The Concept of Ethical Obligation

Topics: Central Intelligence Agency, George Tenet, Ethics Pages: 4 (1310 words) Published: August 25, 2013
The concept of ethical obligation
GEORGE Tenet and the Last Great Days of the CIA

PADM 500: Modern Public Administration

Identify four (4) cross-coded ethical dilemmas facing former CIA Director George Tenet and assess their impact on his leadership abilities. During George Tenet tenure as director of the Central Intelligence Agency, there were several ethical dilemmas he faced, among which most significantly were the violations of national and international human right policies. George Tenet was also faced with the ethical dilemma of being straightforward to the people he worked with, especially his field officers, and most essentially the nation as at large. He knew all along that the statements about Saddam Hussein and chemical weapons were a fluke, but went along with it and cost American families over four thousand lives. Additionally, his role as meditator in the meeting between former Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was also an ethical concern. Professionally, this role was more diplomat than chief spymaster, which made many insiders “distinctly uncomfortable” (Posner 1998; Tenet 2007, 74). Others in the administration were pleased with the idea considering it as unethical despite the fact that Tenet tried to explain that nobody else could act better in that position. This threatened his leadership due to the fact that individuals were beginning to lack trust in his leadership. Analyze four (4) ways in which Tenet addressed the prioritization of ethical concerns. George Tenet utilized diverse approach to address the prioritization of his ethical concerns amongst which notably was the implementation of CIA policies. As the role of mediator for Yasser Arafat and Benjamin Netanyahu, the presidents of Palestine and Israel respectively, he stated that “We are the one entity both sides could trust”. (Tenet 2007, 64). When Tent spoke about this situation, it was obvious that he had good...

References: Ethics as a strategy. (26th July 2011) Retrieved from
Ethics as a Strategy. (February 2nd, 2012) Retrieved from
George Tenet. From
Giraldi, P. (2007). George Tenet 's Machiavellian Moment. Mediterranean Quarterly, 18(3), 31-38. Doi: 10.1215/10474552-2007-015
Richard Joseph Stillman (2010). George Tenet and the Last Great Days of the CIA. Public Administration: Concepts and Cases.
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