Sep 08 2007
Ex CIA agent Michael Scheuer, supposedly this nation’s best defense against al-Qaeda and Bin Laden leading up to 9-11, is out claiming Bin Laden is ‘winning”:
Scheuer spent years tracking al Qaeda as the head of the CIA’s bin Laden unit.
Discussing the video with CBS Saturday Early Show anchor Maggie Rodriguez, Scheuer said, “First of all, the setting is very relaxed, very comfortable. He is not in his camouflaged jacket. There’s no rifle. What he is trying to say is that he is under no pressure from the Americans. The Americans are failing in their effort to kill him, and in their effort to destroy al Qaeda.”
Of our progress in battling al Qaeda, Scheuer said, “It points directly to the fact that we failed utterly in Afghanistan to send enough either intelligence officers or military people.
Scheuer is obsessed with the man he failed to get. al-Qaeda is not winning, they are losing and the Muslim street is taking up arms against them and swearing on the Koran to destroy them. Scheuer would call World War II a failure since we never ‘got’ Hitler. But we should be aware of Scheuer’s culpability in regards to Bin Laden. I found something striking in this analysis of the CIA failures leading up to 9-11 and Scheuer’s apparent part in these failures:
Indeed, the OIG report states bluntly that “most of its officers did not have the operational experience, expertise, and training necessary to accomplish their mission in an effective manner.”
Is that scathing assessment in any way connected to the mismatch between Scheuer’s mission and his academic career? In 1986, Scheuer earned a Ph.D. from the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, Canada. This school has earned an international reputation in the field of grain-storage technology, but it is not exactly known for its contribution to the study of foreign policy. In any event, given the wholly irrelevant nature of Scheuer’s doctoral research–his dissertation traced the comings and goings of an obscure Canadian diplomat in the years before World War II–assigning him to run the bin Laden section was of a piece with, indeed, can be taken as a symbol of, the entrenched neglect of Islamic terrorism within the agency.
As part of its mandate, the OIG assessed the quality of the CIA’s counterterrorist “analytic products,” that is, its studies of bin Laden and al Qaeda, in the relevant period. It found that “important elements were missing.” It seems that when facts were gathered, “discussion of implications was generally weak.” But facts were not always gathered. Indeed, “a number of important issues were covered insufficiently or not at all.” In a conclusion unquestionably bearing on Scheuer’s tenure, it found that there had been no “strategic assessment of al Qaeda by CTC or any other component” and that “no comprehensive report focusing on UBL [Osama bin Laden]” had been produced in the period running from 1993 to September 11, 2001. In other words, in 1996, after Scheuer was assigned the job of countering Osama bin Laden, he never bothered with the first and most elementary task of intelligence tradecraft: assembling and evaluating the known facts about his principal target.
Emphasis mine. So Scheuer had time to do a detailed dissertation on some osbcure and unknown spy from before World War II but couldn’t find the time to develop a report on Bin Laden, even after the African Embassy bombings on the USS Cole? Basically no one should be listening to Scheuer on anything. He is out making money by plying his experience and role in the events leading up to 9-11. Talk about blood money.