Sunday, February 06, 2005
Criminal Investigation of CIA Dropped
U.S. Drops Criminal Inquiry of C.I.A. Antidrug Effort in Peru
WASHINGTON, Feb. 5 - After a secret three-year investigation, federal prosecutors have decided to end a criminal inquiry into whether at least four Central Intelligence Agency officers lied to lawmakers and their agency superiors about a clandestine antidrug operation that ended in 2001 with the fatal downing of a plane carrying American missionaries, Justice Department officials said this week.
...the inquiry had been seen within the C.I.A. as a message that employees could be held accountable for operations that go awry, at a time when officers at the agency are coming under scrutiny in other areas, like the interrogation and detention of terror suspects.
"A criminal investigation is something that breeds a risk-averse culture at C.I.A.," said a Bush administration official familiar with the case.
Heaven knows we don't want to have the CIA get all bogged down in "quaint" questions like whether torturing people is illegal or not. After all, how can we make the world safe for democracy if our men keep worrying about whether the "Salvador Option" (creating to kill suspected dissidents) violated some law?
Additional information on "The Salvador Option" from the BBC HERE.