Sunday, December 09, 2007

How not to deal with intelligence briefings

As with everything else in Washington, we arrive at he-said-she-said as the mode of argument. The Washington Post reports the administration side of their intelligence briefings.

This is surely a very bad idea. The administration is attempting to put their side of what was said through an off-the-record leak. Everyone concerned knows the source of course, the Washington Post states that their sources are two officials who were present.

This is a remarkably bad idea when there is a Congressional investigation in progress. The lawmakers know who was present and they will be witnesses at the hearings. So the lawmakers can ask if they were the source of the allegation directly. This puts them in a bind, either they commit perjury or they they admit revealling classified information for partisan purposes. If all the witnesses deny being the source they can force Mukassey to begin a pejury investigation.

The Washington Post does not describe their sources as 'ex-officials'. So this is likely to lead to forced resignations.

Not a good means of performing spin control.

No comments: