On Monday I noted how Washington Post staff writer Greg Miller failed to report that alleged top-secret information leaker John Kiriakou was employed from 2009 to 2011 as an investigator on the Foreign Relations Committee for Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.).
Tuesday’s New York Times provided two more entries to the paper’s already-bulging “Name that Party” file, wherein the paper leaves off the party affiliation of Democrats who find themselves in legal or ethical trouble, yet readily names controversial Republicans.
Former CIA officer John Kiriakou, who was part of the team which interrogated captured al Qaeda leader Abu Zubayda, appeared Tuesday on the CBS and NBC morning shows, but while CBS's Harry Smith was most interested in how water boarding led Zubayda to reveal future attack plans, on NBC's Today show Matt Lauer focused on fueling political scandal over the use of torture: He zeroed in on getting Kiriakou to confirm the authority to water board came from the White House and to contradict President Bush's insistence the U.S. does not use torture while Lauer contended the videos were destroyed to eliminate “incriminating evidence.”
Lauer wanted to know: “Where was the permission given, in your opinion? The highest levels of the CIA? Was the White House involved in that decision?” Lauer soon played 2006 video of President Bush telling Lauer the U.S. doesn't employ torture and then prodded Kiriakou to disagree with Bush. Wrapping up the segment, Lauer wondered: “Can you think of any reason why the CIA would have destroyed the tapes of those interrogations other than to destroy valuable and incriminating evidence in a possible torture investigation?” When Kiriakou suggested a more innocent explanation that “somebody just wasn't thinking and they went ahead and did it without, without thought,” Lauer countered: “That's somewhat naive.”