With all the attention paid to Donald Trump’s menagerie of terrible choices for cabinet positions in his administration, little attention has been paid to Mike Pompeo, his choice as CIA director. Turns out he’s quite a piece of work himself. He’s a serious Christian right culture warrior, for example:
In June 2015, Rep. Mike Pompeo, a Kansas congressman, headlined a “God and Country Rally” at Wichita’s Summit Church. “To worship our lord and celebrate our nation at the same place is not only our right, it is our duty,” he began. Pompeo’s speech was a mishmash of domestic culture war callouts and dark warnings about the danger of radical Islam. He cited an inflammatory prayer that a pastor named the Rev. Joe Wright once delivered before the Kansas State Legislature: “America had worshipped other Gods and called it multiculturalism. We’d endorsed perversion and called it an alternative lifestyle.” He lamented government efforts to “rip faith from our schools” and then segued immediately into a discussion of the jihadi threat: “This evil is all around us.” Pompeo concluded by describing politics as “a never-ending struggle … until the rapture.”
And this is just the beginning. He was furious that the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence did their investigation of the CIA’s torture programs and released a redacted version of the summary of the final report.
“Our men and women who were tasked to keep us safe in the aftermath of 9/11 — our military and our intelligence warriors — are heroes, not pawns in some liberal game being played by the ACLU and Senator Feinstein,” Pompeo said in a statement on Dec. 9, 2014. “These men and women are not torturers, they are patriots. The programs being used were within the law, within the constitution, and conducted with the full knowledge Senator Feinstein. If any individual did operate outside of the program’s legal framework, I would expect them to be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
“It is hard to imagine a sound reason that Senator Feinstein would put American operators and their families at risk—by demanding the release of details that are not in any way related to the legality or appropriateness of the programs. The intelligence collection programs described in the report have been in the news and hot topics for discussion for years. The sad conclusion left open is that her release of the report is the result of a narcissistic self-cleansing that is quintessentially at odds with her duty to the country.
Oh, bullshit. She did what neither Presidents Bush or Obama wouldn’t do, tried to actually follow the law. Torture is a violation of the Convention Against Torture, signed and loudly advocated by none other than Republican saint Ronald Reagan, and against several federal laws as well. Republicans love to scream and shout about the rule of law, but they are flagrant hypocrites on the matter.
He’s also perfectly happy to lie about Muslims not speaking out against terrorism:
“It’s been just under two months since the attacks in Boston,” said in a speech on floor of the U.S. House of Representatives on June 11, 2013. “In those intervening weeks, the silence of Muslim leaders has been deafening. And that is sad, but most importantly, it is dangerous. When the most devastating terrorist attacks on America in the last 20 years come overwhelmingly from people of a single faith, and are performed in the name of that faith, a special obligation falls on those that are the leaders of that faith. Instead of responding, silence has made these Islamic leaders across America potentially complicit in these acts and more importantly still, in those that may well follow.”
This alleged silence exists solely in his imagination. In the real world, every major Muslim organization in America condemned the Boston Marathon bombings in unequivocal terms. Here are lots of examples. So convinced is Pompeo in his ignorance that he can’t take 30 seconds to do a Google search before condemning millions of people. Lying, of course, is part of the job of the CIA director.