Great news, actually, if true. We wrote earlier this weekend about the disgraceful war the CIA has waged against the Bush administration and the agency’s efforts to undercut American foreign policy. I’ve been pessimistic that much could be done about the agency’s disloyalty, short of abolishing the agency and starting over with a new organization and new employees. So this Newsday report is very welcome:
The White House has ordered the new CIA director, Porter Goss, to purge the agency of officers believed to have been disloyal to President George W. Bush or of leaking damaging information to the media about the conduct of the Iraq war and the hunt for Osama bin Laden, according to knowledgeable sources.
“The agency is being purged on instructions from the White House,” said a former senior CIA official who maintains close ties to both the agency and to the White House. “Goss was given instructions … to get rid of those soft leakers and liberal Democrats. The CIA is looked on by the White House as a hotbed of liberals and people who have been obstructing the president’s agenda.”
One of the first casualties appears to be Stephen R. Kappes, deputy director of clandestine services, the CIA’s most powerful division. The Washington Post reported yesterday that Kappes had tendered his resignation after a confrontation with Goss’ chief of staff, Patrick Murray….”
Newsday, of course, bases its story on anti-administration leakers within the CIA–that could be just about anyone–and buys their spin hook, line and sinker. No matter. If the administration really intends to clean up the mess at the CIA, it’s great news. Be forewarned, however: cleaning up the CIA will be a lot harder than cleaning up Fallujah.