Thursday, August 24, 2006

Iran and Intelligence; Iraq and 9/11; Bush and America's Psyche

Three things. All related. All showing the bamboozlement continues.

First.

A Republican prepared report criticizes the intelligence community for not keeping up with Republican ideology on Iran. That's basically the gist of it.

A key House committee issued a stinging critique of U.S. intelligence on Iran yesterday, charging that the CIA and other agencies lack "the ability to acquire essential information necessary to make judgments" on Tehran's nuclear program, its intentions or even its ties to terrorism.

The 29-page report, principally written by a Republican staff member on the House intelligence committee who holds a hard-line view on Iran, fully backs the White House position that the Islamic republic is moving forward with a nuclear weapons program and that it poses a significant danger to the United States. But it chides the intelligence community for not providing enough direct evidence to support that assertion.

"American intelligence agencies do not know nearly enough about Iran's nuclear weapons program" to help policymakers at a critical time, the report's authors say. Information "regarding potential Iranian chemical weapons and biological weapons programs is neither voluminous nor conclusive," and little evidence has been gathered to tie Iran to al-Qaeda and to the recent fighting between Israel and Hezbollah in southern Lebanon, they say.

The report relies exclusively on publicly available documents. Its authors did not interview intelligence officials. Still, it warns the intelligence community to avoid the mistakes made regarding weapons of mass destruction before the Iraq war, noting that Iran could easily be engaged in "a denial and deception campaign to exaggerate progress on its nuclear program as Saddam Hussein apparently did concerning his WMD programs."

Darn, Mr. Hoekstra, sucks when the facts don't fit your preconceived ideology, don't it? Mayhap you should follow the facts, not fears.

Second

Bush is now going negative on the war in Iraq. He now says that this war strains the nation's psyche, and that not following his plan could be worse. Really? Worse than a destabilized Iraq? Worse than an Iraq with strong Iranian influence now? Worse than 3400 civilians dying per month from violent deaths? Worse than our credibility being shot in the Middle East? Worse than having tens of thousands of Iraqis chanting "Death to America!" and "Death to Israel!"

So what is worse Mr. President?

Oh, and when will a member of the "press" corps actually do their job and "press" him to elaborate?

Finally

Did Iraq have anything to do with 9/11? Not according to Bush, but we know who really runs this kingship, don't we.....




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