What US Foreign Policy Should Be – Robert Spencer

Senate Democrats Purge the Record | National Review Online

"Its report on enhanced-interrogation techniques amounts to intelligence birtherism."

By Tom Rogan via Senate Democrats Purge the Record | National Review Online.

"Senator Dianne Feinstein and the Democrats of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence have released their summary report into the Bush-era CIA detention/interrogation program. While senior Democrats have little credibility on this issue — consider Nancy Pelosi, who has consistently misrepresented her CIA briefings — today they proudly claimed the mantle of honest objectivity.

The summary makes four key claims:

The CIA’s “enhanced interrogation techniques” were not effective.

The CIA provided extensive inaccurate information about the operation of the program and its effectiveness to policymakers and the public.

The CIA’s management of the program was inadequate and deeply flawed.

The CIA program was far more brutal than it represented to policymakers and the American public.

The product of selective half-truths and deliberate deception, these claims are ludicrous, because the CIA’s enhanced-interrogation techniques (EITs) were manifestly successful.

Breaking key figures in al-Qaeda’s international network, the EITs afforded America a unique window into al-Qaeda’s network structure, operational methodology, and strategic intent, as any honest examination of the record will show.

While the report claims that the CIA acted far more aggressively than represented by its officials, the simple fact is that the EITs were not designed to be pleasant. Moreover, as former CIA deputy director Jose Rodriguez outlined last Friday, Democrats knew about and supported the EITs.

They were right to do so, for the program was designed to defeat al-Qaeda training manuals. Those manuals inculcated AQ officers with the belief that U.S. interrogators would attempt to trick and manipulate them but would not apply measured physical or psychological force. And by applying the EITs, CIA interrogators were able to wrest control over their subjects and gain crucial intelligence.

The Senate Intelligence Committee report also argues that CIA management failed to supervise the program and brief government officials. But this requires the suspension of reality. First, just last week, former president George W. Bush again insisted that he was kept fully informed by the CIA.

The committee’s claim is also weakened by its assumption that the CIA’s inherently bureaucratic nature was impossibly suspended. After all, were the report to reflect reality, it would mean that successive CIA leaders, mid-level management officials, and operations officers engaged in a collective multi-year conspiracy of lies, for absolutely no reason. Aware that Beltway politics are radioactive, CIA officials are obsessed with limiting their institution’s vulnerability to political blowback. And so, when it came to the EITs, officials would have known that the program’s inherently controversial nature induced major political liabilities. But that they nevertheless decided to continue the program even with those risks speaks to a basic, undeniable truth.

A large number of officials were convinced that the program was necessary and was generating irreplaceable results. And it was. Responding to the committee report, the CIA notes that EITs led to critical intelligence. Cross-referenced with other sources, the following CIA assertions, I am confident, are true. Read more via Senate Democrats Purge the Record | National Review Online.

“Mrs. Bishop” and the Theology of “but of course!”

I’m starting in the middle and steering you here for the rest,

Let’s leave aside all of the giddy “yes I was ordained and then made a bishop by the super-coolest of the cool bishops” anti-establishment boring-ese bits — and also the question as to whether she is being used as a handy stooge by bishops too cowardly to proclaim themselves (because sneaking about is so very Holy) and be forced from their powerful positions. Here’s what jumped out at me:

“I had felt called by God to priesthood since I was a small child,” she says simply, “and I wanted to be a priest before I died.”

That’s four I’s in two sentences, and not a “Jesus” in sight, in the whole long piece, except as necessary to provide the vaguest of explanations for our teaching on ordination.

Once again, as with the lady from Long Island, there is a great deal of pride and self-reference in all of this. Beyond that, the idea that “I felt called and wanted this before I died, because I am a prophet” makes her theology terribly suspect.

She calls herself “a prophet” but prophets generally don’t want any part of whatever it is they’re being called to. If they eventually find joy in their obedience, their first response is usually, “oh, hell no.”

Theologically, she is missing the whole idea — the Christ-promulgated idea — that you can’t always get what you want, but (if you try sometimes, though obedience is hard) you get what you need.

I am thinking of Moses, reluctantly leading the Hebrews out of Egypt and through the desert, only to be denied the Promised Land.

I am thinking of Saint Gemma Galgani, who certainly felt “called” to become a Passionist nun yet never made it into the convent. Rather, when it became clear that what she was being offered a calling of unquenchable thirst, she discovered her consolation in the self-abnegation into which she had been invited; the calling-within-a-calling, so to speak: desire without consummation, except as Christ consumes. “Not my will, but Thine.”

Her calling, in other words, was not to the cloister, as she fervently believed and desired, but to the very Cross, with Christ, and with suffering, too. Because reluctant prophets and those who answer the call to “pick up your Cross and follow me” always do suffer with him, in the end.

via “Mrs. Bishop” and the Theology of “but of course!”.

So God Made a Liberal

Maybe it wasn’t God, afterall?

Ben Shapiro: The Myth or The True Story of Michael Brown, Gentle Giant

FBI warns media: Journalists “desirable targets” for the Islamic State : Jihad Watch

via FBI warns media: Journalists “desirable targets” for the Islamic State : Jihad Watch.

Oh, the ingratitude! After all the mainstream media has done to keep the Western public ignorant and complacent about the nature and magnitude of the jihad threat! Perhaps we should send some of our large coterie of pro-jihad journalists over to the Islamic State. Christiane Amanpour, Spencer Ackerman, Niraj Warikoo, Jennifer Fermino, Bob Smietana — what a wonderful time they would have, and we would be treated to a series of puff pieces showing the good side of those poor, misunderstand jihadis. Then they would put down their scimitars and show us Islam’s peaceful and tolerant side.”FBI warns media: Journalists ‘desirable targets’ for ISIL,” by Dylan Byers, Politico, October 23, 2014:

The Federal Bureau of Investigation sent a bulletin to reporters on Thursday warning that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant had identified reporters and media personalities as “desirable targets” for retribution attacks against the United States.

via FBI warns media: Journalists “desirable targets” for the Islamic State : Jihad Watch.

via FBI warns media: Journalists “desirable targets” for the Islamic State : Jihad Watch.

Twitter & Terror – Robert Spencer on Fox’s Cavuto