Watching the White House and the CIA slug it out these past two years, it has been tempting to lionize the CIA as I demonize the NeoCons, but y’know, I realized something today: it’s important to think of this fight as less St. George (not Chicken George) and the Dragon, and more of it as just two strangers mud wrestling- I don’t know any of these people personally, and I don’t have a dog in this fight. They’re all down in the sludge together, and I am just watching for the boobies.
The CIA still has the capacity to do evil. To whit:
The CIA has been hiding and interrogating some of its most important al Qaeda captives at a Soviet-era compound in Eastern Europe, according to U.S. and foreign officials familiar with the arrangement.
The secret facility is part of a covert prison system set up by the CIA nearly four years ago that at various times has included sites in eight countries, including Thailand, Afghanistan and several democracies in Eastern Europe, as well as a small center at the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba, according to current and former intelligence officials and diplomats from three continents.
Remember that plenty of times in the past fifty years, the CIA’s job has been to subvert democracy. Ask Chile. Ask Nicaragua. Hell, ask the people of Afghanistan who armed the Taliban. This has not changed.
This is not to say that the CIA should not exist, but that it’s important to remember that there’s ample history that those of us on the left should not forget. It’s mud wrestling, and the CIA put plenty of that mud there to start with.