General Barry McCaffrey Exposed For The Ultimate Spineless Shill That He Is

THE NEW YORK TIMES

November 30, 2008

One Man’s Military-Industrial-Media Complex

In the spring of 2007 a tiny military contractor with a slender track record went shopping for a precious Beltway commodity.

The company, Defense Solutions, sought the services of a retired general with national stature, someone who could open doors at the highest levels of government and help it win a huge prize: the right to supply Iraq with thousands of armored vehicles.

Access like this does not come cheap, but it was an opportunity potentially worth billions in sales, and Defense Solutions soon found its man. The company signed Barry R. McCaffrey, a retired four-star Army general and military analyst for NBC News, to a consulting contract starting June 15, 2007.

Four days later the general swung into action. He sent a personal note and 15-page briefing packet to David H. Petraeus, the commanding general in Iraq, strongly recommending Defense Solutions and its offer to supply Iraq with 5,000 armored vehicles from Eastern Europe. “No other proposal is quicker, less costly, or more certain to succeed,” he said.

Thus, within days of hiring General McCaffrey, the Defense Solutions sales pitch was in the hands of the American commander with the greatest influence over Iraq’s expanding military.

“That’s what I pay him for,” Timothy D. Ringgold, chief executive of Defense Solutions, said in an interview.

[Read more…]

Good Ol’ Charlie Gibson Gets In One Final Bootlicking Of President George “W/Torture” Bush

HOLLYWOOD REPORTER

Charles Gibson aboard for Bush interview

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ABC anchor will boat to Camp David with first family

By Paul J. Gough

Nov 25, 2008, 06:18 PM ET

NEW YORK — During the same week Barbara Walters interviews the president-elect in Chicago, ABC’s “World News” anchor Charles Gibson will interview President George W. Bush and first lady Laura Bush during the holiday weekend.

Gibson will ride with the first family on Marine One from the White House to Camp David, then interview Mr. and Mrs. Bush there. Gibson will ask about the past eight years, the couple’s future plans and if they have any advice for Bush’s successor, Sen. Barack Obama, and his family.

The interview will air on Monday’s “World News With Charles Gibson” plus that show’s webcast, “Good Morning America” and elsewhere.

Circular Firing Squad With Cavuto and Stein

Best New Rules Ever

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U.S. and N.Y.P.D. Accuse Each Other of Endangering National Security

U.S., NYPD Clash on Wiretap Requests

Heated Exchange

A letter from New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly to Attorney General Michael Mukasey expresses frustration at what he describes as the Justice Department’s slow and cautious handling of national security wiretapping requests in terrorism cases and says the delays could put the city in danger.

A letter from Attorney General Michael Mukasey to New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly says Mr. Kelly’s accusations are incorrect and alarming and says the Justice Department is trying to stay within the law while protecting New York City from terrorism.

In letters exchanged last month and since reviewed by The Wall Street Journal, New York Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly and Attorney General Michael Mukasey jousted over how officials from the Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation handle requests made by New York City police for warrants to conduct national security surveillance. The Justice Department is the clearinghouse for the requests, which must be approved by the court that administers the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, the federal law that oversees government national-security eavesdropping.

In his letter Mr. Kelly complained that Justice officials are overly cautious about submitting requests to the FISA court, that there is poor communication between Justice and FBI officials in New York and Washington, and that there are unacceptable time lags in handling NYPD’s requests.

[Michael Mukasey]

Michael Mukasey

Despite Mr. Mukasey and Mr. Kelly discussing the matter on the phone in July and a subsequent visit to New York by top officials from Justice’s National Security Division, Mr. Kelly’s letter on Oct. 27 expresses frustration about continuing problems. “Consequently the federal government is doing less than it is lawfully entitled to do to protect New York City, and the City is less safe as a result,” Mr. Kelly wrote.

Mr. Mukasey, who is a former federal judge in New York City, responded with a letter Oct. 31 defending the Justice Department’s handling of New York’s wiretapping requests and accusing Mr. Kelly of leveling inaccurate and alarming charges. “In effect, what you ask is that we disregard FISA’S legal requirements, which are rooted in the Constitution. Not only would your approach violate the law, it would also in short order make New York City and the rest of the country less safe.”

The dispute has gotten the attention of members of Congress from New York. Rep. Peter King, a Republican, said “the Justice Department is being too cautious here and is putting New York at risk.”

The accusation from the NYPD runs counter to the reputation the Bush administration has developed among civil-liberties groups, which say the administration is too willing to allow eavesdropping that threaten Americans’ civil liberties. Mr. Mukasey has spent much of his time since taking over as attorney general a year ago defending the Justice Department from such charges.

[Ray Kelly]

Ray Kelly

The dispute is an escalation of a rivalry that goes back years between the nation’s largest city police force and federal officials. Motivated by New York’s profile as a target for terrorism, and its experience in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, city police have ramped up their counter-terrorism efforts.

Dean Boyd, spokesman for the Justice Department’s National Security Division, confirmed the letters exchanged between Messrs. Kelly and Mukasey. “While disagreements inevitably arise during the course of investigations, the Justice Department and FBI continue to work closely with the New York City Police Department with significant urgency and resolve to protect New York City and the entire nation against terrorism,” he said.

The New York Times reported on the letters on its Web site Wednesday night.

Write to Evan Perez at evan.perez@wsj.com

Copyright 2008 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

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