Why Didn’t Phil Mudd Get Dick Cheney to Back Down on Torture? « The Washington Independent
Over the weekend, The Washington Post had this telling account about how Philip Mudd’s nomination to be Homeland Security undersecretary for intelligence unraveled:
Over the Memorial Day recess, Mudd met with senior staff members of the Homeland Security panel whose interest was primarily how he would handle issues of intelligence sharing with state and local police units. When, near the end of a two-hour session, they went over Mudd’s CIA positions from 2001 to 2005, it became apparent that questions about harsh interrogations, renditions and allegations that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein had links to al-Qaeda would have to be explored, according to a person at the session who asked not to be identified because he was not authorized to discuss the matter.
“Since he was deputy director of the counterterrorism center, he was going to be asked whether interrogation produced useful intelligence, and if it didn’t, why didn’t he stop it?” the source said.
Yeah! Why didn’t some completely anonymous CIA official march into Dick Cheney’s office and force the vice president of the United States and all his acolytes to completely abandon their cherished torture program — something they feel so strongly about that they continue to defend it out of office? And why didn’t he do that while Porter Goss was firing CIA officials for insufficient loyalty to the Bush administration? Clearly Phil Mudd was the problem here.