Saturday, May 07, 2005

The Fix Was in on Iraq

During Great Britain's just-concluded election campaign, a classified memo was leaked to the London Sunday Times claiming that President Bush decided during the summer of 2002 to overthrow Saddam Hussein. Not surprisingly, the memo also indicates that the administration and an impatient National Security Council, led at the time by Condi Rice, were prepared to make sure the "intelligence and facts" were "fixed around the policy" of regime change.

The memo summarizes a report to Tony Blair and others in the British government by Brian Dearlove (known in very Bondesque terms as 'C'), the head of MI6, the British equivalent of the CIA.

Here is the quote that makes you stand up and say, 'Hmmm:'

C [Dearlove] reported on his recent talks in Washington. There was a perceptible shift in attitude. Military action was now seen as inevitable. Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.

Why was it necessary to sex up the intelligence? Because there was no evidence that Iraq was participating in terrorism, threatening her neighbors, or building WMDs.

British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw admitted as much, as the memo makes clear: "It seemed clear that Bush had made up his mind to take military action, even if the timing was not yet decided. But the case was thin. Saddam was not threatening his neighbors, and his WMD capability was less than that of Libya, North Korea, or Iran."

From the time the memo was written, a systematic propaganda campaign was orchestrated, as chronicled by former CIA analyst, Ray McGovern. Among the fabrications passed off as fact were the following: "1) Aluminum artillery tubes misdiagnosed as nuclear related; 2) Forgeries alleging Iraqi attempts to obtain uranium in Africa; 3) Tall tales from a drunken defector about mobile biological weapons laboratories; 4) Bogus warnings that Iraqi forces could fire WMD-tipped missiles within 45 minutes of an order to do so; 5) Dodgy dossiers fabricated in London; and 6) A U.S. National Intelligence Estimate thrown in for good measure."

The allegations stemming from the memo should create a media firestorm and a slew of Congressional investigations. But so far, there has been nothing but silence, so far as I am able to discern, from major American media outlets other than Knight Ridder News. And I won't expect Republicans in Congress to step up to their oversight responsibilities. After all, that would require that they take time out of their busy schedules granting legal status to "undocumented workers" and finding a myriad of unconstitutional ways to spend your money.

What, too, of our Evangelical and Catholic friends who defended the illegal and immoral invasion as a Just War? Will the revelations of deceit cure them of their war fever?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Darrell,

Some "Christian", this man! A liar, plainly and simply. I've sensed the lie as the essential building block in this man's character from the moment he first appeared on the public scene. And he is a war criminal as well, every bit as guilty as were the Goerings at Nuremburg for the Nazi attack on Poland in 1939. He's cost the world the lives of hundreds of thousands of innocents, every one of them precious in the sight of God and a nail driven into the hands of Jesus Christ. God forgive him on the Last Day.

And yes, where the disapproval from the Bennetts, Weigels, Hudsons, Novaks and Donohues? A very strange kind of Catholic "orthodoxy" theirs. Novak, for one, utterly disgraced as a theologian, compromised so thoroughly as to make him a laughing-stock among Catholic intellectuals, his just-war musings, trumpted by Republican shill, Richard Neuhaus, unworthy of even a hearing at the Vatican. No less than John Kerry with his abortion enthusiasms, these people are accessories to murder with their war apologetics. Should the bishops refuse them communion?

John Lowell

11:34 AM  
Blogger Darrell said...

Don't you think you're being a bit harsh, John. I mean, really, it was just an "intelligence failure." Surely policymakers would never shade the truth to drag the country into war.

The whole experience has been eye-opening for me. In college, I read a number of 1920's era "revisionist" history books--which by now are considered mainstream--and I wondered exactly how the country could be so easily dragooned into war. Now, of course, I had a front-row seat to the procedings.

I'm still furious with the theologians, semi-skilled intellectuals at best, I read in First Things, Touchstone, and all over the evangelical media, that provided legitimacy to this nonsense. If only they had any sense of shame.

6:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Darrell,

"Don't you think you're being a bit harsh, John. I mean, really, it was just an 'intelligence failure.' Surely policymakers would never shade the truth to drag the country into war."

God, spare us. There goes that Lowell again, emotional, impossibly rigid, never the team player. Doesn't he realize what's at stake here? :-)

I am convinced that at least one of the motives behind the fabrication of this war was a desire to offer the American people an outlet for their anger over the attack on the Twin Towers and this solely with the reality of the upcoming presidential election in mind. If I recall, columnist Bob Novak wrote a piece to this effect identifying Rove or a Rove operative as being supportive of this approach. Anyone even in the least familiar with the details of the history leading up to the German invasion of Poland in 1939 will recognize the influence of Hitler, Geobbels and Goering in Bush's preparations. It's almost as though he'd studied them so close are the parallels. These connivences and the torture business make the Bush Administration the closest flirtation to the reality of fascism the United States has ever experienced. And they appear to have gotten away with it.

John Lowell

9:11 PM  
Blogger Darrell said...

In a sense, the administration did need to do SOMETHING from a political standpoint, I suppose. I vaguely remember Wolfowitz talking about the need to invade Iraq because it was "doable."

You mention, too, the rise of an American fascism, a subject also tackled by Raimodo, Rockwell, Paul Craig Roberts, and Scot McConnell. Doesn't seem to me like we are quite to that point just yet, though you can see the smoke billowing over the horizon, can't you? When a little Cessna plane can bring the Imperial Capital to a grinding halt, you come to realize that it wouldn't take much to gin up enough fear to hand over significant liberties to the state in the name of preserving "order."

7:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Darrell,

"Of course the people don't want war. But after all, it's the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it's always a simple matter to drag the people along whether it's a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to greater danger." ..... Herman Goering

While there is another quotation of Hitler's that comes to mind, one in which he assures leaders of the German military that pretexts for the invasion of Poland have been prepared and that his only fear was that someone might come along with a last minute peace proposal, to my way of thinking the Goering remark above easily could be envisioned as having been uttered by Dick Cheney in some private meeting with his staff. Once this kind of thinking is considered acceptable as received, a nation is already fascist.

John Lowell

2:18 AM  
Blogger Darrell said...

I would love to know the source of the Goerring quote.

9:03 PM  

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