The Central Intelligence Agency should have more intelligence on rebels in Libya by now, a member of the House Armed Services Committee said Friday.
In an interview with MSNBC, Rep. Duncan Hunter Jr. (R-Calif.) criticized the CIA for not being able to provide a sufficient amount of intelligence to American lawmakers to decide whether arming Libyan rebels to help battle dictator Col. Moammar Gadhafi is a good idea or not.
"You could say that the CIA kind of failed us in Libya. They were there until about a month ago in Tripoli, they didn't see any of this coming," Hunter said. "They didn't pick out the bad actors and good actors prior to this. “
Hunter's criticism comes after media reports earlier this week that President Obama had secretly authorized providing aid to the rebels. Administration officials denied the reports and reiterated that the U.S. presence in Libya is to help enforce a United Nations Security Council no-fly zone resolution to protect Libyan civilians and allow Libyan rebels the opportunity to strengthen themselves enough to oust Gadhafi.
Obama and other administration officials have left open the possibility of arming the rebels despite criticism from lawmakers that the U.S. doesn't really know who the rebels are or what the end result could be of arming them.
"I'm not ruling [arming them] out. But I'm also not ruling it in," Obama said in an interview with NBC News on Tuesday.
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04/01/11 02:52 PM ET
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