April 20th, 2009
02:10 PM ET
11 years ago

Obama visiting CIA after memos' release

President Obama will speak Monday with the workforce at the CIA headquarters.

President Obama will speak Monday with the workforce at the CIA headquarters.

(CNN) - President Obama on Monday will visit CIA headquarters amid criticism from an ex-CIA chief that he compromised national security last week by releasing Bush-era memos on interrogation tactics.

The president will meet with CIA Director Leon Panetta, Deputy Director Stephen Kappes and other officials as well as talk to employees about the importance of the agency's mission to national security.

Obama's visit comes a day after former CIA Director Michael Hayden said the decision to release the four memos undermined the work the agency is doing.

Hayden, President Bush's CIA director from 2006 to 2009, said the release of the memos emboldens terrorist groups such as al Qaeda.

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Filed under: CIA • President Obama
soundoff (59 Responses)
  1. Owen

    I'm in support of our nation's self defense, but... torturing people is wrong. TORTURING PEOPLE IS WRONG. I can't believe I have to even say this. My congrats go out to Obama. This is a big step towards transparency in government, too, which we need far more of.

    April 20, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  2. Michigan

    So we waterboarded one guy 183 times in a month but Bush said "we don't torture." let's see if he could live through one time of 'controlled drowning," and then say it isn't torture. How soon before they are brought before the Hague? My God, and Republicans support this kind of terrorism?

    April 20, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  3. KC

    Well, Obama is embracing Chavez and Iran, bowing to Muslim Kings so he may as well embolden terrorist groups. Of course in this country that now means God and all Christians according to HMS.

    April 20, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  4. Rick

    Of course releasing the memos undermines the CIA and emboldens terrorists.....and some people still question why most Americans don't trust the democrat party with national security.

    April 20, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  5. obama/mama

    Lock Cheyney up and throw away the key

    April 20, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  6. Dan, TX

    End the war in Afghanistan. Get out. The CIA will keep us safe, we don't need to be over in Afghanistan.

    April 20, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  7. Super D

    This is the kind of garbage that gets people killed.

    This is another example of Obama fighting a "politically correct" war on terror.

    Everytime I hear people say Obama is smart. I want to just barf because the exact opposite is true.

    CNN for gawd sakes post this!

    April 20, 2009 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  8. VON BISMARK -Vienna

    America has a moral obligation to prosecute these people after having prosecuted Nazis and Japanese for the very crimes.Not prosecuting them cannot be surported even with crutches.

    April 20, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  9. Some Guy

    I wonder if they showed him the crashed flying saucer and alien bodies yet. Have a nice day!

    April 20, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  10. arithmetic is liberal

    The one follow up question no conservative has ever answered in the last several years regarding releasing memos on torture or other "state secrets", and i'd really love to actually see someone answer it:


    The people we fight against are willing to KILL THEMSELVES for their cause, so how much more could you possibly embolden a person?

    April 20, 2009 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  11. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    National security BALONEY.... Bush and his henchmen got caught in yet another lie..... Wait til the truth about 9/11 emerges....

    April 20, 2009 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  12. phoenix86

    The ONLY reason Obama released the CIA memos (as it is stated in his administration's reasons for releasing them – if anyone here cares to read it), is that is would "put some distance" between the Obama administration and the Bush administration.

    In other words, he put American lives in jeopardy to further political ambitions.

    April 20, 2009 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  13. AL from SoCal

    " Brave !! "

    April 20, 2009 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  14. Tulsa

    The good men and women of the CIA must feel a whole lot better knowing THIS President won't be ordering them to do what they know is wrong.
    I do.

    April 20, 2009 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  15. Amy

    The only people who have compromised national security are Bush, Cheney, and the underlings who carried out their orders.

    I'm sure they were hoping that their tortuous actions would never see the light of day. I for one am glad that Obama shed some light on this. I'm sick of being kept in the dark.

    April 20, 2009 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  16. Fair is Fair

    Methinks that with the exception of Panetta, Mr. Obama is not going to be very well received.

    April 20, 2009 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  17. John in FL

    There was absolutely no reason to release those memos. If you are not going to hold anyone accountable for "torture" techniques that were used, then why call attention to them. For the AG to say it is how Obama runs the gov't, this isn't transparency of his administration that he is displaying.

    April 20, 2009 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  18. Ray

    It was actually 4 previous CIA leaders, as well as Panetta, that disagreed with this realease. This may be Obama's biggest mistake to-date. I would rather he hug and kiss Chavez than make these kinds of mistakes.

    April 20, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  19. demwit

    Less Secure!? Who cares!??

    I love Obama, he can do no wrong in my eyes...

    April 20, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  20. dominican mama 4 Obama

    Bravo, Mr. President. You are taking the moral high ground. This was one of the things that you said in your campaign that you'd do.

    Kudos to you for in all fairness not prosecuting those that performed these acts. If Pres. Bush/Cheney said it was okay for them to it, they should'nt be prosecuted.

    April 20, 2009 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  21. midwest jeff

    the only reason obama is occasionally releasing negative info about GWB is to keep the focus off of him and the lack of progress, or idiotic things he does like bowing to a Saudi king. Funny the timing of things from him. Having grown up in Chicago, this is typical Chicago politics.

    April 20, 2009 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  22. Mari

    Really............... "compromised national security"? The ONE...... who compromised national security IS/WAS BUSH!

    Every expert in the field of intelligence says that TORTURE never gets you what you want! Prisoners will say anything, confess to anything as long as the torture STOPS!

    Can't wait for The Bushies to be drag into court!

    April 20, 2009 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  23. Kevin in Ohio

    He might as well just shut the whole agency down if he continues to subvert its effectiveness.

    April 20, 2009 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  24. RAG

    Michael Hayden is just trying to keep is torturing criminal neck out the noose. Whatever, Obama does, the truth will out and the guilty will be made to pay.

    April 20, 2009 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  25. Meghan is Michey Mouse

    I find it amusing and curious that a Democreat at heart, Meghan McCain, gets so much media attention for bashing the GOP.

    Meghan is a liberal; she is not conservative. Meghan embraces left wing ideals; she does not embrace conservative values. Meghan is for abortion; she is for gay marriage; she is for legalizing marijuana; she is for higher corporate taxes; and she is for large government with even larger deficit spending to fund government entitlement programs. So, given her penchant for the left, why should anyone be surprised when she takes cheap childish shots at GOP leaders?

    April 20, 2009 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
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