There is that old adage, It isn’t paranoia if they really are out to get you. And there certainly is a little of that in the CIA briefing exploits of Nancy Pelosi, but the truth is most of her embarrassment last spring was self-inflicted. The worst part of it all (for her) is that she probably still doesn’t get it.
But she will have an opportunity to get it now.
The US District Court for the District of Columbia has Ordered the CIA to turn over all documents relating to congressional briefings on “enhanced interrogation techniques.”
You may remember that Pelosi first denied being briefed about enhanced interrogation techniques, then said she was briefed but was never told they would be used, and finally she was told but didn’t say anything because there was nothing she could do about it. And throughout it all, she claimed that the CIA lied to her.
For his part, Leon Panetta, Democrat, former Bill Clinton Chief of Staff, and head of the CIA, sent a letter to his troops that disputed Pelosi’s accounts:
There is a long tradition in Washington of making political hay out of our business. It predates my service with this great institution, and it will be around long after I’m gone. But the political debates about interrogation reached a new decibel level yesterday when the CIA was accused of misleading Congress.
Let me be clear: It is not our policy or practice to mislead Congress. That is against our laws and our values. As the Agency indicated previously in response to Congressional inquiries, our contemporaneous records from September 2002 indicate that CIA officers briefed truthfully on the interrogation of Abu Zubaydah, describing “the enhanced techniques that had been employed.” Ultimately, it is up to Congress to evaluate all the evidence and reach its own conclusions about what happened.
The CIA seems much more credible because unlike Pelosi, they didn’t change their story three times. Thanks to the folks at Judicial Watch we will know the truth on Tax day.
Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, announced today that according to a court order issued by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia January 25, 2010, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) must provide to Judicial Watch by April 15 documents pertaining to congressional briefings on “enhanced interrogation techniques.” Judicial Watch is seeking documents detailing CIA briefings involving House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and/or her staff. (embedded below)
Judicial Watch filed its original FOIA request with the Central Intelligence Agency on May 15, 2009, seeking the following information:
- Records detailing dates when the CIA briefed congressional leaders (to include, but not limited to Rep. Nancy Pelosi and/or her aide, Michael Sheehy) on matters relating to “enhanced interrogation techniques” and/or “harsh interrogation techniques” and suspected and/or known terrorists…
- Briefing materials presented to Rep. Nancy Pelosi and/or her aide, Michael Sheehy, relating to “enhanced interrogation techniques” and/or “harsh interrogation techniques” and suspected and/or known terrorists.
- Records detailing the names of all Members of Congress (and/or Congressional Aides) briefed on “enhanced interrogation techniques” and/or “harsh interrogation techniques” and suspected and/or known terrorists.
- Records and briefing materials from a reported September 4, 2002, briefing of Rep. Nancy Pelosi (and/or her aide Michael Sheehy) concerning waterboarding detainees.
- Records detailing all instances when the CIA has provided briefings to Members of Congress under the provisions of the National Security Act from September 11, 2001, to present.
On June 23, 2009, the CIA notified Judicial Watch that it would not be able to respond to the FOIA request within the statutory mandated 20 working days, but failed to indicate when a response would be forthcoming. Judicial Watch filed a lawsuit to force the release of the documents July 14, 2009.
“This federal court order is a victory for transparency in the face of Obama administration stonewalling to protect Speaker Pelosi,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “We’re looking forward to completing the public record regarding what Speaker Pelosi knew about the use of enhanced interrogation techniques and when she knew it.”
In April 2009 Speaker Pelosi admitted she was briefed on the use of “enhanced interrogation techniques,” including waterboarding, but was not aware they had already been used. The CIA contradicted Pelosi’s claim, pointing to a briefing they held with the speaker on September 4, 2002, and a subsequent briefing to her top staffer. On July 14, 2009, Judicial Watch filed a separate, successful FOIA lawsuit against the CIA to obtain records from the Office of former Vice President Cheney related to CIA interrogation techniques.
If (as expected) the documents show that Pelosi lied, things might get very interesting. So grab some popcorn and read the court order below.
Kerry Picket Has More, including reactions from Rep Peter King..Click HERE to read her Post