Monday, April 24, 2006

Government: Build Up to Iraq

By now, you've probably heard about this report on 60 minutes. Here's a reprise from Josh:

The now-retired CIA officer who was head of covert operations in Europe during the lead up to the Iraq War.


First, Drumheller says that most folks in the intelligence community didn't think there was anything to the Niger-uranium story. We knew that in general terms; but we hadn't heard it yet from someone so closely involved in the case itself. Remember, the CIA Station Chief in Rome, the guy who first saw the documents when they were dropped off at the US Embassy in October 2002, worked for Drumheller.

Second, Drumheller told us a lot more about the case of Naji Sabri, Iraq's Foreign Minister, who the CIA managed to turn not long before the war broke out. Drumheller was in charge of that operation. The White House, as Drumheller relates it, was really excited to hear what Sabri would reveal about the inner-workings of Saddam's regime, and particularly about any WMD programs. That is, before Sabri admitted that Saddam didn't have any active programs. Then they lost interest.

To quote the erudite and beautiful Sarah Vowell:

The thing about the current President is, I wrote about this a little bit, how he keeps opening up new possibilities for us, you know? Like I talk about going to his inauguration and standing there crying when he took the oath cause I was so afraid that he would wreck the economy and muck up the drinking water. The failure of my pessimistic imagination at that moment boggles my mind.

Replace "standing there crying" with "sitting in a dark bar drinking in the middle of the day" and "muck up the drinking water" with "prevent me from ever getting a job again" and you had my experience exactly.


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