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February 22, 2006
Behind The Scenes At Able Danger

An inside source on the Able Danger controversy -- one that has provided CQ with reliable background information in the past -- gives some interesting background information about the recent hearings on the data-mining program that the 9/11 Commission did its best to ignore. The source writes:

The Able Danger hearing was noteworthy for things that did not happen. One interesting item that everyone seems to have missed is that Steve Cambone did not swear in for his testimony to the subcommittee. (In fact, he refused to swear in, but this was not made an issue by the subcommittee.) Thus, no matter how blatantly erroneous his testimony was, he can't be charged with perjury as he did not testify under oath.

Also, Zelikow was excoriated in his testimony during the closed session by the Representatives present. He was called a liar to his face.

Steve Cambone was the director of the DoD's Office of Program Analysis and Evaluation, and reported directly to Donald Rumsfeld; he is the USD/I now. Philip Zelikow held one of the top staff positions on the 9/11 Commission and was Lt. Colonel Tony Shaffer's initial contact with the commission. At first he encouraged Shaffer to provide more information after their initial meeting in October 2003 in Afghanistan, but when Shaffer returned back to the US in January 2004, Zelikow had suddenly lost his enthusiasm for more discussions about Able Danger. Zekikow now works for Condoleezza Rice at the State Department.

If this is accurate, it appears that Congress has also found Zelikow's role to hold some interest in how Able Danger got buried. Perhaps more of this curiosity will be evident in the publc hearings to come.

UPDATE: My source mistook Steve Hadley for Steve Cambone. I have corrected the post above.

Sphere It Digg! View blog reactions
Posted by Ed Morrissey at February 22, 2006 7:52 PM

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