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CIA’s IG Claims Errors Were Made Before 9/11

From those champions of national security at the New York Times:

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C.I.A. Lays Out Errors It Made Before Sept. 11

By MARK MAZZETTI

August 22, 2007

WASHINGTON, Aug. 21 — A report released Tuesday by the Central Intelligence Agency includes new details of the agency’s missteps before the Sept. 11 attacks, outlining what the report says were failures to grasp the role being played by the terror mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and to assess fully the threats streaming into the C.I.A. in the summer of 2001.

The 19-page report, prepared by the agency’s inspector general, also says 50 to 60 C.I.A. officers knew of intelligence reports in 2000 that two of the Sept. 11 hijackers, Nawaf al-Hamzi and Khalid al-Mihdhar, may have been in the United States. But none of those officers thought to notify the Federal Bureau of Investigation about the potential domestic threat, the report says, evidence of what it calls a systemic failure.

The inspector general recommended that several top agency officials, including former director George J. Tenet, be held accountable for their failure to put in place a strategy to dismantle Al Qaeda in the years before Sept. 11, 2001. Gen. Michael V. Hayden, the current C.I.A. director, and his predecessor, Porter J. Goss, have declined to seek disciplinary action against Mr. Tenet and others named in the report.

The outlines of the report have been known since shortly after it was completed in 2005, but it had never been made public, and its release reignited a debate about whether the C.I.A. should have done more before the attacks and whether Mr. Tenet and other officials should be held accountable.

Mr. Tenet called many of the report’s conclusions “flat wrong,” and General Hayden noted that many of those criticized in the review by the agency’s inspector general had criticized the “focus, methodology and conclusions” of the report.

Until Tuesday, the report had been kept under wraps by the spy agency, which opposed a public airing of its failures before the Sept. 11 attacks. The summary of the report was released at the insistence of Congress, over General Hayden’s objections, under the terms of a law passed this summer…

Notice that this report has been around since 2005. But the Democrats last summer passed a law requiring it to be made public this summer, just in time for the political season.

And also, they hope, long enough after 9/11 that we forget who had been in White House for the eight years prior.

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, August 22nd, 2007. Comments are currently closed.

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