Thursday, August 20, 2009

Another Big "So What"?

The New York Times has a front page story today reporting that the CIA plan for assassination of Al Qaeda leaders, shut down by current director Panetta, involved Blackwater contractors. Leaving aside the the fact that none of this secret information should have ever been made public at all, this is another story about the CIA just doing its job.

As the article points out, assassination has been banned by executive order since 1976. Presumably that means that the CIA doesn't have a bunch of assassin teams just waiting around for a president to reverse that order.  Therefore, putting together a program to assassinate Al Qaeda members would require the CIA to find enough assassins, or people with the necessary skills to act as such. One of the obvious places to look would be private military corporations such as Blackwater. PMCs hire former military personnel, particularly ex-special forces operators. By dealing with a private corporation that has people with the needed skills, the CIA could actually be more discreet than having to go through another government agency such as the Department of Defense. And using private operators rather than direct government employees would add a level of deniability should the program be exposed, or an assassin get captured. In short, the CIA was apparently doing exactly the sort of things that  it should have been doing in order to put together an assassination program.


  1. It's like when people are all shocked when the CIA lies. Hello, it's their job!

  2. Yeah, or that people whose job it is to break all sorts of laws might not be too careful about legal niceties.

  3. The NYTimes has once again broken another CIA secret about how they kill terrorist thugs. what a story! I really think most Americans just tune this stuff out and really only NYTimes editors think it's a big deal. It's amazing how hard they try to frame it as news when we all know that they are reporting it because they are against it.