Sen. Mark Udall called for the resignation of CIA Director John Brennan, and other senators expressed outrage after an inspector general report found that CIA operatives had hacked into computers used by Senate staffers investigating the agency’s interrogation procedures during the Bush Administration.
According to a CIA spokesman, Brennan has determined that agents’ behavior was “inconsistent” with an agreement the agency had with the Senate and the panel overseeing the CIA.
In other words, the CIA did what it does and broke the law in an attempt to cover its butt.
Making the findings all the more outrageous was the fact that Senate Intelligence Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein in March had made the allegations of spying, and Brennan at the time had not only denied them but had seemed to ridicule Feinstein for the very thought of them, saying of hacking into Senate computers, “nothing could be further from the truth.… That’s beyond the scope of reason.”
The allegations were made by Feinstein in March during a 40-minute speech in which she accused the CIA of attempting to disrupt an investigation into its detention and torture methods in the Iraq War.
On Tuesday, Brennan apologized to Feinstein and to Intelligence Committee senior Republican Saxby Chambliss. He has submitted the inspector general report to an accountability board headed by a former senator.
Feinstein called it “positive first steps.”
“The investigation confirmed what I said on the Senate floor in March,” Feinstein said, “CIA personnel inappropriately searched Senate Intelligence Committee computers in violation of an agreement we had reached, and I believe in violation of the constitutional separation of powers. This report corrects the record and it is my understanding that a declassified report will be made available to the public shortly.”
Feinstein’s original allegations, along with CIA countercharges that members of her staff removed classified documents from a CIA facility, were referred to the Justice Department, which has declined to investigate.
So there you have it. If the CIA spies on the Senate, it’s unconstitutional, a violation of separation of powers, and our leaders call for heads to roll.
Meanwhile, most of the United States population is being spied on daily by the NSA and probably other federal agencies without warrants, in blatant violation of the Constitution’s Fourth Amendment prohibitions against unreasonable search and seizure, yet none of our elected officials care.
Further, our president is blatantly destroying the very concept of separation of powers on a regular basis, yet because he’s one of their own, Democrats are all in favor.
It’s reminiscent of a passage in George Orwell’s “Animal Farm”: “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”