O'Reilly: Porter Goss removed over leaks
Reported by Chrish - May 9, 2006
Even as the so-called liberal media scrupulously ignores the scandal at the Watergate Hotel involving hookers, illegal gambling, and a slew of Republicans, more cynical types speculate that the reason Porter Goss stepped down was to avert attention from the agency as the scandal unfolds. Even Bill Kristol thought it was a plausible possibility, though he soon backpedalledon that. Out of (media) sight, out of (voters') mind.
Last night 5/8/06 on the O'Reilly Factor we heard from Bill that he thinks Goss "resigned" because of the leaks about rendition (and presumably the secret prisons in Europe); the rendition that Pullitzer-prize winner Dana Priest wrote about in December 2004 and the secret prisons that came to Americans' attention in November 2005. After firing Mary McCarthy for her alleged role in the leaks (which she denies) the next logical step would be for the boss to resign in shame. Or would it?
O'Reilly conducted a segment with former CIA case officer Melissa Boyle Mahle wherein he voiced concern that Bush is on his third CIA head while we're in this "war on terror." In his alarmist way he reinforced the administration's claims that the CIA intelligence failures had allowed the attacks of 9/11 and the disasterous aftermath of the invasion of Iraq, completely disregarding Bush's responsibility in selecting only the intelligence that supported his preconceived plans.
He introduced the segment by saying "Out with Porter Goss, in with General Michael Hayden. Only one key question: will the switch at the CIA make us safer?"
"It looks like chaos again within the CIA."
"What I'm worried about are these leaks. I think that's what did in Porter Goss. Don't you agree, that these leaks about the rendition program in Europe, uh, about the NSA, all of these things created insecurity about Goss, that he couldn't control the agency?"
"I'm getting a little frustrated here with the Central Intelligence Agency." ... "You have two colossal screw-ups: 9/11, and the failure to anticipate the brutal insurgency in Iraq. Those are history altering screw-ups. You get Tenet out of there, the author of the 9/11 screw-up and the Iraq misadventure, if you will,. Then you get Goss in there. They don't like Goss, Goss screwed up - so this is number three under the Bush administration in the most vital agency in the country to protect our families! It's looking really bad." (Transparent fearmongering, invoking personal safety. Post-Katrina FOX couldn't deflect the blame away from federal agencies fast enough, blaming state and locals to absolve Bush and his FEMA choice. Now the CIA is responsible for our families? Jeez, get a dog, buy a gun, install an alarm - take personal responsibility. Isn't that what he says most other days? No wonder his loyal viewers are so confused.)
"I am very worried, very very worried, that in the middle of a war on terror this is the third CIA director, and after almost five years ... we still don't have it right at the CIA. It's very disturbing." (I think O'Reilly is going for an Emmy - for night-time drama. )
O'Reilly concluded that the best thing that Hayden could do (notice that he's speaking of him as if he is already in the position, Senate confirmation being a given) is to catch Osama bin Laden and put him in a cell - that would be huge for the United States (Bush).
Throughout the segment the mild Ms. Mahle made supportive remarks about the lower-level agents but shared concern about top management that reinforced the notion that the CIA is in chaos. She said that Goss was not well-trusted withing the agency by mid-level officers, and poor performance has been a repeat issue within the agency, so Goss failed to turn the organization around.
The whole segment was a platform for O'Reilly's CIA-bashing and misdirection. Blame the CIA for administration misinterpretations and disregard of intelligence, and blame leaks for Goss' resignation. Do NOT let Factor viewers know that there is a scandal brewing involving illicit sex - war, death, deficits, outsourcing, bribery, corruption, stolen elections, illegal spying, environmental rape, it's all acceptable but if there's a SEX scandal, well that's going too far.