Theodore's World: John Brennan Slams Critics Over Handling of the Christmas Day Bomber

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February 10, 2010

John Brennan Slams Critics Over Handling of the Christmas Day Bomber

" I Don't Know Where The Terrorism Chief Is Coming From At All? " ~ Rudy Giuliani

John Brennan Slams Critics Over Handling of the Christmas Day Bomber

USA Today

Obama's top counterterrorism adviser responded to critics of the administration's policies and defended its handling of the failed Christmas day bomber.

Echoing comments he also made on "Meet The Press" this past Sunday, John Brennan, the assistant to the president and deputy national security adviser for homeland security, said that most critics to the president were "misrepresenting the facts to score political points, instead of coming together to keep us safe."
"Politically motivated criticism and unfounded fear-mongering only serve the goals of al-Qaeda. Terrorists are not 100-feet tall," Brennan said.
Brennan said that Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was "thoroughly interrogated and provided important information," and that senior officials from the White House, the intelligence community and the military also supported the decision to charge him in criminal court.
Brennan also defended the decision to read Abdulmutallab his Miranda rights, something that Republicans have harshly criticized. Brennan said the decision to do so was "a long-standing FBI policy that was reaffirmed under Michael Mukasey, President Bush's attorney general."
He added that the most important information was actually obtained from Abdulmutallab after he was read the rights.
"The critics who want the FBI to ignore this long-established practice also ignore the lessons we have learned in waging this war: Terrorists such as Jose Padilla and Saleh al-Mari did not cooperate when transferred to military custody, which can harden one's determination to resist cooperation."
Brennan said it was "naïve" to think Abdulmutallab would have been more prone to dispel valuable information if he was transferred to military custody.
"There is little difference between military and civilian custody, other than an interrogator with a uniform. The suspect gets access to a lawyer, and interrogation rules are nearly identical," he said.
"The notion that America's counterterrorism professionals and America's system of justice are unable to handle these murderous miscreants is absurd," Brennan added.
Brennan also charged that critics were being hypocritical, saying that "would-be shoe bomber Richard Reid was read his Miranda rights five minutes after being taken off a plane he tried to blow up. The same people who criticize the president today were silent back then."
Brennan also sought to highlight successful actions taken by the administration, saying their efforts have "disrupted dozens of terrorist plots," and that they have been responsible for "killing and capturing hundreds of hard-core terrorists."
"We need no lectures about the fact that this nation is at war," he added.


GOP leaders rebut Brennan’s claims about Christmas bomber

The Hill

By Silla Brush


Congressional Republicans lashed out at White House counterterrorism chief John Brennan, who said Sunday that the lawmakers were told the Christmas Day terrorist attacker was taken into FBI custody.

Brennan said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio), Sen. Kit Bond (R-Mo.) and Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-Mich.) were all briefed on Christmas Day and that they raised no objections.

“They knew that in FBI custody there is a process that you follow. None of those individuals raised any concerns with me at this point,” Brennan said. “They were very appreciative of the information.”

The four Republicans immediately took umbrage at Brennan’s comments, saying they were not told of any decision to read Miranda rights to Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the attacker.

“Brennan never told me any of plans to Mirandize the Christmas Day bomber — if he had I would told him the administration was making a mistake,” Bond said.

Spokesmen for McConnell and Boehner described brief or “courtesy” calls on Christmas Day that did not amount to a full briefing.

“During a brief call from the White House, McConnell was given a heads up that Abdulmutallab was in custody, but little else. He wasn’t told of the decision to Mirandize Abdulmutallab,” said Don Stewart, McConnell’s spokesman.

Kevin Smith, spokesman for Boehner, said the congressman received a short, unclassified, non-secure call on his cell phone in which he was not told that Abdulmutallab was read Miranda rights.

This administration, and this administration alone, made the dangerous decision to read Abdulmutallab his Miranda rights and treat him as a common criminal, not a terrorist, and it did so without even consulting our intelligence chiefs,” Smith said.
“I don’t think Brennan is lying,” Hoekstra said. “I think what he is saying is that he gave us some info and based on that kind of info we should have figured out something else. That’s an unfair characterization.”
He said the idea that he would know how the government would treat the attacker legally based on what Brennan said is “ludicrous.”
“That assumption is crazy,” Hoekstra said.
Hoekstra said the call was in the evening on Christmas Day on a nonsecure line. He said they didn’t discuss what strategy would be used or how the government would treat him legally.


Wild Thing's comment.......

Brennan was the man who ran the company that breached candidate’s passport files during the election. The media assumed McCain or Clinton was behind it and then conveniently forgot about it when Obama hired him.

There is no reason to respect this man Brennan and he just keeps proving that.

Senator DeMint, "If we had treated this Christmas Day bomber as a terrorist, he would have immediately been interrogated military-style, rather than given the rights of an American and lawyers. We probably lost valuable information."....and this by DeMint ......"There's no question that the president has downplayed the risk of terror since taking office," DeMint said, adding that "we need to get the politics out" of fighting terrorism."

Posted by Wild Thing at February 10, 2010 04:47 AM


On Fox news they had on some former CIA operatives, and their opinion of Brennan is very poor. He got where he is by "Sucking up", Going by that, then Brennan is merely spouting the obama line and is useless to the administration because he can't think outside the box. However, this is what they want so he fits right in, Blame Bush and move on.

Treating terrorists with dignity and respect is straight down the Progressive line, that they believe they can mold a man and make something out of him. It's all the touchy-feely crap, let them know we mean them no harm. Doesn't matter that they killed 3000+ of our citizens.

This attitude will be obama's downfall.

Posted by: Mark at February 10, 2010 09:48 AM

obama is a muslim and he is not going to have people with anti islamic tendencies in his administration. The guy Brennan fits right in. They are going to treat muzzies better than most cop treat gang bangers. America may be at war, but obama is not.

Posted by: TomR at February 10, 2010 12:14 PM

Mark, oh wow thank you for the information about the former CIA operatives. Interesting!!

Tom, yes Brennan is perfect for Obama's agenda.

Posted by: Wild Thing at February 10, 2010 11:18 PM