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Providing a not-so-Secret Service

Let me begin this commentary by expressing my long-time admiration and gratitude to the Secret Service for its usually superb duties in protecting our president, presidential candidates and a number of others in high-ranking positions who attract the violence of the crazies.

But let us remember, the USSS is made up of fallible human beings – and that fallibility has now burst forth in a major sex scandal.

On Thursday in Cartegena, Colombia, 11 Secret Service agents were on the ground to provide protection when President Obama flew in the next day.

On Friday, these 11 agents were placed on leave, after they and five U.S. military service members working with them were discovered to have been patronizing prostitutes.

The New York Times, in an interview with New York’s Rep. Peter King, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, which oversees the Secret Service, said that he was told the 11 agents and officers were suspected of bringing women back to their hotel rooms. And while prostitution is legal in designated areas in Colombia, “such behavior surely and rightfully violates agency rules of conduct – in part because it could expose agents to blackmail, or facilitate espionage, help an enemy get inside a security perimeter – or otherwise distract agents when they’re supposed to be focusing on protecting the president,” said Chairman King.

King also noted this hotel’s policy that “guests” of people staying at the hotel must leave their I.D. at the hotel – and then leave the hotel by 7 a.m.

On Thursday morning, he said, a hotel manager realized that one of these women had not left and went to the room to ask her to leave.

The Secret Service agent is said to have not let the hotel manager in, whereupon a Colombian police officer went to the room. Inside, the woman complained that she had not been paid for her “services rendered.”

Eventually, this Secret Service agent did pay her, and she left without further incident, noted Chairman King.

While no law was broken, the Colombian police sent a report to the U.S. embassy recounting all of this Secret Service sex.

This led to discovery that other Secret Servicers had taken additional Colombian whores to their hotel rooms.

So the entire Secret Service team was ordered out of Colombia and replaced with other agents flown in from Miami and San Juan, Puerto Rico.

At least two of these sexually misbehaving Secret Service agents were supervisors.

An unidentified “United States official” told the Times:

“There are people who willingly went to prostitutes and people who ended up with prostitutes. Either way, it’s just unacceptable.”

These agents and officers were flown out of Colombia on Friday, the same day Obama arrived for the Summit of the Americas.

White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters:

“The president is obviously aware of the incident. But beyond that, this is a matter that the Secret Service is looking into. I think it has been much more of a distraction for the press.”

Think about that.

Eleven Secret Service agents, who were supposed to be preparing to protect the president, were allegedly cohabiting with Colombian whores.

And Obama’s press secretary described this as “incidental”!