The NSA people are furious that they are getting thrown under the bus for carrying out orders, according to Max Boot:
“The intel community isn’t happy about being blamed for conducting what Obama implies is a rogue operation: “People are furious,” said a senior intelligence official. “This is officially the White House cutting off the intelligence community.”
Not only is Obama blaming the intel community for doing something wrong, he is leaking word that he will order a ban on spying on allied leaders.
One wonders how “allies” will be defined since no nation stands with the U.S. on every single important issue.
Germany, for example, supported us in Afghanistan but not in Libya. (I am tempted to say Germany didn’t support us in Syria either but since we have no coherent policy on Syria it is hard to say whether they support us or not.)
If he is serious about it, Obama’s actions will result in a loss of valuable intelligence and will hardly appease the NSA’s critics who think that all data-hunting operations except perhaps those focused on Ayman al-Zawihiri’s emails should be shut down.
Obama was aware earlier in his administration of the danger of stigmatizing the hard-working intelligence professionals he needs to keep America safe; that’s why the administration shut down attempts to prosecute CIA personnel over the use of torture.
But now, in a frenzy to appease European critics, the president is demoralizing the intel community and sending them a signal that aggressive collection efforts will not be rewarded. That’s a bad tradeoff.”
Here is the problem. The men and women at the NSA follow orders. They do espionage or carry out policies approved by the president.
President Obama should support the men and women at the NSA for carrying out his policies. He should not play word games and throw patriots under the bus.
Taking ownership and responsibility won’t make the hyper sensitive Europeans happy but it will establish that someone is in charge.
We desperately need to know that someone is in charge in Washington!
“Yo no fui” Obama is making the US, the NSA and President Obama look rather silly. He needs to “man up” and support the people who are carrying out his orders!
P. S. Speaking of “our shocked European allies”, they should watch “Casablanca” tonight: