back to article CIA super-spy so sorry spies spied on Senate's torture scrutiny PCs

CIA Director John Brennan has apologized after his staff snooped on computers used by the US Senate during a probe into spies' use of torture. Brennan was speaking at a closed meeting with senators on Thursday. The computers were on a secure network known as RDINet, which was set up by the CIA to store classified documents for …

  1. RedneckMother

    oh, sorry!

    Oops - no prison time necessary, eh?

    I love it how the Senators weren't upset about the proles being spied upon, but were outraged when they themselves were targets.

    Fools.

    1. Suricou Raven

      Re: oh, sorry!

      I expect they can find some bottom-level expendable agent to take all the blame and give the appearance that justice is done.

      1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        Unhappy

        The "one bad apple" theory is popular with police and security organisations.

        It's like the "Lone gunman" of political assassinations.

      2. willi0000000

        Re: oh, sorry! - @Suricou Raven

        the janitor was just issued a red shirt.

    2. nematoad Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: oh, sorry!

      What do you expect? Spies spy, it's in their mental makeup to do so. This does point to the fact that these characters need to be held on a short lead at all times. Otherwise you get what has happened.

      But I agree, the hypocrisy shown in this case is stunning.

      It just shows you, one rule for them, another for the rest of us.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: oh, sorry!

      Looks like America just reduced the penalty for Treason to court martial followed by immediate cessation of chocolate rations.

      1. Robert Helpmann?? Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: oh, sorry!

        ...immediate cessation of chocolate rations.

        There's chocolate?! Why am I always the last to be told?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: oh, sorry!

          The chocolate hasn't been as popular since they put Baldrick in charge of it.

        2. P. Lee Silver badge
          Childcatcher

          Re: oh, sorry!

          > There's chocolate?! Why am I always the last to be told?

          It's American chocolate. No-one else in the world agrees that it fits the definition and the withholding it is actually a reward for a job well done.

  2. solo

    Land of the free (dreams)

    Such a boring question I have in my dreams since years.

    "..Is it really a war against terrorism? .. If it is being fought (forced/intimated/staged) without a democratic will, how on earth they are justifying that they are better than dictators..mmm.. Gaza, Ezypt, Libya .. more than half of the world population is in middle of some war and the only country I presumed as a war hero, is confused who put them in the war.."

    Ah, better to wakeup.

    1. Version 1.0 Silver badge

      Re: Land of the free (dreams)

      America has lost the "War against Terrorism" just as they lost the "War against Poverty" and the "War against Drugs" - of course when I say "lost" I'm referring to the general public, not the corporate profits which have increased with each war.

      Now I come to think about it - and now that Corporations are "people" too - I guess America is actually winning the wars in terms of return on corporate investment.

      1. lambda_beta
        Linux

        Re: Land of the free (dreams)

        Corporations are "people" too --- nope corporation have more rights than people!

  3. Schultz
    Facepalm

    So now it's official

    The American security services don't give a rat's ass about the democratic system they are meant to protect. Checks and balances? That's so last century! Now they check everything and balance any critical reporting with made-up official statements, inofficial leaks, and covert propaganda.

    The only way to solve this problem is to cut their budget; when the gravy train stops, all those smart boys may go out and do something productive. But I guess the failure to recognize any of the recent threats (Arab spring *6, Ukraine crisis, ...) will just be a reason to spend more money.

    1. Vic

      Re: So now it's official

      The only way to solve this problem is to cut their budget; when the gravy train stops, all those smart boys may go out and do something productive

      They'll just get someone like Ollie North in to "find" some extra budget...

      Vic.

    2. Someone Else Silver badge
      Coat

      @ Schultz -- Re: So now it's official

      In the 21st century, "checks and balances" refer to the checks being deposited into the corporate balances.

  4. Mitoo Bobsworth

    At least now...

    some of the government knows what it's like when the government invades their privacy. Sadly, however, we are talking about the american senate - I would bet real money at least half of these over-privileged berks think irony is a property certain metals have.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Mushroom

    Doesn't Utah still have firing squad as a method of execution?

    If so, I suggest the senators from that state bring the charges against ALL of them.

    I'll pay for the bullets and I already have a shovel.

    1. Mephistro Silver badge
      Happy

      Re: Doesn't Utah still have firing squad as a method of execution?

      "I'll pay for the bullets and I already have a shovel."

      Cut the middleman and execute them with the shovel!

      1. kain preacher Silver badge

        Re: Doesn't Utah still have firing squad as a method of execution?

        make them dig their own grave and lie in it. Once they get in, back fill it hot asphalt and turn them into a park lot.

        1. Stevie Silver badge

          Re: make them dig their own grave and lie in it

          What, even Felix Leiter?

  6. dan1980

    This should be wake-up call for all these politicians. They thought they had control of this beast and they assured the public that everyone could be trusted because everything was correct and proper.

    Can there be any clearer a message that these agencies view themselves as above the law or that, even with the best intentions, individuals can and do go outside of that?

    Have they any idea how hollow all the reassurances and dismissals given to the public now sound?

    If these people can't even be trusted to respect the US Senate, does anyone really believe they respect the privacy of the US people?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: this should be a wakeup call

      I don't think so. This is now not only seen as normal, but even acceptable :(. There is no other reason why there is no talk about jailtime for this guy.

  7. Any mouse Cow turd

    why are they bothered?

    If the senators haven't done anything wrong then they should have nothing to sorry about. This surveillance is for their own protection, don't they understand that?

    1. dan1980

      Re: why are they bothered?

      While I do enjoy the comment (and have used a similar line myself) this really is a bit more serious. It's not just about spying on Senators but about removing information the Senators are using to investigate CIA activities. And then lying to them about it.

      1. Mystic Megabyte Silver badge
        Black Helicopters

        Re: why are they bothered?

        >While I do enjoy the comment (and have used a similar line myself) this really is a bit more serious. It's not >just about spying on Senators but about removing information the Senators are using to investigate CIA >activities. And then lying to them about it.

        This post will "self destruct" in 10 seconds!

      2. AussieCanuck46

        Re: why are they bothered?

        The operating principle of "We do things to people because we can, not because we should." remains consistent.

  8. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
    Holmes

    There is a word for this

    "Out of Control and Running the Show"

    If that manifestation of Ancient Evil Brennan is not reassigned to a post controlling speeding tickets at the Mexican border right fucking now, and a few upper levels of the CIA hierarchy are not decapitated along with him, the Land of Freedumb deserves all it will get. And it will get a lot.

    Also, chuckle at that war-driving obedient and opportunistic hag Pelosi getting the jitters: Pelosi Hesitates To Criticize CIA: 'They Really Come After You'

    1. Someone Else Silver badge
      Headmaster

      Re: There is a word for this

      Uhhh...that's 7 words....

    2. Someone Else Silver badge
      Facepalm

      @Destroy All Monsters -- Re: There is a word for this

      Also, chuckle at that war-driving obedient and opportunistic hag Pelosi getting the jitters:

      You either pulled a complete non-sequitir, or you're seriously in need of a reading-comprehension booster shot. The article clearly referred to Senator Dianne Feinstein; Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi was not mentioned anywhere.

      Please try to keep up...

    3. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Thumb Up

      @Destroy All Monsters.

      "Land of Freedumb "

      Neat.

      1. willi0000000

        Re: @Destroy All Monsters.

        dumb has always been free . . . that's why we have so much of it.

        what we need in our "intelligence" services is enough intelligence to not do these kinds of things (or enough to not get caught - not really).

        and my president, who i'm beginning to loathe, but not quite as much as the alternatives offered, just said he has confidence in brennan . . . i have confidence in brennan too . . . i'm confident that he will keep doing this kind of shit.

        every one of the people caught doing or approving or not supervising-out-of-existence this type of activity should be in jail . . . and don't even ask about the torturers and their bosses and enablers (i'd build a sewer line to The Hague and flush all of them into their cesspit for digestion).

        [can't some of you left-ponders wrangle, at least, shrub and darth cheney an invitation to tour the continent? . . . 'cause my government sure ain't gonna]

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    removing information the Senators are using to investigate CIA activities

    No no you totally misunderstood our response to the query and overreacted to our actions taken out to preserve national security.The documents themselves are still live and unadulterated on the RDINet system, we just modified their user base access control which unfortunately had the side effect of making them unavailable for viewing by many of the board members.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Meh

      Re: removing information the Senators are using to investigate CIA activities

      Ahh I see, a bit like Facebook , but in reverse?

  10. Nunya Biznas
    FAIL

    Paging Jack Ryan...

    Haven't those congressional staffers seen A Clear and Present Danger?!?! They probably telnet'd in while the CIA was logged on at the same time... I bet their printer's paper drawer was empty too! Art/life, life/art, ah the cliché lives on!

  11. chivo243 Silver badge
    Pint

    Is this a real thing

    When I read the line "staff had created false accounts" I said whuh? WTF is a false account, something used by the Batman bad guy FalseFace?

    I'm on vacation, I just woke up and I'm wondering if I'll get the meaning of false account after a coupla cuppas?

    Maybe it's time for that pint instead!

  12. frank ly

    A secure network

    " ... a secure network known as RDINet, which was set up by the CIA to store classified documents for Senate staff to scrutinze ..."

    The Senate trusted them. How quaint.

  13. Gray
    Boffin

    No possible foundation of trust

    In a climate of lies, there is no foundation of trust. The very air one breathes in Washington, DC reeks of dishonesty, deception, and hypocrisy. There is no foundation of trust remaining in that cesspit of corruption and dissolution. What a pathetic end for us.

  14. Cipher
    Joke

    The data is missing because...

    ...Lois Lerner's IT staff works on the CIA machines as well...

  15. User McUser
    Headmaster

    G-Men

    Just FYI, the term "G-Men" (presumed to be derived from "Government Man") refers specifically to FBI agents only.

    The slang for a CIA agent would be "spook."

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: G-Men

      or C*nts in Armani?

  16. Identity
    FAIL

    I understand

    that by the time the public document is released, it will be so heavily "redacted" that you could use it as a room-darkening shade.

  17. Someone Else Silver badge
    WTF?

    Can you say "whitewash"? I knew you could...

    "After being briefed on the CIA Inspector General report today, I have no choice but to call for the resignation of CIA Director John Brennan," said Senator Mark Udall (D-CO).

    Well, you gotta like the bluster, I guess, but where there's bluster there is also bullshit. And there is some serious stench here.

    Let's consider that Douche-nozzle Brennen is "allowed" to resign. Of course, that means he'll receive a healthy severance associated with said "resignation" (and we'll throw in some "hush money" to boot). And, of course, that comes with a full government pension. (You know, the one no other entity in the US can get?)

    And since there are no charges, no hint of wrong-doing, his record (and more importantly for him, his clearance level) are unsullied, thereby freeing him to immediately soft-land a nice, cushy lobbying and/or "consulting" job.

    In the meantime Gary McKinnon can't visit his sick dad for fear of extradition to the American gulag for doing the exact same thing that Brennen did (oh, wait..that isn't true...McKinnon never lied about doing what he did), and everybody's favorite whistleblower/traitor Ed Snowden tries to keep himself warm in the bowels of the Russian Federation, for doing the exact same thing that Brennen did (oh, wait..that isn't true...Snowden never lied about doing what he did, either).

    No. Either perp-walks, or its simply YAN bullshit American whitewash.

    (I'm not a betting man, but my money is on the latter...)

    1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Unhappy

      Re: Can you say "whitewash"? I knew you could...

      "In the meantime Gary McKinnon can't visit his sick dad for fear of extradition to the American gulag for doing the exact same thing that Brennen did (oh, wait..that isn't true...McKinnon never lied about doing what he did), and everybody's favorite whistleblower/traitor Ed Snowden tries to keep himself warm in the bowels of the Russian Federation, for doing the exact same thing that Brennen did (oh, wait..that isn't true...Snowden never lied about doing what he did, either)."

      In fact I'm not sure McKinnon removed documents from the Senate machines, in the way that the CIA is stated to have.

      Knowing how much Big time pols like their privileges I'm pretty sure "Messing with a PC used by a member of Congress for doing secret stuff" breaks multiple laws with options for substantial jail time.

  18. willi0000000

    law

    first you break the law , , , then you shred the law . . . then you pulverize the law . . . finally you snort it.

    [i've heard that it's a great high]

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Maybe the CIA went to a secret court and got a secret order to allow the "monitoring" of the users.

  20. raving angry loony

    Fairly typical really

    So these are the people who think Snowden and Assange are "traitors" and should be executed. Yet when their own services are caught being actual criminals, all they require is a mealy mouthed apology whose only accuracy is that they're sorry they got caught. No charges, no criminal investigation, no jail time, no firing, no repercussions at all.

    Then they wonder why so many people think the USA is run by little more than a bunch of murderous hypocrites.

  21. DrM

    I guess we can all see why now?

    Funny how we keep thinking we can trust a group with absolutely no morals as a job requirement?

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