Friday, April 06, 2007



I woke up this morning to hear the recently fired-- but not yet removed-- non-Soledad O'Brien on CNN braying out some insulting and sexist Republican talking points about how Speaker Pelosi had screwed up in Syria and should have stayed "closer to home." I wasn't quite awake and thought I had Fox on by mistake and O'Brien had already found a new job. But no, it was CNN, reading the Bush Regime version of the "news." Will they ever learn? Clearly, the answer to that is no.

Today's Washington Post-- on the day after Cheney was lying his ass off on the Rush Limbaugh Radio Circus both about Speaker Pelosi and about Saddam's "connections" to al-Qaeda-- has the scoop on an official Defense Department report that confirms there was no cooperation between Saddam's Iraq and al-Qaeda. "The declassified version of the report, by acting Inspector General Thomas F. Gimble, also contains new details about the intelligence community's prewar consensus that the Iraqi government and al-Qaeda figures had only limited contacts, and about its judgments that reports of deeper links were based on dubious or unconfirmed information. The report had been released in summary form in February."

Although Saddam and al-Qaeda were virtually at war with each, other today's L.A. Times paints a picture of Bush Regime Neocon operatives Doug Feith and Paul Wolfowitz conspiring to lead the American public into accepting war by creating this lie-- still clung to by their patron Cheney-- that Saddam and al-Qaeda were in cahoots.
Just four months after the Sept. 11 attacks, then-Deputy Defense Secretary Paul D. Wolfowitz dashed off a memo to a senior Pentagon colleague, demanding action to identify connections between Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein's regime and Al Qaeda.

"We don't seem to be making much progress pulling together intelligence on links between Iraq and Al Qaeda," Wolfowitz wrote in the Jan. 22, 2002, memo to Douglas J. Feith, the department's No. 3 official.

Using Pentagon jargon for the secretary of Defense, Donald H. Rumsfeld, he added: "We owe SecDef some analysis of this subject. Please give me a recommendation on how best to proceed. Appreciate the short turn-around."

Wolfowitz's memo, released Thursday, is included in a recently declassified report by the Pentagon's inspector general. The memo marked the beginnings of what would become a controversial yearlong Pentagon project supervised by Feith to convince the most senior members of the Bush administration that Hussein and Al Qaeda were linked — a conclusion that was hotly disputed by U.S. intelligence agencies at the time and has been discredited in the years since.

In excerpts released in February, Thomas F. Gimble, the acting inspector general of the Pentagon, criticized the project as an alternative intelligence assessment that was improper. However, Gimble said, the operation was not illegal or unauthorized, because Pentagon directives allowed Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz to assign the work.

In making its case for the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the Bush administration cited evidence that Hussein was stockpiling weapons of mass destruction. An important secondary reason was the belief in connections between Iraq and Al Qaeda. Though the CIA has been criticized for erroneously gauging Iraq's weapons programs, its assessment of Iraq's ties to Al Qaeda proved more accurate.

There were none. But Cheney had assigned them the job of convincing senior members of the Regime-- mostly in the State Department-- who were skeptical about his harebrained rush to attack Iraq that there was a connection. "Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl M. Levin (D-Mich.), who requested the report's declassification, said in a written statement that the complete text demonstrates more fully why the inspector general concluded that a key Pentagon office-- run by then-Undersecretary of Defense Douglas J. Feith-- had inappropriately written intelligence assessments before the March 2003 invasion alleging connections between al-Qaeda and Iraq that the U.S. intelligence consensus disputed. The report, in a passage previously marked secret, said Feith's office had asserted in a briefing given to Cheney's chief of staff in September 2002 that the relationship between Iraq and al-Qaeda was 'mature' and 'symbiotic,' marked by shared interests and evidenced by cooperation across 10 categories, including training, financing and logistics." This was a huge pack of lies manufactured by Feith, Wolfowitz and Cheney, all of whom should be on trial for their lives. They set out to undercut the CIA's professional, non-political analysis with one based solely on ideology and a pre-accepted conclusion that they needed to rationalize a long-planned attack on Iraq.

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At 8:34 AM, Blogger Bil said...

Wolfowitz, architect of debathification and releasing hundreds of thousands of Iraqi troops and then surprised at an insurgency? GETS A CONGRESSIONAL MEDAL OF HONOR? How Orwellian is THAT?

Cheney should get one for supporting Chalabi, as well as Feith and other neocon scum for their lies. Congressional Medals of Failure all around.

At 12:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Further putting the lie to Cheney, this 2004 piece on how Bush's NSC shelved Pentagon plans to attack Zarqawi before the invasion -- even as Ansar built a ricin factory.


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