Obama’s Nat’l Intelligence Director: Secret CIA Program was Legal

Thursday, July 16, 2009

With the national and cable news cycle consumed by the Sonia Sotomayor confirmation hearings and national healthcare, I expect this nugget from today’s Washington Post will likely go unnoticed. That’s a shame because it may very well illuminate what direction any investigation of former vice president and the secret CIA assassination program, which was concealed from Congress since 2001, will take.

According to the piece, the Obama administration is now defending the Bush-era program as legal. This position would put Obama at odds with powerful members of his own party like Sens. Dianne Feinstein and Russ Feingold who now publicly question its legality and want an investigation.

The Post piece centers around secret CIA al Qaeda assassination teams that were the brainchild of former vice president Dick Cheney. Newly appointed CIA director Leon Panetta promptly killed the program and informed the Congress of its existence which led to the current controversy.

Here’s what Obama’s director of national intelligence, Dennis Blair, told the Post:

Blair broke with some Democrats in Congress by asserting that the CIA did not violate the law when it failed to inform lawmakers about the secret program until last month. Blair said agency officials may not have been required to notify Congress about the program, though he believes they should have done so.

“It was a judgment call,” Blair said in an interview. “We believe in erring on the side of working with the Hill as a partner.”

So, Dennis Blair is claiming it’s OK for the CIA to keep Congress in the dark on clandestine national security matters and essentially function like a shadow government?

The Obama administration appears to be sending a not-so-subtle message to Democrats on Capitol Hill: back-off, the CIA assassination program was legal and former vice president Cheney did nothing wrong.

Once again, the question begs, why is President Obama so heavily invested in protecting the previous administration?

This entry was posted in Assassination, Cheney, CIA, International News, News, President Barack Obama, Terrorism and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Obama’s Nat’l Intelligence Director: Secret CIA Program was Legal

  1. feminazi says:

    I keep hearing how President Obama is worried his legislative agenda could suffer if his administration gets bogged down in an investigation of the former administration, but how can he claim the moral authority if he doesn’t restore the nations belief in our laws? Nevermind how the Muslim world views us.

  2. Robster says:

    I hear the same thing too, but there’s no guarantee he’s going to get a second term. Americans do not have the patience to wait for things to turn around. He’s got to do something soon. He has no choice in the matter.

  3. bradfrmphnx says:

    I can’t believe, nor understand why Obama would want to make it appear as if he is siding with the previous administration. He is protecting them. This will be a smudge on his presidency, and decisions like this will keep those jack hammers off of Mt. Rushmore.

  4. Walk on Socks says:

    There’s much I don’t understand about national security. Especially, in the so-called “post 9/11 era” after the terrorist attacks on this nation.

    But this doesn’t change the fact that the CIA and the vice president, can’t operate autonomously from the United State Congress regarding policy. It also doesn’t excuse violating the Constitution and the Geneva Convention.

    Conservatives are fond of claiming “we’re a nation of laws,” and no one is more mindful of this than conservative lawmakers. Yet, all of their rhetoric gets flushed down the commode as it pertains to Dick Cheney.

  5. Douglass Lewis says:

    Let’s not confuse the matter.

    Cheney orchestrated a death squad, using American tax dollars and then ordered the CIA to keep it from the Congress.

    This is an act of treason. Cheney’s utter lawless behavior exposes him to legal consequences. He isn’t protected by Executive Privilege.

    Obama must not and cannot protect this man. He will do so at his own peril.

  6. Brigadoon says:

    Cheney is a bully. He only has as much power as those are willing to give him. Obama is according Cheney the respect and power that goes along with a sitting vice president. Cheney is no longer in office and no longer has power. Obama needs to man up and uphold the rule of law. Enough kowtowing.

  7. Aunt Peg says:

    I don’t think the Democrats need Obama’s OK to convene hearings into Cheney’s lawlessness.

    All they have to do is do it. If the president doesn’t like it, he can mail Cheney a friendship card.

  8. Jimmy says:

    He’s picking and choosing the amount of executive power he cedes back to congress (oversight) after W. and DICK’s over-reaching power grab.

  9. Paul says:

    Why are people getting all upset over Cheney’s illegal death squads, illegal torture techniques, illegal NSA spying program, lets face it, nothing will happen to him, they might investigate, the justification will be 9/11, 9/11, 9/11 or you are only giving ammunition to our enemies and in the end nothing will happen, he is part of the ruling class. The chickens are coming home to roost from the operatives that stole the election for Bush/Cheney in Florida 2000 and in Ohio 2004. I love listening to Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, and Glenn Beck, these chicken hawks on the War on Terror have become chicken little’s that the sky is falling when it comes to the economy, too funny.

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