Sunday, April 23, 2006

The Sting?

Captain Ed over at Captain’s Quarters posts this:

Rick Moran at Right Wing Nuthouse wonders if the story on CIA detention centers might not have been a sting operation to unmask leakers at Langley. The possibility comes up because on the same day that the CIA terminated Mary McCarthy for her communications to the press, the New York Times reports that European investigators cannot find any evidence that the detention centers ever existed:


How do intel agencies find leakers and spies? They pass around carefully designed misinformation to selected individuals considered likely suspects, and see what winds up exposed as a result. It's possible that after Porter Goss took over as DCI when George Tenet left, he began mole hunting in a big way. It's certain that the administration would have demanded some action on leaks, and Goss would have been of a similar mind. It appears that the story she gave Dana Priest has a lot less substance than first thought. Two separate investigations by Europe turned up nothing. They have reported on both occasions that no evidence exists to substantiate the story, either of the detention centers or of European cooperation.

The story about secret CIA prisons overseas has generated an enormous amount of bad press for the administration. For this reason Fits over at Shooting the Messenger doubts that it was any kind of sting operation. He could very well be right. The bad taste that this story has left in some mouths will not go away just because it turns out to be untrue. If in fact it turns out to be disinformation designed to smoke out one of their sources they will likely be livid. Especially if it puts some of their number in danger of a prison cell.

I can predict the moonbat reaction. “Bush lied about the secret prisons so that a legitimate whistleblower will not be believed. Whatever the truth is it must be much worse than CIA torture chambers on foreign soil”. But here’s a question. How else do you expose a leak, especially if you want to do it quickly?

An embittered government employee isn’t going to leak information to the left-wing press that makes the administration look good are they? And the left-wing press will not print that kind of leak, will they? The fastest and most reliable way to unmask a leaker is to plant disinformation and then wait to see where it turns up. It might very well have been worth it to Porter Gauss and George W Bush to take a PR hit to send a message to the rank-and-file at the CIA, State and the Pentagon that continuing their covert war to undermine the administration can carry an extremely high price tag.

After all the moonbats and their servants in the Democrat Party and their enablers in the mainstream press have already maxed out on Bush hatred. The people who are upset by the supposed revelation of “foreign torture chambers” aren’t the people who vote Republican anyway (at least outside of Rhode Island).

Republican voters will be disappointed that we don’t have overseas prisons where we wring information out of captured terrorists.

Bottom line, the only thing about the “sting operation” scenario that strains my credibility is my doubts that the CIA could be smart enough to pull it off.