The enemies of America, even when they reside in the White House, are actually quite predictable...
Obama consulted widely on memos
By Mike Allen
April 16, 2009
White House senior adviser David Axelrod says President Barack Obama spent about a month pondering whether to release Bush-era memos about CIA interrogation techniques, and considered it “a weighty decision.”
“He thought very long and hard about it, consulted widely, because there were two principles at stake,” Axelrod said . “One is … the sanctity of covert operations … and keeping faith with the people who do them, and the impact on national security, on the one hand. And the other was the law and his belief in transparency.”
The president consulted officials from the Justice Department, the CIA, the director of National Intelligence and the Homeland Security Department, according to his adviser. “It was a weighty decision,” Axelrod said.
“As with so many issues, there are competing points of view that flow from very genuine interests and concerns that are to be respected. And then the president has to synthesize all of it and make a decision that’s in the broad national interest. He’s been thinking about this for four weeks, really.”
A former top official in the administration of President George W. Bush called the publication of the memos “unbelievable.”
“It's damaging because these are techniques that work, and by Obama's action today, we are telling the terrorists what they are,” the official said.
“We have laid it all out for our enemies. This is totally unnecessary. … Publicizing the techniques does grave damage to our national security by ensuring they can never be used again — even in a ticking-time- bomb scenario where thousands or even millions of American lives are at stake."
“I don't believe Obama would intentionally endanger the nation, so it must be that he thinks either 1. the previous administration, including the CIA professionals who have defended this program, is lying about its importance and effectiveness, or 2. he believes we are no longer really at war and no longer face the kind of grave threat to our national security this program has protected against.”
Obama did not act on an arbitrary timeline. There was a deadline in a court case with the ACLU on Thursday. It had been extended, but the ACLU was not going to agree to another.