Monday, December 10, 2007

From Tenet said NO to Perino and Cuba....

From American Progress:

Think Fast...

Operatives within the CIA's clandestine service were reportedly turned down when they asked former Director George Tenet for permission to destroy the torture tapes.

Several former CIA colleagues describe Jose Rodriguez as "a cautious operator who probably would have ensured that top CIA managers knew of the plan" to destroy the torture tapes. One former official said Rodriguez was concerned that midlevel officers would get in trouble despite the fact "they were carrying out the direction from higher-ups."

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Joe Biden (D-DE) yesterday called on the Justice Department to appoint a "Special Counsel to investigate the CIA's destruction of videotapes that included the interrogation of terrorism suspects."

A year after being involved in a partisan purge by the Bush administration, most of the fired U.S. attorneys "have landed on their feet, in law partnerships or private-sector jobs where their compensation dwarfs government pay. Some carry scars from the experience. Six of the attorneys marked the anniversary of their firings at a private dinner in San Diego 10 days ago, where they toasted one another for persevering."

Army leaders are pushing to shorten tour lengths for active-duty soldiers in Iraq back to 12 months by summer, though senior commanders in Baghdad appear reluctant to commit to a change. In April, Defense Secretary Robert Gates extended tours to 15 months to enable the "surge."

China and the United States, the world's top two polluters, "say they are not ready to commit to mandatory caps on greenhouse gases." At the U.N. climate talks in Bali, the United States has instead indicated that it will "come up with its own plan."

The New York Times writes, "Congressional leaders, who have disappointed frequently this year, have done it again. This time, the House leadership has failed to find a way to get a bipartisan law against hate crimes passed and signed into law."

"The United States is rife with racial discrimination and the authorities have an 'abysmal' record on promoting equality," according to a report by a coalition of 250 civic groups published on Monday. The report says U.S. minorities "face discrimination in a range of areas including voting, policing and education."

And finally: Appearing on NPR's quiz show "Wait, Wait...Don't Tell Me" over the weekend, White House Press Secretary Dana Perino revealed one of her most stressful moments on the job. During a White House briefing, a reporter referred to the Cuban Missile Crisis, and Perino "panicked a bit" because she didn't "know about" it. "It had to do with Cuba and missiles, I'm pretty sure," she said. When she told her husband about the incident, he simply said, "Oh, Dana."


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