Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Ron Suskind just found the smoking gun on Iraq!

Now here's some news:

In his new book "The Way of the World: A Story of Truth and Hope in an Age of Extremism" Ron Suskind writes the administration knew from a secret meeting between an Iraqi intelligence official, Tahir Jalil Habbush al-Tikriti, and British intelligence officals in Amman, Jordan, [Formerly called Philadelphia] that Saddam had no WMD, before the invasion.

Suskind writes: "That the White House had 'ignored the Iraq intelligence chief’s accurate disclosure that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq – intelligence they received in plenty of time to stop an invasion."

Of course, they also knew from the defection in 1995 of Saddam's son-in-law and chief of WMD that Iraq had no weapons.

As I pointed out in April of 2006, for about the 100th time, quoting from the transcript of the UNSCOM debrief: "Kamel states categorically: 'I ordered destruction of all chemical weapons. All weapons - biological, chemical, missile, nuclear were destroyed.'" [In 1991]

But there's much more . . .

More explosively, if that's possible, Suskind writes that Bush ordered the CIA in July of '03 to fabricate a post-dated letter saying that Mohammed Atta went to Iraq to train for the 9/11 attacks and that Saddam really did get that "Yellow Cake," after all.

The very same Iraqi intelligence chief, Habbush, wrote the letter. He was relocated and given 5 million dollars, according to Suskind, which he told NPR couldn't have been anything other than "hush money."

Politico (who got an advance copy of the book, before the "street date," very naughty booksellers) reports:

"The White House had concocted a fake letter from Habbush to Saddam, backdated to July 1, 2001,' Suskind writes. 'It said that 9/11 ringleader Mohammad Atta had actually trained for his mission in Iraq – thus showing, finally, that there was an operational link between Saddam and al Qaeda, something the Vice President’s Office had been pressing CIA to prove since 9/11 as a justification to invade Iraq. There is no link.'" [Though Cheney keeps insisting it's true.]

The letter appeared in December of 2003 in the Telegraph.

The Telegraph:

"Iraq's coalition government claims that it has uncovered documentary proof that Mohammed Atta, the al-Qaeda mastermind of the September 11 attacks against the US, was trained in Baghdad by Abu Nidal, the notorious Palestinian terrorist.

Details of Atta's visit to the Iraqi capital in the summer of 2001, just weeks before he launched the most devastating terrorist attack in US history, are contained in a top secret memo written to Saddam Hussein, the then Iraqi president, by Tahir Jalil Habbush al-Tikriti, the former head of the Iraqi Intelligence Service.

The handwritten memo, a copy of which has been obtained exclusively by the Telegraph, is dated July 1, 2001 and provides a short resume of a three-day "work programme" Atta had undertaken at Abu Nidal's base in Baghdad.

In the memo, Habbush reports that Atta 'displayed extraordinary effort' and demonstrated his ability to lead the team that would be "responsible for attacking the targets that we have agreed to destroy'.

The second part of the memo, which is headed 'Niger Shipment', contains a report about an unspecified shipment — believed to be uranium — that it says has been transported to Iraq via Libya and Syria.

Although Iraqi officials refused to disclose how and where they had obtained the document, Dr Ayad Allawi, a member of Iraq's ruling seven-man Presidential Committee, said the document was genuine.

'We are uncovering evidence all the time of Saddam's involvement with al-Qaeda,' he said. 'But this is the most compelling piece of evidence that we have found so far. It shows that not only did Saddam have contacts with al-Qaeda, he had contact with those responsible for the September 11 attacks.'"

Notice, btw, who takes credit for uncovering this important evidence that just happens to debunk Joe Wilson's claim that Bush lied in his Jan 2003 SOTU address about Yellow Cake. That Darth Cheney, always thinking about covering his tracks!

Suskind goes on . . .

[The forgery] "operation created by the White House and passed to the CIA seems inconsistent with the laws about the CIA not launching operations 'intended to influence United States political processes, public opinion, policies or media . . . . It is not the sort of offense, such as assault or burglary, that carries specific penalties, for example, a fine or jail time . . . It is much broader than that. It pertains to the White House’s knowingly misusing an arm of government, the sort of thing generally taken up in impeachment proceedings."

Boy, Dennis Kucinich and Robert Wexler are real nutjobs, huh? Where do they get their crazy ideas, wasting the public's time and money?

Suskind on NPR

Suskind was on ATC this morning and had to deal with a very skeptical Steve Inskeep.

Inskeep: "Are you alledging that the President didn't just screw up, [Because we all know he does that all the time] or that his people didn't screw up, but that the President himself knowingly lied about what Iraq's situation was?"

Suskind: "The evidence is clear, that the Presdident knew there were no weapons, or certainly had plenty of evidence there were no weapons in Iraq prior to the invasion."

Inskeep: "Let me ask, though, you're talking about one high level Iraqi official, very high level, credible sounding, but he's one offcial, and I wonder if you as a reporter would be willing to base you entire book, say, mush less a matter of life and death, on a single source like that?"

No Steve, actually, beside Saddam's defector son-in-law (only in charge of Saddam's entire WMD program), Iraq's foreign minister told the CIA Saddam didn't have weapons, as well.

Sidney Blumenthal confirmed on Salon.com the story that Tyler Drumheller, the former CIA chief of clandestine operations for Europe, told "60 Minutes" that the CIA "received documentary intelligence from Naji Sabri, Saddam's foreign minister, that Saddam did not have WMD. 'We continued to validate him the whole way through,' said Drumheller. 'The policy was set. The war in Iraq was coming, and they were looking for intelligence to fit into the policy, to justify the policy' . . .

Now two former senior CIA officers have confirmed Drumheller's account to me and provided the background to the story of how the information that might have stopped the invasion of Iraq was twisted in order to justify it . . .

On the eve of Sabri's appearance at the United Nations in September 2002 to present Saddam's case, the officer in charge of this operation met in New York with a 'cutout' who had debriefed Sabri for the CIA. Then the officer flew to Washington, where he met with CIA deputy director John McLaughlin, who was 'excited' about the report. Nonetheless, McLaughlin expressed his reservations. He said that Sabri's information was at odds with 'our best source.' That source was code-named 'Curveball,' later exposed as a fabricator, con man and former Iraqi taxi driver posing as a chemical engineer."

According to the Observer, "Curveball's German Handlers handlers saw him as 'crazy ... out of control', his friends called him a 'congenital liar', and US officials investigating his claims were surprised that he had a hangover and that he 'might be an alcoholic.'"

Great source, but any friend of Ahamd Chalabi is a friend of BushCo.

Of course, knowing, in fact, that there were no weapons Bush had to create a casus belli. Since he figured the weapons inspectors weren't going to come up with any weapons soon enough to make the whole misadventure appear legal, he needed create a reason to attack Iraq.

The Boston Globe reported:

"According to a British author's account, Bush proposed an alternative: Paint a US spy plane in UN colors and see if they couldn't tempt Hussein's forces to shoot at it. In any case, he said, the war was 'penciled in' for March 10 and the United States would go ahead with or without a second UN resolution.

Blair replied that he was 'solidly with' the president.

That is the gist of an account of the Jan. 31, 2003, meeting contained in the new edition of a book, 'Lawless World,' by British author Philippe Sands. The author has not identified the writer of a memorandum on which the account is based, but British news reports say it was one of the aides in attendance: Sir David Manning, then security adviser to Blair and now the British ambassador in Washington."

Not that, Bush & Co. would ever consider anything like that again, naturally.

Oh, but there is this: Sy Hersh recently said that, at a brainstorming session in Cheney's office:

"There was a dozen ideas proffered about how to trigger a war [With Iran]. The one that interested me the most was why don’t we build — we in our shipyard — build four or five boats that look like Iranian PT boats. Put Navy seals on them with a lot of arms. And next time one of our boats goes to the Straits of Hormuz, start a shoot-up. Might cost some lives. And it was rejected because you can’t have Americans killing Americans. That’s the kind of — that’s the level of stuff we’re talking about. Provocation. But that was rejected." [Democraticwarrior.com]

I'm sure that's as far as it went.

Anyway, back to impeachable offenses . . .

Inskeep: "Are you saying the White House ordered the CIA to fabricate evidence, even after the invasion of Iraq, fabricate evidence linking 9/11 to Iraq, in effect?"

[Gasp! Ambassador Wilson's Op-Ed provoked Cheney to "out" a CIA agent, for Christ sake! Common', get real jackass!]

Suskind: "Absolutly. George Tenet comes back from a White House briefing and he's got it . . . folks at CIA remember seeing the creamy White House stationary and it says 'we want a letter fabricated and we want this letter to essentially emerge. This hand written letter from Habbush to Saddam, which essentially is a checking of the box on all the controversies about the WMD that are unfolding that America might have taken the nation to war on false pretences."

How crazy is that?

NPR called around and the got the stright poop from all involved. Tenet said it was "rediculous" to sugget he would plant false evidence; that farcical Colin Powell presentation at the UN, by the way, was "triple sourced"

The White House said this is all another one of those "bizzare conspiracy theories that Ron Suskind likes to dwell in. "

And about the charge that Habbush telling the Brits before the war Saddam had bubkus for WMD? George Tenet said the "Iraqi failed to persuade."

Curveball, obviously, was so much more convincing. And this guy was our chief spook? Wow. That explains 9/11.

The White House adds that any info Habbush might have provided was "inmaterial to the decision to use force."

Finally, the truth! Of course, the information that Saddam had no WMD was inmaterial to the decision to go to war, what difference did that make?

Good God! What else are these people into? When do the impeachment hearings start?

Labels: , , , , ,

hit counter script Top Blog Lists Favourite Blogs Top List
My Zimbio
Top Stories