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Ear to the Ground

Senators Shame Bush Over Prewar Intelligence

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Posted on May 25, 2007

The Senate Intelligence Committee has declassified and released two prewar intelligence reports that warned a postwar Iraq could struggle with sectarian violence and might benefit al-Qaida and Iran. Democrats on the panel, along with Republicans Chuck Hagel and Olympia Snowe, criticized the Bush administration for ignoring the prescient warnings.


New York Times:

WASHINGTON—Democrats on a deeply divided Senate Intelligence Committee accused the Bush administration [Friday] of ignoring warnings in 2003 from the nation’s spy agencies that a post-war Iraq could face violence and division and that an invasion could strengthen the hand of Al Qaeda and Iran.

“Sadly, the administration’s refusal to heed these dire warnings, and worse, to plan for them, has led to tragic consequences for which our nation is paying a terrible price,” said Senator John D. Rockefeller IV of West Virginia, the Democratic chairman. It was one of many dueling statements accompanying a long-awaited committee report on the spy agencies’ pre-war predictions of the effects of toppling Saddam Hussein.

Republicans replied that the 226-page report exaggerated the prescience of the intelligence agencies. They noted that the 2003 assessments barely mentioned the possibility of a Sunni insurgency—a point the committee’s Democratic majority voted not to include in the text—and were “certainly not a crystal ball.”

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By JNagarya, May 30, 2007 at 2:42 am Link to this comment

“#73560 by C.P.T.L. on 5/29 at 1:08 am
(Unregistered commenter)

“Well, I suppose if the Senate doesn’t have the guts to cry impeach! if they don’t have the votes, or do it: impeach, if they do have the votes then, shaming the president is something to do.

“Of course they might try saying, “Saddam had nothing to do with 9/11” once a day every day until they shake some action.”

It’s obvious you didn’t pay attention when Clinton was impeached.  And now you give a damn?

Impeachment begins in the House.  It is the equivalent of an indictment.

The trial takes place in the Senate.

So it wouldn’t make sense for the Senate to “shout impeach!”

Report this

By Louise, May 29, 2007 at 8:24 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Trigger finger (#73407)
“King George!!!.....I like that, kinda has a ring to it.”

Surely you jest!

Strangely enough, there are those who want to have a King.
Those who are afraid to think for themselves.
Those who are afraid to be held accountable for their own actions.
And those who are dumb enough to think somehow they will be included in the Royal Court.

(Gosh, sounds like the 109th congress!)

If in fact this nation ever sinks that low, and decides we really must have a King, for goodness sake ...

CAN WE AT LEAST HAVE ONE WITH LITTLE CLASS?

Do we really want to grovel under a bush?
That’s for dogs and ticks and other assorted critters!

(Apologies to the good and valuable bushes in the world)

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By JNagarya, May 28, 2007 at 8:27 pm Link to this comment

“#73282 by Ernest Canning on 5/27 at 3:22 pm
(277 comments total)

“Why is the Senate wasting time with the failure of the administration to heed warnings about the likely difficulties that would be encountered “after” we illegally invaded Iraq when its resources should be devoted to unconvering the degree to which the administration “fixed” the facts and the intelligence to justify carrying out the pre-9/11 PNAC policy of putting in place a regime-changing “policy” of U.S. imperial hegemony that entailed, among other things, securing a permanent U.S. base of operations in Iraq that was intende to secure control of the flow of oil throughout the Middle East?”

One thing at a time, with increasing severity.  And next year is an election year, and Congress needs a veto-proof Democratic majority.  The revelations will come with increasing severity, and speed, as we approach the fall.

And, hopefully (this is a political consideration, not a legal), Gonzales remains where he is until at least September, keeoing the issues alive and front and cneter, and damaging not only Bushit, et al., but Republican chances for re-election.  By September, at latest, you’ll see more and more Republicans joining the Democrats in votes, knowing which way the political winds are blowing.

To be most effective, the revelations should be carefully managed as to when, and in which order, they are brought to the attention of the public.  The first big test is the vote of no confidence.  We’ll see then which Republicans are on which side of the Bushit lawlessness.  Their constitutents will also be watching; and will be reminded by the Democrats running against them.

Next Spring-Summer should be even hotter for the Republicans than this Summer.  And this Summer is going to teach Bushit some about political global warming.

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By C.P.T.L., May 28, 2007 at 7:38 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Well, I suppose if the Senate doesn’t have the guts to cry impeach! if they don’t have the votes, or do it: impeach, if they do have the votes then, shaming the president is something to do.


Of course they might try saying, “Saddam had nothing to do with 9/11” once a day every day until they shake some action.

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By Trigger finger, May 28, 2007 at 8:12 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Have the American 2008 Presidential elections been officially permanently canceled yet, or is Rove still working on his new BIG terrorist scare tactic? On second thought, probably won’t need the scare, just get Congress or the Courts to declare elections and the Constitution obsolete and get this conversion over with once and for all.

King George!!!.....I like that, kinda has a ring to it.

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By Skruff, May 28, 2007 at 7:28 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The flow of crude is not the shortage causing the high prices.

“Big Oil” reeps 3 to 5 cents profit on a gallon of refined gasoline.

It is a rare case where “big oil” owns the unpumped crude, so they must purchase it from various owners at about $60 for a 42 gallon barrel. the raw crude costs $1.43 The States get an average of $.45 a gallon, there are transportation costs, marketing costs, heavy tanker insurance costs and the big one the refining cost. Now a Company like Chevron no longer ownes most stations.  They sell to a “distributor” who takes his cut, then you get your $3.199 (This morning at the Whiting Village store) gallon of gas.

Enviornmental laws (which by the way I support) have prevented the construction of any new refinary in the US for the past twenty years. Some of these refinaries are closed for repairs (you might allow that 30-year-old refinaries might need a tweek or two)

Unfortunately, most of the most recent price hike has nothing to do with Iraq, and MUCH to do with the emerging economies in China and India where gas at any price seems to be the order of the day. 

We get our cheap polymer from China, but we pay because that plastic toy, bed-liner, or kitchen tool is produced using the same scarce resourse we use to power our vehicles.

And as usual, US citizens complain loudest when they are denied their right to use 3/4th of the world’s resources ar their quoted price. (which incidently has always been lower than what people pay in the rest of the indrustrialized world.) I’d say if they don’t want to pay so much for fuel, stop using so much. buy a smaller car, Think abhout converting to propane, take mass transit instead of one person one car.

Nope, your argument doesn’t hold.  I don’t like the price so high, but it’s our “WE the People’s” fault.  No conspiracy just unmitigated greed.

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By cann4ing, May 27, 2007 at 6:02 pm Link to this comment

Skruff:  If you read some of what Greg Palast, who has a copy of the pre-war plans, has to say, you will realize that the idea was not to secure control in order to “produce” the oil but to insure that its flow is minimized so as to create scarcity on the world markets.  In case you haven’t notice the soaring of prices at the pump, the plan has worked quite well.  Exxon-Mobil and Chevron are posting record profits.  For those on the wealthy side of the class divide, things are going just swimmingly.  After all, what are the lives of the sons and daughters of working class stiffs serving their fourth tours of duty compared to the desires of what Noam Chomsky refers to as the “substantial people” or what Bush refers to as his “base,” the “haves and have mores.”

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By Skruff, May 27, 2007 at 4:39 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“....imperial hegemony that entailed, among other things, securing a permanent U.S. base of operations in Iraq that was intende to secure control of the flow of oil throughout the Middle East?”

which is damn strange since we import more crude from canada than from anywhere else.  The good thing about Canadian Crude is the source is secure. the bad thing is the extracting of this crude is playing havoc with the Yukon enviornment…as previously in Mexico.  AND we’re going to neen at least two new refinaries to process heavy crude (either here or in Canada… or we will have to send this oil to France, China, or Venezuela for processing.  Our (old and inadaquate) refineries are geared to process light sweet.

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By cann4ing, May 27, 2007 at 4:22 pm Link to this comment

Why is the Senate wasting time with the failure of the administration to heed warnings about the likely difficulties that would be encountered “after” we illegally invaded Iraq when its resources should be devoted to unconvering the degree to which the administration “fixed” the facts and the intelligence to justify carrying out the pre-9/11 PNAC policy of putting in place a regime-changing “policy” of U.S. imperial hegemony that entailed, among other things, securing a permanent U.S. base of operations in Iraq that was intende to secure control of the flow of oil throughout the Middle East?

Report this

By John C. Bonser, May 27, 2007 at 1:50 pm Link to this comment

We also purged gays who understood Arabic? Remembering Ms Goodlings comments makes one wonder how many were purged because they refused accept the fundamentalist worldview!

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By Forkboy, May 27, 2007 at 12:18 pm Link to this comment

Titchaba,

That’s an interesting connection you have put forth between the Cheney energy meeting and Iraq.  I hadn’t thought about it that way.

Then again, I like to believe that folks in government are working for my benefit.  Silly me.

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By titchaba, May 27, 2007 at 2:21 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The only intel this Administration acted on was from the Pentagon.  Not the CIA, Not the FBI, not the NSA.

  And what this Adminstration did, in outing Valerie Plame, was nothing more than a smear campaign against Joe Wilson for telling the truth about the trumped up claim that Sadam was getting yellowcake from Niger.

  What it Caused was a complete lack of trust from the Intell comunity.  Seasoned vets quit.  Others were purged for nay saying the Pentagon “intel”.  When you out a covert operative, you not only out them, you out an intire network, making agents abroad suddenly targets.  The Intel commuity at large tends to resent this.

  These folks sign things that essentially give up their rights to well, everything.  In order to do the job that they do.  They have done this for generations, knowing that their Government had a vested interst in keeping them covert.

  Bush basically bushwacked them.

  Then he blamed them.

  Wasn’t them.  They gave him what data they felt was verifiable.  He didn’t like it so he go better data from Cheney and the Pentagon.  That it was written to conform to his view, seemingly not important.  That it was not real, seemingly unimportant.

  Please, reread Orwell, and read all about how Hitler did it.  You will then know what the hell is going on. 

  What we do about it, I will leave to finer minds than mine.  But, I will say this, Im an American, I have rights, and they will not be taken away from a silent compliant life form.

  For me, it has always been about the Oil.  Not that I thought we invaded a Country to steal their oil, at least not right away.

  I think the Bush Cabal and Opec came to an agreement (possibly at Cheney’s Energy meeting) that the US would invade, take out Sadam and make sure Iraq sold NO OIL.  Meanwhile, Opec et all could use the war as an excuse to keep jacking up oil prices.

  It seems that we invaded Not to bring Democracy to Iraq, but to make sure Iraq oil did not gain a place at the banquet table being set up for the super rich in Dubai.  Where Haliburton now lives.

  Watch the rest of them run there.

  One at a time, all with mad cash.

  They are selling us out.  They sold the US out….....a long time ago.

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By putneyplater, May 26, 2007 at 10:46 pm Link to this comment

I’m sure Dubya will arrange for the offending report to be re-classified(along with others) before he publishes his autobiography(ghost-written of course).
There was obviously too much ‘stuff’flying around while Tenet was “At the Center of the Storm”.It must have just slipped his mind.
Or maybe it was one of Rummys “unknown knowns”
Damn those ‘revisionists’.

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By felicity, May 26, 2007 at 3:51 pm Link to this comment

The posts by others on this site have said it all and said it well. 

I do wonder how long the likes of Kip Bond are going to get away with spewing the old bait-and-switch ruse (Wilson and wife) and not get lynched. Trying to score political points off the suffering and deaths of millions of other human beings is beyond understanding.

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By lawlessone, May 26, 2007 at 3:31 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Regarding the collapse of the Democrats on the war funding, we need a new, perhaps even “novel,” approach to finally getting out of Iraq.  I propose we entitle the epic “War and Impeach.”

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By Allan Wheeler, May 26, 2007 at 2:12 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The pre-invasion intel was only a cover. It really didn’t matter what was said, pointed out, feard or suspected. We invaded a non-combatant country for oil and Israel. PERIOD! When are the Dems going to start speaking the truth? And we will be in Iraq until Cheney is satisfied that contracts for Iraqi oil are solidified. The troops will come home when are assured of getting the oil. Not a minute before. And the troops will stay in Iraq until either the oil starts flowing regularly or until Bush is out of office and leaves his failures for the Democrats to mop up.

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By Forkboy, May 26, 2007 at 2:01 pm Link to this comment

Even without these intelligence reports how could any reasonably intelligent person not suspect/believe that open hostilities between Shiites and Sunnis (and possibly Kurds) wasn’t a very real possibility? 

The iron fist of Saddam kept all in check.  This was no different than the results of the collapse of the former Soviet Union; old regional, ethnic and religious hatreds were allowed to come back to the surface and folks began fighting and killing one another once the oppression of Moscow was removed.  To have assumed that Iraq would be any different was irresponsible bordering on incompetent.

And to not have assumed or suspected that non-Iraqi persons wouldn’t flow across the border in an attempt to attack U.S. forces was equally absurd. 

I don’t know why the Bush junta opted to ignore common sense.  The reasons can range from simply not wanting to think things would go poorly (unrealistic and sad) to the truly horrific notion of this administration being in bed with the military industrial complex.  Certainly the truth lies somewhere between the two, but in any instance no one could honestly say that they didn’t see this coming.

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By QuyTran, May 26, 2007 at 2:00 pm Link to this comment

Bush/Cheney are shameless !

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By Dale Headley, May 26, 2007 at 12:19 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

What the intelligence assessment left out:  there is oil under the ground in Iraq - oil that Bush’s buddies want; and that trumps everything.  Deaths of innocent Iraqi women and children?  Destruction of a country that did us no harm?  Sacrifice of young American lives - they are of little consequence when stacked up against OIL!  So let’s stop dithering over little things like truth.

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By rodney, May 26, 2007 at 11:39 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

First of all you have to have a human consious and human feelings in order to have shame which Bush has neither. As long as it doesn’t effect his world he doesn’t care. This war was planned by neocons like Cheney,Feith,Rumsfeld,Pearle,Wolfowitz along with several others long before Bush became president. They found a stooge in Bush to carry out the plans. Why do you think Cheney picked himself as the running mate. Bush had the name they needed to get a canidate to be president. The noecons did the rest and America is suffering the consequences. The real reason for the war in Iraq was take out a enemy of Israel and set up a puppet regime to keep the flow of cheap oil coming from the middle east. That theory was fine with most of America as long as there were few casualties and little money spent on the war. But 1 trillion dollars later,3400 dead and 21,000 permanently injured soldiers later, and $3.30 gas later America is pissed and looking for someone to blame. Well let’s start by looking in the mirror. If you voted for Bush, if you at anytime supported the war in Iraq, If you were niave enough to believe the warmongors, then accept the responsibility for yourself. God knows Bush and Company has never accepted any responsibility for any of it’s actions. Saddam was our friend until America decided we no longer needed his oil. We knew he was a bad guy. We supplied him with WMD’S, and did nothing when he used them on Iran and his own people. When the neocons dicided they wanted Iraq, they propprd up Bush to be the president, stole an election, and as Paul Harvey would say,” now you know the rest of the story “.

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By GW=MCHammered, May 26, 2007 at 11:11 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

‘Shame’ and its caustic sidekick ‘Guilt’ are his Achilles’ heel. It’s why he crusades to shed both onto others. Profuse ‘Self-love’ impels him to disown Accountability, Disgrace and Self-reproach. He will make others pay for his inability to process shame… right up until they won’t.

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By Skruff, May 26, 2007 at 9:35 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I agree with 72842 by DennisD… It si impossible to shame Bush.  He thinks he’s the almighty!

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By Matt, May 26, 2007 at 9:10 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I’m sure this is all true, but excessive concentration on Bush’s failure to “plan the war properly” detracts from the real issue.

What is deeply, horribly wrong about this war is that it is morally indefensible. It is a criminal war of aggression.

This would still be true, even if Bush had “handled it” superbly and we had obtained “victory”.

Even if this war can somehow be made a “success,” Bush and Cheney deserve prosecution and the most severe punishment the law allows, for defrauding Congress and committing mass murder and torture through calculated, treasonous abuse of governmental power.

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By THOMAS BILLIS, May 26, 2007 at 1:27 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It does my heart good to know that the brave and conscientious employees of the C.I.A. were as used by this administration as anybody else.Can there be any doubt that they cherry picked intelligence and took the liberty of impugning the patriots at the C.I.A. who knew of the dire consequences that would befall us in the invasion of Iraq.Funny that in George{medal of freedom}Tenets book no mention of this report.They had better sources for intelligence Chalabi and his buddy curveball who we all know had no ax to grind in getting us involved in Iraq.By the way where is our good friend Chalabi now.Hopefully he will be visiting hell soon so he can finally deal with his part in the killing of 3400 Americans and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis.

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By DennisD, May 25, 2007 at 8:30 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Shame Bu$h Inc. - that’s neither physically or metaphorically possible. You have to have a conscience to feel shame.

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By Hammo, May 25, 2007 at 6:34 pm Link to this comment

Of course the Bush-Cheney bunch and their associates knew the intel about possible negative outcomes.

They didn’t respect the CIA and had their own secret agendas. In addition, they didn’t care how many American troops died or were injured in the process.

See:

“‘Mistakes’ or ‘plans’ in Iraq, War on Terror?”

http://www.populistamerica.com/mistakes_or_plans_in_iraq_war_on_terror

-  -  -

“CIA inspector general blamed own officers; scapegoats for intel on 9/11, Iraq?”

http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/viewArticle.asp?articleID=3510

-  -  -

“‘Intelligence failures’ prior to 9/11, Iraq war: Planned strategies?”

http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/viewArticle.asp?articleID=3367

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