CIA Didn't Bother Informing Obama About Blown Cover Of German Double Agent Before His Call With Merkel

from the finding-out-from-the-papers-again dept

We’ve pointed out before how bizarre it is that President Obama seems to gleefully admit that he’s almost totally in the dark about what the intelligence community is doing. Last year, he admitted that he keeps finding out what the NSA is doing from the press reports on the Snowden documents and then he goes to ask what the NSA has been up to. It appears this “keep him in the dark” status is reaching new and ridiculous heights. As you probably heard, over the weekend the Germans arrested an employee of the German BND, who had apparently been spying for the Americans (via the CIA), and who had been tasked with keeping tabs on the German investigation into the Snowden leaks. This morning, there are reports about a second spy as well. Reports suggest that the first guy was a bit of a bumbling buffoon who was caught because he sent via email classified documents to the Russians, offering to spy for them as well (leading to an investigation that turned up his existing spying activities for the CIA), but it’s still a diplomatic black eye for the US.

However, the craziest bit about this is that no one bothered to inform the President that the cover of a CIA plant had been blown in Germany — even though President Obama was scheduled to talk to Angela Merkel a day after the arrest. While that call went off without a hitch, and the spy wasn’t brought up, the fact that President Obama was apparently unaware of the situation, once again, raises serious questions about the rogue nature of the intelligence community. No one expects the President to know specifically about CIA plants, but once one is blown — especially concerning a big ally where previous revelations already made a bit of a diplomatic mess — you’d think that someone inside the intelligence community would think to brief the President.

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Comments on “CIA Didn't Bother Informing Obama About Blown Cover Of German Double Agent Before His Call With Merkel”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

You know, that “Der Postillon” is satire, right? Something like “The Onion”. If you understand German, that should become clear from all the other articles on that page. And if you don’t get it, it’s mentioned in the FAQ.

Apart from that, it’s really horrible to see how the German government kowtows before the USA. Instead of strongly condemning the actions, evicting all intelligence officers with a diplomatic pass and stopping certain negotiations and other programs (SWIFT data transfer, TTIP, etc.), the actual action taken strongly resembles that the satire news magazine “Der Postillon” describes.

That One Guy (profile) says:

No need

He didn’t get informed about it because he didn’t need to be. Germany has already shown that they’re just fine dancing to the USG’s tune, and will not do anything that would annoy/anger the USG too much, so of course having a spy or two outed like this wouldn’t be discussed or even brought up, making briefing him on it beforehand a waste of time.

As to the ‘bizarre’ bit about how he only learns about what the NSA is doing from the press… yeah, nothing ‘bizarre’ about that, it’s called ‘willful ignorance’, or ‘plausible deniability’. He doesn’t know what they’re doing because he doesn’t want to know.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: No need

I would consider plausible deniability criminal negiligence in several cases regardless. Plausible deniability is exactly created to avoid putting the president in the same situation as Richard Nixon when Watergate broke.

It is to a large extend either criminal negligence from the president or the agencies when plausible deniability is used in this context. As important core functions of a government, a president has as much of a duty to keep informed and act if the government bureaucracys actions seem inappropriate as passing laws. That duty cannot be fulfilled when plausible deniability is used.

DannyB (profile) says:

This seems like very poor management

Good managers make sure their underlings have the information needed to do their job properly.

In this case, it seems like the intelligence community is not giving proper oversight to the president. The intelligence community seem to be poor managers of the elected officials. Both of the president and the senate intelligence committee.

Anonymous Coward says:

That’s the way their existence is. (our glorious leaders)

They can’t think for themselves and are always doing what they are told to do. They only get information when it is given to them and they don’t have time to validate anything. It’s the nature of how they exist, too busy doing stuff and making sure they don’t do/say something stupid while having to say this and that.

Obama, like almost all other leaders is a machine that is always on. No time to think… be here for breakfast, there for meeting, then here for a lunch, go there for another meeting, then here for a press statement, go there for dinner etc…

It’s why they age so much. They don’t even get a lunch break and even going out to dinner is a job that requires hours of saying this and not saying that.

Until that is fixed… stories like the “ill informed” leader will always be occurring.

GEMont (profile) says:

Its just a job... but the pay is awesome!

“…you’d think that someone inside the intelligence community would think to brief the President.”

You’d think that if you still believed the President was anything more than a hired gun for Wall Street Billionaires.

On the other hand, if you realized that Obama was just an employee of the men running the USA these days, you would understand that what Obama knows is exactly what he needs to know when he’s about to lay down another lie on the US Public.

He already had his German meeting script memorized, so there was no need to confuse the con with stuff that was immaterial to that meeting.

Now that he might need to spin some BS to the public about this “bumbling minion”, he will be briefed and handed his new script by the same folks who wrote his German meeting script.

I can barely wait to hear this one. 🙂

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