1. “Silencing Gen. Petraeus
In one of his many overreactions to the events of 9/11, however, President George W. Bush changed all that with an ill-conceived executive order that unlawfully unleashed the CIA inside the U.S. and the FBI into foreign countries. Rather than facilitating a cooperative spirit in defense of individual freedom and national security, this re-ignited their rivalry. FBI agents, for example, publicly exposed CIA agents whom they caught torturing detainees at Gitmo, and Bush was forced to restrain the CIA.
Isn’t it odd that FBI agents would be reading the emails of the CIA director to his mistress and that the director of the FBI, who briefs the president weekly, did not make the president aware of this? The FBI could only lawfully spy on Petraeus by the use of a search warrant, and it could only get a search warrant if its agents persuaded a federal judge that Petraeus himself — not his mistress — was involved in criminal behavior under federal law.
The agents also could have bypassed the federal courts and written their own search warrant under the PATRIOT Act, but only if they could satisfy themselves (a curious and unconstitutional standard) that the general was involved in terror-related activity. Both preconditions for a search warrant are irrelevant and would be absurd in this case.
All this — the FBI spying on the CIA — constitutes the government attacking itself. Anyone who did this when neither federal criminal law nor national security has been implicated and kept the president in the dark has violated about four federal statutes and should be fired and indicted. The general may be a cad and a bad husband, but he has the same constitutional rights as the rest of us.
No keen observer could believe the government’s Pollyanna version of these events. ”