Victor Davis Hanson has written a remarkable article about the liars in the Obama’s administration’s intelligence apparatus, titled A Lying Quartet, and published in American Greatness.
Rarely has an intelligence apparatus engaged in systematic lying—and chronic deceit about its lying—both during and even after its tenure. Yet the Obama Administration’s four top security and intelligence officials time and again engaged in untruth, as if peddling lies was part of their job descriptions.
So far none have been held accountable.
Those exemptions are likely because, in hubristic fashion, all four assumed their service to progressive noble agendas would justify any odious means felt necessary to achieve them.
In part their liberal credentials were seen as guarantees that the media either would ignore or excuse their dissimulation. And in part, untruth was innate to them as lifelong and now seasoned Washington bureaucrats. Their reasons to be in Washington were largely a quest for media exposure, government sinecures, revolving door profiteering, and maintaining a host of subordinate toadies at their service. A harsh assessment, perhaps—but lying to the American people earns them such disdain.
The four Mr. Hanson mentions (and a short description of each) follows. Read the entire article to learn the extent of their perfidy:
- Politically Correct Deception
Former Obama United Nations ambassador and National Security Advisor Susan Rice was rarely credible in any of her major public statements. Her dissimulation bordered on the pathological. Indeed, it went beyond even the demands put upon her for partisan spinning.
- Boy Scout Sanctimonious Deception
Former FBI Director James Comey long ago lost his carefully crafted Boy Scout image of a truth-teller, buffeted in a sea of Washington deception. Like Rice, when Comey signals he cannot lie or that others are lying, we know that his own duplicity is forthcoming. The list of his untruths and unprofessionalism is growing, as continuous disclosures cannot be synced with either his congressional testimony or his public statements.
- Apparatchik Deception
Similar was the serial lying of CIA Director John Brennan, before, during, and after his CIA tenure. Brennan had a weird habit of becoming outraged at any who quite accurately alleged that he was mendacious, such as when he deceived the Senate Intelligence Committee officials that he had never unlawfully surveilled the computers of particular U.S. senators and their staffs (e.g., “beyond the scope of reason in terms of what we would do”).
- Careerist Deception
It is hard to mention Brennan without bookending the similar careerist trajectory of Obama’s former Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper.Indeed, it is uncanny how Clapper emulated the Brennan model: the former Bush appointee reinventing himself as an Obama partisan after assuring the country that Saddam Hussein’s WMD depots were transferred to Syria; lying about the rise of ISIS and pressuring others in military intelligence to mimic his pre-planned deceptions; not being forthcoming about surveillance of the Trump campaign and transition; becoming a loud and partisan accuser of Trump’s supposed mendacities on cable television, while finding himself increasingly exposed at the center of the growing unmasking scandal. If Brennan lied about surveilling U.S. senators and the drone program, Clapper, in turn, lied to Congress about the National Security Agency’s illegal monitoring of U.S. citizens.
But what extenuating excuse do the supposedly nonpartisan trio of intelligence and investigative directors offer?
They would like us to believe that only their nonpartisanship ensured subsequent tenures with the Obama Administration. In fact, their willingness to reinvent themselves and deceive were precisely why Obama retained and promoted them as sufficiently malleable and useful careerists—and why their post-government careers are today characteristically partisan and deceptive.
A well-written and documented history of the lies told by these four – three of whom were fulfilling historically non-partisan roles – should be read by everyone. Victor Davis Hanson is known for his fine articles in National Review. This (perhaps more hard hitting than usual) piece in American Greatness is definitely a must read.