- By Thomas E. RicksThomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military for the Washington Post from 2000 through 2008.
A friend of mine with decades of experience in intelligence, and who has a track record as a straight shooter, wonders just how the newly forming High Value Interrogation Group (HIG) possibly could have been ready to handle the underwear bomber, given its unformed state as of mid-December. He writes that he was puzzled by Admiral Blair’s statement yesterday that our Nigerian friend should have been assigned as an interrogation target of the HIG because as of mid-December,
. . . I was told [the HIG] was being played very close by the NSC, that there had been an FBI name tossed out for possible Chief, but that it remained a work very much in progress, which I took to mean, after hearing it from four sources, that it was still in its organizational infancy. One wonders how it could have been ready to interrogate the Nigerian?
Tom again: I wouldn’t be surprised to see Admiral Blair — I like him, think he’s a good guy — out of the government before the first pitch is thrown in this year’s baseball season.
Kevin Baron is a national security reporter for Foreign Policy, covering defense and military issues in Washington. He is also vice president of the Pentagon Press Association. Baron previously was a national security staff writer for National Journal, covering the "business of war." Prior to that, Baron worked in the resident daily Pentagon press corps as a reporter/photographer for Stars and Stripes. For three years with Stripes, Baron covered the building and traveled overseas extensively with the secretary of defense and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, covering official visits to Afghanistan and Iraq, the Middle East and Europe, China, Japan and South Korea, in more than a dozen countries. From 2004 to 2009, Baron was the Boston Globe Washington bureau's investigative projects reporter, covering defense, international affairs, lobbying and other issues. Before that, he muckraked at the Center for Public Integrity. Baron has reported on assignment from Asia, Africa, Australia, Europe, the Middle East and the South Pacific. He was won two Polk Awards, among other honors. He has a B.A. in international studies from the University of Richmond and M.A. in media and public affairs from George Washington University. Originally from Orlando, Fla., Baron has lived in the Washington area since 1998 and currently resides in Northern Virginia with his wife, three sons, and the family dog, The Edge.| The E-Ring |