Thursday, September 6, 2007

The making of a lie

A Salon article by Sidney Blumenthal states that two CIA operatives have confirmed Tyler Drumheller’s account of the developments between Tenet and Bush with regards to the intelligence received from Naji Sabri, Saddam Hussein’s Foreign Minister. Drumheller stated that Tenet had informed Bush prior to the war in Iraq on the findings of the Naji Sabri debriefings. Sabri had been paid up to $200,000 by the CIA alone and more by French Intelligence to divulge information about Saddam Hussein's WMD programs and had stated categorically that Saddam Hussein may have wanted to have WMDs but that he had none and that Hussein’s engineers had told him that they could build a crude atom bomb in two years if they had fissile material, but they didn’t.

Instead Bush avidly concentrated on the famous agent codenamed “curveball” an alleged chemical engineer who told the CIA and specifically the Bush Administration what they wanted to hear. Drumheller considered ‘curveball’ to be a fake and indeed, it turned out that he wasn’t an engineer at all, but an unemployed taxi driver. Tenet had also told Bush that curveball’s information was at odds with what Sabri had been telling the CIA and that Sabri was considered a highly reliable informant. Bush’s reaction was to call it “the same old thing,” and he disregarded it completely.

The CIA officers in question who had originally written the Sabri memo waited for it to return to them but it never did. Instead a different memo which had been rewritten came to them which put a completely different slant on the Sabri information. One of the CIA agents is quoted as saying:

"Bush didn't give a fuck about the intelligence. He had his mind made up."

And so we went to war on a lie. Game, set and match.

2 comments:

Todd Dugdale said...

I believe when Bush is out of office we are going to see a flood of horror stories from people who worked in the Administration about the continual lying, disappearance of funds, crony deals and gross abuse of the eavesdropping programme.
Today I saw a bumpersticker that said "The WMDs went to Syria". There, it's all explained now. Maybe that's why Ohlmert is getting ready to invade Syria. Where will these mysterious WMDs be "moved" next? Undoubtedly to a country with oil, desperate for "liberation". Well-paid secret informants will provide all of the "proof" needed, and in copious amounts.

AJG said...

The remarkable thing is the propagation of the unknown, WMD as a constant in terms of what people actually believe. It has been expressed so often that certain people are bound to believe there must have been some and so Syria is the obvious choice for where they ended up. Only as you point out, Syria has no oil.
Tarnation! We'll have to re-thunkit.