Friday, April 26, 2013


FBI Director Robert Mueller:  Maybe time for him to be let go.

(Friday April 26, 2013 New York City)  Sadly, nothing seems to have appreciably changed in the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in the 12 years since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.  The scrutiny and examination of the myriad “intelligence” failures conducted in the aftermath of that infamous day revealed the wide spread, systemic, endemic incompetence, antiquated methods, lack  of imagination and overall dysfunction in the country’s well-funded inept intelligence community including some glaring deficiencies in the FBI and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).  Despite a host of purported improvements in how each agency functions and cooperates with each other and with federal, state and local Law Enforcement Agencies (LEA), the last 10 days has provided ample evidence that the FBI remains riddled by ineptitude and has fallen back into its insular posture regarding communicating with the Law Enforcement Community (LEC) at large.  Since the CIA is not purposed for domestic intelligence collection, the highly regarded 9-11 Kean Commission Report exposed the fatal lack of cooperation between their efforts overseas and coordinating leads with the domestic sentinels at the FBI.  As became common parlance after the Commission Report was published, “The FBI and CIA just did not connect the dots.”


The 210 mile drive southbound on Interstate 95 from downtown Boston to Midtown Manhattan can be made in less than four hours.  New York City Police Department (NYPD) Commissioner Ray Kelley is acutely aware of this fact.  He is particularly disturbed, actually “pissed off” that the FBI failed to notify him that while the two Boston marathon bombers where still on the loose, they had planned to make that ride and set off pipe bombs and a pressure cooker explosive device they had in their possession in Times Square.  The FBI became aware of this information after conducting a second interview with the surviving suspect, 19 year old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev this past Monday.  New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg expressed his dismay at the failure of the FBI to notify him that his City had been a potential target of the two Chechan-born brothers.

Mayor Bloomberg commented that this most recent development in the case is a “horrific reminder that we remain targets for terrorists.” Bloomberg continued, “Upon news of the explosions in Boston we immediately mobilized the New York City Police Department’s counterterrorism operations because we thought there was a possibility that they could attempt a related attack here. We now know that possibility was, in fact, all too real.”  The silence on the part of the FBI is inexplicable and someone in that troubled agency should be held accountable.  Hopefully, at least, some explanation will be provided so this kind of “Major league error never happens again,” commented an NYPD Intelligence Unit Detective not authorized to speak for attribution.  The Detective added, “Yes, we have seen this before and because the federal agencies were so poor at what they did, this City suffered 9-11-01.  It is for that reason that this Unit exists today.”


Overshadowed by the events in Boston last week, the FBI suffered another black eye when they mistakenly arrested a man from Corinth Mississippi, Paul Kevin Curtis, who makes his living as an “Elvis Impersonator”.  Ricin-laced letters had been mailed to President Obama as well as Republican Mississippi Senator Roger Wicker and Lee County (MS) Justice Court Judge Sadie Holland.  The FBI was quick to arrest Curtis alleging that he had been the source of the ricin letters based, apparently, on flimsy circumstantial evidence that was quickly proven erroneous.  The FBI has since identified a second suspect who they “briefly lost” track of yesterday.  This new suspect, J. Everett Dutschke who is currently charged with sexual abuse crimes against a 7 year old girl, has since been located after his attorney phoned the FBI to inform them of her client’s whereabouts.  The investigation into this strange matter remains fluid.


It has been quite some time since the glory days of the FBI when they enjoyed the public’s respect and were held in high regard.  Their best days may have come in the period between the early 1970’s through the early 1980’s when they reached the heights of success in their campaign against organized crime.  After the dark days of the long tenured J. Edgar Hoover and his paranoid wanderings that lead to a host of malfeasance over the course of decades, the FBI aggressively sought to prosecute organized crime, drug dealing, money laundering and other offenses with their new tool known as the RICO Predicates.  RICO, an acronym for Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act became effective in October 1970.  RICO provided the FBI with the legal mechanism to conduct surveillance and investigations with more latitude than ever before.

It was also during that period of time that the Behavioral Sciences Unit of the FBI pioneered the methodology of what would go on to become the highly successful art and science of criminal profiling.  The Forensics, Ballistic, and Evidence Laboratories of the FBI were on the cutting edge of their respective disciplines and literally wrote the books that became the standards for Law Enforcement Agencies across the country.  But the FBI began to stumble due to institutional inertia, poor management, a failure to adapt to the ever increasing sophistication of technology employed for criminal purposes, and a stale mindset coupled with a work force more concerned with protecting their pensions than thinking “outside the box”.  Many former FBI Agents blame the decline of their former employer on the awful directorship of Judge Louis Freeh who was appointed Director by President Bill Clinton in 1993.  Freeh’s eight years as Director saw some of the biggest embarrassments for the once highly touted Bureau including the exposure of gross incompetence in the FBI Laboratories, man of which resulted in retrials and dismissals of cases based on shoddy work by the Bureau.  By 2001 whatever small sheen of luster remained on the Bureau was forever gone.  Barely three months after Freeh’s resignation 19 Muslim extremists successfully perpetrated an attack on United States soil in New York City and Washington DC.  The man appointed by George W. Bush to lead the troubled Bureau, Robert Mueller was at the helm for only seven days before 9-11-2001.  He still serves as Director and, as many former Agents readily admit, “He (Mueller) was never an Agent.  He has never understood the actual mission of the FBI, its process, and you see the results.  Mueller is a bureaucrat, a ‘manager’, a lawyer, not a law enforcement guy.  He did some positive things for the FBI insofar as upgrading the antiquated computer networks that we were working with as of September 11, 2001 but other than that he has been a huge disappointment, a failure.”


One of the longest running knocks on the FBI is their failure to interact with local LEA smoothly and productively.  That was not the case in Boston last week but has been a problem that infected many investigations in the past.  The FBI has a very well defined mission in what crimes are within their purview and in other types of crimes they must be specifically “invited” by the local LEA to offer assistance.  Typically the FBI wastes no time in their efforts to wrest control of an investigation from the host LEA and, in so doing, usually ends up alienating the local agency instead of working in a cooperative manner.  Local police Departments that have had long running acrimonious relationships with the FBI derisively refer to the Feds as “Big Feet”.  “What the FBI fail to realize is that the local Police know the territory and is intimately familiar not only with the turf but also the people,” commented a retired NYPD Detective who worked in the Organized Crime Unit from 1979 to 1991.  He continued, “I can recall the FBI sending young Agents up to New York City to work with us on Organized Crime operations who had never even been in a big city before.  They stuck out like sore thumbs and simply could not assimilate as people in NYC and certainly not as Agents involved in sensitive on-going investigations.”

There have been numerous incidents where the FBI has blundered into long term efforts such as undercover and “sting” operations and have destroyed what was sometimes years of painstaking old fashioned Police work.  In some of these cases the FBI’s incompetent bungling would have appeared like a comedy of errors if the stakes had not been so high and the investigations totally “blown”.  Lately the FBI has suffered more failures and embarrassments than they have victories.  Famed New York criminal defense attorney Gino Palermo commented, “ The FBI does a very few things well and a great many other things extremely poorly.  Often in their haste to bring prosecutions they have cut corners, mishandled legal elements of cases from interrogations to evidentiary chain of custody protocols.  We have all read of the systemic deficiencies in their once highly touted forensic laboratories and we have all witnessed the results of the Agencies recalcitrance, refusal to share information with others Agencies and continue to “stovepipe” what solid leads they do develop.”


It is safe to concede that most Americans have been lead to believe there have been dramatic changes in our bloated, convoluted, top heavy, risk averse “intelligence community” from the CIA, Department of Defense (DOD), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Transportation Security Agency (TSA) as well as the FBI and, this has simply not been the case.  In the rush to correct the multitude of dysfunctions at the FBI haphazard modification were made. The benchmark standard of their abject uselessness was exposed for all to see in the aftermath of one of their greatest, most fatal failures that made it possible for 19 foreign nationals come to the United States, live here among us, lose track of several of the perpetrators after they were embedded among us, receive aviation training while carefully planning their high jacking terrorist attack carried out virtually flawlessly on that bright September Tuesday morning 12 years ago.  Hopefully in the “after action assessments” that will no doubt be conducted in the future, the FBI will identify what went wrong – if anything -  prior to the Boston Marathon bombing.

There are statutory mechanisms in place that protect the Constitutional and civil right of Americans from overzealous Law Enforcement Agencies including the FBI.  Ther FBI by its charter and mandate is a domestically empower organization while the CIA is forbidden from conducting operation on our home soil; their realm exists in operating overseas but there must be a true increase of the seamless cooperation between the two so that dots are connected and there are no gaping cracks for foreigners already of terror “watch lists” to fall threw as has so often been the case in the last 20 years. 

Many of the most glaring deficits in intelligence gathering, analysis, and dissemination were supposed to be eliminated by the creation of the National Intelligence Agency which has only served to blur the lines of command and has in many ways made coordination among its 22 assorted member Agencies even more complicated.  If anything according to insiders in the diverse and to a degree disparate members organizations under the auspices of the NIA and DHS have lost their primary sense of mission and rather than having the DHS be a stronger all-in-one concern it suffers from profound weaknesses in which it is clearly not as robust and functional as the sum of its parts.



Copyright The Brooding Cynyx 2013 © All Rights Reserved

Thursday, April 25, 2013



President Obama with George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush (in wheelchair)

and Jimmy Carter who had to use the restroom due to an enlarged prostate

today in Dallas

(Thursday April 25, 2013 University Park, Texas)  President Barack Obama joined with his three Presidential predecessors here today to celebrate with his immediate predecessor as the opening of the George W. Bush Presidential Library & Museum ceremonies took place here on the peaceful campus of Southern Methodist University.  The four former Presidents posed with Obama for many photographs and they all seemed to be enjoying each other’s company especially since they knew they’d only be spending approximately 90 minutes with each other.  The 41st president, George H.W. Bush, George W’s father who is confined to a wheelchair, appeared every bit the proud father if not a bit addled and confused.

A modest, subdued crowd composed primarily of Bush family supporters and former officials from his Cabinet gathered in the bright noon time sun.  Conspicuously absent was the man who actually performed all the Presidential function in the Bush White House, Dick Cheney, who made virtually every important decision while under cover as the “Vice President”.  Some Bush loyalists claimed that Cheney’s absence should not be interpreted negatively.  Former George W. Bush Press Secretary Ari Fleischer told the meager assembly of reporters, “Uncle Dick…uh…um…I mean, Mr. Cheney and the former President remain cordial.  Apparently Dick is spending some time in an undisclosed location working on his memoirs and preparing for Armageddon.  I’m sure that if Dick was not afraid he’d be assassinated he would venture out in public more.  For now he travels from bunker to bunker in Wyoming and other points out west.”

As is unwritten protocol for such events there was no mention made of just how abysmally wretched the eight year reign of Cheney/Bush was.  There was no talk of the multiple controversies George W. created and oversaw, nor any discussion of the fact that by all accounts his presidency was an abject disaster and failure.  Former President Bill Clinton did comment that now that George W has a Library he has “a chance to rewrite history”.  The comment drew modest chuckles from the somnambulant crowd.  The only flash of anger was displayed by George W’s mother and former First Lady Barbara Bush who threw what appeared to be an empty can of Diet Fanta at Clinton.  Clinton easily dodged the projectile and appeared to give Mrs. Bush the finger.

For his part President Obama was gracious and even generous in his remarks although he limited them to comments about the man rather than the president that George W. Bush was.  “If you want to know the man, then get to know the man”, said Obama.  He continued that in his estimation George W. Bush had always been a “man of his convictions, a man comfortable in his own skin, and a man who was decisive.”  The only break from the united front of harmony and good humor among the former presidents was when Jimmy Carter offered a few brief remarks and finished saying, “I’d rather be out building houses for poor people instead of standing here with these guys.  But, I probably won’t have to see any of them again until President Bush Senior dies.”  At the mention of his name, the 41st President attempted to stand up and wave to the crowd but quickly lost his balance, lost control of his bladder and broke raucous wind before his Marine escort could set him firmly back in his wheelchair.

After the speeches concluded and the photo ops were over, the former President lead a small group of close friends and former aides on a tour of his Library and Museum.  He became expansive as he looked with pride at some of the displays of nick-knacks and trinkets he’d collected on trips overseas during his eight years as President.  He frequently paused to point out a specific item and offer a story about them.  “Y’all see this here little wooden paddle?  If ya look closely ya see there’s a length of elastic cord attached to the paddle at one end and to that little pink rubber ball on the other.  You’re supposed to bounce that ball against the paddle as many times as ya can.  I’ll tell y’all, it ain’t as easy as it looks.  I think the King of Formosa or Fiji gave it to me or…um…maybe it was Larry King.  I really can’t remember just now.”  W also displayed his mastery of a porcelain yo-yo given to him by Russian president Vladamir Putin.

In a high ceilinged chamber off the main corridor there is an impressive, dramatic display of photographs from the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and The Pentagon.  The former President hurried through this chamber while speaking rapidly to the small crowd tagging along behind him, “Hey, y’all wanna see my baseball collection?  It’s really somethin’ else.  C’mon, I’ll show ya.”

At the end of a tangential corridor is a complete replica of his Oval Office including the desk, chair and carpet that was in his White House.  It was here in the replicated Oval Office that the former president seemed most comfortable and willing to speak extemporaneously.  “Y’all see that desk and that chair?  Well that was where I sat when I was the decider.  That is actually where I decided the things I had to decide and even had to decide what I would and would not actually have to decide about.  As y’all can imagine, I made some pretty big decisions right there in that chair except, at that time, that chair was actually in the White House.  See that little chair in the corner?  That’s where Uncle Dick used to sit and watch me decide what to decide.  We had some tough days in the Oval Office and, if I could remember them, they’d probably even seem tougher although I know they were tough but that was the kinda President I was, ya see.  I was a tough, decidin’ SOB.”

The smallest room in this impressively constructed and designed modernistic building with high ceilings and ample skylights that add the gentle hue of sunlight to the varnished hardwood floors, is the Library itself.  There are only a few shelves of books and the President, obviously without irony, proudly boasts that he had read them all, “In eight years.  Every last one of them.”  The lower shelf contains several oversized “coffee table” style books each containing many pages of glossy photographs.  There is The History of the Alamo, The History of Texas, and Great Moments in Texas History.  The former President bent down to retrieve what he said was one of his “most favoritest books”, The Illustrated History of Baseball. “Yeah, I remember reading that one while the evil doers where perpetrating all sorts of evil on our troops in Fallujah.  It used to help me relax and take my mind off things.  Cause, y’all know, a President has to have his relaxed time because the demands of the job are so damned demanding.” 

There is one shelf with an impressive collection of Readers Digest Condensed Books as well as the Cliff Notes for Hamlet, Cat on a hot tin roof, War and Peace and several biographies including those of Winston Churchill, Dr. Seuss, Andy Griffith, Billy Graham and the great Houston Astros speed-baller, pitching ace, Nolan Ryan.  George W. commented, “When I owned the Texas Rangers I met Nolan Ryan a number of times.  He was a great pitcher and a nice, decent man.  When I got to be the President I invited him up to the White House to play a game of catch with me, talk sports, have a Mr. Pibb and some pretzels, ya know, manly men’s sort of things.  He never came up to visit and that sorta pissed me off.”

The former President lingered in his modest Library and stared, momentarily, off into the distance, his mind obviously filled with some profound thoughts and emotional recollections.  His eyes appeared to grow misty and he blinked hard several times, stifled a small belch, and commented, “I know what people are sayin’, I know everyone thinks I sucked as President.  Well, let the historians write the history because that’s what they write about and besides, I lived it.  I lived it and I made it…history, that is.  I know the truth about things y’all can’t even imagine.  But I can’t talk about most of that stuff because it still has national security implications and it might endanger lives or ruin careers…that sorta thing.  But we got a sayin’ out here in Texas that says, ‘There’s more than one way to skin a armadillo and it ain’t pretty but, when you gotta skin an armadillo, you just set to doin’ it.’  That’s what I did.  I skinned me some armadillos when I was President and, like it or not, there’s a few less armadillos in the world today thanks to me.”



Copyright The Brooding Cynyx 2013 © All Rights Reserved