Wenstrup leads CENTCOM investigation

U.S. Representative Brad Wenstrup (R-OH) whose Ohio Second District seat includes a portion of Scioto County, is one of three members of the House of Representatives who will lead an investigation into allegations that U.S. Central Command’s top intelligence officials pressured analysts to discard parts of their reports that reflected poorly on the war effort in Iraq and Syria.

According to Wenstrup’s office, a former Central Command official said more than 50 intelligence analysts had complained that their conclusions were undercut. One or more senior analysts from the command made a written complaint to the Defense Department inspector general in July, prompting an investigation that officials have publicly acknowledged.

The Military Times reports the chairmen of the Armed Services and Intelligence committees and the Appropriations Defense subcommittee said the task force would “investigate allegations that senior U.S. Central Command officials manipulated intelligence products” and “examine whether these allegations reflect systemic problems across the intelligence enterprise in CENTCOM or any other pertinent intelligence organizations.”

President Obama has said he has repeatedly made it clear to intelligence officials that they should never shade their assessments to produce a “feel good story.”

The Times story says Obama was questioned during a news conference in Malaysia about a New York Times report that said military analysts felt their supervisors were eager to paint a more optimistic picture than warranted about training Iraqi troops and fighting the Islamic State.

Joining Wenstrup at the head of the task force are Republican representatives Ken Calvert of California and Mike Pompeo of Kansas.

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By Frank Lewis

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Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.