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.
Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military for the Washington Post from 2000 through 2008.