Thursday, October 06, 2005

Spy in the House of Bush: Cheney Staff Member Under Arrest For Espionage

The FBI has arrested a U.S. Marine most recently assigned to Vice President Dick Cheney's staff, according to ABC News:

Officials tell ABC News the alleged spy worked undetected at the White House for almost three years. Leandro Aragoncillo, 46, was a U.S. Marine most recently assigned to the staff of Vice President Dick Cheney.

"I don't know of a case where the vetting broke down before and resulted in a spy being in the White House," said Richard Clarke, a former White House advisor who is now an ABC News consultant.

Federal investigators say Aragoncillo, a naturalized citizen from the Philippines, used his top secret clearance to steal classified intelligence documents from White House computers.

This news could not have come at a worse time for a White House beleaguered by a host of scandals and political troubles. While the damage to U.S. national security is likely minimal and the involved nation, the Philippines, far from the notorious Axis of Evil in terms of a threat to strategic interests, the arrest will still likely be seen as a black eye to a notoriously tightly run and controlled White House.

It's ironic that the arrest was made public today as cracks in the historic unity of the Republican Party have also appeared over recent days with the nomination of White House Counsel Harriet Miers to the United States Supreme Court. A wide range of conservative thinkers and politicians, from George Will to former Supreme Court nominee Judge Robert Bork have expressed concern about Mier's qualifications and lack of an established legal and constitutional philosophy.

George Will takes the President to task for using "intellectually disreputable impulses":

Under the rubric of "diversity" -- nowadays, the first refuge of intellectually disreputable impulses -- the president announced, surely without fathoming the implications, his belief in identity politics and its tawdry corollary, the idea of categorical representation. Identity politics holds that one's essential attributes are genetic, biological, ethnic or chromosomal -- that one's nature and understanding are decisively shaped by race, ethnicity or gender. Categorical representation holds that the interests of a group can be understood, empathized with and represented only by a member of that group.

The crowning absurdity of the president's wallowing in such nonsense is the obvious assumption that the Supreme Court is, like a legislature, an institution of representation. This from a president who, introducing Miers, deplored judges who "legislate from the bench."

With an unpopular war in Iraq, rising gas prices, and a massive reconstruction operation in the Gulf region, President Bush's second term agenda was already in jeopardy, if not on life support. It will be interesting to see if these new allegations of espionage at the highest levels of government will in some way undermine support for Miers, a longtime legal counsel to President Bush, in the Senate Judiciary Committee.

For much more on political scandal and mayhem, check out the Blogcritics Political Scandal Sheet. For more on the Supreme Court, click here.


Anonymous said...

Yes, this guy was a Gore left over but the question remains, why were there Gore leftovers?

That is what angers me so much as this adminstration has protected the interests of the previous one in every occasion.

The Clinton-Gore was the most corrupt adminstration in US History. However once Bush-Cheney got in, did they investigate even one of the crimes the previous adminstration committed, much less proscute the officials involved?


There was even a case when the adminstrations changed where the previous staff, the staff for the outgoing Clinton/Gore Adminstration vandalized White House property for the incoming Bush/Chaney team. Keyboards had the "W" key removed and there were other damage they did. Yet the Bush/Chaney team did their best to downplay the incident and no one was even charged.

And even recently we have seen this "covering for the previous adminstration" play out where Former former national security adviser Sandy Berger got a slap on the wrist for for taking classified documents.

This comes from I believe, an elitist "gentlemanly" attutide that Bush has regarding politics. An idea that we on this level don't to such stuff to each other. We might to the outside seem like opponents, but don't forget that we are both insiders and insiders protect their own.

Bush needs to be condemned for this "insider" attitude. Bush has gone so far as to help Bill Clinton try to redemn himself in the public eye. One could go so far as to see this as two "families" colluding as we seem in this country to be stuck on a Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton (Hillary Rodham)-Bush(Jeb) pattern.

Anonymous said...

US politics has become nothing more than a pro-westling match. Where in public they might pretend to be bitter enemies, but behind the scenes they could be the best of friends.

Sometimes you get a hint of this like how Bush is helping Bill Clinton now.

And in a case like we have here it just proves that Republicans don't give a damn about governing except for the trappings.

I have seen this with state governors as well. The Republicans get in, and they don't remove any of the people of the previous Democratic Adminstration, except for the figurehead political positions.

But for the real civil servants, the ones who actually do the work (if that is what you can call it) they keep them in and so it's business as usual with these no-faced Democratic activist civil servants just moving their agenda ahead regardless of the fact that a supposedly conservative person is now their boss. The Governor and his/her people just keep the 'leftovers' in there and they don't care what they do.

Until it hits them in the ass, as it has now hit Chaney's.

There are two political parties in America, but they aren't the Republican and the Democratic Parties. They are the Insiders and Outsiders. That is why you see Daddy Bush and Slick Willie becoming such great friends because they are in the insider party.

And the rest of us being constantly screwed on issues such as border enforcement, well the American people, we are the outsider party.

Eric Berlin said...

I can't believe some people are still trying to take on the Clinton administration when we're nearly five years into The Age of Bush II.

There's plenty worry about right now.

Vandalized keyboards should be down at about 145,000 on the list.