Washington Post "Topic A": To Prosecute or Not To Prosecute?

Posted on August 24, 2009

Since taking office, the Obama administration has prosecuted the CIA in the court of public opinion. Now it is taking its campaign into the court of law. The allegations in the CIA inspector general's report were reviewed five years ago -- not by Bush appointees, but by career prosecutors. Those career prosecutors decided not to pursue criminal charges (except in one case where a CIA contractor was convicted of assault). Now political appointees in the Obama administration are reversing those decisions, and Attorney General Eric Holder is appointing a special prosecutor who -- he promises -- will investigate only a small number of officials. But once a special prosecutor is appointed, there is no controlling where the investigation may lead. Such prosecutions will harm our national security -- putting the agency on the defensive at a time when we need the CIA to be on the offensive against the terrorists. 

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