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This evening, McClatchy and The / / Intercept's Dan Foomkin are reporting upon two major developments in the ongoing, knockdown-drag out pissing war between the Central Intelligence Agency and the top folks on Capitol Hill that are vested with the task of overseeing that monolithic government entity, the Senate Intelligence Committee.

If readers wish to skip the excerpts, below, here are the links: from McClatchy, "Despite vows of help, White House withholds thousands of documents from Senate CIA probe," and The / / Intercept, "Calls for Brennan’s Ouster Emerge Along With Details of CIA Search of Senate Computers."

Despite vows of help, White House withholds thousands of documents from Senate CIA probe
by Jonathan S. Landay, Ali Watkins and Marisa Taylor
McClatchy Washington Bureau
March 12, 2014

WASHINGTON — 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.

The significance of the materials couldn’t be learned. But the administration’s refusal to turn them over or to agree to any compromise raises questions about what they would reveal about the CIA’s use of waterboarding and other harsh interrogation techniques on suspected terrorists in secret overseas prisons.

The dispute indicates that the White House is more involved than it has acknowledged in the unprecedented power struggle between the committee and the CIA, which has triggered charges that the agency searched the panel’s computers without authorization and has led to requests to the Justice Department for criminal investigations of CIA personnel and Senate aides.

“These documents certainly raise the specter that the White House has been involved in stonewalling the investigation,” said Elizabeth Goitein, the co-director of the Brennan Center for Justice’s Liberty and National Security Program at the New York University Law School…

McClatchy reporters Landay, Watkins and Taylor tell us that both the SSCI and the CIA “declined to comment.”

However, we do learn in the next few paragraphs of the article that the White House issued a statement to McClatchy wherein the folks at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue “confirmed that ‘a small percentage’ of the 6.2 million pages of documents provided to the committee were ‘set aside because they raise executive branch confidentiality interests.’”

There’s much more to this story, so I’d strongly suggest a full read of it, as well as
The / / Intercept piece, excerpted below. Because both of these media outlets are all but blatantly stating that the White House is running interference (and siding with) for the CIA on these matters (for the moment), despite any public press statements coming from our nation’s executive mansion to the contrary. So, if the MSM won’t use those exact words, I will.

Here’s Froomkin on the other half of tonight’s revelations on these latest travesties from our Ministry of Truth…

Calls for Brennan’s Ouster Emerge Along With Details of CIA Search of Senate Computers
By Dan Froomkin
The / / Intercept
12 Mar 2014, 6:29 PM EDT

CIA Director John Brennan’s decision to search Senate committee computers was such a blatant violation of the constitutional separation of powers that some pro-accountability groups in Washington are starting to seek his ouster.

Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) disclosed in a fiery speech on Tuesday that Brennan told her in January that CIA personnel had conducted a search on  computers at a CIA-leased facility that had been reserved for the use of committee staffers investigating the agency’s role in the Bush-era torture of detainees.

The Constitution clearly gives the legislative branch the authority to investigate the executive branch — and not the other way around.

More even than the act itself, some critics see Brennan’s lack of recognition of the extent of his violation of key constitutional principles to be the biggest cause for him to be fired...

Quotes in the story from Angela Canterbury, the public policy director of the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) and Shahid Buttar, executive director of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee, follow.

Canterbury...

“The recent revelations that CIA Director Brennan reported the surveillance directly to Chairman Feinstein is stunning...How can we hold such impunity accountable? Remove Brennan, for starters..."
...

..."And then there must be a full investigation that is more independent than one might expect from DOJ...”

Buttar, on "the concerns about the Senate investigation that led Brennan to launch his search were..."
...“ridiculous, as well as simply incorrect."

Buttar continued: “Given his false assurances to the Senate Intelligence Committee about CIA drone strikes, and his continuing failure to let the public finally know the facts about CIA torture, Brennan should resign or be removed from office so the Committee can examine and confirm new leadership.”

Senators Udall and Heinrich weigh in...
Some senators appeared to be close to calling for Brennan to go. “I’ve lost confidence in Director Brennan, particularly because he won’t acknowledge the misdeeds and misconduct of the CIA,” Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colo.) said on MSNBC on Tuesday. He added: “The CIA has an important role to play, but if the public doesn’t trust the CIA, if the Senate overseers don’t trust the CIA, I don’t know how Director Brennan can continue to lead the agency.”

“Despite Director Brennan’s commitment to ‘strengthen the trust’ between the CIA and the Intelligence Committee, the relationship between our respective bodies has only deteriorated during the first year of his tenure,” Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M), said in a statement

For more on this, from late Wednesday afternoon: "Colorado Senator Floats Brennan’s Resignation," by Andrew Johnson, National Review, March 12th, 2014, 3:54PM (EDT)

Ah, yes! "Democracy" inaction in action. I'll bet you're absolutely shocked about these latest developments, aren't you?


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I am so not looking forward to those misguided souls that wish to flame away in the comments regarding these latest inconvenient, status quo realities


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