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The real mystery here is the passivity of the Bush administration to the mutiny of the bureaucracy in the CIA. How, one wonders, can the administration consult with the CIA on whatever problems it is facing today?
After all, that is the provenance of the Wilson Plame Affair. There was a report circulated in Washington — apparently from the Brits — that Saddam had tried to buy uranium in Africa in 1999. What did Cheney do? What I hope anybody else on the reading list for that report would have done. He asked our guys “is this true?”
Except that our guys were so affronted at this request — for reasons that are unclear to a civilian — that either they undertook a grotesquely inadequate effort by sending a family-member out on a junket or developed an operation to damage the questioner.
Why this response to a request from the Vice President has not resulted in everyone in the CIA chain of command involved with processing this request being fired is a mystery to me. But it certainly makes it easy to understand why Rumsfeld wants his own intelligence agency.