More on the Goss Memo

Entirely predictable, but the NYT article on the Goss memo indulges some politicized distortions.

The Washington Post actually saw the Memo and did not read it as an order to “Back Bush” as did the NYT.

Thank you NYT for confirming your pathological inability to separate facts from your politics.



  1. Hey Stuart,

    I read the CNN article, but I’m a bit confused. Did the NY Times doctor the quotes, or what? Obviously a paper’s headline– by definition– shows bias. But even in the CNN piece, the quote from the memo is:

    “We support the administration, and its policies, in our work as agency employees . . . [w]e do not identify with, support or champion opposition to the administration or its policies. We provide the intelligence as we see it — and let the facts alone speak to the policy-maker.”

    I just can’t see how saying the CIA is FOR the administration and its policies and AGAINST opposition of the administration’s policies is anything but troublig. It also seems incongruent with the notion that the CIA is to “provide facts as [they] see it– and let [them] speak to the policy maker.” Again, what if the FACTS speak AGAINST an administration’s policy?!?

    But perhaps I’m missing something… 

    <><><><>Posted by<><> <><>Lance


  2. Nah, I agree with you Lance that any statement of positive “support” in the political sense for the Bush admin would be inappropriate.

    But if I read the article right I come to the following conclusions:
    1. The NYT was quoting someone who saw the memo but made no claim to actually having seen the memo themselves which means we’re dealing with two degrees of interpretation.
    2. Everything else in the excerpts–except for the “support the administration” line–is a rejection of politics of any kind and a hard assertion that the CIA is there only to provide information.
    3. All of which suggests that the “support the admin” line could be read as “support” in the sense that an administrative staff at a high school supports the Principal. They provide the information in support of the administration’s information needs.

    I admit, it still sounds fishy but given the context of the rest of the memo, the fact that the CIA is roundly denying that the memo suggested that the Agency should politically support Bush, this seems to be a rational conclusion.

    Bear in mind that this memo was written to address parties inside the CIA who had quite openly agitated against the president, which is clearly out of line.  

    <><><><>Posted by<><> <><>Anonymous


  3. Point one: that could be true– or perhaps they just read the Washington Post article and copied from that!
    Point two: I got that from some of the wording, and it is in accords with Goss’ statements in the confirmation hearing.
    Point three: Good suggestion– but perhaps a wordsmith/editor could have come up with a better word so it SOUNDED less… horrible!

    As for the last part, yes– some, it seems, were openly having issues with the President. However, in many cases that seems to have stemmed from the administration’s handling/use of intel for Iraq. Unfortunately, when your boss is the President, you have few options with which to file objections… 

    <><><><>Posted by<><> <><>Lance


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