Sunday, December 04, 2005

The FBI and CIA: Protecting You from Terrorism

Worried about terrorism? Don't worry the FBI is on the job:

FBI officials mishandled a Florida terror investigation, falsified documents to try to cover mistakes and retaliated against an agent who complained about the problems, The New York Times reported in its Sunday edition.

Citing a draft report of an investigation by the Justice Department's inspector general's office, a copy of which was obtained by the newspaper, the Times said that in one instance correction fluid was used to alter dates on three FBI forms to conceal an apparent violation of federal wiretap law.


The FBI was considering initiating an undercover operation and asked an agent with expertise in the area to take part.

But the agent, Mike German, soon told FBI officials the Orlando agent handling the case had "so seriously mishandled" the investigation that a prime opportunity to expose a terrorist financing plot had been wasted.

The report however concluded that "there was no viable terrorism case."


The report also said that after German began making his complaints about the case, the head of the FBI undercover unit, Jorge Martinez, froze him out of teaching assignments in undercover training and told one agent that he would "never work another undercover case."

Ain't the PATRIOT Act wonderful?

The CIA is doing a great job as well:

Coats informed the German minister that the CIA had wrongfully imprisoned one of its citizens, Khaled Masri, for five months, and would soon release him, the sources said. There was also a request: that the German government not disclose what it had been told even if Masri went public.


The Masri case, with new details gleaned from interviews with current and former intelligence and diplomatic officials, offers a rare study of how pressure on the CIA to apprehend al Qaeda members after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks has led in some instances to detention based on thin or speculative evidence. The case also shows how complicated it can be to correct errors in a system built and operated in secret.

Detaining people based on thin or non-existent evidence...almost impossible to correct errors...anybody getting warm fuzzies over our governments ability to catch the bad guys?

The CIA, working with other intelligence agencies, has captured an estimated 3,000 people, including several key leaders of al Qaeda, in its campaign to dismantle terrorist networks. It is impossible to know, however, how many mistakes the CIA and its foreign partners have made.

You should really read the rest of this article, it's scary as hell.