a bizarre cross of the aimlessly flailing chicken without its head and a tranquilized hog.
He’s been a bizarre cross…
If you were looking for a summary in 5 words or less, that might do.
Mary; touche’. Good dig at Pelosi, whom, most of us would probably agree, has been a big disappointment as SofH. Well before the election situation began to be defined, she was showing herself to be political lite-bread. Much less true-grit there than most of us on the left had hoped for.
But, if we want to start micro-managing the blame-dispersal, we could begin with the litmus test of the Iraq debacle, and who voted to authorize it.
With 140 dead in bombings in the past two days, and a lot of them in downtown Baghdad, any claims of “stability” there have the same 6-year-old reek of foul, bloody, horseshit; no matter WHOM is issuing them.
TPM also has up the story about the revelation of July 2002 SERE training sessions for the CIA.
They point to the information that Fredman (Brennan’s gen counsel at CIA counterterrorism)is mentioned by name, unredacted, which helps nail the redacted entity as being (what we all pretty much knew) CIA.
I thought this excerpt they quoted was also interesting, though, from the standpoint of who was the orchestrator of what vis a vis the OLC memos:
So there were two CIA lawyers hanging out during the CIA SERE training sessions, looks like probably Fredman and … Rizzo? So that’s how he is making the factual representations to Yoo?? Interesting. But I’m wondering if the redact on “*** personnel ‘and were granted time to present the legal limits is a redact for the same agency. Probably so, with perhaps the CIA lawyers wanting to somehow give real time presentations during SERE training on what were the “acceptable” limits on “physiological and psychological pressures”
Acceptable for …? Training about how to defend agaisnt torture? And then you have those references in the OLC memo to what kind of information OLC had already given verbally in July. I don’t know how long the SERE training program would last, but I wonder if there’s a chance that the “*** personnel” who popped up to give a presentation on “acceptable” limits on physiological and psychological pressures might have been DOJ or OLC vs. CIA?
Harman papered herself because she is a clever lawyer. However, for the most part, she has been an enthusiastic supporter of the Bush neocon agenda. She is, above all, a neocon. She is also trying to throw Pelosi under the bus right now to save herself.
I think that too many underestimate Pelosi, who is not a neocon and did not vote for the Iraq war. She had to deal with beating back the push for expansion of the Iraq war and she has done pretty well at that. Remember, please, that she was dealing with the Bush Administration throughout, who were never honorable in any of their actions. Harman is the one who got tangled up, not Pelosi. Bob Graham coming out now is further indication of these truths.
PS – If it was CIA, we know Fredman’s assessment, passed on at GITMO, on what the acceptable limits would be “if your detainee dies, you’re doing it wrong”
Just read the NYT piece on Cheney this morning and there’s this nugget:
Former President George W. Bush has said that Mr. Obama “deserves my silence,” but Mr. Cheney, who told Mr. Hannity he has spoken with Mr. Bush just once since leaving office, does not share that view.
Yesterday, Lizzie said this to Norah:
O’DONNELL: … did Vice President Cheney get permission from President Bush to speak out like this?
L. CHENEY: He doesn’t need permission. But we were just watching…
O’DONNELL: Do they talk regularly?
L. CHENEY: They do.
Let’s hope this road show is just beginning…..
44 – and Pelosi’s not clever? Seriously – how do you buy the argument that she says she was given this uber secret briefing, something everyone took time to schedule, where the CIA sat her down to tell her about interrogation techniques and that they had an OLC memo to back them up on legality of the techniques, but … oh well, that’s it, we aren’t going to do any of that stuff, and next week why don’t we all get together for another secret briefing on things we aren’t going to be doing but plan on having OLC give us memos authorizing, you know, like ginning up intel for war
Seriously – you think Pelosi got those briefings that she admits, but that she really did just naively think they were killing time telling her that stuff and weren’t going to do it, but you think “too many” underestimate her?
It’s the Bush adminisistration who “were never honorable in any of their actions” but not Pelosi who ran to negate her Congressional duty by taking impeachment off the table and who nixed over and over any enforcement mechanisms for committees trying to get Bushco employees to come and tesitfy?
I don’t buy it. I do buy the “don’t underestimate” her though, and I think that it is perfectly likely that she knows she can pretty much call for any investigation she wants right now (she of the “we can’t start an impeachment investigation”) bc the Senate and Obama won’t let it happen.
All of which is not to say that Harman is a babe in the woods. She’s not and I won’t cry over her – but don’t pretend that Pelosi didn’t know how to paper if she had wanted to.
Box, thanks for the clickback. Sounds plausible, to me.
Just how far the move for taking the lid off the torture cesspit will go, is up for grabs now, it seems to me. But I would hope that it will play in Peoria. That will be the clincher. A question is, is the CIA, with their “It’s too secret to talk about.” mantra, repeated so often over the decades, be so precious to MOR voters (middle of road, as they say in Nashville country music…) that they won’t want to take a good look at what they’re doing? The impetus for turning them into a rubber stamp agit-prop organization for Bush and his cronies came from the white house, but they sure rolled over (with a few grumbles and whines) for it.
I was pleased that Obama put Panetta in at Langley. Where does he come down on the issue of looking at and then dismantling this gulag?
Pelosi: The only reason Jane was not chosen is because she already had two terms. It had nothing to do with wiretaps or Iraq.
Pelosi here is responding to charges that she failed re-appoint Harman to the top Dem slot on the House Intel committee because of political disagreements (NSA wiretapping, Iraq). She’s not referring to the leaked wiretap.
BTW – the Rozen piece also pointed to the fact that despite the Foggo debacle – rather, Debacle, Pelosi put Goss on the “bipartisan panel” overseeing Congressional ethics. Laura ponder that a bit more here and also give kudos to EW and drational here
Completely OT, but I got the link from WarandPiece too, this is a really super piece on a way to address the Taliban and al-Qaeda and how our framing of them as warriors in a great ideological battle played into their hands and makes people in the areas hesitant to criticize them. But once they are re-framed as criminals, the response from the areas involved is very different
This plays into something that Richard Engel said last night on Maddow’s show – re: the Taliban spread in Pakistan. There the Taliban is selling themselves as the spreaders of Sharia law, not of Taliban ideology per se. And with the corruption of government and law (which we helped set up, to keep Musharaf in power and to be able to disappear people at will and use Pakistan as a base for “interrogations” etc.) is very bad in many countries. When those countries are under stress and also have the mystic appeal of a “divine law” which is what Sharia is viewed as by many, then it becomes very difficult for people to take a stand “against” the spread of divine law.
What cuts that off at the knees?
Childnapping? Paying off dicators? Bombing civlians? Torture?
Or maybe detailing crimes and disenfranchising the criminals from any “divine” status while relentlessly going after them as criminals? Of course, you can’t do that by getting in bed with other criminals (the dark side argument) to help them try to “more subjugate” their populace than the extremists are doing and you also can’t do that while you won’t go after your own criminals and you won’t offer any version of secular justice.
It’s not a matter of “whose God” it’s a matter of who are the criminals and where is the justice. If we can’t put ourself in a position where it is clearly THEM (not us) that are the criminals and US (not them) that offers justice to a population, we aren’t changing the paradigm.
Thanks for that pointer, M.
Another bonus if Obama were willing to go the route of treating all of this as a criminal matter: he wouldn’t be blithely smearing the remaining Guantanamo detainees as too dangerous to release to a pre-Super Bowl audience of gazillions. Not sure I’m ever going to forgive that.
[email protected] is right about the wingnuts going batshit over a world commission to investigate the torture and rendition.
My question is this: How many wingnuts are there? How many people in the political center would join them in freaking out about the idea of doing this laundry? I’m thinking that just now, the number of folks watching, and buying into, Fauxnews and their ilk’s, bullshit, is the lowest since they discovered that no one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of americans. At least, I hope that’s true.
It’s why they’re going around in circles, with drool running off their chins. None of the turds they’re slinging at Obama and the dems seem to be sticking. Might this not be a good time for Obama to move decisively to discredit them, at least, semi-permanently?
I would like to hear him preparing the ground for really getting us out of Iraq, and then, Afghanistan, with some honest, fireside chats about how Iraq is not going to be our 51st state, user-friendly to the Fortune 500, no matter WHEN we leave, so we might as well get out, and soon.
Shorter question: It seems Obama has a lot of political capital right now. How durable is it, and where should he use it?
how do i find an article by a particular poster on Oxdown? the other day i was looking for Toby Wollin and today i’m looking for the article that was up yesterday by TheraP. it’s not in the sidebar at the right. and it’s not in previous entries.
i know if i see TheraP’s name i can click on it, but how do i find it directly?
any help will be appreciated, thanks.
that took me to the post on TPM. it’s cross posted there. thanks a bunch.
the biggest mystery: how did she get pressured in to wearing a berber rug in the photo (at FDL home page)?
Anyone care to comment on the significance of the one-sided revelation of people on the call? Harman’s involvement is leaked but the counterparty (and supposed wiretap target) is still shrouded in mystery?
A perfectly good reason would be that the person is still the target of surveillance.
If Harman is as claimed, “powerless”, she does have one route open. Complete disclosure.
But what if they are all crooks? We know that too many of the players are.
new here. but been reading a lot lately. you’re all VERY GOOD.
could the contractors be blackwater?
keep up the great work!
see EW yesterday on this, and the comment thread for some of the companies that may be doing the contracting.
Jane Harmon needs to answer for why she was making promises to AIPAC. If she caught her ears in a ringer, it’s her own fault.
If you don’t rub noses with sleazy lobbyists, even to the point of saying “this conversation never happened” you don’t have to worry about somebody putting pressure on you.
She could have been a voice for opposition to the wiretapping, but instead had to play footsie with AIPAC.
Good riddance, Jane Harmon.
my question at 78 was in response to:
Leen April 24th, 2009 at 6:51 am 7
Have folks found out any more about the “torture” contractors? Where they were from? Yesterday on the Rehm show Elissa Massimo said that the torture contractors pushed hard for the use of the (cough) “enhanced interrogation techniques”
Oh, I forgot: If Nancy Pelosi turns out to have been complicit with the torture, or even if she gave tacit approval, she needs to be dumped overboard, too.
I’ve been about done with Nancy Pelosi since about mid-2007.
68 – that’s a very good fast summary of some of the competing interests. It reinforces EW’s “Look,there are no good guys in this story”
We all get reassured with a narrative that sells a good guy chapter. That doesn’t mean there is one.
Nell- I definitely don’t like harman and think she should “pay” for her sins as an enabler. But my point at least was that you gotta look at who and why is leaking the goods on her.
I don’t care about Harman being the victim of a hit job. I just point out that the others being warned by the process could jeopardize moves against the CIA for torture. Congressional dems are being warned that their conversations with powerful donors can and will be used against them in the court of the press.
This openness and accountability should be a good thing, except that in this case the ones holding the keys to the kingdom are Bushies and Gossites who may have only failed to minimize the wiretapping of Democrats.
I wonder if, more broadly, the whole body of Congress is being threatened that they have been recorded doing whatever dirty deed each has done. No one will tell what they know about torture if everyone’s been tapped.
BTW great diary at Kos on this.
Thanks! Pardon the pimping, but if you have time, read the tracheotomy diary from today. I tried to emulate EW’s lead in finding something in the memos to “shock the conscience”.
Indeed, Josh Marshall threw ou a thoughtful comment regarding Blagojevich and Harman to the effect that he wonders whether virtually any politician could survive telephone surveillance. This thought makes the Harman-as Horse’s-
Ass-Head-in-the-Bed theory mighty tempting, especially with the Stein piece timed to come out in the first news cycle after the release of the memos.
If Harmon’s past included acting in any capacity as an agent of Israel, or even a zealous “friend”, why would a “suspected Israeli spy” have to even mention or offer a deal to push her to get DOJ to back-off trial of AIPAC’s Rosen and Weissman? That makes no sense…unless the “suspected spy” was a ruse itself to test or implicate her for future
I try not to underestimate the cleverness of very bright intel types. And they are often recruited while young just for their brightness, because they can be slowly but incrementally “turned” into believers of anything.
The amount of people suicided in the past few years should give the people with the most information the most pause.
Listen to NPR Torture debate today : The soldiers who went through SEER training called in to comment that only 10% of the class were water tortured during their training . The rest just watched. .
How’s that for framing.
Obama decides to release the torture memos.Looks bad for cheney/bush. We know they live for spiteful vengeance.
Harman is implicated for playing along with AIPAC. She is a powerful democrat. Sends a message. How many played along …southern states ….KKK hates blacks and Jews and keeps a lot of “those politicians” in office.
Harmon, the neocon/hardliner and bestest Bush and Cheney friend ..innocent? HA Ha, fat chance.
Would you believe a woman who lied and said “there was only one N.S.A. program”?
I’m finding surprisingly good cause to like and trust Nancy Pelosi more and more every day.
She appears to be the new backbone of our party. To have put an unlikley guy like Reyes in the Intelligence Chair rather than allow the seat to be subverted by the likes of a war-monger like Harmon, and, she willingly bucks Obama, is representative of just the leader we need.
Plus, yeah Goss may hate Harman, hell he may hate all democrats…
However, if Goss was going to sign off on a warrant — and that warrant was a FISA warrant [because they maybe wanted to classify her as a possible foreign agent’s asset?] — the details would have had to have gone to the FISA Court… Are we willing to go down the road that we think everyone on that court is now corrupt? Or, maybe some or most of them are legit, and would take justice seriously enough if the evidence was there, which is possibly why Cheney et. al wanted to cirumcuvent the FISA court altogether in the first place?
Just a thought…
I question this:
— JTA: Note the operative verbs: Lede: It was Goss who “concluded” that the tap required more action. He drew this conclusion not because Harman’s alleged involvement was raised with him,…”
“Concluded” after he may have been advised? There’s nothing in the NYTimes article that he ‘alone’ concluded Harman had completed a crime?
Who is to say the investigative team brought it to ‘his’ attention? — Here we really do need the timeline… when was the suspected Israel spy FISA warrant up for renewal — and when was Harman making deals on the tapes? Do the dates really coincide? It was an FBI case — according to Stein’s the investigative team on Harman wanted Mueller to sign off?
Stein: “…”A former intelligence official familiar with the matter told Foreign Policy on condition of anonymity Monday that Goss had been asked due to the unavailability of FBI director Robert Mueller to certify a FISA
Then we are told Goss found problems with the Harman tapes during a ‘periodic review’ stage — ok…
I just think it too movie-ish for Goss and Goss alone to go through mounds of transcripts and say ‘hey we’ve got her’ so what can we do with this information 4 years down the line when I’m out of office.
Not withstanding the fact that it appears an intelligence official[s] had to go behind Goss’s back to alert Pelosi — that Harman had been caught. They might have felt they had to do this because, maybe, their request for an appropriate surveillance warrant from Mueller &/or Goss were denied?
Also, what agency[s] decided that Harman had carried out a ‘completed crime’ — was that on Goss impetuous as well to confirm legal status?
I just think there are too many unanswered questions — to immediately jump to the conclusion that the hit on Harman was solely because of Goss’s hatred for Harman.