Recall the time that senator Diane Feinstein accused the CIA of spying on the computers and email of her staffers who were preparing the 6,300 page secret report on the CIA’s torture practices? The charge was particularly irksome to the Obama administration since Feinstein is one of the most ardent supporters of the national security state and of government secrecy and its widespread surveillance practices, and losing her support was dangerous.
This caused the administration to push back with former CIA director Michael Hayden invoking sexist tropes and accusing Feinstein of being “emotional” and current director John Brennan flatly denying the accusation and even accusing the senate staffers of committing a crime by illegally accessing documents.
At the time, he warned that lawmakers would regret accusing the agency of wrongdoing.
“When the facts come out on this, I think a lot of people who are claiming that there has been this tremendous sort of spying and monitoring and hacking will be proved wrong,” he said.
In what should not come as a surprise to anyone even mildly aware of how the US government works, it appears that Brennan was flatly lying. He has now acknowledged that the spying did take place and has apologized to lawmakers for the CIA’s actions and created a committee to investigate the wrongdoing, the usual stalling tactic to let the heat die down.
Of course the Obama administration is supporting him and rejecting calls for his resignation. In the Obama administration, publicly lying and getting caught is not a disqualification and even seems to be desirable, as we see with James Clapper earlier and Brennan now. What is surprising is that they are such bad liars.