I have to admit of being engulfed in the details of the Iraq war because I never thought there was enough evidence of collaboration with Al qaida or that the country had large quantities of weapons of mass destruction to justify the invasion. Like everyone else I thought the invasion of Afghanistan was justified and brilliantly conducted. As we approach the 11th anniversary of the Iraq war fiasco, I am still amazed that no one ever paid for their mistakes except the thousands of innocent Iraqis and our troops.
It's not that I don't want to put it behind me but Andrea's Mitchell's interview of Donald Rumsfeld brought back all the old anger. I didn't expect Donald Rumsfeld to apologize for his mistakes but his arrogance and his obvious lies to sell books set me off.....If you get a chance to watch the interview,you won't be disappointed...This is a sample:
Mitchell: One of the key factors was this source ‘Curveball.’ Rumsfeld: How do you know it was one of the key factors? Mitchell: From all the reports, from all of the writing, the point was that without Curveball, Colin Powell said without being told this man, a single source, that he would not have made the speech that he made to the United Nations. Rumsfeld. Right, and that's fair. The intelligence people, these are honorable people - George Tenet and John McLaughlin - Mitchell: And all them in the Pentagon in your Office of Special Plans. Rumsfeld: They had nothing to do with it. They were not intelligence gatherers. They did not have anything to do with Curveball at all. It would be a mistake to connect them. The people, the intelligence community gathered information from all kinds of people. Curveball was one of hundreds I'm sure. I’m not in the intelligence business so I can’t say precisely - Mitchell: You actually created for the first time a special unit, this Office of Special Plans. It has been described as an intelligence – Rumsfeld: The policy office created it. Mitchell: On your order. Rumsfeld: Not on my orders at all. I was advised they did that and there was nothing wrong with that. There were a handful of people in there, 2 or 3 people, interpreting intelligence. They weren't creating it, they weren’t gathering it. And I think the implication of your question I think isn't consistent with what I understand to be the facts. Mitchell: According to subsequent reports, Inspector General’s reports, that intelligence unit, that analysis unit in the Pentagon was stove-piping information – intelligence information. Rumsfeld: What does that mean? Stove-piping? Mitchell: Mr. Secretary, you know what stove-piping means. It was keeping intelligence information away from other units. Not permitting people in the CIA - Rumsfeld: Oh, not at all. Mitchell: - and not permitting Colin Powell to know all of the factors. Rumsfeld: That is not true. That is factually not true. Mitchell: Tyler Drumheller, the former CIA analyst who has written - Rumsfeld: Never heard of him, Tyler Drumfeller. But I do know is that when I heard about this office and what they were doing and they briefed me once – once is all as I recall, I said, you should brief George Tenet and they did. There was no secret about it – there was nothing mysterious. Mitchell: You were only briefed once? Rumsfeld: To my recollection. By this group. I was briefed every day by the CIA.
She continued to hound him on key points of information that were crucial to the run-up to the Iraq war and then he played dumb again when she questioned him about his involvement with torpedoing Gen. Shinseki and trying to squelch others from speaking out about the war. She was well prepared for Donald and quizzed him over his frightful decision to disband the Iraqi army which resulted in a brutal civil war that cost many innocent Iraqi lives as well as our many of our troops. Mitchell: his replacement. Rumsfeld: I did not announce his successor a year before. That is a myth that's been built up and many people have pointed out - Mitchell: were you trying to send a signal to undercut General Shinseki? Rumsfeld: I certainly was not. Mitchell: So that people would know they could not dissent about what some would argue – Rumsfeld: That’s absolute nonsense, Andrea. It just didn’t happen. Mitchell: What about the decision to disband the Iraqi army? Rumsfeld: What about it? Mitchell: Do you take responsibility for that? You seem to be implying that Jerry Bremer was responsible for that. It could not have happened without your concurrence though. Rumsfeld: You have a lot of conclusions that come from people not involved. I tried to write about it in an accurate way. I've got documentation on the website that supports it. The Iraqi army in large measure disbanded itself because you had something I think 11,000 Sunni generals. Mitchell: They were defections, but there was a decision made. Rumsfeld: Just a minute. And a group of Shia conscripts many of whom just went home. There's no question but that the coalition provisional authority, Jerry Bremer, made an announcement and is it a wrong decision? I don't think so. I think he probably, it's - there's arguments on both sides..
Donald Rumsfeld is a smart man, so he knows that curball recently admitted that he lied about Saddam Hussein having WMD because he wanted us to overthrow the regime. He also knows that Judith Miller,former New Times columnist cherry picked intelligence reports to write columns supporting the invasion. I know Mr. Rumsfeld knows the findings of the Senate Intellagence Reports that stated "Most of the major key judgments in the Intelligence Community’s October 2002 National Intelligence Estimate (NIE), Iraq’s Continuing Programs for Weapons of Mass Destruction, either overstated, or were not supported by, the underlying intelligence reporting. A series of failures, particularly in analytic trade craft, led to the mischaracterization of the intelligence."
Donald Rumsfeld cites Colin Powell as his source but according to a Guardian report " "Colin Powell the US secretary of state at the time of the Iraq invasion, has called on the CIA and Pentagon to explain why they failed to alert him to the unreliability of a key source behind claims of Saddam Hussein's bio-weapons capability.
Responding to the Guardian's revelation that the source, Rafid Ahmed Alwan al-Janabi or "Curveball" as his US and German handlers called him, admitted fabricating evidence of Iraq's secret biological weapons programme, Powell said that questions should be put to the US agencies involved in compiling the case for war.
In particular he singled out the CIA and the Defense Intelligence Agency – the Pentagon's military intelligence arm. Janabi, an Iraqi defector, was used as the primary source by the Bush administration to justify invading Iraq in March 2003. Doubts about his credibility circulated before the war and have been confirmed by his admission this week that he lied."
Where is the outrage? Where is the accountability?
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