Even if [Panetta] is nominally in power he is completely marginalized. Juan says it [the infighting within the administration between CIA and Justice] is a civil war. If it’s a civil war, we already have seen Appomattox. It’s over, and Panetta handed over his sword.
Everything he has fought over he has lost, and these aren’t just marginal territorial turf disputes. These are core interests.
Number one, he opposed the release of documents, and twice he lost on that.
Secondly, he opposed the appointment of a prosecutor. Of course, a prosecutor has just been appointed.
And lastly, and most importantly, the interrogation of high-level enemy terrorists has been removed from the CIA. It’s now in the hands of the FBI and White House.
Now, what’s left? Signal intelligence is not CIA, it’s NSA. Human intelligence — any important intelligence — is not CIA anymore. It’s in the FBI and the White House.
So it is Central Intelligence, but it doesn’t gather intelligence. All that’s left is analyzing intelligence. Well, you don’t need $30 billion a year for analysis. You can hire the RAND corporation who will do it at 1/100th of the cost and save billions of dollars that you could waste on the Cash for Clunkers and purchase every secondhand car in America.
This is a real institutional problem…The Obama administration has relegated the CIA to the role it had pre- 9/11. And we know what that resulted in.
I couldn’t agree more. This disabling and weakening of our intelligence capabilities is not good and shouldn’t go quietly into the night.