CIA, still bitter about Cheney, rejects application to release memos

On April 20, former US Vice-President Dick Cheney urged the CIA to declassify several internal documents that “showed the success” of the Agency’s torture program against captured members of al-Qaeda. Several weeks earlier Cheney had actually applied to the US National Archives and Records Administration for the release of two internal documents pertaining to the torture controversy. But on Thursday, CIA spokesman Paul Gimigliano issued an official letter rejecting Cheney’s application, because “the two memos […] were relevant to pending litigation” against the Agency. The CIA official assured reporters that the decision to reject Cheney’s application was made “[f]or that reason –and that reason only”. But insiders tell intelNews that Cheney’s clout with the CIA has been severely diminished, following his failure to come to the Agency’s rescue after a departing President Bush blamed the CIA for producing “false intelligence” on Iraq. Apparently, the decision to reject Cheney’s advocacy was supported by CIA Director Leon Panetta, but also reflected a wide consensus among the Agency’s policy-makers, who blame Bush and Cheney for essentially dumping their foreign policy failures on Langley. Cheney, however, won’t give up. There are rumors floating around that the former Vice-President is already preparing to appeal the ruling.

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Expert news and commentary on intelligence, espionage, spies and spying, by Dr. Joseph Fitsanakis and Ian Allen.

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