May 31, 2005

New York Times Outs CIA's Covert Air Fleet
— Ace

Pretty unbelievable. The newspaper that got itself into such a tizzy about the supposed "outing" of stateside mom Valerie Plame now reveals all on the CIA's successor to Air America, the air fleet that ferries the CIA into hot zones and moves terrorists to interrogations sites.

It's one thing to speak of the dimensions of the project and the uses of the planes, but what, precisely, is served by revealing the names of all the shell companies used to keep the planes "clean" from CIA association, or even the man's name who incorporated the companies, or the precise models of planes in the fleet?

Is the New York Times actively attempting to undermine the CIA and serve as a free intelligence agency for hostile foreign governments?

I'm not naive. I know that a fairly decent foreign intelligence service would already some or most of this. But what about a terrorist organization?

And while semi-friendly governments may have played along with the CIA's ruse and allowed CIA planes into their airspace -- winking at them, permitting overflights while knowing they weren't really civilian jets -- now those governments are duty bound to refuse overflight permissions, as the whole world (including their anti-American populations) know knows, for example, that "Pegasus Technologies" is a CIA-front holding company, and that any plane owned by that shell is up to no good (or great good, depending on your POV).

Thanks a lot, New York Times!

They really consider themselves Citizens of the Global Journalism Nation, don't they?

Thanks to "someone."

Posted by: Ace at 07:30 AM | Comments (21)
Post contains 271 words, total size 2 kb.

1 I would stand up and cheer if someone had the balls to prosecute these morons for hindering the war effort. It'll never happen, but it'd be nice.

Posted by: Iblis at May 31, 2005 07:48 AM (9221z)

2 I'm sure they ran it by their lawyers and nothing here is actually illegal.

But that doesn't make it right.

They could have written a very similar story while omitting the particulars of the names of the shell companies and the types of aircraft.

Why did we need to knwo that? We didn't. The only people with use for such info are foreign governments and terrorist organizations.

Posted by: ace at May 31, 2005 08:00 AM (Q6+G6)

3 They really consider themselves Citizens of the Global Journalism Nation, don't they?

Nah, they they know who they are. They're the people Orson Scott Card wrote about on the weekend, "the citizens of Smartland". They don't owe anything to anybody, except to their fellow Smarties.

Posted by: Wanda at May 31, 2005 08:17 AM (FlAqu)

4 Bill Roggio agrees with your analysis...

Posted by: someone at May 31, 2005 08:34 AM (S22v9)

5 Wanda,

Thanks for the Smartland tip.


I'm going to try to work it in to the top of the show rant.

Posted by: ace at May 31, 2005 09:52 AM (Q6+G6)

6 Actually, this is a disinformation campaign by the CIA in cooperation with the NYT - I wish! Isn't there some remedy to this? Yes! There is!

THE RIGHT MUST BOYCOTT!!!

Posted by: 72 Atrifacts at May 31, 2005 10:40 AM (dhRpo)

7 The "Smartland" article is indeed very interesting. But I couldn't help think that it gives credence to the Andrew Sullivan position:

Our country is at war. And it's a war in which victory absolutely depends on the Muslim world perceiving it as a war between the U.S and its allies on one side, and fanatical murderous terrorists on the other.

If it is ever perceived as a war against Islam, then we have lost. The world has lost.

While he's making the point that as Americans the media should have been cognizant of the extreme damage they were doing to our side by reporting on Qur'an desecration, even if it were true, I think it also applies to performing such desecration in the first place.

Yes, he says this:

Even if the allegations about Quran desecration were completely and absolutely verified, why in the world would you publish the information during wartime? It's not that the Media themselves regard the Quran as sacred. It's just paper to them. And surely they would have to agree that if such actions might somehow gain the cooperation of a potential source of useful information (though that seems extremely unlikely to me), it would be infinitely preferable to physical torture.

But is it? I have my doubts. Mistreating or even torturing prisoners can cause PR problems, even severe ones, but he's ignoring his own previous point that if this becomes seen as a war on Islam then all is lost.

That's why I previous disagreed with everyone saying, hey, flush the Qur'an, rip up the Qur'an, wrap them in an Israeli flag, stuff them in pig skin...whatever it takes. I honestly think as far as our larger goals we'd be better off physically torturing then doing that (not that I'm necessarily advocating torture).

Posted by: Bob at May 31, 2005 11:08 AM (lSPur)

8 When we start hearing more about the Media Insurgency? Seems to be getting not much different from the vaunted Iraqi insurgency. . . . .

Posted by: Frank Black at May 31, 2005 11:23 AM (rSCnk)

9 Not to worry, soon the NY Times will be publishing a headline "Bush's non proliferation policy a complete failure", complete with methods for getting nuclear material and plans to build a H-bomb.

Then we can have a global thermo-nuclear war to blame on Bush. That will surely convince people to vote for Quagmire Ted.


Posted by: Soldier's Dad at May 31, 2005 12:54 PM (rajbF)

10 I'm thinking of subscribing to The New York Times just so i can cancel it.

Posted by: at May 31, 2005 02:07 PM (sPm0c)

11 ....

I was going to say something, but I got distracted by Imagine No Liberals chick.

There's good blogads, and there's bad blogads. This is a very good blogad.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at May 31, 2005 02:10 PM (AIaDY)

12 Here's a shocker - Kos, Oliver Willis and Joshua Micah Marshall are not as outraged about this story as they were about the Plame story.

Imagine that.

Posted by: Slublog at May 31, 2005 03:50 PM (z5gGU)

13 I have two reactions, one straight from the gut and one that's much colder and derives from a proximity I have to people in the intel community:

1.) Fuck those rotten, smug, Cheshire-cat-grinning journalist sonsofbitches DEAD. I think I have a solid bead on what motivates reporters and editors to print something so clearly damaging to the national interest like this: self-glorification. Not anti-Americanism (at least not consciously), but rather that simple, developmentally atavistic "LOOK MA, LOOK AT WHAT I CAN DO!!" impulse that makes a certain type of insecure person do something destructive like this simply to prove that they still can. You see, the MSM has still "got it!" They can still work their chaos-engendering mojo! RESPECT THEIR AUCTORITAS.

2.) This operation (or major aspects of it) are/were 'loose shit,' as Anka would say, if the NY Times could expose them like this. And in fact, they're not the first - I recall that CBS and 60 Minutes first reported on some aspects of this story a couple months ago (I think), though nobody really talked about it in the blogosphere at the time. At least not on the sites I visited. These operations could have been run more tightly in any number of ways not worth getting into now.

That said, the big secret behind the intel community is that "it's ALL open source," as they say. (Not all, of course, but a shocking amount.) Meaning, you can often find almost ANY information that might appear in, say, a PDB if you know where to look on the Web. The trick is in knowing what to pay attention to, what to discount, and how the hell it all fits together. THAT is what the Times has done here that's so godawfully damaging: assemble all the pieces in one convenient place.

Posted by: Jeff B. at May 31, 2005 04:31 PM (037AZ)

14 I'd say this is related as well:

Time magazine in Australia is trying to make a story out of an Australian SAS contact in Afghanistan that killed 11 tribesman (who incidentally were all armed). Anyhow, in the course of telling that story...

"The magazine article also published for the first time the rules of engagement for the SAS during Operation Slipper, the code name for the post-September 11 Afghanistan mission.

General Cosgrove said revealing such information publicly was in breach of the Official Secrets Act."

... says the Sydney morning Herald.

Posted by: XYZ at May 31, 2005 05:47 PM (H0oBp)

15 Doesn't mention E-Systems or Air Asia.

Loose shit.

Posted by: Dave in Texas at May 31, 2005 05:58 PM (A57b7)

16 The media are traitors almost to a man, and may they reap their reward soon.

Posted by: Improbulus Maximus at May 31, 2005 06:14 PM (0yYS2)

17 ">sedition usta be illegal....

Posted by: Claire at May 31, 2005 06:46 PM (l1oyw)

18 "Jounalistic ethics"? Is there something journalists DON'T put above patriotism? It seems to me to be so far down the list of priorities that it's trivial to say something in particular is "higher".

Posted by: Brian H at May 31, 2005 07:08 PM (8AabM)

19 Pity Atta didn't miss the WTC and hit the NYTimes headquarters in NYC with his jet instead.

Posted by: Cedarford at May 31, 2005 08:03 PM (6krEN)

20 Good Lord, now Cedarford's channeling Ann Coulter...

And Deep Throat's true identity has been confirmed.

The only thing left between us and the Apocalypse is the revelation of Ace's real name.

Posted by: Dogstar at May 31, 2005 08:47 PM (KgeNY)

21 Regarding the officers and reporters of the NYT, one must not advocate on this site what one must not advocate. I don't advocate it. But I don't advocate it, not because I don't, but because I mustn't.

Posted by: Jacarutu at June 01, 2005 01:33 AM (p/vR8)

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