It's intriguing how certain commentators keep cropping up on the BBC.
Last night's The World Tonight featured Michael Scheuer, the former CIA officer who launched the Extraordinary Rendition programme back in 1995 under the Clinton administration, discussing Barack Obama and the Nigerian plane bomber. This was not Mr Scheuer's first appearance on the programme. (His last appearance was on 1oth December, discussing Osama Bin Laden).
Then, tuning in to the Today programme this morning, he was there again (introduced by Justin Webb as "one of the architects of America's rendition programme"). This is not necessarily a bad thing of course. Mr Scheuer is an interesting if controversial guy, and author of the influential Imperial Hubris. He was a strong critic of American foreign policy under the Bush Administration, but is far from uncritical of President Obama.
Voicing criticism of Barack Obama was virtually guaranteed to bring Obama-worshipper Justin Webb crashing in, not just to put the president's point of view, but to defend it too: "Yeah but...on that point, that it should have been passed on, what President Obama (..all praise President Obama!..) says is that this information was passed to a component of our intelligence community. In other words, having received the information from the father in Nigeria it appears to have gone further but then says it was not effectively distributed so as to get the suspect's name onto a no-fly list. Now, that does actually fit the president's description, doesn't it, of a systemic failure?"*
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