May 20, 2010

The Director of National Intelligence, Dennis Blair, takes the fall.

"On the heels of a number of intelligence failures involving the Fort Hood shooter, failed Christmas Day bomber Umar Farouq Abdulmuttalab, and questions about failed Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad...."

44 comments:

danielle said...

its about time.

traditionalguy said...

What's the chance that the DC politicians will finally appoint a man or woman with a real commitment to do the job rather than a commitment to feather their own nest? How about appointing Rudy Juliani?

danielle said...

that's a joke right, tg ? Rudy's consistent exploitation of 9/11 (see his presidential campaign ads) is probably the best example of commitment 'to feather [his] own nest'.

mesquito said...

Okay. So Pantta wins the turf war. Cane he do any better?

Fen said...

the ultimate reason Blair is gone is because of the dissatisfaction President Obama and the National Security Staff had with Blair’s ability to share intelligence in a tight, coherent and timely way.

In short, officials didn’t think the briefings were relevant to what the president was focused on that day or time period. They weren’t crisp or well-presented.


Blair: ...and that in spite of sanctions, Iran will acquire nuclear weapons no later than -

Obama: [yawn] lets go back to villifying Rush Limbaugh and those damn Teabaggers...

Blair: ...14 more incursions by military units across Arizona's border -

Obama: Don't you have all this in powerpoint? Just drop it off on your way out...

Jason (the commenter) said...

Reading the article (silly me, right?) it doesn't sound like Blair is "taking a fall", that would mean he was taking the blame for something he wasn't responsible for. He sounds incompetent, therefore he's just falling.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Fen, do you find it that hard to believe Obama picked someone without the experience needed to perform his job? He's done it before, in fact, it's the story of his life.

Original Mike said...

Failures? What failures? We were told the system worked.

Fen said...

Well, someone is incompetent. Either its the Rhodes Scholar Admiral Dennis Blair or its the Diversity Hire who cant handle the course load. You decide.

Hint: what the president was focused on that day

The Drill SGT said...

I'm not a big fan of Balir who seemed to be a classic political appointment. His big claim was that he supported Obama during the election. Unlike McConnell, but like Panetta he had no intel credentials.

Panetta however beat him like a stick.

as for his resignation, most of the issues were the lack of interest by the adminstration in the old War on Terror.

banishing the issue of terroist attack, Islam, Muslim, tends to indicate you have a political agenda.

It's intersting that the Ft Hood thing is called an intel failure now, when up till now, it has been "an isolated mental health incident".

Unfortunately, the next appointee is likely going to be a worse pick, since the qualified possibles will be frightened off by the lack of committment and support.

EDH said...

David Rothkopf in Foreign Policy predicts more departures after the mid-terms.

Among these could be Gen. Jim Jones at the NSC and Defense Secretary Robert Gates. In the words of one senior official with whom I have spoken recently, they have offered Gates "everything but the kitchen sink to stay" but he has been intractable... Indeed, it is Obama's vulnerability on the national security front that makes the changes that are likely to come so significant... Add to the mix the rumored departures of key political players who have had big roles on these issues like Rahm Emmanuel and David Axelrod and this early tremor seems especially foreboding.

traditionalguy said...

@ Danielle ...The job Rudy did in NYC before the 9/11 attack was a very good example of a government trying to succeed instead of one trying to fail so that more money could be thrown around. He has pretty well resigned from politics, so he could use his skills as an administrator and not be under anyone else's political domination. Who would you suggest?

Jason (the commenter) said...

The Drill SGT: His big claim was that he supported Obama during the election.

The country needs to learn that loyalty is important, but not important as competence. (Competent people can suffer fools, but only fools can suffer incompetent people.)

The Drill SGT said...

Blair apparently was a dead man walking since last year when he had the stupidity to admit that stressful interogations yielded good results:

“High value information came from interrogations in which those methods were used and provided a deeper understanding of the al Qa’ida organization that was attacking this country,” Adm. Dennis C. Blair, the intelligence director,

Fen said...

Competence:

Blair: ...200,000 barrels per day pouring into gulf -

Obama: No no no. Today is only about mobilizing the base. I've got that "Vote 2010" video coming up.

24 April 2010: The president delivers his weekly radio address, which focuses on further regulation of Wall Street. He also calls upon certain segments of his original supporters -- African-Americans, Latinos, Hispanics, and women -- and asks them to mobilize for political action.

Blair: er, Mr President...?

26 April 2010: President Obama appears in a "Vote 2010" video, distributed by his political action wing Organizing for America, which serves as a stark appeal to blacks and Latinos -- specifically -- for their votes in November

http://directorblue.blogspot.com/2010/05/obamas-katrina-illustrated-timeline.html

GMay said...

Are they still calling these things "man made disasters" or whatever other silly terms massage the liberal conscience?

Looks like the President wants 'yes' men who give a snappy brief. Color me shocked.

Susan said...

Maybe Jamie Gorelick is available.

edutcher said...

The problem is we have an anti-American administration more interested in making friends with our adversaries than protecting the American people. The one who should resign is The Won. Blair just went under the bus, or, in this case, the DDG.

General Sherman, in commenting on the carpetbag governor of Texas, bowing to Eastern pressure to release a Kiowa chief who had massacred settlers and a wagon train, hoped the governor's would be the first scalp lifted. In this case, if the Zero gets what he deserves for letting down this country's guard in the name of his unquestionable hatred of this country, it will also cost the lives of a great many innocents.

The Drill SGT said...

Jamie Gorelick is free, She's done with her Duke Lacrosse defense and done with her defense of Sallie Mae's student loan business (epic fails).

so she could step right in. afterall, she knows how to compartmentalize intel. No need to have those pesky dots linked up.

On second thought, maybe they are keeping her on the bench as the next AG

Fen said...

Maybe Jamie Gorelick is available

Obama: Does she use Powerpoint?

Fen said...

Competence:

[Obama] was never a professor and was hardly an adjunct.

The other professors hated him because he was lazy, unqualified, never attended any of the faculty meetings, and it was clear that the position was nothing more than a political stepping stool.

According to my professor friend, he had the lowest intellectual capacity in the building."


http://www.killingjanefonda.com/blog/wordpress/?p=17

Geoffrey said...

A politically stupid move.

In recent testimony before Congress CIA Director Panetta predicted that we would be hit with another terrorist attack within the next 6 months. Both the underwear bomber and the Times Square bomber have stated that more are coming.

Given those conditions, asking for Blair's resignation now, instead of using him as a fall guy when it would be politically beneficial, reveals political incompetence.

Now Brennan has announced that the administration will reach out to 'moderate' elements in Hezbollah...

Clearly, they retain their 'faith' in the power of verbal diplomacy, of course being appeasers, they have no other option available.

Fen said...

Now Brennan has announced that the administration will reach out to 'moderate' elements in Hezbollah

Obama: Do they use Powerpoint? C'mon people, I've got remedial geography all day tomorrow. F-O-C-U-S.

Bruce Hayden said...

Jamie Gorelick is free, She's done with her Duke Lacrosse defense and done with her defense of Sallie Mae's student loan business (epic fails).

I had forgotten about her role with the Duke lacrosse scandal. Thanks.

What is scary is that she is the ultimate example of the failure of the Peter Principle gone wild on the left. She advances from failure to ever more massive failure, making more money apparently at each promotion.

holdfast said...

In short, officials didn’t think the briefings were relevant to what the president was focused on that day or time period. They weren’t crisp or well-presented.

I've heard of (and experienced) "death by PowerPoint", but this is new: death FOR PowerPoint.

Iapetus said...

"The country needs to learn that loyalty is important, but not important as competence. "

I wish George Bush had bought into that and fired his CIA Director George Tenet on 9/12. Instead, after lending his support to faulty intelligence on WMD in Iraq, Tenet got a medal. A medal!???!!

Issob Morocco said...

If Blair had dibss on the fall, does Big Sis Janet have dibs on summer?

Fen said...

In short, officials didn’t think the briefings were relevant to what the president was focused on that day

Blair: Mr President, we've detected a missile launch off the coa-

Axelrod: Not now! Today we're attacking Wall Street. Friday is for foreign policy.

Obama: Wait! Powerpoint?

Blair: [...]

ricpic said...

Didn't one of the Obamoid idiots say recently that we have to cozy up to the moderate terrorists in Hezbollah and Hamas in order to humanize those very complex and interesting organizations...or some such twaddle? That's right, he called them moderates. I'll bet that guy is credentialed up the eyeballs. You've gotta be really really really bright...only then can you fuck up EVERYTHING.

Elliott A said...

Obama does not have a war on terror

David said...

Blair was foolish enough to tell Congress in public testimony that there was too much political interference in intelligence gathering and analysis.

That's a firing offense, as Obama just proved.

If this is a "victory" for Panetta, it's hollow. Panetta has little influence on and access to Obama.

If you think Blair is a fall guy now, wait until after the next attack. It will all be Blair's fault.

The Obama presidency is on the edge a chaotic failure in several areas--economic, security, diplomatic, political. He does not see it coming. He will not react well when it happens. He's a lucky man whose luck is about to run out.

AC245 said...

In short, officials didn’t think the briefings were relevant to what the president was focused on that day or time period. They weren’t crisp or well-presented.

Obama fires Director of National Intelligence for failing to stovepipe intelligence.

Great.

bagoh20 said...

"(Competent people can suffer fools, but only fools can suffer incompetent people.)"

Let's remember that in November.

Dorothea said...

Obama will not focus on radical Islamists as the enemy in the war on terror which runs counter to what Dennis Blair has advised. Blair has purposely been sidelined. The White House purposely leaked information after the Christmas bombing which compromised the intelligence. Plus, the Texas shooting "cover-up" of the Muslim involvement made the Administration look like a disaster. I've been waiting for this to happen. Surprised it took this long!!

GMay said...

Another money quote to go right up there with the focus comment:

"Another factor was Blair's blunt style, which was seen by some as an asset but irked others in a White House that prizes staying on message."

Message. Wasn't the message after the Christmas Bomber that "the system worked"?

These clowns have completely lost track of "the message" and it would be funny to watch if the implications weren't so dire.

PatCA said...

It must have been difficult to serve as the intelligence advisor to a president who doesn't like his own country much.

garage mahal said...

These clowns have completely lost track of "the message" and it would be funny to watch if the implications weren't so dire.

Like getting actually getting attacked?

GMay said...

"Like getting actually getting attacked?"

What's the party line message on Ft. Hood again?

garage mahal said...

Party line message? Which party?

GMay said...

The one in charge?

Fen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fen said...

Libtard_Garage: Like getting actually attacked?

Can you count to 4?

Use your toes if you need to, Libtard.

Gary Rosen said...

"Obama does not have a war on terror"

Sure he does. He's doing everything he can to keep those teabaggers under control.

Zach said...

This was, the official said, the result of long pent-up dissatisfaction with Blair as the principal intelligence adviser to the president, responsible for briefing the president every day and briefing the National Security Staff. In short, officials didn’t think the briefings were relevant to what the president was focused on that day or time period. They weren’t crisp or well-presented.

At other times, Blair didn’t seem to take “no” for an answer, the official said. He was pushing an initiative dealing with intelligence and other countries, and he kept pushing it even after President Obama turned it down.


That's a double edged passage if I've ever read one. You could just as easily read it as Obama being uninterested in things that his subordinate is pushing with some urgency.

I keep remembering the story of Obama and his Blackberry, and how he kept insisting that he keep it until the NSA guys gave ground. It's a bad habit to fight with a subject matter expert about the very thing they're an expert in.