But the Hoekstra letter was quite specific about what is going on in the CIA. The Times article, however, did not highlight that part of the letter in which Hoekstra referred to events in the Valerie Plame affair as the result of "a strong and well-positioned group" within the CIA that "intentionally undermined the Administration and its policies." Readers of the on-line Times were able to read the whole letter, which was posted on the paper's website.
The Hoekstra letter also refers to Stephen Kappes returning to the CIA as Deputy Director when it is believed that he "may have been part" of the group that was determined to sabotage the Bush Administration.
And it's not just about Wilson/Plame:
The Bush administration suffered major embarrassment when it was disclosed that the United States was holding top al-Qaida suspects in "secret prisons" in eastern Europe and North Africa.
A Swedish journalist who prepared one of the first stories on the CIA flights that transported al-Qaida captives told Josh Gerstein of The New York Sun the CIA did a poor job of covering its tracks. "I would say they didn't give a damn," Fredrik Laurin told Mr. Gerstein. "If I was an American taxpayer, I'd be upset."
For a show broadcast in May of last year, Mr. Laurin traced the tail number of a Gulfstream jet used to transport captives to a clearly phony company in Massachusetts. "You weren't able to trace the name to any living individual," Mr. Laurin said. "They were all living in post office boxes in Virginia. "If that's all the imagination they can drum up at Langley, I'd fire the bunch," Mr. Laurin added.
But if the CIA hasn't been very good at ferreting out the secrets of our enemies, or keeping our own, it has shown a talent for playing politics.
"The CIA's war against the Bush administration is one of the great untold stories of the past three years," wrote lawyer and Web logger John Hinderaker in The Weekly Standard.
The CIA has used its budget to fund criticism of the Bush administration by former Democratic officeholders, and permitted a serving analyst, Michael Scheuer, to publish and promote a book bashing the president.
The principal CIA weapon has been the leak. Reporters for ABC, The New York Times and The Washington Post didn't have to do even the minimal legwork Mr. Laurin did to out the CIA's clandestine "rendition" program. It was handed to them by "current and former intelligence officials."
"So the CIA established policies that it knew would be controversial and would damage American interests if revealed, and then leaked the existence of those policies to The Washington Post for the purpose of damaging the Bush administration," Mr. Hinderaker wrote.
Thanks for your posts.