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Team Bush and "Best Info Available @ the Time"

Simon W. Moon

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It has been "contended" that Team Bush "acted according to the best information available" at the time.
This contention must be made w/o regard to the organizations created to gather supporting evidence that varied widely in quality to tie a threat of terrorism against the US to, "sweep it all up, things related and not," as Rumsfeld put it. These organizations, (specifically the OSP, Office of Special Plans, and the PCTEG, Policy Counter Terrorism Evaluation Group), are sure to have lent credence in the eyes of some, to the view of Mohammed Atta, and undoubtedly other members of al Qaida, that "Saddam Hussein was an American stooge set up to give Washington an excuse to intervene in the Middle East"[sup][alt link][/sup]
So we have the creation of these extra groups that function outside of the normal operations of the US intelligence system to find the raw materials necessary for Team Bush to cruft a sales pitch for the idea of a threat from Iraq to the US to the American electorate.

Despite the litany of reasons cited for going to war with Iraq, according to one senior official, the threat to the US was recognized within Team Bush as the only one that could justify putting "American kids' lives at risk...on the scale we did..." So this idea of an Iraqi threat was absolutely necessary for the war effort to prevail.

Team Bush's threat spiel was dependent on three main elements: Hussein's non-conventional weapons; Hussein's "operational relationship" with terrorists who would attack the US, (al Qaida being the most well branded candidate); and the idea that Hussein was undeterrable and thus a madman. Without any of these three, the case for a threat to the US from Iraq would be weakened significantly. And thuis the case for invading Iraq would likewise be crippled.

The second most important of these three items were the strong, meaningful and significant ties to a terrorist group likely to attack the US, specifically al Qaida. To further this end, iffy and/or previously debunked reports were stripped of contexts, professional analysis and descriptions of their relative accuracy and presented to the electorate as reliable information. Even classified national security intel was leaked to Bush friendly press outlets to further this idea. Team Bush purposefully used information that was not "the best available" to sell this idea.
As merely a single example, Cheney took up the Atta/Iraq connection as a cause celebre (occasionally to darkly comedic effect):
CHENEY: CLEAR LINKS BETWEEN SADDAM, AL-QAEDA; CALLS NY TIMES ARTICLE 'OUTRAGEOUS'
Thu Jun 17 2004 19:00:33 ET

"...responding to a report from the 9-11 Commission saying it had found no evidence of 'collaboration' between Iraq and Al Qaeda" "Vice President **** Cheney... called the New York Times coverage of the story 'outrageous'."
Vice Pres. CHENEY: I disagree with the way their findings have been portrayed.
<snip>
There's clearly been a relationship.
There's a separate question. The separate question is: Was Iraq involved with al-Qaida in the attack on 9/11?
<snip>
What The New York Times did today was outrageous. ... The press wants to run out and say there's a fundamental split here now between what the president said and what the commission said. Jim Thompson is a member of the commission who's since been on the air. I saw him with my own eyes. And there's no conflict. What they were addressing was whether or not they were involved in 9/11. And there they found no evidence to support that proposition. They did not address the broader question of a relationship between Iraq and al-Qaida in other areas, in other ways.
Vice Pres. CHENEY: But that is a separate question from what the press has gotten all in a dither about, The New York Times especially, on this other question [of whether or not there was a general relationship between UbL and Hussein]. What they've done is, I think, distorted what the commission actually reported, certainly according to Governor Thompson, who's a member of the commission.
BORGER: But you say you disagree with the commission...
Vice Pres. CHENEY: On this question of whether or not there was a general relationship.
BORGER: Yes.
Vice Pres. CHENEY: Yeah.
BORGER: And they say that there was not one forged and you were saying yes, that there was. Do you know things that the commission does not know?
Vice Pres. CHENEY: Probably.
BORGER: And do you think the commission needs to know them?
Vice Pres. CHENEY: I don't have any--I don't know what they know. I do know they didn't talk with any original sources on this subject that say that in their report.
BORGER: They did talk with people who had interrogated sources.
Vice Pres. CHENEY: Right.
BORGER: So they do have good sources.
Vice Pres. CHENEY: Gloria, the notion that there is no relationship between Iraq and al-Qaida just simply is not true.

[Since there actually is a disagreement between "what the president said and what the commission said," and if it is outrageous that the NYT would say that 'there's a fundamental split here now between what the president said and what the commission said,' this means that the VPotUSA is just outraged that the NYT would say it?]​
BORGER: Well, let's get to Mohammad Atta for a minute, because you mentioned him as well. You have said in the past that it was, quote, "pretty well confirmed."
Vice Pres. CHENEY: No, I never said that.
BORGER: OK.
Vice Pres. CHENEY: Never said that.
BORGER: I think that is...
Vice Pres. CHENEY: Absolutely not. What I said was the Czech intelligence service reported after 9/11 that Atta had been in Prague on April 9th of 2001, where he allegedly met with an Iraqi intelligence official. We have never been able to confirm that nor have we been able to knock it down.


The Vice President Appears on NBC's Meet the Press
December 9, 2001
RUSSERT: Do you still believe there is no evidence that Iraq was involved in September 11?
CHENEY: Well, what we now have that's developed since you and I last talked, Tim, of course, was that report that's been pretty well confirmed, that he did go to Prague and he did meet with a senior official of the Iraqi intelligence service in Czechoslovakia last April, several months before the attack.
Cheney continued to cite the supposed meeting without regard to the dearth of reliable evidence that it had occurred and despite the US intel community analysis that the story was most likely hokum. Obviously, this is an instance where Team Bush was insufficiently concerned with what was the best information available.
 

Simon W. Moon

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Part 2

The most essential element that was necessary was the suspension of disbelief in the undeterrability of Hussein, that he was a 'madman'. Despite the analysis of Dr. Rice ("national obliteration") and the historical incidences (James Baker- "resounding silence" in the Iraqi desert) in which Hussein had been shown to be well deterred from attacking the US w/ non-conventional weapons, and despite the best information available at the time from the US intelligence community, ( the probability of Hussein initiating an attack in the foreseeable future is low ), Team Bush repeatedly sold the idea that an attack from Hussein was something that would happen sooner than later. They said that we could not wait lest there be a mushroom cloud over major metropolitan area (despite the fact that the best information available said that Hussein did not have this capacity ). According to Team Bush Hussein was mongongo monkey nuts with hatred for the US and was willing to sacrifice his own life, livelihood and nation to initiate an attack in the immediate future.
None of this was supported by the best information available at the time.

Without even having to address the issues of Hussein's biological and chemical weapons, it can be seen the idea that Hussein represented a threat to the US were not supported by the best information available at the time.
Without a threat to the US, there was not reason enough to risk American lives on the scale that we have. According to one senior official, Hussein's "criminal treatment of the Iraqi people" was not enough to warrant the major invasion of Iraq.

These are just few examples of how the case for the invasion of Iraq depended on malinfo as opposed to the "best information available at the time."


Then there's the whole issue of how could so many people in the world who had only Google to go by come up with more accurate answers than Team Bush?
 

vandree

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Very nice analysis, Simon W Moon.

It is also interesting to note that the administration knew that the info about the yellow cake from Niger was not reliable, but decided to use it anyway:

"The next day the White House acknowledged to The Washington Post reporter, Walter Pincus, that 'The sixteen words did not rise to the level of inclusion in the State of the Union address.' Within days it became clear that the Director of Central Intelligence had warned the administration nearly four months before the State of the Union not to use the Niger claim and that the President not be a witness of fact because, as he subsequently testified, the case was weak and the American intelligence community believed the British had exaggerated the claim. Indeed, at roughly the same time Mr. Tenet was sending faxes and telephoning the White House, in early October, 2002, his Deputy was telling the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence that the American Intelligence community believed the British had stretched the case on African uranium sales to Iraq. Steven Hadley, then the Deputy National Security Adviser offered to resign when the evidence of the phone calls and faxes from the DCI became public and Rice even offered an apology to Gwen Ifill of PBS. "
[from the testimony of Ambassador Wilson: http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/?q=node/288]


The Downing Street memos make it clear that a war for regime change is illegal. There are only three instances when the war is legal (sounds kinda funny, doesn't it?): 1. self-defense; 2. humanitarian reasons; 3. UN mandate.

The memos are important because they reveal:

--the Bush policy of provocation of the Iraqi to elicit a response that could be used as a rationale for war;

--the provocative, unnecessary and therefore illegal bombing which resulted in the deaths of innocent Iraqi civilians;

--the concern of the UK government in as early as March, 2002 about the lack of a legal basis for a war against Iraq;

--the acknowledgement that without a legal basis for war, military actions against Iraq would be termed illegal and therefore criminal acts of aggression;

-- the unlawful 'fixing' of intelligence to create the conditions necessary to justify the war;

--the lack of a strategy to deal with post-war Iraq. Despite UK urging, a post-war strategy was not developed in the year after the Downing Street memos and now two years later is very rudimentary. The lack of planning for post-war Iraq has resulted in the unnecessary deaths of tens of thousands of innocent Iraqi civilians and is a violation of the Law of Land Warfare, which is a violation of the Law of Land Warfare that requires an occupying state to provide for the occupied state..

[from the written testimony of Ann Wright http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/?q=node/290]


Has anybody seen the documentary 'Secrets of the Iraq War'? Saddam Hussein did not want a war and was trying to negotiate with Washington: http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article6648.htm . They increased the bombings to provoke him, but that didn't work; then they sent the weapons inspectors, thinking that Saddam Hussein would not let them in and/or wouldn't allow access to the sites; that plan failed too; no self defense, no UN mandate, there was only one excuse left: humanitarian reasons........

BTW this is a very interesting reading about the intelligence and how it was misused: http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/?q=node/168

"Again, you would not know it from our domesticated mainstream press, but this does not stand up to close scrutiny. Take the ubiquitous mushroom clouds that, we were warned, could come to us as the �first evidence� that Iraq had a nuclear weapon. On October 7, 2002, the president pulled out all stops in a major speech in Cincinnati. Associating Saddam Hussein with 9/11 and claiming that he would be �eager� to use a nuclear weapon against us, Bush warned, �Facing clear evidence of peril, we cannot wait for the final proof � the smoking gun � that could come in the form of a mushroom cloud.� Condoleezza Rice parroted that line the next day, and the Pentagon spokeswoman did likewise on October 9. It was no coincidence that Congress voted on October 10 and 11 to authorize war.

Those of us who worked with former CIA deputy director John McLaughlin know that he is an amateur magician. In the fall of 2002 he had a chance to learn from a real pro. For it was Vice President **** Cheney who conjured up the mushroom clouds. Indeed, it was Cheney, not Saddam Hussein, who �reconstituted� Iraq�s nuclear weapons development; and he did it out of thin air.

There was nothing but forgery, fallacy, and fairy tales to support key assertions in Cheney�s speech of August 26, 2002. The most successful midwife of fairy tales, Ahmed Chalabi, later bragged about facilitating the spurious claims of WMD in Iraq. He said, �Saddam is gone.... What was said before is not important.� We are heroes in error.�

Cheney and the Son-in-Law

Cheney�s August 26 address provided the recipe for how the intelligence was to be cooked in September. The speech, in effect, provided the terms of reference and conclusions for a National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) commissioned at the behest of Congress a few weeks later and completed on October 1, 2002. That NIE, nick-named �The Whore of Babylon,� has been (aptly) criticized as one of the worst ever prepared by U.S. intelligence. But it did the job for which it was produced; i.e., to deceive Congress out of its constitutional prerogative to declare or otherwise authorize war. During September 2002, the intelligence community dutifully conjured up evidence to support Cheney�s alarmist stance. The vice president claimed:

...We now know that Saddam has resumed his efforts to acquire nuclear weapons. Among other sources, we�ve gotten this from the firsthand testimony of defectors � including Saddam�s own son-in-law, who was subsequently murdered at Saddam�s direction. Many of us are convinced that Saddam will acquire nuclear weapons fairly soon.

That statement was highly misleading. Saddam�s son-in-law, Hussein Kamel, had been in charge of Iraq�s nuclear, chemical, biological, and missile programs before he defected in 1995. But what Kamel told us then was that all that weaponry had been destroyed at his command in the summer of 1991. And everything else he told us checked out, including particularly valuable information on Iraq�s earlier biological weapons programs. Now we know he was telling us the truth on the 1991 destruction of weapons, as well.

Many in the intelligence community knew of Cheney�s playing fast and loose with the evidence and the administration�s campaign to deceive Congress. Most just held their noses; sadly, no one spoke out.

Cheney's misleading reference to Kamel calls to mind the unbridled chutzpah in vogue during the march to war. This was no innocent mistake. Even if the vice president's staff had neglected to show him the debriefing report on Kamel, the full story became public well before the invasion of Iraq. A veteran reporter for Newsweek obtained the transcript of the debriefing in which Kamel said bluntly, All weapons biological, chemical, missile, nuclear were destroyed. Newsweek broke the story on February 24, 2003, more than three weeks before the war began. But this news struck a discordant note amid the cheerleading for war, and the mainstream media suppressed it. Even now that Kamel's assertion has been proven correct, the press has not corrected the record."
 

Simon W. Moon

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There're, of course, many more examples of this sort of dishonesty. We can debate all day long, as many already have, whether or not these things constitute "lies." But the only defenses available against the charges of lying are legalistic and semantic ones. The facts demonstrate that there were intentional uses of untrue, faulty and misrepresented information with the goal of persuading. For most of us regular folks, this constitutes lying. I know I'd've gotten a whuppin for lying if I'd tried some of these things with my parents. Perhaps they just have a little more moral clarity than politicians.

I'm curious about how long it will take for an Attack-Iraq-Bush-Backer to attempt to rebut or at least acknowledge the contents of this thread.

Feel free to link to this and send any AIBB you like here to debate.
 

Pacridge

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Simon W. Moon said:
There're, of course, many more examples of this sort of dishonesty. We can debate all day long, as many already have, whether or not these things constitute "lies." But the only defenses available against the charges of lying are legalistic and semantic ones. The facts demonstrate that there were intentional uses of untrue, faulty and misrepresented information with the goal of persuading. For most of us regular folks, this constitutes lying. I know I'd've gotten a whuppin for lying if I'd tried some of these things with my parents. Perhaps they just have a little more moral clarity than politicians.

I'm curious about how long it will take for an Attack-Iraq-Bush-Backer to attempt to rebut or at least acknowledge the contents of this thread.

Feel free to link to this and send any AIBB you like here to debate.
Can you imagine what people like Rush and Hannity would be saying right now regarding these facts if Bush Jr. were a Democrat?
 

stsburns

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Simon, Check your links! http://216.239.63.104/search?q=cache:YZuQ3doiKJgJ:www.9-11commission.gov/report/911Report_Ch5.htm+%22To+him,+Saddam+Hussein+was+an+American+stooge+set+up+ This link you've posted proved nothing of the intentions of your search. It just explained their point of view of the events of 9/11 disproving the "Label" of the link, PERSONALLY "CHOOSE A BETTER SEARCH ENGINE< TRY GOOGLE OR MSN< THEY WOULD LUV TO FEED YOUR HATRED FOR PEOPLE OR GROOPS!" :spin:

Happy Posting! :mrgreen:
 

Simon W. Moon

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stsburns said:
Simon, Check your links! http://216.239.63.104/search?q=cache:YZuQ3doiKJgJ:www.9-11commission.gov/report/911Report_Ch5.htm+%22To+him,+Saddam+Hussein+was+an+American+stooge+set+up+ This link you've posted proved nothing of the intentions of your search. It just explained their point of view of the events of 9/11 disproving the "Label" of the link, PERSONALLY "CHOOSE A BETTER SEARCH ENGINE< TRY GOOGLE OR MSN< THEY WOULD LUV TO FEED YOUR HATRED FOR PEOPLE OR GROOPS!" :spin: Happy Posting! :mrgreen:
I'm not sure what you're getting at here.
This is a Google link.
It has a highlight function that has highlighted the section that says Atta thought Hussein was an American stooge set up to give Washington an excuse to intervene in the Middle East.
 

stsburns

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Simon W. Moon said:
I'm not sure what you're getting at here.
This is a Google link.
It has a highlight function that has highlighted the section that says Atta thought Hussein was an American stooge set up to give Washington an excuse to intervene in the Middle East.
ALL SEARCHES ARE NOT RANDOM! Just because a computer can analyze 0's and 1's doesnt mean you can completely trust it. Many of these "Popular" search engines are PAID to show certain results. My referce is MSN.com search engine. Event: April Fools Day, MSN.com advertised how inacurate it is by "Displaying its ego", on the subject that people will search on their search engine that day "April Fools Day", and would recieve strange results. Like if you were to search for the word "Cat", you'd turn up a result with "Pizza"! If I have to give you one truth of computers, COMPUTERS ARE NOT RANDOM, THEIR FLAWS ARE IN THE CODING OF THE SOFTWARE WHICH CAN BE MANIPULATED TO PROMOTE ITS CREATERS FUNCTIONS OF THE SOFTWARE. This is also proven with "Slot Machines" in Las Vegas. Nothing is random about a machine that pays out ".01%" of the 100% that is put in over an large period of time. :mrgreen:

DONT TRUST SEARCHES! :spin:
 

Simon W. Moon

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stsburns said:
ALL SEARCHES ARE NOT RANDOM! Just because a computer can analyze 0's and 1's doesnt mean you can completely trust it. Many of these "Popular" search engines are PAID to show certain results. My referce is MSN.com search engine. Event: April Fools Day, MSN.com advertised how inacurate it is by "Displaying its ego", on the subject that people will search on their search engine that day "April Fools Day", and would recieve strange results. Like if you were to search for the word "Cat", you'd turn up a result with "Pizza"! If I have to give you one truth of computers, COMPUTERS ARE NOT RANDOM, THEIR FLAWS ARE IN THE CODING OF THE SOFTWARE WHICH CAN BE MANIPULATED TO PROMOTE ITS CREATERS FUNCTIONS OF THE SOFTWARE. This is also proven with "Slot Machines" in Las Vegas. Nothing is random about a machine that pays out ".01%" of the 100% that is put in over an large period of time. :mrgreen:

DONT TRUST SEARCHES! :spin:
ummm....
suuure okay
Whatever you say.
I have no idea what you're talking about in relation to this thread.
 

vandree

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From: http://www.americanprogress.org/site/pp.asp?c=biJRJ8OVF&b=24889

2001: WH Admits Iraq Contained; Creates Agency to Circumvent Intel Agencies

In 2001 and before, intelligence agencies noted that Saddam Hussein was effectively contained after the Gulf War. In fact, former weapons inspector David Kay now admits that the previous policy of containment – including the 1998 bombing of Iraq – destroyed any remaining infrastructure of potential WMD programs.

OCTOBER 8, 1997 – IAEA SAYS IRAQ FREE OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS: "As reported in detail in the progress report dated 8 October 1997…and based on all credible information available to date, the IAEA's verification activities in Iraq, have resulted in the evolution of a technically coherent picture of Iraq's clandestine nuclear programme. These verification activities have revealed no indications that Iraq had achieved its programme objective of producing nuclear weapons or that Iraq had produced more than a few grams of weapon-usable nuclear material or had clandestinely acquired such material. Furthermore, there are no indications that there remains in Iraq any physical capability for t he production of weapon-usable nuclear material of any practical significance." [Source: IAEA Report, 10/8/98]

FEBRUARY 23 & 24, 2001 – COLIN POWELL SAYS IRAQ IS CONTAINED: "I think we ought to declare [the containment policy] a success. We have kept him contained, kept him in his box." He added Saddam "is unable to project conventional power against his neighbors" and that "he threatens not the United States." [Source: State Department, 2/23/01 and 2/24/01]

SEPTEMBER 16, 2001 – CHENEY ACKNOWLEDGES IRAQ IS CONTAINED: Vice President **** Cheney said that "Saddam Hussein is bottled up" – a confirmation of the intelligence he had received. [Source: Meet the Press, 9/16/2001]


2002: Intel Agencies Repeatedly Warn White House of Its Weak WMD Case

Throughout 2002, the CIA, DIA, Department of Energy and United Nations all warned the Bush Administration that its selective use of intelligence was painting a weak WMD case. Those warnings were repeatedly ignored.

JANUARY, 2002 – TENET DOES NOT MENTION IRAQ IN NUCLEAR THREAT REPORT: "In CIA Director George Tenet's January 2002 review of global weapons-technology proliferation, he did not even mention a nuclear threat from Iraq, though he did warn of one from North Korea." [Source: The New Republic, 6/30/03]

FEBRUARY 6, 2002 – CIA SAYS IRAQ HAS NOT PROVIDED WMD TO TERRORISTS: "The Central Intelligence Agency has no evidence that Iraq has engaged in terrorist operations against the United States in nearly a decade, and the agency is also convinced that President Saddam Hussein has not provided chemical or biological weapons to Al Qaeda or related terrorist groups, according to several American intelligence officials." [Source: NY Times, 2/6/02]

SUMMER, 2002 – CIA WARNINGS TO WHITE HOUSE EXPOSED: "In the late summer of 2002, Sen. Graham had requested from Tenet an analysis of the Iraqi threat. According to knowledgeable sources, he received a 25-page classified response reflecting the balanced view that had prevailed earlier among the intelligence agencies--noting, for example, that evidence of an Iraqi nuclear program or a link to Al Qaeda was inconclusive. Early that September, the committee also received the DIA's classified analysis, which reflected the same cautious assessments. But committee members became worried when, midway through the month, they received a new CIA analysis of the threat that highlighted the Bush administration's claims and consigned skepticism to footnotes." [Source: The New Republic, 6/30/03]

SEPTEMBER, 2002 – DIA TELLS WHITE HOUSE NO EVIDENCE OF CHEMICAL WEAPONS: "An unclassified excerpt of a 2002 Defense Intelligence Agency study on Iraq's chemical warfare program in which it stated that there is ‘no reliable information on whether Iraq is producing and stockpiling chemical weapons, or where Iraq has - or will - establish its chemical warfare agent production facilities.’" The report also said, "A substantial amount of Iraq's chemical warfare agents, precursors, munitions, and production equipment were destroyed between 1991 and 1998 as a result of Operation Desert Storm and UNSCOM (United Nations Special Commission) actions." [Source: Carnegie Endowment for Peace, 6/13/03; DIA report, 2002]

SEPTEMBER 20, 2002 – DEPT. OF ENERGY TELLS WHITE HOUSE OF NUKE DOUBTS: "Doubts about the quality of some of the evidence that the United States is using to make its case that Iraq is trying to build a nuclear bomb emerged Thursday. While National Security Adviser Condi Rice stated on 9/8 that imported aluminum tubes ‘are only really suited for nuclear weapons programs, centrifuge programs’ a growing number of experts say that the administration has not presented convincing evidence that the tubes were intended for use in uranium enrichment rather than for artillery rocket tubes or other uses. Former U.N. weapons inspector David Albright said he found significant disagreement among scientists within the Department of Energy and other agencies about the certainty of the evidence." [Source: UPI, 9/20/02]

OCTOBER 2002 – CIA DIRECTLY WARNS WHITE HOUSE: "The CIA sent two memos to the White House in October voicing strong doubts about a claim President Bush made three months later in the State of the Union address that Iraq was trying to buy nuclear materials in Africa." [Source: Washington Post, 7/23/03]

OCTOBER 2002 — STATE DEPT. WARNS WHITE HOUSE ON NUKE CHARGES: The State Department’s Intelligence and Research Department dissented from the conclusion in the National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq’s WMD capabilities that Iraq was reconstituting its nuclear weapons program. "The activities we have detected do not ... add up to a compelling case that Iraq is currently pursuing what INR would consider to be an integrated and comprehensive approach to acquiring nuclear weapons." INR accepted the judgment by Energy Department technical experts that aluminum tubes Iraq was seeking to acquire, which was the central basis for the conclusion that Iraq was reconstituting its nuclear weapons program, were ill-suited to build centrifuges for enriching uranium. [Source, Declassified Iraq NIE released 7/2003]

OCTOBER 2002 – AIR FORCE WARNS WHITE HOUSE: "The government organization most knowledgeable about the United States' UAV program -- the Air Force's National Air and Space Intelligence Center -- had sharply disputed the notion that Iraq's UAVs were being designed as attack weapons" – a WMD claim President Bush used in his October 7 speech on Iraqi WMD, just three days before the congressional vote authorizing the president to use force. [Source: Washington Post, 9/26/03]
 

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2003: WH Pressures Intel Agencies to Conform; Ignores More Warnings

Instead of listening to the repeated warnings from the intelligence community, intelligence officials say the White House instead pressured them to conform their reports to fit a pre-determined policy. Meanwhile, more evidence from international institutions poured in that the White House’s claims were not well-grounded.

LATE 2002-EARLY 2003 – CHENEY PRESSURES CIA TO CHANGE INTELLIGENCE: "Vice President **** Cheney's repeated trips to CIA headquarters in the run-up to the war for unusual, face-to-face sessions with intelligence analysts poring over Iraqi data. The pressure on the intelligence community to document the administration's claims that the Iraqi regime had ties to al-Qaida and was pursuing a nuclear weapons capacity was ‘unremitting,’ said former CIA counterterrorism chief Vince Cannistraro, echoing several other intelligence veterans interviewed." Additionally, CIA officials "charged that the hard-liners in the Defense Department and vice president's office had 'pressured' agency analysts to paint a dire picture of Saddam's capabilities and intentions." [Sources: Dallas Morning News, 7/28/03; Newsweek, 7/28/03]

JANUARY, 2003 – STATE DEPT. INTEL BUREAU REITERATE WARNING TO POWELL: "The Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR), the State Department's in-house analysis unit, and nuclear experts at the Department of Energy are understood to have explicitly warned Secretary of State Colin Powell during the preparation of his speech that the evidence was questionable. The Bureau reiterated to Mr. Powell during the preparation of his February speech that its analysts were not persuaded that the aluminum tubes the Administration was citing could be used in centrifuges to enrich uranium." [Source: Financial Times, 7/30/03]

FEBRUARY 14, 2003 – UN WARNS WHITE HOUSE THAT NO WMD HAVE BEEN FOUND: "In their third progress report since U.N. Security Council Resolution 1441 was passed in November, inspectors told the council they had not found any weapons of mass destruction." Weapons inspector Hans Blix told the U.N. Security Council they had been unable to find any WMD in Iraq and that more time was needed for inspections. [Source: CNN, 2/14/03]

FEBRUARY 15, 2003 – IAEA WARNS WHITE HOUSE NO NUCLEAR EVIDENCE: The head of the IAEA told the U.N. in February that "We have to date found no evidence of ongoing prohibited nuclear or nuclear-related activities in Iraq." The IAEA examined "2,000 pages of documents seized Jan. 16 from an Iraqi scientist's home -- evidence, the Americans said, that the Iraqi regime was hiding government documents in private homes. The documents, including some marked classified, appear to be the scientist's personal files." However, "the documents, which contained information about the use of laser technology to enrich uranium, refer to activities and sites known to the IAEA and do not change the agency's conclusions about Iraq's laser enrichment program." [Source: Wash. Post, 2/15/03]

FEBURARY 24, 2003 – CIA WARNS WHITE HOUSE ‘NO DIRECT EVIDENCE’ OF WMD: "A CIA report on proliferation released this week says the intelligence community has no ‘direct evidence’ that Iraq has succeeded in reconstituting its biological, chemical, nuclear or long-range missile programs in the two years since U.N. weapons inspectors left and U.S. planes bombed Iraqi facilities. ‘We do not have any direct evidence that Iraq has used the period since Desert Fox to reconstitute its Weapons of Mass Destruction programs,’ said the agency in its semi-annual report on proliferation activities." [NBC News, 2/24/03]

MARCH 7, 2003 – IAEA REITERATES TO WHITE HOUSE NO EVIDENCE OF NUKES: IAEA Director Mohamed ElBaradei said nuclear experts have found "no indication" that Iraq has tried to import high-strength aluminum tubes or specialized ring magnets for centrifuge enrichment of uranium. For months, American officials had "cited Iraq's importation of these tubes as evidence that Mr. Hussein's scientists have been seeking to develop a nuclear capability." ElBaradei also noted said "the IAEA has concluded, with the concurrence of outside experts, that documents which formed the basis for the [President Bush’s assertion] of recent uranium transactions between Iraq and Niger are in fact not authentic." When questioned about this on Meet the Press, Vice President **** Cheney simply said "Mr. ElBaradei is, frankly, wrong." [Source: NY Times, 3/7/03: Meet the Press, 3/16/03]

MAY 30, 2003 – INTEL PROFESSIONALS ADMIT THEY WERE PRESSURED: "A growing number of U.S. national security professionals are accusing the Bush administration of slanting the facts and hijacking the $30 billion intelligence apparatus to justify its rush to war in Iraq . A key target is a four-person Pentagon team that reviewed material gathered by other intelligence outfits for any missed bits that might have tied Iraqi President Saddam Hussein to banned weapons or terrorist groups. This team, self-mockingly called the Cabal, 'cherry-picked the intelligence stream' in a bid to portray Iraq as an imminent threat, said Patrick Lang, a official at the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). The DIA was "exploited and abused and bypassed in the process of making the case for war in Iraq based on the presence of WMD," or weapons of mass destruction, he said. Greg Thielmann, an intelligence official in the State Department, said it appeared to him that intelligence had been shaped 'from the top down.'" [Reuters, 5/30/03 ]

JUNE 6, 2003 – INTELLIGENCE HISTORIAN SAYS INTEL WAS HYPED: "The CIA bowed to Bush administration pressure to hype the threat of Saddam Hussein's weapons programs ahead of the U.S.-led war in Iraq , a leading national security historian concluded in a detailed study of the spy agency's public pronouncements." [Reuters, 6/6/03]

http://www.americanprogress.org/site/pp.asp?c=biJRJ8OVF&b=24889
 

Billo_Really

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Originally posted by Simon W. Moon:
"Vice President **** Cheney... called the New York Times coverage of the story 'outrageous'."
You see even this own message board finds the vice-president offensive!
 
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