Rep. Rogers Insists CIA Oversight Is Great… Just As We Learn CIA Hid Thousands Of Documents From Congress
from the congressional-oversight! dept
Since the Senate spying scandal story came out last week, and then went into overdrive this week with Dianne Feinstein’s public statement on the details, her counterpart in the House, Rep. Mike Rogers (a staunch defender of the intelligence community) had remained mostly quiet. He finally did an interview in which he actually admits that if the CIA broke the law, “that would be a pretty horrific situation and would destroy that legislative-CIA relationship.” Relationship? Then there’s this nugget, where he suggests that the CIA isn’t out of control and Congressional oversight is working great:
“We shouldn’t taint the whole agency. The agency is well-overseen, lots of oversight, and they’re doing some really incredible work to protect the United States of America.”
Well-overseen? Lots of oversight? Right. So, soon after he does this interview, McClatchy releases a story about how the CIA (with support from the White House) has been withholding thousands of documents from the Senate Intelligence Committee who is investigating the CIA’s torture program. This is in relation to the report that created this scandal, the supposedly scathing report that condemns the CIA for going even further in torturing people than previously reported and revealing that the torture produced no useful intelligence. And that’s without knowing what’s in these other documents.
The White House has been withholding for five years more than 9,000 top-secret documents sought by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence for its investigation into the now-defunct CIA detention and interrogation program, even though President Barack Obama hasn’t exercised a claim of executive privilege.
In contrast to public assertions that it supports the committee’s work, the White House has ignored or rejected offers in multiple meetings and in letters to find ways for the committee to review the records, a McClatchy investigation has found.
How’s that “oversight” looking now? When the CIA can just hang onto the really embarrassing stuff just because it wants to, you no longer have “oversight.” You have an agency that is free to coverup whatever it would like.