Tags: Cheney: | U.S. | Will | Drop | Clinton-Era | CIA | Restrictions

Cheney: U.S. Will Drop Clinton-Era CIA Restrictions

Sunday, 16 September 2001 12:00 AM

The Cheney statement confirms a report, broken by Christopher Ruddy on NewsMax.com in the immediate aftermath of the attacks:

Cheney announced the policy switch in response to a question from NBC's "Meet the Press" host, Tim Russert.

RUSSERT: "There have been restrictions placed on United States' intelligence gathering – a reluctance to use unsavory characters, those who violate human rights – to assist in intelligence gathering. Will we lift some of those restrictions?"

CHENEY: "Well, I think so. I think one of the by-products, if you will, of this tragic set of circumstances is that we'll see a very thorough sort of reassessment of how we operate and the kinds of people we deal with.

"If you're going to deal only with sort of officially approved, certified good guys, you're not going to find out what the bad guys are doing. You need to be able to penetrate these organizations. You need to have on the payroll some very unsavory characters if, in fact, you're going to be able to learn all that needs to be learned in order to forestall these kinds of activities."

The vice president added that the Bush administration would "make certain that we have not tied the hands, if you will, of our intelligence communities."

Just hours after the terrorists struck, a CIA source told Ruddy, NewsMax.com's editor in chief, that spy recruitment policies put in place by the Clinton administration had devastated the agency's ability to gather human intelligence.

Ruddy reported late Tuesday:

A regular NewsMax reader, "Roger," was a CIA spy in the Mideast.

I met him almost two years ago. Roger wanted to tell me why a gung-ho American quit the CIA in disgust.

Roger said the CIA was not interested in recruiting spies.

Clinton and company knew they could not just tell the CIA to stop recruiting spies. That would look stupid and embarrassing.

So they just changed the rules of how spies are recruited, raising the bar on requirements to such a high degree that the most valuable spies could never meet CIA standards and couldn't work for us.

Previously, I wrote how Clinton effectively stopped the recruitment of Chinese nationals by demanding that only high-ranking embassy officials could be recruited knowing this is almost impossible. Roger told me that. Roger reminded me again of this today.

He noted that Clinton policies reached their zenith under CIA Director John Deutch and his top assistant, Nora Slatkin. The pair ran Clinton's CIA in the mid-1990s and implemented a "human rights scrub" policy.

Here's how Roger described it in an e-mail Tuesday evening: "Deutch and Nora, Clinton's anti-intelligence plants, implemented a universal 'human rights scrub' of all assets, virtually shutting down operations for 6 months to a year. This was after something happened in Central America (there was an American woman involved who was the common law wife of a commie who went missing there) that got a lot of bad press for the agency.

"After that, each asset had to be certified as being 'clean for human rights violations.'

"What this did was to put off limits, in effect, terrorists, criminals, and anyone else who would have info on these kinds of people."

Roger says the CIA, even under new leadership, has never recovered from the "Human Rights Scrub" policy.

Read Christopher Ruddy's report on the policies that led to our terrorist intelligence breakdown,

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The Cheney statement confirms a report, broken by Christopher Ruddy on NewsMax.com in the immediate aftermath of the attacks: Cheney announced the policy switch in response to a question from NBC's Meet the Press host, Tim Russert. RUSSERT: There have been...
Cheney:,U.S.,Will,Drop,Clinton-Era,CIA,Restrictions
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2001-00-16
Sunday, 16 September 2001 12:00 AM
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