In early April, 2007, the US intel agencies held a critical meeting with President Bush, Condi Rice, and Dick Cheney and reported on Iran’s weapons program involving nuclear technology.
The response was a Bush/Cheney classic:
* According to the BBC, Cheney coughed up an iron lung, then demanded that the US military bomb Iran. He continued with these mad demands on a daily basis. He went so far as to order a third US carrier task force into the itty bitty Gulf, sitting outside the shores of Iran, in hopes of provoking an “incident”. On October 21, 2007, he actually threatened Iran with war, while talking before the American Enterprise Institute.
* Condi Rice went on a series of press conferences, warning Iran about its nuclear ambitions, and threatening that the world would not and could not put up with dangerous Iranian behavior. She even hinted that if the Israelis wished to take matters in their own hands, she could not disagree with that move.
* President Bush appeared at numerous fund-raisers, beating the war drum, and repeated his threats that Iran had to change its ways at every press conference. He also repeatedly threatened Iran with war, in no uncertain terms.
So what exactly did the Intel agencies say nine months ago, that resulted in such war-mongering, almost daily threats, and seeing terms like World War III being used openly in press conferences?
The INTEL was based on new, confirmed lines of intelligence, including Human, technological and other sources. It said that Iran had NO WEAPONS PROGRAMS.
This week, the Intel Agencies, jointly released their NIE (national intelligence estimate that congress is supposed to receive). It was made public to everyone’s surprise. It concluded, again, that Iran had NO WEAPONS PROGRAMS dating back to 2003.
George Bush held a press conference yesterday, to respond to the release of the NIE.
My point is is that there is a better way forward for the Iranians. There has been a moment during my presidency in which diplomacy provided a way forward for the Iranians. And, you know, our hope is we can get back on that path again.
But what is certain is that if Iran ever had the knowledge to develop a nuclear weapon and they passed that knowledge on to a covert program, which at one time in their history has existed, the world would be more dangerous. And now’s the time for the international community to work together.
George must have forgotten the post-9/11 Iranian effort, attempting to come to terms with the US, accepting Israel, cooperating on bin Laden and the Taliban, and working towards peaceful coexistance. Then again, given George’s mental workings, maybe not. A month after Iran’s overture, George called them part of the Axis of Evil.
Just a month after claiming that Iran was building a weapon, and needed to stop, he now claims that just having nuclear knowledge is enough to justify current US policies. And this comes NINE MONTHS after we knew they had no weapons program since 2003.
In one respect, one must be impressed with the mature, restrained, and civilized manner in which the Iranian leaders dealt with a constant barrage of threats, feigned attacks, and economic & military pressure. Comparing them to the US leadership, one comes away with the idea that America is being led by a gaggle of idiots, a cabal of morons, a group of lying fiends. Some might even suggest that George and Dick are insane. A growing number of people around the world might agree.
Dick Cheney not only demanded that our military attack Iran on a daily basis, he also threatened, pushed, yelled at, and tried to force the Intel agencies to alter their conclusions on Iran, much like he did successfully on Iraq’s WMD. This time, the Intel agencies stood up to the tyrannical threats and pressure, and refused to bow to his will.
For those who don’t recall, or simply wish to forget, during the run-up to war against Iraq, Cheney appointed Doug Feith, one of the stupidest men on the face of this planet, to run the Office of Special Projects. Their task was to cherry pick all intel items that would support a war with Iraq, while suppressing the vast database that went against them.
It may be that the entire world can take a deep breath today and realize that we passed a major milestone this week. Because of brave intel agencies (the idea we must preface this issue that way is still shocking and scary), we know the truth about Iran. War now seems far less likely as a result. Joe Biden went so far as to state that if one American bomb falls on Iran, he will personally start impeachment proceedings.
Of course, we will still see the president’s neocon supporters claim that because the Intel was wrong on Iraq, it is also wrong on Iran, and use that to justify more pressure, even war against Iran. Considering the damage they did (Wolfowitz, Libby, Addington, Hadley, Bolton (John), Bolton (Josh), Cheney, Feith, Perle, Gonzales and many others) we really need to take their future statements with a grain of salt. The only reason that Congress received such bad intel before Iraq, was precisely because of their lies, deceit, manipulation, and worse.
It maybe that Biden is wrong, and that impeachment is not the answer. Perhaps war crimes trials would be more appropriate.
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It was not April, 2007 that the terrible trio first learned of the NIE’s conclusions.
This blog was one of the first to report that the NIE was being delayed for political reasons. George Bush tried his moron act again today (i.e., “I didn’t find out about this until last week.”) but this time the turd ain’t floating. The news that Iran ended its nuclear program in 2003 was briefed to George Bush in the Presidential Daily Brief. He has known about this, I am told, for at least one year. George Bush is lying when he insists he had no inkling, until last week, that the intelligence community believed Iran halted its nuke program in 2003.
This is the kind of earthshaking intel that analysts rarely get to see. What is remarkable about the NIE is the consensus in the intelligence community about the validity of this info. Compare this to the execrable 2002 NIE on Iraq. There was no consensus in the intelligence community about Iraq’s efforts to acquire nukes. The”true believers” held the day and their position was prominently featured in the final draft. Dissenters–State’s Intelligence and Research Bureau and the Department of Energy–were relegated to footnotes and comments separated from the claim.
this from Larry Johnson at:
His quotes from norm Podhorezt and John Bolton make for priceless reading.