That’s the real gist of today’s New York Times piece by Mark Mazetti and Julie Bosman once you get past all this talk of the former CIA chief “breaking his two-year silence” and “getting ready to return fire.” But George Tenet can’t do that unless he actually finishes the book: it was supposed to hit shelves last week, but Tenet was still writing as late as last month. (The pub date has been pushed back to the sprint.) The book has also undergone a slow vetting process at the White House and the CIA, which reviewed it to ensure it did not contain classified information.

But once it’s done and in shelves, he’ll put the blame for various CIA screwups on other people’s shoulders – maybe. “George is a born politician and he wants everyone to love him, but in order to sell books he’s going to have to throw somebody out of the lifeboat,” said a former colleague who wished to remain anonymous. And no matter what, this will just be one account of many. “Because of the nature of intelligence work, you can never totally set the record straight,” said former Senator Bob Kerrey, a member of the Sept. 11 commission who has known Tenet since the two worked together on the Senate Intelligence Committee. “The record is always going to be a little bit murky.”