Friday, January 28, 2011

Our incompetent spies

The inquiry into the employment of Stephen Wilce (who bluffed his way into a top job as director of the Defence Technology Agency with a fake CV) has uncovered what we already knew: that the SIS are a pack of incompetent fools:

Officials had not checked with their counterparts in overseas agencies to see what they knew about Wilce and they had not followed up on Wilce's failure to disclose convictions once the police check had revealed that he had convictions. Officials had also failed to act on information about Wilce after he was appointed.

"The failure by NZSIS staff to record critical information about Mr Wilce's character, and pass it through to the vetting file, at this early juncture of Mr Wilce's employment with NZDF was significant," the report said.

Contrary to the PM's assertion, security vetting is one of the SIS's basic functions. But I guess they were just too busy looking under Keith Locke's bed for "communists", going through Sue Bradford's underwear drawer again, burgling peaceful protestors, spying on lobby groups, or chasing phantom "terrorists" to do that job properly. And if they're unable to do that job, I think its time we asked whether we should really be spending $36 million a year on these clowns, or whether we're better off without them.