Rudy Giuliani

Born Freeh

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Ron Paul has Michael Scheuer, and now Rudy Giuliani has Louis Freeh.

Louis Freeh, Democrat Bill Clinton's FBI director, is going over to the other side in a big way today—endorsing Republican presidential hopeful Rudy Giuliani, the Daily News has learned.

… it is Freeh's get-tough approach to crime and terrorism—he has long advocated expanding U.S. intelligence gathering around the globe—that will likely take center stage at today's planned endorsement.

It's a message that certainly fits with Giuliani's recent rhetoric on the presidential campaign trail, where he often argues that Democrats want to go back to playing "defense" on terrorism, while Republicans understand the importance of playing "offense."

Prediction: The endorsement will be sold as a no-downsides boost for Rudy's national security cred (like it is here) and there won't be much assessment of Freeh's record. For example, does he still think the 9/11 Commission Report whitewashed info about Muhammad Atta? Does his botch-up of the Wen Ho Lee investigation factor into his "get-tough" image? Does Rudy think that Carnivore was a good idea?

Actually, we can probably intuit the answer to that last question.

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  1. I predict that this will be a non story that the media will not touch. Now, if a former Republican director of the FBI endorsed a Democrat, that would be fron page news and the guy would have a book deal and be on every Sunday talk show being lauded for his conversation from the dark side. But a Democrat endorsing a Repbulican? That is a tree falling in the forest with no one to hear it. All this means is that Freah is no longer welcome in polite company in Washington and won’t be getting any talk show invites anytime soon.

  2. It is only a “big way” by supposedly being a different party. There isn’t a big difference between Clinton squared and Giuliani except Clinton just lobbed a few bombs at Iraq and Rudy wants to own Iraq.

  3. “Expanding U.S. intelligence gathering around the globe” is part of what Republicans characterize as “playing defense” instead of “offense.”

    Under this formulation, “playing offense” refers only to main-force military actions aimed at defeating nations’ militaries and taking over their countries.

    Hell, I get accused of “playing defense” for suggesting we move troops out of Baghdad and back to Afghanistan.

  4. Hell, I get accused of “playing defense” for suggesting we move troops out of Baghdad and back to Afghanistan.

    Technically, I think that would be more an accusation of “abandoning the field to our enemies” than “playing defense.” Its a nuance, but hey, this foreign policy stuff is all about nuance. At least that’s what the Dems keep telling me.

  5. If one team is all about defense, and the other all about offense, isn’t this just a rematch of the Super Bowl? If so, Freeh looks a lot more like Rex Grossman than Peyton Manning to my eyes.

  6. ‘Technically, I think that would be more an accusation of “abandoning the field to our enemies”‘

    You mean like at Tora Bora?

  7. Freeh was never a Democrat, and certainly never a “friend of the Clintons”. He worked for ten years as a prosecutor under Giuliani, and Giuliani recommended him for the FBI position. This news is about as shocking as a Bernard Kerik endorsement.

  8. RC,

    So, pulling troops from Iraq to stabilize Afghanistan is “abandoning the field to our enemies”…but pulling troops from Afghanistan to invade Iraq in the first place was ____________.

  9. “Freeh was never a Democrat, and certainly never a “friend of the Clintons”. He worked for ten years as a prosecutor under Giuliani, and Giuliani recommended him for the FBI position. This news is about as shocking as a Bernard Kerik endorsement.”

    Oops. A certain news reporter (DAVID SALTONSTALL) forgot to mention that rather super-duper important fact in his roaming narrative about Freeh and the Clintons. I smell a barely re-worded re-write of a Guiliani campaign press-release.

  10. Wait, my bad: the article DOES mention that they worked “together” at least.

  11. “Expanding U.S. intelligence gathering around the globe” is part of what Republicans characterize as “playing defense” instead of “offense.”

    You make me laugh Joe. Let’s expand intelligence gathering around the globe. The first thing we need to do is get rid of the restrictions that came out of the 1970s. Specifically all of the restirctions on paying sources and using sources with human rights abuse records. In addition, lets get rid of all of the Church Commission restrictions on sharing of intel between domestic law enforcement and the CIA. A terrorist is at his most dangerous when he is in the country itself. We need to be able to keep tabs on people we think are terrorists and share info between law enforcement and the NSA and the CIA. I am all for it. Are you? If not, how is “Expanding U.S. intelligence gathering around the globe” anything more than just an empty phrase?

  12. Okay, I’m tired of the whole Iraq mess. We should never have gone in, but since we did and we can’t leave it to the terrorists it seems to me we have only one choice.

    Leave and nuke/chem bomb the entire country until it’s absolutely uninhabitable for a hundred years or so.

  13. You always write “You make me laugh” or curse me out at the beginning of comments after I’ve landed a solid blow, John. Ever notice that?

    Some revisions in those old laws may make sense. I’d want to consider them on a case-by-case basis – as you might recall, those reforms didn’t come about because somebody at a bad burritto and had weird dreams.

    “If not, how is “Expanding U.S. intelligence gathering around the globe” anything more than just an empty phrase?”

    How about undoing the Cold War-era favoritism towards technology over human assets? How about expanding the CIA? How about simply making the management of CIA and intel actions against terrorist groups a higher priority for the President, like it was under Clinton?

    How about undoing Bush’s decision to make the counter-terrorism chief a sub-cabinet position?

  14. John,

    I would just note that the wall between the CIA and domestic was erected under the original National Security Act in 1947.

  15. ktc2 says: “Okay, I’m tired of the whole Iraq mess. We should never have gone in, but since we did and we can’t leave it to the terrorists it seems to me we have only one choice.

    Leave and nuke/chem bomb the entire country until it’s absolutely uninhabitable for a hundred years or so.”

    Because the mass murder of millions of innocent Muslim non-combatants is the best way to ensure that Middle Eastern terrorists want to leave us alone?

    Because that’s the precedent for warfare that we want to inculcate among the legions of terrorist recruits this policy would create?

  16. Talk about the blind (evil) Leading The blind (evil)… another marriage for Rudi “made in hell”…

    Cynicism and defeatism are NOT options to be entertained.
    “We are in the eleventh hour of losing this Nation…”

    Consider the only Conservative Presidential Candidate…

    Welcome my name is: Joel Lemieux I am retired and currently live in the beautiful mountains of Western NC… I Have been an avid supporter of Dr Ron Paul… “We have to get Ron Paul elected, firstly and foremost, in the primaries”… Then on to the Presidency!!!

    http://leadership2008.bravehost.com

  17. Yup!

    And then distrubute graphic photos/videos of the destruction to every nation in the middle east along with the message that if so much as one terrorist attack against the US is linked to your country you are next.

  18. We can drill for oil through radioactive glass right?

    (Is the satire showing through yet?)

  19. Freeh’s not much, but he’s better than someone hopelessly around the bend like Scheuer.

  20. plunge, you got it right. The NY Daily News took a Giuliani campaign press release and only superficially edited it to run as a news story. Louis Freeh is now, and always has been, on the dark side of the force.

  21. “””I would just note that the wall between the CIA and domestic was erected under the original National Security Act in 1947.”””

    Partly because the CIA can and does operate outside the rule of law. I don’t know if he’s aware of it, but John is supporting having a lawless section of government working within US borders.

    If one thinks the CIA should be lawful, they should support sending those CIA agents to Italy for trial, but of course we won’t, because we expect them work outside of law. That’s why they should be forbidden to operate within our borders

  22. In all fairness to John, I retract my statement that he is supporting the CIA operating within US borders, being his disagreement was not with the 1947 National Security act which established the “wall” to prevent the CIA from operating in the US.

  23. Gee, wasn’t Louie the guy who lost the one, key piece of evidence after the Waco disaster? An 8-foot steel door, which would have shown who shot first, (the Feds or the Branch Davidians) . . .just . . . .vanished . . . . . .

  24. I once made a protest sign that read:

    “FREEDOM ISN’T FREEH”

    I forgot where I carried/displayed it.

  25. You can still date arcade games by looking for the FBI logo, Freeh’s name, and the words “Winners Don’t Use Drugs” on the display screen between games.

  26. I got my start educating media and newspaper readers when the St Petersburg Times (Florida’s largest newspaper) ran an LTE from me which rebuked Louis Freeh’s insistence that Carnivore and other such cyber monitors were greatly needed for American safety.

    The Times had run an LTE from Freeh which was echoing then Rep Bill McCollum’s insistence on same.

    When they didn’t come to my door and take me away, I realized that disrespecting bad policymakers in major media is extremely empowering. But diligence is needed. McCollum recently was elected Florida Attorney General.

    http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v99/n578/a05.html

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