and Afghan War Gain CIA Mileage
Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is reaping the benefits of the
Afghan war, according to John Donnellyís recent report in the Boston
Globe, "CIA takes on major new military role." He
assembles an array of revealing facts and quotes of interest to
patriots and constitutionalists, including from an agent who stated
on condition of anonymity, "we are doing things I never believed
we would do Ė and I mean killing people." Donnelly notes that
the CIAís 200 operatives in Afghanistan represent the "largest
on-ground military presence since Vietnam," and that many analysts
believe the agency is "building a shadow military organization."
With Clinton appointee George Tenet as DCI, we should be wary of
this opportunistic power grab.
will appear before the Senate Intelligence Committee next month,
and a senior intelligence official, predictably speaking without
attribution, admits Tenet "is not anxious to talk to reporters
and we will not go out of our way to be forthcoming." The CIA,
an agency presumably dedicated to preserving truth, justice, and
the American way, has jettisoned the old American ideal of the press
serving as a check on the power of government. Tenetís reserved
stance also discards the CIAís "Vision, Mission, and Values"
statement, which promises acceptance of "accountability for
anonymous official reassured Donnelly about the CIAís role in Afghanistan,
stating, "if we didnít think it was appropriate, we wouldnít
be doing it. If the commander in chief didnít think it appropriate,
we wouldnít be doing it. If it ainít broke, why fix it?" Apparently,
our man in black hasnít figured out that itís impossible to determine
if anything is "broke," since Tenet will not be forthcoming
with information. The shadow man trusts Tenet, and "the commander
in chief." That level of trust, once called the fuhrerprinzip
in some quarters, stands far removed from the American way, whether
Bush is comfortable having "Hail to the Chief" played
for him or not.
there were deeper motives behind the string of human interest stories
that emerged when CIA agent Mike Spann was killed in the November
25 prison uprising at the Kala Jangi fortress outside Mazar-e Sharif,
soon after interrogating the American Taliban, John Walker. Spann
became the first American combat death in Afghanistan. The Company
doesnít like to publicize the identities and activities of their
agents, even in death. Spann will become the 79th star
in the lobby of the CIA building, and many of those stars commemorating
the deaths of agents bear no names. Spannís star will bear his name.
Spannís length of service with the Marines had been too short to
qualify him for burial in Arlington National Cemetery, so Bush granted
him a waiver. It's part of an effort to condition the American people
into accepting the CIA as a nice, huggable agency, so that as news
of the CIAís enhanced strength and scope comes out, no one will
all, what patriot would object to doing whatever it takes to nail
the terrorists, right? Who could possibly suggest the CIA isnít
as wholesome as the smile on Spannís face as he leans against a
tree, in his widely distributed sepia tone photo? Of course, Spann
was playing the "good cop" in the routine we saw on the
video of Walkerís interrogation, making Spann a more sympathetic
character. Spann interrogated Walker with a fellow Special Activities
Division agent only known as "Dave." The "bad cop,"
Dave, made an unforgettable statement in earshot of Walker, "we
can only get the Red Cross to help so many guys." Spannís father
had said his son joined the CIA because he "felt that he would
be able to make the world a better place to live in." The CIA
is ostensibly building that better world by "trading favors
and distributing blocks of cash in Pakistani and US currency to
warlords who do their bidding," according to Donnellyís article.
we do today sets a precedent for the future. Today, the CIA wields
power against the terrorists that could be used against the American
people tomorrow. Government agencies and programs are not known
for voluntarily shrinking or abolishing themselves. Income tax withholding,
introduced as a wartime measure, persists to this day and masks
the level of taxation reaming Americans. Why should we expect the
CIA to give up its new toys? As Donnelly writes, the CIA in Afghanistan
"has operated under greatly relaxed rules of engagement."
The CIA is just getting comfortable.
Fallavollita [send him mail]
holds an M.A. in political science from Purdue University. He has
written for EtherZone, Enter Stage Right, OpinioNet, Spintech, and
The American Partisan.
© 2002 LewRockwell.com
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