April 27, 2006

The Chamber Pot Spills

I ripped the Washington Post yesterday for a dishonest editorial attacking Porter Goss and the CIA. The Post actually attempted to say it was wrong to fire suspected leaker Mary McCarthy, who may be involved with Dana Priest's Pulitzer Prize-winning article of the CIA prisons, that no one can seem to prove existed.

Well, things just keep getting more interesting with the old "secret prisons" story, and if Dan Riehl is correct, it is a really old secret prisons story, dating back as far as December 26, 2002.

A sample of the potential bombshell from a Riehl World View:

Contrast these two excerpts below published three years apart. The second won a Pulitzer. The first isn't even archived on line.
2002: In other cases, usually involving lower-level captives, the CIA hands them to foreign intelligence services — notably those of Jordan, Egypt and Morocco — with a list of questions the agency wants answered. These "extraordinary renditions" are done without resort to legal process and usually involve countries with security services known for using brutal means.

2005: A second tier -- which these sources believe includes more than 70 detainees -- is a group considered less important, with less direct involvement in terrorism and having limited intelligence value. These prisoners, some of whom were originally taken to black sites, are delivered to intelligence services in Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, Afghanistan and other countries, a process sometimes known as "rendition." While the first-tier black sites are run by CIA officers, the jails in these countries are operated by the host nations, with CIA financial assistance and, sometimes, direction.

Notice the quotation marks around rendition above in 2005? A new and extraordinary term? Hardly.

Read it all and draw your own conclusions.

If Dan is correct—and upon reading the case he makes, I have a feeling that he may be—then Dana Priest's Pulitzer Prize was awarded for recycling the content of an article she wrote with Barton Gellman years before.

Perhaps more troubling, it brings up the possibility that Mary McCarthy could have been leaking to the press as far back as 2002.

The plot has indeed thickened.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at April 27, 2006 12:32 AM | TrackBack


"For the first few days after the action was announced, the agency and the White House let stand the impression that McCarthy had been a source for the stories about secret U.S. detention centers in Europe that won a Pulitzer Prize for The Washington Post's Dana Priest. But when McCarthy's lawyer said she had no part in that transaction, CIA officials confirmed that was the case — leaving it unclear exactly what she had done to bring down the punishment."

Posted by: Dave Johnson at April 27, 2006 11:07 AM

I'd love to see where Broder is getting his information, as the last official word I've heard from the CIA was this:

The CIA announced the firing Friday, saying that a senior employee — subsequently identified by other intelligence officials as McCarthy — had admitted to unauthorized contacts with the media and to disclosures of classified information.

In particular, McCarthy was accused of contacts with a reporter for the Washington Post who won a Pulitzer Prize this month for stories about secret CIA prison facilities overseas for terrorism suspects.

A spokesman for the CIA, Paul Gimigliano, said Tuesday that the agency "stands by the statements it has made on this issue from the start."

Posted by: Confederate Yankee at April 27, 2006 11:27 AM

You have been the victim of a carefully orchestrated leak here. The CIA fired her for failing a polygraph, period. All the stories then go into anonymous sources (leaks) who intimate that it had something to do with the prisons story. She denies disclosing anything. The CIA never said what it is she is supposed to have done - only that she had "contacts" with reporters.

Even the piece you quote here makes only the connection that because she is a friend of a certain reporter, and that reporter happens to be the one who broke that story... In fact she isn't even accused of leaking to that reporter. See also Newsweek's story.

Posted by: Dave Johnson at April 27, 2006 11:52 AM

It must not be too "carefully orchestrated," as the CIA is firing out directly with official spokesmen.

NY Times:

The Central Intelligence Agency on Tuesday defended the firing of Mary O. McCarthy, the veteran officer who was dismissed last week, and challenged her lawyer's statements that Ms. McCarthy never provided classified information to the news media.


A C.I.A. spokeswoman, Jennifer Millerwise Dyck, said: "The officer was terminated for precisely the reasons we have given: unauthorized contacts with reporters and sharing classified information with reporters. There is no question whatsoever that the officer did both. The officer personally admitted doing both."

ABC News

In a statement to CIA employees, [CIA Director Porter] Goss said that "a CIA officer has acknowledged having unauthorized discussions with the media, in which the officer knowingly and willfully shared classified intelligence, including operational information."

The bold in both stories is mine, and the spin is yours, Dave. Two CIA officals have come out directly and stated that the fired CIA employee leaked classified information to the press, and that she confessed.

Posted by: Confederate Yankee at April 27, 2006 12:15 PM

The more I look at the dishonest David Brock claim, the more it iritates me.

I'm calling him out.

Posted by: Confederate Yankee at April 27, 2006 01:09 PM