Wow. This spat on the CIA lying to Congress is like a tennis game. First there was Silvestre Reyes’ letter to Crazy Pete reminding him that CIA had affirmatively lied to Congress. Then seven Congressmen and women released a letter saying that Panetta had recently told them that "top CIA officials have concealed significant actions from all Members of Congress."
Now Reyes has released a statement. (h/t Laura Rozen)
I appreciate Director Panetta’s recent efforts to bring issues to the Committee’s attention that, for some reason, had not been previously conveyed, and to make certain that the Committee is fully and currently briefed on all intelligence activities. I understand his direction to be that the Agency does not and will not lie to Congress, and he has set a high standard for truth in reporting to Congress.
I believe that CIA has, in the vast majority of matters, told the truth. But in rare instances, certain officers have not adhered to the high standards held, as a rule, by the CIA with respect to truthfulness in reporting. Both Director Panetta and I are determined to make sure this does not happen again.
The men and women of the CIA are honest, hard-working patriots, and they do not deserve the distraction to their mission that this current issue has caused.
So, to conclude:
- Panetta confirmed that someone was lying in the past.
- Reyes will give Panetta the benefit of the doubt going forward.
- The men and women in the CIA are patriots.
- Our President still wants to maintain this system of abusive secrecy.
I’m particularly interested in Reyes’ mention of "certain officers." Would those officers happen to be named Jose Rodriguez and/or Porter Goss, I wonder? Both of whom would fit the description the 7 members of Congress used, "top CIA officials." And hell, while we’re at it, let’s throw George Tenet onto that list as well…
So if just "certain officers" have been lying to Congress, what are we going to do about it?