IN DEFENSE OF INTELLIGENCE…AGAIN The House Judi…

IN DEFENSE OF INTELLIGENCE…AGAIN

The House Judiciary Committee Minority report (spearheaded by the irrepressible John Conyers of Michigan) on some of the laws the Bushies have broken in connection with the Iraq War and the illegal domestic spying, has been released. There’s no news for those of us who’ve been following the shenanigans (and IMHO giving them an Irish name over-dignifies them!), but in case you missed it on 60 Minutes back in April, here’s a key CIA agent talking about the so-called Intelligence Failure, and let me put it this way, it was a failure of White House intelligence, not CIA intelligence! (From pp. 171-172 of the report, in the “Addendum” [PDF]):

“On April 23, Sixty Minutes interviewed retired CIA Officer Tyler Drumheller, who headed up the CIA’s covert operations in Europe before the {Iraq} war. He confirmed that prior to the War, the vast majority of individuals who worked in the intelligence community recognized that the Niger uranium story was false. He stated on the show, ‘Most people came to the opinion that there was something questionable about [the Italian intelligence service report]….[t]hat was our reaction from the very beginning. The report didn’t hold together.’ Drumheller explained how the White House lost interest in information provided by Naji Sabri, Iraq’s former Foreign Minister, after Sabri had reported that ‘[Iraq] had no active weapons of mass destruction program.’ As Drumheller stated on Sixty Minutes, ‘It just sticks in my craw every time I hear them say it’s an intelligence failure… This was a policy failure…[t]he policy was set…[t]he war in Iraq was coming. And they were looking for intelligence to fit into that policy, to justify the policy.’ On June 25, The Washington Post further reported when Drumheller saw a claim in a draft U.N {sic} speech for Mr. Powell that Iraq had mobile chemical weapons labs, supported by statements from the Iraqi defector known as ‘Curveball,’ he ‘took his pen and crossed out the whole paragraph’ and that when he received a late evening phone call from CIA Director Tenet the night before Powell’s speech Drumheller told him, ‘[h]ey, boss, you’re not going to use that stuff in the speech….? There are real problems with that.’ However, when Mr. Drumheller later ‘turn[ed] on the television…there it [the reference to mobile chemical weapons labs] was again.'”

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