Thursday, August 24, 2006

Forcing The Intelligence To Fit The Policy, Act 2 - Iran

Both the New York Times and the Washington Post cover the same story today - that of a Republican led report critical of US intelligence gathering on Iran - from slightly different angles. The NY Times describes the report thus:
Some senior Bush administration officials and top Republican lawmakers are voicing anger that American spy agencies have not issued more ominous warnings about the threats that they say Iran presents to the United States.

Some policy makers have accused intelligence agencies of playing down Iran’s role in Hezbollah’s recent attacks against Israel and overestimating the time it would take for Iran to build a nuclear weapon.

The complaints, expressed privately in recent weeks, surfaced in a Congressional report about Iran released Wednesday. They echo the tensions that divided the administration and the Central Intelligence Agency during the prelude to the war in Iraq.
However, both versions make one thing abundantly clear - the report leaps from noting that US intelligence on Iran's plans, technology and intentions is woefully inadequate - as the Post puts 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.
To demands that that community should now proceed to find exactly the evidence the White House and militant Republican cronies need to gin up a war with Iran! The Post writes:
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.
What the intelligence community is doing wrong, according to the report, is not providing enough evidence to help the warmongers. The Times quotes one such warmonger:
The consensus of the intelligence agencies is that Iran is still years away from building a nuclear weapon. Such an assessment angers some in Washington, who say that it ignores the prospect that Iran could be aided by current nuclear powers like North Korea. “When the intelligence community says Iran is 5 to 10 years away from a nuclear weapon, I ask: ‘If North Korea were to ship them a nuke tomorrow, how close would they be then?” said Newt Gingrich, the former Republican speaker of the House of Representatives.
And what if Pakistan already shipped them a nuke like it almost did with the Saudis, Newt? You're boy's gonna look pretty damn dumb for selling Pakistan F-16's then, eh? Then again, if pigs had wings we would all need umbrellas. I mean honestly, this quote shows why Newt is too f**king stupid to be allowed near grown-ups. Does Gingrich really think any such intelligence would be ignored or not factored in to estimates...or is he just panicking over daydreams of apocalyptic conspiracies, where every day is August 22nd, and hoping no-one notices his jelly knees? Gimme a break!

Do you know why Newt thinks he can get away with such James Bond fantasy stuff? Here's why, from the Post:
The report relies exclusively on publicly available documents. Its authors did not interview intelligence officials.
So no-one involved has a foggiest idea what they are talking about. Moreover, again from the Post:
Jamal Ware, spokesman for the House intelligence committee, said three staff members wrote the report, but he did not dispute that the principal author was Frederick Fleitz, a former CIA officer who had been a special assistant to John R. Bolton, the administration's former point man on Iran at the State Department. Bolton had been highly influential in the crafting of a tough policy that rejected talks with Tehran.
So the whole report is a hatchet job concocted by a neocon core in the Republican party to further their agenda of war with Iran. You'd think three strikes - Afghanistan, Iraq and Lebanon are all failures of the neocon plan - would convince even such dumbasses as the Republicans to ditch the false gurus and get back to reality, but nope. They are even more gullible than the penniless followers of your average Swami in a Rolls-Royce.

And what do the Democrats intend to do about this blatant attempt to pressure the intelligence community into providing another "slam dunk"? Not a damn thing, according to the Post.
Rep. Rush D. Holt (N.J.), the ranking Democrat on the subcommittee that prepared the report, said he agreed to forward it to the full committee because it highlights the difficulties in gathering intelligence on Iran. But he added that the report was not "prepared and reviewed in a way that we can rely on."
No f**king sh*t, Sherlock! What you should have done, in a world where Dem leaders have spines, is stand up on your back legs like a man and tell the world that the people behind this report are utterly and certifiably psychopathic!

No comments: