January 28, 2016

"The admiral in charge of Navy intelligence has not been allowed to see military secrets for years."

WaPo reports.
Vice Adm. Ted “Twig” Branch has been barred from reading, seeing or hearing classified information since November 2013, when the Navy learned from the Justice Department that his name had surfaced in a giant corruption investigation involving a foreign defense contractor and scores of Navy personnel. Worried that Branch was on the verge of being indicted, Navy leaders suspended his access to classified materials.... More than 800 days later... Branch... has [not] been charged... [The Navy] kept Branch in charge of its intelligence division...

“I have never heard of anything as asinine, bizarre or stupid in all my years,” Norman Polmar, a naval analyst and historian, said in an interview.

39 comments:

Holding My Nose said...

A perfect example of how broken our political establishment is, and make no mistake about it the military establishment is as political as the rest of the mess.

Fritz said...

Just wait until we have a President forbidden to see state secrets.

The Drill SGT said...

Stupid is as Stupid does...

rehajm said...

Twig. Branch. Heh.

PB said...

Obama probably thinks this is a perfect situation to hamper the Navy. He's worked wonders cashiering generals in the Army and Air Force that resist and replaced them with compliant, useless fops.

MikeR said...

I guess this is another suggestion that the same should have been with Hillary Clinton? What are the military and intelligence supposed to do when someone very high up cannot be trusted to guard secrets? Encapsulate them, no?

The Drill SGT said...

I can't imagine how the guy could pretend to function without an active clearance. Ignore the part about not being able to read documents.

All the NAVINT offices are SCIFs. He can't enter one without shutting down all work in the office, or any site he visits.

Imagine the lose of respect up and down the chain of command, to know that the top guy lost his clearance. The Leadership deficit is staggering.

Imagine what the rest of the Navy thinks about the CNO and the SecNavy. No matter which side of the fight you would be on, you gotta think your top leaders are spineless...

Put him out of his misery. Retire him, clear him, reassign him, try him...

chickelit said...

The guy could use a little due process and then a "you're fired" from Trump.

Rae said...

Is this an attempt to pave the way for a Commander in Chief who is under indictment on espionage charges?

Hagar said...

"Military intelligence is a contradiction in terms" is a very old saying.

Sebastian said...

"What are the military and intelligence supposed to do when someone very high up cannot be trusted to guard secrets?" What difference, at this point, does it make? The top people do not care. Correction: they do care about secrets and clearances insofar as they can be used to score political points -- e.g., to hound Petraeus. They care about politics. They care about power. They care about using that power to weaken evil America. But they do not care about intelligence or leadership or respect from troops as valuable in themselves, as national assets worth preserving.

"Imagine what the rest of the Navy thinks about the CNO and the SecNavy. No matter which side of the fight you would be on, you gotta think your top leaders are spineless." No, not spineless. Calculating.

Michael McClain said...

If a lower ranking officer lost his security clearance, he'd be discharged.

David Begley said...

Hillary will cut deals to benefit herself and the Foundation. She did it at State. Who can stop her? Congress? Impeachment? Ha!

F said...

I read the headline and checked the date -- surely this was published on April 1? Sadly, no.

Qwinn said...

Hey, I find this heartening. At least the Navy still cares about keeping secrets, unlike the State Dept. This just proves the military is still the most competent branch of our government.

traditionalguy said...

Obambi loves holding hostages feet over the fire. That is his control method.

Michael Fitzgerald said...

Smart power!!!

William said...

There's more to this story, but it will all be classified as top secret so you'll never know. Especially if it reflects poorly on Obama or Hillary.

JCC said...

There are conflicting claims about this. The Navy says Justice originally said there would be a swift resolution, so the admiral would be charged or exonerated. So, Navy is blaming DOJ. Cynics are now suggesting the admiral is being allowed to remain (as a 3 star) so he can retire with sufficient time in grade for the higher pension (instead of being forced out now and retiring as a 2 star), and that there really was no intent for him to ever assume full duties at all, because he is known to be tarred enough to be disqualified for the intel job even if never charged.

In either case, this is rank stupidity. If he's innocent, then too bad for him, but he should have been replaced back when. Bad karma and all that. But life goes on and someone has to be behind that desk regardless of this guy's tough luck. Or poor judgement.

gspencer said...

"Branch has been barred from reading, seeing or hearing classified information since November 2013"

Hey, Admiral Swabby, dontcha know how to do it? Become a friend of Hillary.

DKWalser said...

Not to worry, I'm sure Admiral Branch has been busy ensuring Navy Intelligence is staffed with the right demographic mixture of historically marginalized groups. With such historical progress at stake, who can justifiably care whether he (or his newly diversified staff) are equipped to obtain, analyze, and disseminate information about matters affecting our national security.

Roy Jacobsen said...

Sure. Let us give the federal government more money, more control over more facets of our lives.

What can go wrong?

Wayworn Wanderer said...

What do you expect from the idiots in the Navy?

Go Army!

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

They probably just assumed he was on one of Hillary's email distribution lists.

mccullough said...

Petraues gives classified information to his girlfriend, now this guy?

I've always been skeptical that the best officers in the military get promoted. Like any organization, it's mostly the boot lickers that get ahead. There must have been hundreds of guys who got flushed out at major who would have been much better than guys like Petraeus and Colin Powell.




Richard Dolan said...

"I have never heard of anything as asinine, bizarre or stupid in all my years."

Your government doing what it does best. After all, as Obama told us, it's just a name for what we do together. Except that no one is ever really responsible.

Laura said...

So somebody finally found Ron Brown's missing x-rays? Wait, my bad -- that was the Air Force.

Laura said...

We must update our military. They must make bribery more challenging. The list cited in the article has worked for centuries.

Mac McConnell said...

Why does this surprise anyone? 800 days to investigate corruption, that's par for the course. How many days have we waited for answers and accountability for Fast & Furious of the IRS scandal, been well over 800 days.
Petraeus on the other hand shared intel with an Army Intel officer he happened to be hosing.

Michael in ArchDen said...

Wayworn Wanderer said...

What do you expect from the idiots in the Navy?


A win every December! #GoNavyBeatArmy ;-)

cubanbob said...

God help us! And to think at least 45% of the vote in November will be for the very same party that thinks this level of stupidity and incompetence in military and national security isn't a problem.

Danno said...

“I have never heard of anything as asinine, bizarre or stupid in all my years,” Norman Polmar, a naval analyst and historian, said in an interview.

Look at anything the Obama administration touches and you will see nothing but asinine, bizarre or stupid. Or all three.

Brian McKim & Traci Skene said...

“I have never heard of anything as asinine, bizarre or stupid in all my years,” Norman Polmar, a naval analyst and historian, said in an interview.

If the interview was on Fox, we can safely ignore it, right?

cubanbob said...

Brian McKim & Traci Skene said...

“I have never heard of anything as asinine, bizarre or stupid in all my years,” Norman Polmar, a naval analyst and historian, said in an interview.

If the interview was on Fox, we can safely ignore it, right?
1/28/16, 1:03 PM "

Besides pointless snark what is your point?

hombre said...

it's this constant choice between corruption and ineptitude. Maybe this time we don't need to choose. It may be both.

Gahrie said...

I've always been skeptical that the best officers in the military get promoted. Like any organization, it's mostly the boot lickers that get ahead.

The difference is, at irregular intervals people actually start dying (and killing) in the military, and at that point, the political officers usually get shuffled off into obscurity. But it is one of the main reasons why the American military usually enters wars unprepared to fight them.

Jason said...

Yeah, but he's gay and trans friendly. And that's what counts in today's military with Obama as POTUS.

So he'll continue clogging the promotion billets and holding back the warfighters, whom the Obama Administration, together with Sen. Clair McCaskill, has been blocking or sacking for seven years.

Paul said...

We will have a war one day, and maybe not that far away, and LOTS of young men, and yep, some women, will die cause our government is so stupid.

Dr.D said...

I worked for the Navy as a civilian for seven years. No level of stupidity is beyond their ability.