Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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April 26, 2007
By: Kevin Drum

"SLAM DUNK"....George Tenet says he's pissed off at whoever it was who leaked his "slam dunk" comment to Bob Woodward:

The phrase "slam dunk" didn't refer to whether Saddam Hussein actually had WMDs, says Tenet; the CIA thought he did. He says he was talking about what information could be used to make that case when he uttered those words. "We can put a better case together for a public case. That's what I meant," explains Tenet.

....He says he doesn't know who leaked it but says there were only a handful of people in the room.

"It's the most despicable thing that ever happened to me," Tenet says. "You don't do this. You don't throw somebody overboard just because it's a deflection. Is that honorable? It's not honorable to me."

Well....color me unconvinced. Given a couple of years to think it over, that's probably the kind of story I'd come up with too, but I think I'd try to make it more believable. Frankly, the table-pounding declaration that something is a "slam dunk" doesn't really sound like the kind of thing you'd say if you were merely agreeing that your PowerPoint presentation could use some sprucing up, does it?

But who knows. Maybe that really is the way Tenet talks. As for his belated discovery that the Bush White House doesn't always behave in honorable ways, all I can say is: I hope Tenet's take on foreign leaders was more insightful than his take on his own boss. The fact that loyalty is a one-way street with Bush the Younger is not exactly the news of the century.

Kevin Drum 6:05 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (77)

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Comments

Let me get this straight:

"We can't prove that he has WMD. But, Mr. President, it's a slam dunk that we can do a better job helping you claim that we do."

I feel SO much better about George Tenet now.

Posted by: Bill Camarda on April 26, 2007 at 6:23 PM | PERMALINK

Just out of curiosity (since I started reading this much after 2000), when did Kevin come to the conclusion that the Bush White House doesn't always behave in honorable ways?

Posted by: gregor on April 26, 2007 at 6:27 PM | PERMALINK

Oh, NOWTenet wants to talk about honorable actions?

I'd be happy to show him a quite honorable foot up his ass.... what a dick.

Posted by: Simp on April 26, 2007 at 6:28 PM | PERMALINK

Tenet's story sounds plausible enough to me. Doesn't make it true, but "slam dunk" is more appropriate as a description of a public appeal than as a description of an intelligence estimate.

Bigger picture issue for Tenet: so what? The reason the comment is notorious is because it perfectly encapsulates a discredited worldview. Tenet is annoyed because he's being saddled with an unfair characterization, but outside of George Tenet, no one really cares about George Tenet.

Posted by: Adam on April 26, 2007 at 6:29 PM | PERMALINK

Read "The Looming Tower." It's all in there about the foul-ups and turf battles. Who was in charge of the CIA in 2001 anyway?

Posted by: Rula Lenska on April 26, 2007 at 6:29 PM | PERMALINK

Retaining Bill Clinton's director of CIA was one of George W. Bush's major mistakes. The CIA needed major reform, which wasn't going to come from Tenet.

Posted by: ex-liberal on April 26, 2007 at 6:30 PM | PERMALINK

Do you think George will give back his MEDAL OF FREEDOM as a sign of protest over the White House's "leak" of his slam dunk comment? Don't bet on it.

Posted by: Barney on April 26, 2007 at 6:31 PM | PERMALINK
Given a couple of years to think it over, that's probably the kind of story I'd come up with too, but I think I'd try to make it more believable. Frankly, the table-pounding declaration that something is a "slam dunk" doesn't really sound like the kind of thing you'd say if you were merely agreeing that your PowerPoint presentation could use some brushing up, does it?

It does if the assignment you'd been (either personally or as part of a group) given by your boss was to come up with a way of selling an idea.

Tenet's claim, if true, doesn't make him look good, OTOH, it does make the President look bad.

Whether Tenet was telling the President that the factual case for WMD in Iraq or the PR case was a "slam dunk", its a black mark on Tenet.

But in the latter case, the Administration's deflection attempt is a black mark on the Administration.

Tenet's complaint is most interesting, I think (especially given the timing, amidst the swirling scandals and investigations around the administration) as a message to anyone else who might be considering about compromising themselves out of a sense of loyalty to the boss in this administration. Yet another in a string of people providing faithful service even to the point of putting serving the PR interests of the administration ahead of the public interest who has been paid back by being thrown under the bus by the White House.


Posted by: cmdicely on April 26, 2007 at 6:36 PM | PERMALINK

I find his "I wasn't stupid, i was treasonously deceitful" story plausible.

Posted by: jefff on April 26, 2007 at 6:41 PM | PERMALINK

Medal of Freedom.

Posted by: Gore/Edwards 08 on April 26, 2007 at 6:42 PM | PERMALINK

There's no way I would ever believe George Tenet is liberal or that he opposes the war in Iraq. However, I remember this line always sounded different to me- I thought it sounded like the kind of sarcastic thing you say when someone's trying to sell you a flimsy idea. So I took it as kind of the same thing Tenet's saying. Remember, it's kind of old hat that the CIA has a very strong belief, apparently, that it shoul not get behind the intelligence that the administration provided to justify he war. So this may be very basic, uncontroversial stuff with the CIA, something basically everyone in the bureau agrees should not be disputed.

It just shows to go that statements put into print, and that are retold from when they ocurred in the past, can be ambiguous. Also I think people from different social classes are prone to interpreting ambiguous statements different ways sometimes. And among the blogging-class, I definitely have seen a lot of examples of bloggers jumping to conclusions about ambiguous statements, and I think that's kind of a trait of the upperclass, too.

There are easier ways to criticize or expose someone as something than stuff like this. If they'e really a crass, dishonest war promoter, they'll make these same kinds of statements again and again. There may be a lot of stuff to criticize Tenet for besides this thing, and there may be a lot of other Republican politicians and appointees we can criticize rightly as being that kind of war supporter, but just not him. You have to draw the line somewhere. Remember, all I'm saying is for all I know, Tenet may be that kind of war supporter, and all the CIA may be that kind of war supporter, but I'm saying this instance isn't evidence of it- this is just as easily evidence of Tenet saying that it wasn't a good enough lie to tell to the public.

Posted by: Swan on April 26, 2007 at 6:45 PM | PERMALINK

Give back the Medal of Freedom, George. This would serve two purposes:

* You'll perhaps convince some of us that you're at least trying to be honorable; and

* The White House can award it instead to someone who properly appreciates the president's gesture of good will, like Paul Wolfowitz or Alberto Gonzales.

Posted by: Donald from Hawaii on April 26, 2007 at 6:45 PM | PERMALINK

Tenet has a book coming out--he may be disgusted enough to clear his name and let it all loose.
We'd like to know why maps of Iraqi oil pipelines and fields were part of documents reviewed in early 2001 by the veep's so called energy task force. Well before the attack on the world trade center.

Posted by: consider wisely always on April 26, 2007 at 6:45 PM | PERMALINK

Ah, Kevin.

"The fact that loyalty is a one-way street with Bush the Younger is not exactly the news of the century."

Wrong, wrong, wrong.

Bush is really a more complex characterization than the unidimenshional card board cut out you people make him out to be. To listen to you, the President is some spoiled liar from Connecticut with a silver spoon in his mouth who's a recovering alcoholic who's unintelligent and cares only about politcs and doesn't care about anything but politics. This is the myth thats been built up in the liberal media. Actuall, the truth is much more complex and nuanced.

Posted by: egbert on April 26, 2007 at 6:46 PM | PERMALINK

It just shows to go

Or goes to show- I make that joke of switching the words so often it becomes second nature.

Remember, it's kind of old hat that the CIA has a very strong belief, apparently, that it shoul not get behind the intelligence that the administration provided to justify he war.

This should be, "Remember, it's kind of old hat that the CIA has a very strong belief, apparently, that it should not get behind the intelligence that the administration provided to justify the war."

Posted by: Swan on April 26, 2007 at 6:47 PM | PERMALINK

I say that if this upsets him, he should throw his Presidential Medal of Freedom awards over the fences around the White House.

Posted by: jerry on April 26, 2007 at 6:49 PM | PERMALINK

egbert is right.

The President cares much more about giving handouts to his friends and eliminating barriers to his friends' favorite forms of commerce.

Egbert's description included none of that.

Posted by: jerry on April 26, 2007 at 6:52 PM | PERMALINK

According to Suskind's book, he didn't pound the table, either.

I don't think Tenet called the case for war a 'slam dunk.' I think he was in a meeting in which the presentation being put together for Powell was criticized. I think he was asked if the presentation could be improved and he said yes. He might have even said, Yes, that's a slam dunk. And then I think the administration came out with their version of what was said in the meeting and Tenet was afraid to correct the record, because correcting the record at that point would have provoked a vicious attack.

Obviously he should have sucked it up and spoken out. But hardly anyone was sucking it up and speaking out back then. Remember?

Posted by: cmac on April 26, 2007 at 6:55 PM | PERMALINK

Is Tenet saying that he didn't say "slam dunk" about WMD on wgich the CIA were wrong, wrong, wrong!, but did say it on how convincing a lying case he was willing to put together to deceive the public.

So the CIA became a willing propaganda tool for the preznit. Wow!

Am I missing something here?

Hang 'im high!

Posted by: notthere on April 26, 2007 at 6:55 PM | PERMALINK

Ah, egbert, you pretentious "This Space Available"-minded neocon apologist.

The only "complex characterization" you're able to discuss with any of us, either at-length or in-depth, is how Bruce Wayne came to be known as The Batman.

Posted by: Donald from Hawaii on April 26, 2007 at 7:05 PM | PERMALINK

I just figured it out. egbert is Hal from 2001!

"card board"
"cut out"

A computer with a limited vocabulary, whose programmers left out the concept of compount words!

Oh, and what notthere said.

Posted by: thersites on April 26, 2007 at 7:08 PM | PERMALINK

Thanks for reporting on this, though, Kev; it's definitely worth thinking about who's on board with this crass-empire building / rash, aggressive foreign policy, and who's not.

Posted by: Swan on April 26, 2007 at 7:14 PM | PERMALINK

Wow, I rarely disagree with you this much Kevin. I always assumed "slam dunk" meant the ability to sell the claim, not actually support it from an intelligence perspective. In fact, I thought that was what made the quote so bad; they were just looking for marketing, not real intelligence.

So yea, I believe him. And that isn't a good thing.

Posted by: Mark on April 26, 2007 at 7:25 PM | PERMALINK

I just figured it out. egbert is Hal from 2001!

egbert.el

You're arguing with an EMACS add-on.

If you have GNU EMacs, try '[META]-x egbert'.

Betcha you'll get a comment from him, generated automatically.

Al, on the other hand, is only an add-on for an abacus.

Posted by: Davis X. Machina on April 26, 2007 at 7:27 PM | PERMALINK

Retaining Bill Clinton's director of CIA was one of George W. Bush's major mistakes. The CIA needed major reform, which wasn't going to come from Tenet.

These two statements might be true, but are part of "ex-liberal"'s dishonest agenda to blame Bush's dishonesty in selling the neocon agenda to invade Iraq on bad intelligence.

No one's buying, "ex-liberal". Why do you bother? Why -- and to whom -- is it so important to have bullshit neocon talking points posted here?

Posted by: Gregory on April 26, 2007 at 7:27 PM | PERMALINK

Tenet was proud of his manliness before things started going wrong in Iraq (some say after day 6 of the invasion). Now he shrivels and shrinks like a sissy-boy from his "slam dunk".

Posted by: namvetted on April 26, 2007 at 7:28 PM | PERMALINK

Tenet was so outraged he refused to accept the Medal of Freedom, right?

Posted by: Old Hat on April 26, 2007 at 7:42 PM | PERMALINK

To listen to reality, the President is some spoiled liar from Connecticut with a silver coke spoon in his nostril who's a recovering alcoholic who's unintelligent and cares only about politcs and doesn't care about anything but politics.

Fixed it for you.

Posted by: Stefan on April 26, 2007 at 7:45 PM | PERMALINK

Egbert is right.

Bush also thinks God talks directly to him and that he is his prophet.

Posted by: Michael7843853 G-O in 08! on April 26, 2007 at 8:00 PM | PERMALINK

I read all there was written about Watergate (except Liddy's book) and found it interesting that so many people did not believe a word John Dean said. Yet, in the end, the tapes proved he was the one telling the truth. Perhaps, Tenet is the John Dean of this messy thing known as the Bush Administration. Still, like with Powell and his aide who spoke out a while ago, it's too little too late.

Posted by: Mazurka on April 26, 2007 at 8:12 PM | PERMALINK

Well Jeebus, Tenet sure didn't say nothing when he got that Medal of Freedom. In fact he was all smiles as I recall. So it's more than a bit late to be bitching about his role in the build up to the Iraq war at this late stage of the game.

Tenet's boo ho crying now would indicate that somehow his Medal is Freedom is completely worhtless, and of course it is, coming from Bush and all, as I'm sure the particular Medal was given as a from of hush-up award. Tenet accepted the medal in good faith as one of Bushie's true blue loyalist and fully appeared to agree with his hush-up award. So it's just plain old "bad-faith" of Tenet to being crying foul now.

Anything to sell a worthless kiss and tell book, I guess.

Posted by: Cheryl on April 26, 2007 at 8:17 PM | PERMALINK

I'll forgive this hapless piece of crap, if he cuts off his dick. Otherwise, fuck him. He is another neocon moron, and I am so glad that we are now seeing infighting and nastiness

Posted by: POed Lib on April 26, 2007 at 8:27 PM | PERMALINK

Washington Whispers
By Paul Bedard
Posted 4/1/07
And Now, It Will Be Tenet's Turn to Dish
We're just a month away from what could be the biggest storm yet over who knew what before 9/11 and about those weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, as former CIA Director George Tenet finally tells of those troubled days. We hear vaguely that in At the Center of the Storm: My Years at the CIA, out April 30, Tenet takes responsibility for intelligence shortcomings but also isn't shy about naming officials in the Bush and Clinton administrations who share in the blame. It's not all bad: The "DCI" tells of some amazing intel successes, too.

Allies say the 511-page book-300,000 in the first printing-isn't a rant: Tenet spent a year and a half researching it, reviewed tens of thousands of documents, and conducted dozens of interviews with key players to fill in the gaps of his story, the first by a true Bush insider involved in making war policy. Then he had to win CIA approval. To speed that, he submitted chunks of the 25-chapter book, getting the green light in mid-March.

How big will the Tenet storm be? Several foreign publishers are negotiating the rights for it. And his P.R. rollout includes a rare two-segment 60 Minutes appearance, a magazine deal, the Today Show, and Meet the Press. "Many books, many articles, and many talk shows have discussed George," says his lawyer Robert Barnett. "Now George will have the opportunity to tell his side."

Posted by: consider wisely always on April 26, 2007 at 8:33 PM | PERMALINK

It depends on what your definition of the word "information" is.

Posted by: Kenji on April 26, 2007 at 8:52 PM | PERMALINK

I think Mr. Tenet should take that finger he was holding up to check the winds of change, and shove right back up the hole he's been storing it in all this time.
And yes, he can take his Mea Culpa and pack it into that hole as well!

Posted by: Sheerahkahn on April 26, 2007 at 8:52 PM | PERMALINK

So....what Mr. T said was not that proven evidence Saddam had WMD made the case for "slam dunk" certainty but that Bush propaganda made a "slam dunk" of selling the hoax to the American people? Now, is this supposed to make this AH a good guy?

Posted by: Richard on April 26, 2007 at 8:59 PM | PERMALINK

There was some Tenet statement, or a couple of them, that were reported in the media by around the time the Woodward book cam out, that seemed inconsistent with the Tenet-as-misuse-of-flimsy-intelligence-cheerleader interpretation. I don't remember exactly what it was that made me conclude from my own reading of the Woodward excerpt online that Tenet's ambiguous statement was being too quickly chalked up as this.

But anyway, it fits in with the CIA official position of the intelligence as no good. I never got the impression that Tenet was out to do the same thing Rumsfeld and Cheney were out to do, even though some interpreted the statement that way.

Anyway, I could be totally wrong.

Posted by: Swan on April 26, 2007 at 9:08 PM | PERMALINK

As was pointed out above, Suskind's The One ercent Doctrine is the go-to book on nearly all things Tenet. George was clearly Suskind's most important single source, so he neaturally comes across as the hero of the otherwise excellent piece, as much as anyone does.

In that account, Tenet didn't recall using the words "slam dunk", and was stewing over the story from the moment Woodward released it. He was very clear to Suskind that, if he did use those words, the issue would have been how solid a presentation could be made at the UN, not how solid the actual evidence was.

Yes, Tenet went cheerfully along with the selling of the war on flimsy evidence, which he knew was flimsy. He knew the CIA knew it was flimsy, and had never told the White House otherwise. So he was indignant - partly on his own behalf, partly on the CIA's - when Woodward's story made it look like the CIA had lied to the President, by claiming that the evidence was solid.

But Suskind says he stifled at the time, because he was profoundly loyal to George W., and didn't want to air the fact that it was Bush who had fluffed up the featherweight evidence into a mountain-sized pillow.

And now? Tenet is willing to spill the beans, because he believes that it was not Bush, but some other White House actor, who set out to make him the scapegoat for the bad intelligence. I doubt that he comprehends, to this day, that his loyalty should have been to the country that paid his salary, rather than to the President who let him keep drawing it after Clinton left. He thinks it would have been dishonorable to have lied to the President. It doesn't occur to him that it was dishonorable to help the President lie to the country.

Posted by: nicteis on April 26, 2007 at 9:23 PM | PERMALINK

Is anyone watching msnbc? Did you just see this? How in hell does Dennis Kucinich, the nebbishiest guy on stage, get hitched to a supermodel?

Is there a formula that describes how this works?

Posted by: cld on April 26, 2007 at 9:24 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin, I read you all the time and love your stuff, but I can't believe you can't work up some bloggerly outrage over the Tenet book. Here's a guy who sold his soul to the Bush Cheney War Machine in 02-03 and literally enabled the Iraq Debacle. Now he's demonstrating that, although he didn't have the balls to stand up to Bush and Cheney, he DOES have the balls to write a "kiss and tell" book and make millions. It is frickin' disgusting.

Posted by: steved on April 26, 2007 at 9:47 PM | PERMALINK

I don't care about Tenet. What is significant is that Bush was NOT told the existence of WMDs was slam dunk. Bush was concerned only about convincing "Joe Public" I have believed all along Tenet assured him only that bullshitting America was doable.

Posted by: chance on April 26, 2007 at 10:06 PM | PERMALINK

I wonder if Scott Pelley asked him about the Medal of Freedom.

That was the deal Bush offered: You remain silent as we saddle you with "it's a slam dunk." I give you the Medal of Freedom to take the sting out of it.

If he wants out of the deal now, then he should give back the Medal.

Posted by: Jay Rosen on April 26, 2007 at 10:12 PM | PERMALINK

Tenet sez... Bush administration ruined my reputation

George Tenet to "60 Minutes": Bush administration ruined my reputation
Orlando Sentinel, FL - 5 hours ago
Tenet says he was referring to making a public case that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. Tenet says he was not saying that the Iraqi leader ...


Lets get this right, George Tenet RUINED his own reputation.

Tenet finds out that you can't eat medals, and damn it, I guess Tenet figures it's time to sell a cheap book on how Bush ruined him?

What major a-hole

No wonder terrorist were able to fly into the World Trade towers, because CIA director Tenet is and was a completely stupid moron. Sen. Levin was right, George Tenet disseminate the threat information in order to aid Bush in deceiving the American public. I remember how mad Tenet got at Sen. Levin for saying so.

Posted by: Cheryl on April 26, 2007 at 10:22 PM | PERMALINK

Boy, talk about chickens coming home to roost, eh?

They're gonna have to rename the White House the Hen House pretty soon.

Posted by: lampwick on April 26, 2007 at 10:31 PM | PERMALINK

Tenet quit his job in July 2004. Even if true, he said nothing, absolutely nothing about this in the four months leading up to the re-election of Bush. Screw him.

Posted by: BillS on April 26, 2007 at 10:49 PM | PERMALINK

I have always thought since reading the Woodward book that the slam dunk was selling WMD's to the American public. Read the book section again and you will see that slam dunk does not refer to the evidence for WMD's but to the presentation of the evidence to convince people. You have to remember that the Bush administration has already declared there are WMD's so they are not looking to be convinced of the evidence, but are looking at their ability to sell it.

Posted by: Th on April 26, 2007 at 10:53 PM | PERMALINK

Listened to Carlo Bonini on NPR’s Fresh Air tonight, talking about his new book, Collusion, which exposes the way the Italian neofascist government aided Bush and Cheney’s charade in 2002 of duping the American people into attacking a Muslim country that had absolutely nothing to do with 9-11. The shabbily forged "yellowcake" documents from Niger were the mechanism for this deception. George Tenet was a bit player in this fool's errand.

Posted by: The Conservative Deflator on April 26, 2007 at 10:59 PM | PERMALINK

Dick Gephardt has said that he was personally assured by Tenet that Sadam had WMD. Tenet was not an innocent bystander in the pre-war intelligence fixing. He knew the intel was old and unreliable but went along anyway. Of course, Gephardt was pretty stupid to believe someone like Tenet.

Posted by: MarvyT on April 26, 2007 at 11:12 PM | PERMALINK

As this was reported by Woodward, Tenet only said it's a "Slam dunk case" in response to Bush saying, "Is this the best we got?" and something about needing to "Convince Joe Public." Contextually, Tenet's claims make sense, especially given the Bush regime's obsession with PR and track record of twisting things around for their own ends -- and the "slam dunk case" comment is perfect twisting material. Whether it's the Bush crew or Tenet doing the twisting I don't know for sure -- personally I think it would take more balls than Tenet has to try something brazen like this, whereas brazenness is SOP for the Bushites, but that's just my opinion. Tenet's case, though, makes a lot more sense than Kevin would have it, and Kevin is smart enough to have figured that out with a couple of minutes of effort. Not your best work there, Kevin.

Posted by: Martin Gale on April 26, 2007 at 11:31 PM | PERMALINK

Tenet was NO bit player...


Profile: George J. Tenet

Positions that George J. Tenet has held:

CIA Director during the Clinton and Bush administrations

Quotes
February 6, 2002

“Our major near-term concern is the possibility that Saddam might gain access to fissile material,… [and] with substantial foreign assistance, [Iraq] could flight-test a longer-range ballistic missile within the next five years.” [Chicago Tribune, 2/7/2002]

Associated Events

Events leading up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq - February 6, 2002 - George Tenet tells the Sen ...

March 19, 2002
Testifying before the Senate Intelligence Committee, CIA Director George Tenet says, “There is no doubt that there have been (Iraqi) contacts and linkages to the al-Qaeda organization. As to where we are on September 11, the jury is still out. As I said carefully in my statement it would be a mistake to dismiss the possibility of state sponsorship whether Iranian or Iraqi and we’ll see where the evidence takes us…. There is nothing new in the last several months that changes our analysis in any way…. There’s no doubt there have been contacts or linkages to the al-Qaeda organization…. I want you to think about al-Qaeda as a front company that mixes and matches its capabilities.… The distinction between Sunni and Shia that have traditionally divided terrorists groups are not distinctions we should make any more, because there are common interests against the United States and its allies in this region, and they will seek capabilities wherever they can get it…. Their ties may be limited by divergent ideologies, but the two sides mutual antipathies toward the United States and the Saudi royal family suggests that tactical cooperation between them is possible.” [PBS, 3/19/2002; Agence France-Presse, 3/20/2002]

Tenet did everything is his power as director of the CIA to help Bush and Rice lie to the American people.

It's like when Richard Perle decided that it was all Bush's fault the war in Iraq went so badly, even as Perle said that Iraqis, overwhelmed with gratitude, would be throwing flowers (no planning needed).


Posted by: Cheryl on April 26, 2007 at 11:32 PM | PERMALINK

When is someone from the Bush royal family going to Iraq? Eh?

Posted by: craigie on April 26, 2007 at 11:34 PM | PERMALINK

George Tenet was a high school classmate of Ron Jeremy; so wikipedia tells me.

Imagine if Tenet had gone into porn, and Jeremy had gone into spook work... Where would we be today?

Posted by: lampwick on April 26, 2007 at 11:35 PM | PERMALINK

ex-liberal manages to blame Clinton in only 6 comments! Outstanding!

Posted by: craigie on April 26, 2007 at 11:36 PM | PERMALINK

The phrase "slam dunk" didn't refer to whether Saddam Hussein actually had WMDs, says Tenet; the CIA thought he did. He says he was talking about what information could be used to make that case when he uttered those words. "We can put a better case together for a public case. That's what I meant," explains Tenet.

WTF?

George that's what I thought was meant when I first heard it...

In my eyes your culpability hasn't changed an iota.

It's a slam dunk =
we can convince the American people =
You will have your war Bushy-poo


Posted by: ROTFLMLiberalAO on April 26, 2007 at 11:42 PM | PERMALINK

Give back the Medal of Freedom, George. This would serve two purposes:

* You'll perhaps convince some of us that you're at least trying to be honorable; and

* The White House can award it instead to someone who properly appreciates the president's gesture of good will, like Paul Wolfowitz or Alberto Gonzales.

--Posted by: Donald from Hawaii

Ha, ha, ha...LOL.

William Saffire got one of those medals too.

It's becaming the Medal of Bush Ass-kissing and Incompetence. You have to be a completely dis-honorable Bush crony in order to get one of those medals.

Bush needs to give medal to each of his worthless cronies: Wolfowitz, Alberto Gonzales, Rumsfield and WP columnist David Broder (cause I'm certain the Dean must be really jealous of Saffire.)

Posted by: Cheryl on April 26, 2007 at 11:48 PM | PERMALINK

Oh yeah, and lets not forget Rice, and Andy Card, Ari Fleshier, Tony Snow, Fox news ower Murdock, Rush Limbaugh, and Ann Coulter.

Posted by: Cheryl on April 26, 2007 at 11:51 PM | PERMALINK

cld: "How in hell does Dennis Kucinich, the nebbishiest guy on stage, get hitched to a supermodel?"

Two thoughts:

(1) There's no accounting for personal tastes.

(2) Who are we to judge?

In my high school, the cheerleader captain hooked up with the nerdish pocket-protector-wearing president of the Interact Club. They've been married 22 years now, and are the proud parents of four, ages 6-20.

Posted by: Donald from Hawaii on April 27, 2007 at 12:37 AM | PERMALINK

As if we needed confirmation this guy is a weasel who got out-weaseled by the Top Weasels.

I suppose this just confirms he's a weenie weasel.

Armitage leak?

Posted by: Tilli (Mojave Desert) on April 27, 2007 at 12:53 AM | PERMALINK

Also from the Times article:

During the meeting, the deputy C.I.A. director, John McLaughlin, unveiled a draft of a proposed public presentation that left the group unimpressed. Mr. Tenet recalls that Mr. Bush suggested that they could add punch by bringing in lawyers trained to argue cases before a jury.

Bring on them trial lawyers!

Posted by: malcolm on April 27, 2007 at 1:01 AM | PERMALINK

In my high school, the cheerleader captain hooked up with the nerdish pocket-protector-wearing president of the Interact Club.

Nerds aren't afraid to go looking for the g-spot, that's my theory.

Posted by: craigie on April 27, 2007 at 1:40 AM | PERMALINK

egbert, bush is a spoiled blue-blooded coward from connecticut. he deserted TANG, he ran away and hid on 9/11. there are no horses on his fake ranch because the pussy is afraid of them.
no nuance needed, jackass. now go suck some more bush you idiot.

Posted by: merlallen on April 27, 2007 at 6:28 AM | PERMALINK

Tenant desreves not the Freedom but the Chutzpa Medal:

First he gives the neocons all they want for their propaganda but after they use it to their advantage he comes out and asks for sympathy.

Remind me of the old jewish joke of the guy who, after killing his parents, ask for mercy for being orphan...

Posted by: Yonathan Shapir on April 27, 2007 at 7:17 AM | PERMALINK

Shrub has so degraded the Medal of Freedom, that Tenet will have to come with an extra three bucks for latte from a Starbucks in Alexandria.

Posted by: thethirdPaul on April 27, 2007 at 8:22 AM | PERMALINK

How could that have been misconstrued? All I said, was that Colin could yo-yo up and down, fake them out of the popcorn machine, do a no harm, no foul spin move and take it to the rack.

For that a double technical and lifetime suspension?

Posted by: George of No Tenets on April 27, 2007 at 8:37 AM | PERMALINK

"If stupidity got us into this mess, why can't it get us out?"
-- Will Rogers

Posted by: MsNThrope on April 27, 2007 at 8:50 AM | PERMALINK

Oh yeah, and lets not forget Rice, and Andy Card, Ari Fleshier, Tony Snow, Fox news ower Murdock, Rush Limbaugh, and Ann Coulter.
Posted by: Cheryl

Forgot the Rev. Moon...


'The Iraq War is and always has been morally wrong, intellectually misguided, prosecuted in ignorance, intentionally corrupt, and motivated by opportunism at every turn. ' Jane Smiley

Posted by: MsNThrope on April 27, 2007 at 8:57 AM | PERMALINK

Yes, Jane Smiley, but very, very profitable.

Profits uber Alles.

Posted by: Halliburton Share Holder on April 27, 2007 at 9:14 AM | PERMALINK

I was going to say, "If you lie down with the dogs don't be surprised if you pick a bunch of fleas" but in this case I think the more appropriate saying is "If you lie down with the whores don't be surprised when you end up infected with AIDS".

Posted by: The Fool on April 27, 2007 at 9:25 AM | PERMALINK

i always thought that the quote ment that they had a slam dunk to convince people that sadam had nukes not necessarily that they belived that the administration had them i thought that was why everybody got upset about the quote

Posted by: joe on April 27, 2007 at 9:35 AM | PERMALINK

why do all the former administration johnny-come-latelies confess to all their misgivings and previous misdeeds after the damage has been done and they have left the administration (O'Neill, Powell, Tenet, Clarke.) No offense gentlemen but isn't easier to do work from the inside of the house rather than after you closed the door behind you. Obviously their guilty consciences weigh heavy on their minds - or is it the weight of their publishers' checks? - but it seems to me the near-height of hypocrisy to cry about what they could have done after being position originally to do it in the first place.

Posted by: ny patriot on April 27, 2007 at 10:25 AM | PERMALINK

Had they done it earlier, they would have been shown the door much earlier - None of them left because they "Really, Really" wanted to spend more time with the grandkids.

Posted by: thethirdPaul on April 27, 2007 at 11:00 AM | PERMALINK

Compliant bureaucrats I get. CIA as propagandists, mainstream media bent by corporate pressure, military-industrial-petro capitalism trumping democracy. Check, check, check.

But I will never to my death understand how so many Americans could look at George Bush and see anything other than the mock sincerity and strutting bravado of a lying, shallow little shit.

If they couldn't see that, what can they ever see?

Posted by: chance on April 27, 2007 at 11:07 AM | PERMALINK

Well, they could see themselves. But they wouldn't like that one bit.

Posted by: Kenji on April 27, 2007 at 11:11 AM | PERMALINK

chance,

I think you misunderstand. The choose NOT to look. They do no want to look. It is willfull ignorance. They accept the descriptions they get from their pastors, priests and pundits.

Posted by: Tripp on April 27, 2007 at 11:15 AM | PERMALINK

And advertisers, of course.

"Does this planet make me look fat?"

Posted by: Kenji on April 27, 2007 at 11:56 AM | PERMALINK

I gotta say, I do have some tiny degree of sympathy for the guy.
He was put in an untenable position. His bosses made it abundantly clear that they didn't want to hear the truth, they wanted lies to support their pre-existing decisions. So when it's discovered, as it eventually must be, that they were lies, the bosses of course blame him -- for doing exactly what they'd insisted that he do.
But given how well we -- all of us, collectively -- treat whistleblowers, there was no winning move for Tenet at the time.
Would anyone really have expected him to resign in protest?
Those days are long gone. Nobody wants to wind up teaching high-school science, or banished to NPR.

Posted by: smartalek on April 27, 2007 at 2:39 PM | PERMALINK

The response that any DCI should make to any question about how to make a public case for or against anything is:

"That's not my job. Taking any part in that -- even advisory -- would compromise my job. Please don't ask again."

As Tenet exculpates himself w/r/t the bad intel assessment, he seems unaware that he's confirming himself as precisely the kind of team player a DCI must not be.


Posted by: Monte Davis on April 29, 2007 at 12:56 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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