Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Jami Miscik - Another "Former" CIA "Whistle-Blower"-Janus - Hits the Talk Show Circuit

By Alex Constantine

The airwaves are clogged with "former CIA officials" claiming that they "warned the administration about Al Qaeda." This is a cynical machination that depends on planted assumptions, with the sole purpose of reinforcing the programmed belief - seeded by scores of book-writing propagandists representing all points on the political spectrum - that Al Qaeda was responsible for 9/11.

By now, the archives for this blog contain enough documented information on bogus Al Qaeda claims to fill a book. The skeptical reader is referred to my archived posts on (search terms) the CIA and Abu Sayyef, Khashoggi and the 1999 Moscow bombings, Republican ties to three 9/11 terrorists, Khashoggi and Richard Perle, the post-9/11 anthrax attacks, the 1993 WTC bombing and Allied Signal, the Glasgow suicide bombing, and the Bush-driven contention that Al Qaeda comprises the front rank of the opposition in Iraq. "Iran Contra Connections to 9/11" reverses the intelligence community spin and fits Al Qaeda in proper context as a cover story (although that is rapidly changing under the stresses of American invasions, bombings, torture, provocateur actions, covert ops, etc.)

If any skepticism remains, keep combing the archives until it goes away, take five caps of white willow bark and sleep on it until the side-effects of state-controlled media brainwashing dissipate.

Ms. Miscik's assignment is similar, to muddy the waters on the circumstances leading to the American invasion of Iraq. Depending on whom one believes, she either pressured agents in the field to "stretch" the case against the Saddam Hussein OR fought with the White House to head-off the administration's attempt to cook the WMD evidence.

Ms. Miscik hails from the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) - the fear-inspiring cold war propaganda mill - where many of the actual domestic 9/11 planners clustered together. Like Vincent Cannistraro, Robert Baer and other shills who have written "exposes" with ulterior motives, she is acting out a public role scripted for the purpose of damage control. The CIA points the finger at Bush, Bush points the finger at the CIA, and in the end, all involved escape accountabilty with the exception of the scapegoat: Al Qaeda.

Politicized espionage - Insiders fear that changeovers at the CIA will weaken the agency
By Jason Vest

"... Jami Miscik [directs] the agency’s analytic Directorate of Intelligence (DI) division, is not regarded by some as an exemplar of good analytic tradecraft — earlier this year, she told the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence that she had asked analysts to "STRETCH to the maximum the evidence you had" in connecting Saddam Hussein to Osama bin Laden. However, concerns are rife that replacements for people like Miscik wouldn’t be any better. ... "


"CIA Resists Pressure to Make Unsubstantiated Link between Al-Qaeda and Iraq" - January 10, 2003

Jami Miscik, head of the CIA’s Directorate of Intelligence, storms into CIA Director George Tenet’s office, complaining about having to attend more meetings with Deputy National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley to rebut the Iraq-al-Qaeda connection yet again. She complains to Tenet, “I’m not going back there again, George. If I have to go back to hear their crap and rewrite this goddamn report… I’m resigning, right now.” Tenet calls Hadley and shouts into the phone, “She is not coming over. We are not rewriting this fucking report one more time. It’s fucking over. Do you hear me! And don’t you ever fucking treat my people this way again. Ever!” This is according to RON SUSKIND in his book, The One Percent Doctrine. Suskind will conclude, “And that’s why, three weeks later, in making the case for war in his State of the Union address, George W. Bush was not able to say what he’d long hoped to say at such a moment: that there was a pre-9/11 connection between al-Qaeda and Saddam. ...”


"Ron Suskind is a native of Kingston, N.Y. He earned a bachelor's degree in GOVERNMENT and FOREIGN AFFAIRS from the University of Virginia and a master's degree from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism. ... "

Pulitzer Prize Recipient Ron Suskind


Relying on UNIQUE ACCESS to former and current government officials, his latest book, THE ONE PERCENT DOCTRINE: DEEP INSIDE AMERICA'S PURSUIT OF ITS ENEMIES SINCE 9/11, reveals for the first time how the U.S. government - from President Bush on down - is frantically improvising to fight a new kind of war. Mr. Suskind will show readers what he calls 'the invisible battlefield' - a global matrix where U.S. spies race to catch soldiers of jihad before they strike. It is a real life spy thriller with the world's future at stake. ... His previous book, The Price of Loyalty, George W. Bush, the White House and THE EDUCATION OF JOHN O'NEILL, was a sweeping tour of the inner working of the Bush administration ... " Continued:


When? When did Jami Miscik come forward and be "upfront" about the Iraq war mistakes?  I am one of the people who refuses to believe that an educated person could have looked at the pre-war intelligence and came away thinking anything but "We should probably shoot Chalabi." 

I know the President was lying, or told to lie, when he discusses the "unaccounted" for stockpiles.  Even a chemical and biological weapons SCRUB could have told you the stockpiles in question would be worthless sludge by 2002, but I am supposed to believe that this eluded the US intelligence services?  No, all "evidence" of WMD in Iraq came from reports of liars, and Bu$hCo had decided in advance to have the war.

Now this article from the Indianapolis Times, in a story repeated elsewhere, that Jami Miscik, head of the Analytics department, is retiring, supposedly as part of the "Goss-is-a-partisan-idiot" shakeup. 

But Miscik also has been praised for owning up to problems in the agency's analysis branch and for pushing for broad changes over the past year to fix problems that plagued the agency in its work on Iraq.

Remember Tenet's Feb 4th speech at Georgetown?  Search for "Several sensitive reports crossed my desk from two sources characterized by our foreign partners as 'established and reliable.'" 

The analysts, all of them, apparently _MISSED_ the fact that on the reports they said they were from people known shitbags.  Further down in the Tenet speech "For example, we recently discovered that relevant analysts in the community missed a notice that identified a source we had cited as providing information that, in some cases was unreliable, and in other cases was fabricated. We have acknowledged this mistake."  I don't know, outside of this speech, where Tenet acknowledged this mistake, making that a very crafty use of the past tense.  But when the hell has Miscik acknowledged anything?

Look for Miscik to become rich, earning speaking fees from neo-con-friendly mega-corporations.

Pepperdine Alumnus in the News
Miscik Assumes New Role in the CIA

Jami A. Miscik was appointed a deputy director within the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in May. Among the agency's highest ranking females, she has oversight responsibility for all of the CIA's intelligence analysts, the production of all-source analysis, and determining what materials should be included in President George W. Bush's daily intelligence briefing.

Miscik, a double major in economics and political science at Pepperdine, received her bachelor's degree with honors in 1980, and she joined the CIA in 1983. In her first assignment, she served as an economic analyst working on international debt issues in third-world countries. She subsequently led Directorate of Intelligence analytic programs on political instability, economic competitiveness, and civil technologies. From 1995 to 1996, she served on rotation to the National Security Council as the director for intelligence programs, where she had oversight responsibility for covert action programs and special reconnaissance missions. From 1996 to 1997, Miscik was the executive assistant to George Tenet, director of Central Intelligence. In January 1998, she became the deputy director of the DCI's Nonproliferation Center, and in January 1999, director of the Office of Transnational Issues. She was named associate deputy director for intelligence in August 2000.

Miscik, who was the Distinguished Alumna of the Year at Pepperdine in 2001, was born in Chicago and grew up in Redondo Beach, California. Following Pepperdine, she received a master's degree in international studies from the University of Denver. She has twice been the recipient of the Intelligence Commendation Medal.
Member, Center for Strategic and Int. Studies (CSIS)
... Ms. Jami Miscik: Fmr. Deputy Director of Intelligence, CIA and current Global Head of Sovereign Risk, LEHMAN BROTHERS

by Larry C. Johnson
April 03, 2005

The Deputy Director for Intelligence until December 2004 was Jamie Miscik. Jamie is a nice lady and would be a good neighbor. But she too failed to do her job and did not aggressively probe analysts writing on WMD issues about the strength and veracity of their sources. ...
Miscik's secret CIA memo

July 11 2007: 7:43 AM EDT

In November 2004, Jami Miscik, in charge of the CIA's intelligence unit, caught flak from her boss, new CIA Director Porter Goss, for refusing a request from Dick Cheney's office to declassify a section of a CIA report that would have helped the Administration justify the Iraq war.
Through an aide, Miscik told Goss, "Sometimes saying no to the Vice President is what we get paid for" - and then Miscik sat down and wrote her boss a memo. She doesn't have a copy of that one-page memo; it's classified, so even she can't see what she wrote. ...

"This is just the sort of thing that had gotten us into trouble, time and again. Telling only half the story, the part that the Administration wants to tell, and keeping the rest classified. This is wrong to be playing in a political debate. Eventually, it comes out and it looks bad, real bad, and we lose moral capital."

Goss supported Miscik's decision to keep the information classified. But a few weeks later, just before Christmas, she was told that she was being replaced as deputy director of intelligence. A spokesperson for Goss says today, "There is absolutely no linkage between the two events. This is connecting dots that don't connect."

The spy goes to Wall Street

Ex-CIA Intelligence Chief Jami Miscik was wrong about WMD in Iraq. But in her new career, Lehman brothers depends on her to say where it's safe to put billions. An exclusive tale of intrigue and redemption from Fortune's Patricia Sellers.

By Patricia Sellers, Fortune editor-at-large
July 11 2007: 11:25 AM EDT

(Fortune Magazine) -- Every Monday at 8:45 a.m., when the dozen top executives at Lehman Brothers gather in a 31st-floor conference room at their Manhattan headquarters, they hear from the oracle. This is the weekly capital markets meeting, where the investment bankers talk about the state of the world in which they put their billions. CEO Dick Fuld presides, but typically he is not the one kicking off the conversation. That job belongs to a Wall Street newcomer few businesspeople have heard of.

Her name is Jami Miscik. Her title - global head of sovereign risk - may be cryptic, but her role is clear. She is both über-analyst and seer, forecasting from fuzzy data about yesterday's crisis in the Middle East or today's trouble in Thailand or next year's election in Russia.

Ex-CIA intelligence chief and Lehman Brothers' global head of sovereign risk Jami Miscik

Miscik worries that "hardly anything is considered risky in the markets now."

Miscik's path to the CIA

A lot of people wonder what drew Jami Miscik, the fastest-rising woman in the history of the CIA, to the spy agency. Here's her story, in her own words. (more)

Where Miscik sees geopolitical tension now:


She doubts the troop surge will bring the progress the administration desires. "The complicity of Iraqi forces in some attacks on U.S. soldiers is a real concern. We can't win this for the Iraqis."


"This is a story that people aren't paying enough attention to," she says, citing the possibility that President Musharraf could be toppled. The risk is that he is replaced by an extremist who supports the Taliban. More likely, says Miscik, is that Musharraf would partner with someone to shore him up, like former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.


As the country goes ahead with its nuclear program, "The question is, What is our plan B?" She predicts a possible third round of UN sanctions.

Meanwhile President Ahmadinejad is coming under increased pressure to boost the economy; he may be motivated to keep up the global confrontation as a distraction from failed promises. "Prominent Iranians inside the country have criticized him publicly. That's significant."

Latin America

Venezuela's socialist leader, Hugo Chávez, "will continue to cause problems - nationalizing industries, denouncing America," Miscik says. His next intrigue may be to try to influence the elections in Argentina, where First Lady Cristina Kirchner is due to launch her candidacy July 19. She is seen as more friendly to the U.S. than her leftist husband is.


Miscik sees "orchestrated uncertainty" ahead of the 2008 elections. The deputy prime minister has edged ahead in the polls, but President Putin has an interest in keeping it close to avoid becoming a lame duck.

Last fall, when North Korea's nuclear test rattled global markets, the folks at Lehman (Charts, Fortune 500) were calmer than most; Miscik had forewarned them and explained how it could play out peacefully. Last December, when Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez's brash reelection rhetoric was publicly dismissed as idle boasting, Miscik told the Monday-morning gathering, "He really means this." She predicted an acceleration of his program to nationalize industries: "He'll be doing things bigger, bolder, and faster than even his closest allies in government expect." She was right.

Lately Miscik has been talking about the possible fall of President Pervez Musharraf in Pakistan and a confluence of problems in the Middle East. "I see heightened levels of concern this fall," she says.

Spoken with the confidence of a guru. But wait a minute. The seriousness with which her predictions are now taken on Wall Street needs to be reconciled with what happened at her previous job, which involved some colossal blunders that affected the course of history. Before she joined Lehman in 2005, Miscik ran the intelligence directorate of the Central Intelligence Agency under CIA chief George Tenet. Her analysts were key contributors to the erroneous judgment in the 2002 National Intelligence Estimate that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction - a conclusion that led Congress to authorize war with Iraq.

Only a year earlier Miscik's agency had let America down in another way, picking up warning signs about 9/11 but failing to provide enough information to motivate authorities to do something about them. The story of how Miscik has survived her agency's tragic shortcomings, learned to stand up to an aggressively political Bush administration (in Ron Suskind's bestseller "The One Percent Doctrine," she is described in one scene as "shaking with rage" over White House interference), and managed to achieve platinum-level credibility on Wall Street is a tale of intrigue and redemption.

Even today she remains a woman of mystery among her colleagues. Lehman president Joe Gregory says he has resisted querying her about her CIA past. "I know it's inappropriate to ask, 'What was it really like on the inside?' That's a stupid question, even though I really want to know."

In interviews with Fortune, Miscik (pronounced MISS-ik) and her colleagues describe her improbable journey from Washington to Wall Street, where Lehman deploys her in the financial world not only for her steely intellect but also for her cachet as a former spy. At this year's Black Diamond Executive Conference in Beaver Creek, Colo., the firm's annual gathering for about 100 key clients, they booked her as a main speaker along with Alan Greenspan and Colin Powell.

Lehman also sends Miscik to meet one-on-one with clients, who typically marvel at her geopolitical smarts. "If something is going on in the world, she's our first call," says Stuart Spodek, who heads interest rate trading at BlackRock, the asset-management firm. Kathy Cassidy, the treasurer of General Electric (Charts, Fortune 500), notes that when Miscik visits GE headquarters, "She doesn't bring notes and she doesn't have charts! Everyone else who comes to see us has charts. But she doesn't seem to need them."

Miscik, 49, is not just a cerebral showpiece. Her brand of risk analysis has become critical to Wall Street decision-making as competition becomes more complex, developing markets grow more enticing, and threats (from terrorism to avian flu) turn more global. At Lehman her reports on 34 key countries are regarded as the last word in trouble spotting. Says Gregory: "Her information is infinitely better than the information you can get anywhere else that I know of."

CEO Fuld credits Miscik's analysis with giving Lehman the confidence to restart business in Russia, which it exited after the country's 1998 debt crisis. "No question, she has been a valuable resource in getting us to the right place in this region," says Fuld. "From the moment I met Jami, I knew we needed her to be part of our team."

Conspicuous discretion

In her modest office in Lehman's Midtown headquarters, the woman who once commanded more than 1,000 CIA analysts has few artifacts on display, but one stands out for its assertion of bring-it-on street cred: a coffee cup embossed with a photo of her wielding an enormous gun. Would that be an automatic weapon? "I don't know," Miscik replies. When asked if we are to believe that a former spy wouldn't be curious, she laughs conspiratorially.

Characteristic of her 22 years as the fastest-rising woman in CIA history, Miscik is conspicuous in her discretion. Her office shows no signs of a personal life except a framed picture of a 7-year-old girl. "My goddaughter," she explains.

Miscik presents herself as a determined sentinel who is free of distraction and totally accountable, someone you might trust with another chance. Does she bear responsibility for the WMD conclusion in the Iraq report? "Absolutely. We got this wrong," Miscik acknowledges, while adding she had no time to beat herself up about it in the aftermath. "We were so busy, and we felt this unrelenting push to stay on top of things. It was kind of 'Just do it!'"

Did the CIA fail in its responsibility leading up to 9/11? "Yes, because it happened," Miscik says. She remembers feeling helpless in the summer of 2001 to prevent the inevitable. "Our sources went silent. That terrified us," she says. "You see it coming. You're working on it. You have pieces of the puzzle. And then, where are the other pieces? We did not know the date, the place. Could we have provided more warning? Maybe."

In her current role Miscik is on the lookout for everything from coups to currency crises to the ultimate disaster beyond 9/11. But besides watching for threats, she's hunting for opportunities. "In government, geopolitical risk is a bad thing," she explains. "Here at Lehman, people are risk takers. They want to understand the situation and the smart risk to take, because smart risk is opportunity." She adds, "You know what I like about it? I really like rolling up my sleeves and getting back into the analysis myself." I mention that she reminds some people at Lehman of a storybook character: Nancy Drew. "That's great. I read her as a kid," replies Miscik, the executive version of the unflappable girl detective.