Patterico's Pontifications

7/11/2004

Los Angeles Times Ignores Stunning Revelations of Joseph Wilson’s Lies

Filed under: Dog Trainer — Patterico @ 8:46 am

When is the Los Angeles Times going to tell its readers that Joseph Wilson is a liar?

Since July of last year, the Times has run numerous articles — many on its front page — that chronicled Wilson’s accusations of wrongdoing by the Bush Administration. The Times told its readers that Wilson had disproved allegations that Iraq had tried to buy enriched uranium from Niger, and that the White House had ignored his warnings. The Times reported Wilson’s assertion that, contrary to White House claims, his wife did not recommend him for the Niger trip.

The significance of Wilson’s accusations cannot be overstated. They ignited the famous “sixteen words” controversy, relating to the truth of statements contained in President Bush’s 2003 State of the Union address. Ultimately, the “Bush lied!” canard began with the seemingly revelatory allegations made by Joseph Wilson.

The problem is that all of Wilson’s accusations were false, according to the bipartisan Senate intelligence committee report released Friday. But you wouldn’t know this if you got all your news from the L.A. Times. So far, the Times has not mentioned these findings from the report, choosing instead to let Wilson’s numerous fabrications stand unchallenged.

Here are the details:

As I previously told you, the Washington Post ran an article yesterday, reporting that the Senate intelligence committee report had made several stunning findings regarding Wilson’s credibility:

  • Wilson lied about his findings — “The panel found that Wilson’s report, rather than debunking intelligence about purported uranium sales to Iraq, as he has said, bolstered the case for most intelligence analysts.”
  • Wilson lied about whether the White House was told of his findings — “And contrary to Wilson’s assertions and even the government’s previous statements, the CIA did not tell the White House it had qualms about the reliability of the Africa intelligence that made its way into 16 fateful words in President Bush’s January 2003 State of the Union address.”
  • Wilson lied about whether his wife recommended him for the Niger trip — Wilson said in his memoir: “Valerie had nothing to do with the matter . . . She definitely had not proposed that I make the trip.”

    But the Post reported yesterday:

    The report states that a CIA official told the Senate committee that Plame “offered up” Wilson’s name for the Niger trip, then on Feb. 12, 2002, sent a memo to a deputy chief in the CIA’s Directorate of Operations saying her husband “has good relations with both the PM [prime minister] and the former Minister of Mines (not to mention lots of French contacts), both of whom could possibly shed light on this sort of activity.” The next day, the operations official cabled an overseas officer seeking concurrence with the idea of sending Wilson, the report said.

    Whoops!

  • Wilson lied about having seen the forged documents — “The report also said Wilson provided misleading information to The Washington Post last June.” Wilson had claimed that he had concluded the Niger-uranium connection was false because he had determined the relevant documents were forged — but the report says Wilson had never seen those documents at the time he made that claim.

These findings contradict assertions printed in numerous L.A. Times articles about Wilson. The Times has run a couple dozen stories, many on the front page, mentioning Wilson’s supposedly definitive Niger findings, and Wilson’s allegations that those findings were ignored by the White House.

For example, on July 12, 2003, the Times ran this front-page article on the “sixteen words” controversy, which said:

The CIA has acknowledged that in February 2002 — almost a year before the State of the Union speech — it dispatched a former U.S. diplomat to Africa to investigate reports that Iraq had approached Niger for uranium. That envoy, Joseph C. Wilson IV, concluded that the allegations were false and reported his findings to the agency upon his return.

Wilson hit the L.A. Times‘s front page again in October with the scandal relating to the allegedly illegal outing of his wife, Valerie Plame. On October 1, 2003, a front-page story by Doyle McManus and Bob Drogin, titled “Washington Abuzz Over a New Kind of Scandal,” stated:

In July, Wilson publicly revealed that in 2002, he visited West Africa at the CIA’s request to investigate claims of an Iraqi uranium program — and reported back that the evidence was weak. He accused the White House of ignoring his report and exaggerating the Iraqi threat.

On October 2, 2003, a front-page news analysis by Ron Brownstein repeated the charge:

Wilson had concluded in a study for the CIA that there was no evidence to support claims Bush voiced in his State of the Union speech in January that then-Iraqi President Saddam Hussein had tried to obtain enriched uranium for nuclear weapons in Niger.

The Times last mentioned Wilson on June 25 of this year, in a story that stated:

At the CIA’s request, Wilson, who also had served as an ambassador to several African nations, traveled to Niger and determined that the statement [regarding Iraqi attempts to buy uranium in Niger] was untrue.

Eight days after Wilson’s article [an op-ed in the New York Times] appeared, [Robert] Novak’s column identified Plame as a CIA employee and said she had had a role in her husband being sent to Niger — a contention Wilson says is untrue.

Now we know that all of these claims by Wilson, reported in those numerous Times stories, were false.

But L.A. Times readers don’t know it — unless they read the Washington Post or internet blogs.

What is the Times‘s excuse? Wilson’s accusations were front-page material before. Why is a bipartisan report debunking them not worth mentioning anywhere in the paper?

Is there not enough room in the paper? Well, there’s room enough on today’s front page for the story about Shaquille O’Neal being traded. And there’s room enough in section A for a two-column story about an unintended side effect of the repeal of blue laws in Virginia.

But a bipartisan Senate report showing Joseph Wilson is a liar? Nope — according to the Times editors, it’s not news.

I wonder why not.

UPDATE: A couple of commenters, relying on Josh Marshall, say the Washington Post blew the story, and that Wilson has not been shown to be a liar.

On the issue of Wilson’s credibility (which is the subject of my post), the commenters are wrong. If the Senate report is correct, Wilson is a liar.

The Washington Post did indeed blow part of the story, as a July 13, 2004 correction shows:

A July 10 story on a new Senate report on intelligence failures said that former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV told his contacts at the CIA that Iraq had tried to buy 400 tons of uranium from the African nation of Niger in 1998. In fact, it was Iran that was interested in making that purchase, but no contract was signed, according to the report.

But my bullet points above do not rely on the erroneous assertion, which I do not quote or refer to in my post.

I have read the section of the report relating to Wilson. I am still making my way through other parts of the report relating to efforts to procure uranium. If the report is right, Wilson flat-out lied about his wife’s involvement in offering him as a candidate for the Niger trip. Wilson also told falsehoods about having seen forged documents, and having tipped off intelligence officials about how to discern they were forgeries. Wilson learned information that supported the case that Iraq was trying to buy yellowcake; intelligence officials concluded that his trip, if anything, corroborated what they had been told about such efforts to procure uranium. Yet Wilson has maintained that his trip “refuted” reports of such efforts. Nonsense.

As my post says, the Senate report destroys the credibility of this all-important witness to the supposed lies of the Bush administration. It’s time to get the fact of Wilson’s mendacity into the public record, and the L.A. Times‘s stubborn refusal to do so is shameful.

52 Responses to “Los Angeles Times Ignores Stunning Revelations of Joseph Wilson’s Lies”

  1. That last question was rhetorical, yes? Because otherwise it was simply a dumb question, as everyone already knows the answer: the Times, like the Dayton Daily News and papers throughout the country, will only print stories that defame the President and throw a fog of scandal around him. The truth has nothing to do with it, and any pretense of fairness or objectivity was thrown out the window years ago.

    You’ll also notice that news of Uranium being found and removed from Iraq was sent down the memory hole as well.

    Steven P. Cornett (3a19e7)

  2. This is the same news story that falsely assures its readers: “According to the former Niger mining minister, Wilson told his CIA contacts, Iraq tried to buy 400 tons of uranium in 1998.” By Patterico’s standards, that makes Sue Schmidt a proven liar.

    Which is good to bear in mind when considering this claim by Patterico: “And contrary to Wilson’s assertions and even the government’s previous statements, the CIA did not tell the White House it had qualms about the reliability of the Africa intelligence that made its way into 16 fateful words in President Bush’s January 2003 State of the Union address.”

    In the actual report, however, we read: Based on the analyst’s comments, the ADDI drafted a memo for the NSC outlining the facts that the CIA believed needed to be changed, and faxed it to the Deputy Natoinal Security Advisor and the speech writers. Referring to the sentence on uranium from Africa the CIA said, “remove the sentence because the amount is in dispute and it is debatable whether it can be acquired from the source. We told Congress that the Brits have exaggerated this issue. Finally, the Iraqis already have 550 metric tons of uranium oxide in their inventory.”

    … Later that day, the NSC staff prepared draft seven of the Cincinnati speech which contained the line, “and the regime has been caught attempting to purchase substantial amounts of uranium oxide from sources in Africa.” Draft seven was sent to CIA for coordination.

    … The ADDI told Committee staff he received the new draft on October 6, 2002 and noticed that the uranium information had “not been addressed,” so he alerted the DCI. The DCI called the Deputy National Security Advisor directly to outline the CIA’s concerns. On July 16, 2003, the DCI testified before the SSCI that he told the Deputy National Security Advisor that the “President should not be a fact witness on this issue,” because his analysts had told him the “reporting was weak.” The NSC then removed the uranium reference from the draft of the speech.

    Although the NSC had already removed the uranium reference from the speech, later on October 6th, 2002 the CIA sent a second fax to the White House which said, “more on why we recommend removing the sentence about procuring uranium oxide from Africa: Three points (1) The evidence is weak. One of the two mines cited by the source as the location of the uranium oxide is flooded. The other mine city by the source is under the control of the French authorities. (2) The procurement is not particularly significant to Iraq’s nuclear ambitions because the Iraqis already have a large stock of uranium oxide in their inventory. And (3) we have shared points one and two with Congress, telling them that the Africa story is overblown and telling them this is one of the two issues where we differed with the British.”

    All this via Josh Marshall at talkingpointsmemo.com

    To which one might add, Wilson might well have been under the impression that the CIA had accepted his interpretation of his findings than they did. We know there was a lot of pressure on the CIA to have its views conform to White House desires, not Wilson’s. Of course, that part of the report doesn’t come out until after the election.

    m.croche (6b3822)

  3. Which is good to bear in mind when considering this claim by Patterico: “And contrary to Wilson’s assertions and even the government’s previous statements, the CIA did not tell the White House it had qualms about the reliability of the Africa intelligence that made its way into 16 fateful words in President Bush’s January 2003 State of the Union address.”

    That is a claim by the Washington Post. That’s why it’s in quotes.

    Patterico (f7b3e5)

  4. However, you may have a valid point about whether the WaPo got it right. It’s not like they never get it wrong. I’m pretty busy right now, but a quick look at the Josh Marshall post you cite raises interesting questions. Thanks for the link and the comment.

    Patterico (f7b3e5)

  5. It may be a few hours before I have a chance to look at this issue in detail, but I’ll update later if it appears appropriate.

    Marshall’s points, if true, don’t appear to refute all of the WaPo‘s assertions — but they sure seem to call some of them into question.

    Patterico (f7b3e5)

  6. Josh Marshall sums it up:

    “So France, Italy and the United States each had reports about the alleged Iraq-Niger sales. And each stemmed from the same source — the forged documents, the origins of which the SSCI chose not to investigate.

    The documents weren’t peripheral. They were central, though precisely how and why only emerged over time.”

    In short no one chose to question the source of the documents, now shown to be forged. How is this Wilson’s fault? He told them.

    Mark A. York (fcee7f)

  7. m.croche doesn’t have a point at all. If you actually read the Intelligence Report (I have), what you get out of it is this:

    1) The CIA believed the story about Iraq trying to purchase yellowcake from Niger was true, but that information was less important than other things, such as aluminum tubes.

    2) Wilson lied about his report (both publicly and in his book). He reported that the former Minister of Mines was approached by a businessman who wanted to arrange a meeting between Iraqi representatives and Nigerian representatives to “establish a commercial relationship” between the two countries and that the minister was convinced that meant purchasing yellowcake. Whether the Iraqis ever followed through or not is a separate issue to whether or not they were trying to *obtain* uranium. Yet Wilson stated publicly that there was “nothing there”.

    3) Wilson lied about his wife’s involvement. He claimed she wasn’t involved at all. The report shows that a) she suggested his name, b) she attended the meeting where his trip was planned, and c) she was present at his debriefing after his trip.

    4) Wilson lied to WaPo about the infamous forged “yellowcake order” document. He had never seen it, yet he labeled a “forgery”.

    While it’s true that the CIA tried to keep the story out of speeches, the reason for doing so was not because they didn’t believe its veracity but because they felt it was less relevant. For example, analysts pointed out that Iraq already had hundreds of tons of uranium, so obtaining more didn’t really buttress the WMD case.

    m.croche’s point of Schmidt’s error is nitpicking and irrelevant to the main point. Schmidt made a mistake. Whether intentional or not, it doesn’t change the fact that Wilson has consistently lied about the entire affair or that the Iraqis were actively trying to obtain more uranium. m.croche doesn’t even bother to mention that the report also details (unfortunately heavily redacted) attempts by the Iraqis to obtain uranium from the Replublic of the Congo and from Somalia.

    One wonders how much evidence folks are willing to ignore in order to maintain their position. What do they suppose the Iraqis were going to do with the yellowcake? Make cupcakes?

    antimedia (fd9d43)

  8. Josh is wrong. First of all, he doesn’t even address the British reports, claiming those require a more involved analysis (which perhaps he will do later), but there is zero evidence that the French report was based upon the forged Italian document and the US report definitely was not. The US case was based upon the British one (as m.croche points out above) not the French or Italian ones and the document in question came out *after* the US was already investigating the story. (It was offered, years later, as proof of the supposed contract.)

    Furthermore, Wilson confirmed during his visit that the Iraqis had approached the Nigerians *and* that they were actively trying to obtain yellowcake. This completely destroys Josh Marshall’s argument (not to mention proving that Wilson is a bald-faced liar and willing to profit from his lies.)

    antimedia (fd9d43)

  9. I stress that this is a preliminary conclusion based upon a quick review of the report, but: I think antimedia has the better of the argument, for the most part.

    It does appear that Schmidt made a mistake regarding the 400 tons, transposing “Iran” to “Iraq.”

    But this doesn’t affect my bullet points in the post.

    It appears that Wilson lied about virtually everything. The one thing that isn’t clear to me yet is the extent (if any) to which “qualms” were communicated. This will require a closer look at the report, which I am currently unable to do because (Croche will appreciate this) I am off to the Bryn Terfel recital.

    There is clearly plenty here regarding Wilson’s mendacity — most clearly regarding whether his trip refuted or strengthened the Niger-uranium allegations — that the Times‘s refusal (so far) to report the story is inexcusable.

    Patterico (f7b3e5)

  10. Pejman has a good post on this issue, substantially supporting antimedia’s view.

    Patterico (f7b3e5)

  11. And another post from Pejman.

    I still haven’t had the chance to go through the report myself, but it really seems like Marshall’s points are pretty insignificant as they pertain to Wilson’s credibility. Do any of the lefties here (Croche and York, e.g.) really want to try to make a case that Wilson has any credibility left?

    Why don’t you folks address that issue for me? See if you can address it head-on without the dissembling. After all, Wilson’s credibility, and the failure of the Times to correct the record on that issue, is the point of my post.

    If you can’t make the case, then I’m sure you’ll agree that the Times has some ‘splainin’ to do.

    Patterico (f7b3e5)

  12. Hmmm … the Administration listens to defectors (Chalabi, etc) with an axe to grind, and the LA Times is all over it. But when the news media falls for the same thing … utter silence.

    Kevin Murphy (6a7945)

  13. I’d love to. But the spin zone here is such that I need to know what it is you’re refuting since you refute everything the press says in general. The niger report stands, and does not disavow anything Wilson reported on the matter. I’ll have to read the report myself.

    Mark A. York (b36589)

  14. Chalabi’s sources were all liars in retrospect so certainly there is no reason to refute that fact? Judith Miller was foolish to fall for it as well. But hey you never know those WMD might be in a ditch somehwere? Yeah right. I find the criticism so ideologically tainted that you guys would’nt recognize the truth if it was on a billboard. There is such a thing as digging too deep when the answer is in hand already. Pat Roberts did that all morning long yesterday. I’m with Rockefeller.

    And counselor I’m no lefty. I’m a centrist.

    Mark A. York (b36589)

  15. Again it’s the source of the forged documents that isn’t addressed. We know they were forgeries. All the reports from the three governments were based on this claim, thus Wilson is correct. This is just wishful thinking by pattern-seekers hoping to refute the truth for political purposes.

    Marshall’s key points again:

    “The US, in turn, was baseing most, though not all, of its suspicions on these reports it got from this unnamed foreign intelligence agency that provided an initial report to the US shortly after 9/11 and then another with more detail in February 2002, as the SSCI report states. That foreign government was Italy. And the information they provided also stemmed from the same documents. So France, Italy and the United States each had reports about the alleged Iraq-Niger sales. And each stemmed from the same source — the forged documents, the origins of which the SSCI chose not to investigate. The documents weren’t peripheral. They were central, though precisely how and why only emerged over time.”

    That’s my story and I’m stickin to it. For now at least.

    Mark A. York (b36589)

  16. And then there’s this:

    The key graf:

    “They charge that the administration squelches dissenting views and that intelligence analysts are under intense pressure to produce reports supporting the White House’s argument that Saddam poses such an immediate threat to the United States that pre-emptive military action is necessary.

    “Analysts at the working level in the intelligence community are feeling very strong pressure from the Pentagon to cook the intelligence books,” said one official, speaking on condition of anonymity.

    A dozen other officials echoed his views in interviews.

    No one who was interviewed disagreed.”

    Mark A. York (b36589)

  17. I’m no lefty. I’m a centrist.

    Mark, I could chime in here defending Bush to the ends of the earth, and then claim “I’m no righty, I’m a centrist.” Would you believe it?

    Now take into account that real live lefties have been claiming to be centrists for so long now that a lot of them actually believe it themselves.

    So I hope you’ll excuse those of us who don’t accept your self-description at face value. Just sayin’. ;-)

    McGehee (32acd7)

  18. Good for you. I’m no Nader voter. Make of that what you will.

    Mark A. York (9221a6)

  19. Mark A. York (5:41am), you support the “analysts pressured by Administration” notion with a link to the Knight-Ridder story Some administration officials expressing misgivings on Iraq from Oct. 8, 2002. Yesterday, Dan Darling at Winds of Change covered the Senate Intelligence Committee Report’s July 2004 findings on the same subject (see Oh yes, about all that pressure… referencing SICR pages 358 and 361-375). Darling’s summary is that no pressuring was found to occur or be attempted.

    Your choice of a rather dated link in the immediate aftermath of the SICR strikes me as a little, um, selective, given that “pressure” was one of the subjects the Intelligence Committee was charged with covering, and did cover.

    Why weight the earlier story more heavily?

    AMac (3cb088)

  20. Mark, I’m going to have to insist that you back up your statements with evidence. First of all, Josh did *not* include the British report in his undocumented claim that the French and Italian reports were both based upon the forged document. Furthermore, the SICR doesn’t even address the Italian report, if there ever was one.

    But getting directly to the point – where is your evidence (or anyone else’s) that the French report was based upon the forged Italian document? According to the SICR, that document came *years* after the first reports from the French. Are you claiming that the French had the document to hand but refused to produce it?

    WHere’s your evidence for these claims?

    antimedia (655b5c)

  21. Two curious parts of the Niger yellowcake story:

    (1) Bush and others are slammed for their suspected ties to Saudi Arabia. While Joe Wilson’s paycheck is from a Saudi-funded think tank, “appearance of conflict of interest” charges don’t seem to attract much attention.

    (2) The open-source literature seems to agree that Italian intelligence passed on a set of documents detailing the Iraq-Niger connection. These documents, referenced by Wilson, were forgeries. Other material had been independently obtained via British (and French?) intelligence, and have not been shown to be forged.

    There are two plausible motives for the Italian forgeries: (a) pump up the WMD-based Case For War Against Iraq, or (b) on the expectation of discovery, Discredit the Existence of the Iraq-Niger Yellowcake Connection.

    Genuine evidence for the Iraq-Niger connection exists; some of it was reported to the CIA by Wilson, although unmentioned by him in his NYT Op-Ed and in subsequent interviews. So a-less-than-perfect forgery would add little to the yellowcake-supported case for war.

    For these forgeries to benefit the anti-war case, they would need to be widely publicized, but outside of the broader context of Iraq-Niger dealings. The forgeries would need to be characterized by a credulous press as typical of the flimsy sort of evidence that Bush et al rely on.

    Oh.

    AMac (3cb088)

  22. This is just unreasoned spin. Are you saying the British have a different set of Niger sources? That’s not been proven. I understand you want there to be a connection. There are no collaborative connections to Al Queda and meaningful “fruitful” attempts to get uranium from anywhere. And as we know, and some of us did at the time no way to produce anything in the crushed and broken world of Saddam, I’m a pitiful has been Hussein and his Keystone Cops army. Give me a frickin break.

    Show me your evidence.

    Mark A. York (9221a6)

  23. For a mirror of fog this is a replica of this discussion. Writers call this weasel-wording. Lawyers call it deception. Pat Roberts watered down as much as he could while sidestepping the issue of blame. Bush himself said today “They had the capability of producing weapons of mass mureder.” Unless you count rocks, and Kalishnikoffs this is bald-faced lie.

    Mark A. York (9221a6)

  24. Mark A. York, parts of your serial posts leave me confused.

    For a mirror of fog this is a replica of this discussion. Writers call this weasel-wording. Lawyers call it deception.

    Clarify your thoughts, use standard grammatical conventions (“this” requires an identifiable antecedent), and lay off the patronizing assumptions (I understand you want there to be a connection). I’ll try and hold up my end of the discussion (if it’s me you are addressing).

    Show me your evidence.

    Assuming you are referring to my post of 9:49am, “evidence” would consist of an open-source citation in support of the notion that British intelligence based their Iraq-Africa yellowcake claim on material other than the forged contracts obtained via Italy.

    The logic is as follows: Bush’s SOTU “16 words” were based on British claims. British claims were not based on Italian contracts. That the Italian contracts were forgeries therefore does not rebut the British claims.

    The key Financial Times scoop was in the 28 June paper. I have a print subscription only, but here is Google’s cache. Two quotes:

    “European intelligence officers have now revealed that three years before the fake [Italian] documents became public, human and electronic intelligence sources from a number of countries picked up repeated discussion of an illicit trade in uranium from Niger. One of the customers discussed by the traders was Iraq.”

    “The UK eavesdropping centre GCHQ had intercepted communications suggesting Iraq was seeking clandestine uranium supplies, as had the French intelligence service.”

    Returning to this comments thread, I note that you have not responded to antimedia’s 9:44am request for the evidence you relied on in parroting Marshall’s claim that “[all] reports about the alleged Iraq-Niger sales…stemmed from the…forged documents” (7/11 4:07pm).

    Nor have you answered my query of 9:25am, asking why you seem to ignore the SICR findings regarding “pressure” in favor of dated material.

    You thus appear to be asking others to do work (supply evidence in support of claims) that you are unwilling to undertake yourself.

    AMac (9b9c77)

  25. Indeed. I just posted, this evening, a detailed analysis of the time sequence of events in the section of the SICR that deals with the Niger matter. The sequence of events shows that long before the forged documents appeared, the US was picking up intelligence indicating that Iraq was shopping for uranium in Africa – not just in Niger, but in The Republic of the Congo and Somalia as well (and possibly others. Extensive sections are blanked out so it’s simply not possible to tell.)

    The documents weren’t known to be forged until three months after the SOU speech (in which speech, by the way, Bush never even mentioned Niger, but said “Africa”). Furthermore, the SICR indicates only that the French based their intelligence on those documents. The British did not. Neither did the CIA. In fact, Wilson’s report *strengthened* the CIA’s suspicions that Iraq was up to something.

    But I wouldn’t hold your breath waiting for Mark to answer my questions. He doesn’t seem inclined to do so.

    What we know now is that Bush’s infamous “sixteen words” were precisely accurate, Wilson lied through his teeth and the press fell for it, hook, line and sinker except for Clifford May and a few other brave souls.

    BTW, check out National Review. May and Ledeen skewer Wilson and a few others quite ably.

    antimedia (65bb87)

  26. Terribly innacurate like your assertions Texant. They, Iraq, had no corroborative relationships that proved out in any way. Just because some scmuck passes through town doesn’t mean he held up the bank. Try reason. Iraq had no capability and you are just naive. It’s unfortunate, but there are many misguided among us. That’s the intention. “We found the weapons!” Anything will suffice.

    Mark A. York (ae5399)

  27. Here’s the problem with the assumption, which we’ve all heard before.

    “One of the customers discussed by the traders was Iraq.”

    They were discussed as a potential customer? So what? That’s innuendo. The traders talked about selling to them as I take this, among themselves. This is not evidence of a transaction. Honk!

    So the 16 words are tenuous and propagandistic hyberbole. Why did Tenent request they be removed? Apparently he didn’t think that was a slam dunk at least. No, this is smear and destroy in defense of Bush. You’re loyal just like Saddam’s henchmen.

    You’ve failed.

    Mark A. York (ae5399)

  28. Are you saying there was no pressure as stated by the analysts in the Knight-Ridder story at the time? Go to the source. This committee wouldn’t report the actual he said pressure, but the environment in the government was to bring things and conclusions I Bush want.

    This is well-established in other areas like environmental policy. I worked for Bush, I’ve seen the way science is watered down and conclusions and facts changed by policy makers from the inside. You have several assertions that was the case. Junior gets what he wants. He’s always wrong, as are you.

    Mark A. York (ae5399)

  29. A pattern? You friggin bet there’s a pattern of pressure. In every policy area.

    Mark A. York (ae5399)

  30. O’Hanlon reports:

    “It is only on the nuclear question admittedly a very important one that the Central Intelligence Agency and other agencies truly dropped the ball. They bought into the idea that Saddam Hussein had reconstituted his nuclear weapons programs largely on the basis of “flimsy reports of possible Iraqi efforts to obtain uranium” [emphasis mine] and centrifuge components from abroad. Even if those reports had all been true, the imports would have been nothing more than raw materials for a nuclear program that would have required several more years to produce even a crude bomb.”

    Game set match.

    Mark A. York (ae5399)

  31. I’d like to have an argument, please.

    More seriously, my response to the posts of 3:58am, 4:11am, 4:17am, 5:14am, and 6:16am is here.

    AMac (3cb088)

  32. The issues have been addressed. i.e. there is no British intelligence that refutes the statements portrayed here as “lies.” None.

    Mark A. York (ae5399)

  33. Mark A. York, we can agree on this: neither of us is going to sway the other very much.

    Your arguments would be better if you edited your posts for clarity, and if you deleted some of your snarky remarks prior to pressing the “Post” button.

    My final take on the substantive issues under discussion was posted 7/12 at 8:43pm. “Antimedia” has also made good points on this thread.

    I am pleased to recall that every interested reader will make his or her own judgement, based on what each of us have put forward for their consideration.

    AMac (3cb088)

  34. My website contains information that is pertinent as well. Environment II. We will await the results of the British report. At this point only one view has sufficient support. I can’t help that.

    Mark A. York (bef6ea)

  35. Amidst all of the sturm und drang over whether Iraq tried to purchase uranium oxide from Niger, an essential fact is being ignored: It’s been irrefutably proven that Iraq already possessed literally tons of the stuff. What was all of that enriched uranium doing in underground facilities, anyway? It couldn’t have been for energy production; Iraq has the second-largest oil reserves in the world.

    The bottom line is, Iraq played games with international sanctions for over a decade. And we let them get away with it — until after 9/11, when we could no longer allow such shenanigans. As far as the U.S. was concerned, the burden of proof shifted back to where it always legally belonged, under the original Gulf War treaty — on Iraq.

    It was incumbent on Saddam to bend over backwards, to do everything in his power to prove to us that he was on the up and up. Instead, he continued to play games, and he paid the price. It doesn’t matter now whether our suspicions were correct or not. He didn’t do what was necessary to allay our suspicions.

    inkling (b84388)

  36. “And counselor I’m no lefty. I’m a centrist.”

    “I’m no Nader voter.”

    I’m no Nader voter = not a leftist.

    Ha, ha, ha, heeh.

    Other great leaps of leftst logic…

    I’m no monkey = not a primate.

    I’m no pedophile = not a criminal.

    I’m not standing on the moon = not an astronaut.

    I’m no Michael Moore = not an idiot.

    Really, Mark, how can you expect anyone to take you seriously when you’re clearly a partisan and yet do not have the nerve to own up to it? Be a man. Claim your liberalism. Get in touch with your inner-pinko.

    But if you don’t believe me, how about your own words:

    “Liberty and Liberal go hand in hand.”

    And by the way, have you any idea what damage a “crude [nuclear] bomb” could do?

    Ah, I forgot the liberal logic…

    Not an ICBM = nothing to worry about.

    Game set whatever…

    Jim Valvis (496210)

  37. Tons of the stuff buried everywhere? Where? Who says it this time?

    I’m a partisan, but it doesn’t make me Noam Chomsky either. Saying so is a fallacious leap, but then that’s seems to be the credo here. I question the reasoning, or lack thereof.

    If you’d all crawl out from under your anti-liberal blanket and open the other eye maybe you’d catch a clue? Jefferson was a liberal and liberty doesn’t sound like conservative to me.

    Whatever indeed.

    Mark A. York (1defa2)

  38. Inkling (2:06am):

    >Iraq played games with international sanctions for over a decade.

    Nobody but the ANSWER fringe dispute that.

    >the burden of proof shifted back to where it always legally belonged, under the original Gulf War treaty — on Iraq.

    You’ll find agreement on this point, too, on the ‘right’ and in the center, and even with some elements of the US and European ‘left’.

    >It doesn’t matter now whether our suspicions were correct or not.

    As to whether, in retrospect, the war was justified, you say ‘yes,’ and I strongly agree with you. Many reasonable people disagree. Fair to say that, had US Intelligence correctly assessed and reported Iraq’s capabilities, the political case for war would not have been strong enough to obtain Congressional authorization, or UN 1441. Questions about Western politicians’ and Intelligence agencies’ competence and honesty naturally follow from this point, although the answers do not.

    So I disagree with “it doesn’t matter.” It matters, a lot, in terms of understanding what went wrong and what went right. It matters, too, as we look beyond Iraq to the other ‘wicked problems’ we face in the immediate future.

    AMac (3cb088)

  39. Papers like the LA Times were not duped by Wilson. It was KNOWN LAST YEAR that the charges of lying were a lie. I have a post on this at my site.

    Alec Rawls (1d3199)

  40. Papers like the LA Times were not duped by Wilson. It was KNOWN LAST YEAR that the charges of lying were a lie. I have a post on this at my site.

    Alec Rawls (1d3199)

  41. I think almost every issue vis-a-vis Iraq has become the perfect contemporary Rorschach test.

    One of the key elements of any good argument is addressing the issue at hand in a direct way. Mr. York’s inability to say “Joe Wilson lied…”
    is one symptom.
    (BTW my favorite aspect of this story is that Joe Wilson could be so devestatingly discredited while at the same time the leaker of Plame’s name might still be on the hook for a little gray-bar hotel time.)

    But C’mon you Bushies, with some exceptions, the administration used too many flimsy arguments and manifested an strong myopia regarding Iraq. Certainly those of us (yes, me too) who were in favor of this war need to be constructively critical at all times.

    Here’s another fact: for the Libertarian-minded I am ever more convinced that if there were just a way to elect Kerry and return the Republican congress.

    A fresh-faced Dem to sell the outcome of the noecon strategy in Iraq to the rest of the world while Republicans in the House find their long-lost purse strings and cinch them shut. If I believed God would stoop to the level of poking his finger into such a thing as a congressional election, that’s what I’d pray for.

    reltorsean (5aa56b)

  42. The Non-News the LA Times is Not Reporting
    Patterico Patterico’s Pontifications: Los Angeles Timessuggests that since the LA Times devoted extensive front page coverage to Joseph Wilson’s accusations against the Bush Administration, then at least give some coverage to Friday’s bi-partisan Senat…

    The Southern California Law Blog (f2a7ef)

  43. The Non-News the LA Times is Not Reporting
    Patterico suggests that since the LA Times devoted extensive front page coverage to Joseph Wilson’s accusations against the Bush Administration, then at least give some coverage to Friday’s bi-partisan Senate Intelligence Committee Report contradicting…

    The Southern California Law Blog (f2a7ef)

  44. They Fall Down
    I’ve always been a supporter of legitimate criticism of any government official or station. It’s part of what makes America great. However, I’ve always felt that one should be careful about the conclusions one jumps to, if only because it makes him …

    Ubique Patriam Reminisci (465031)

  45. Who was it that Lied?
    I was busy around the house this weekend and didn’t find time to blog. The big news from the weekend seems to be that Joseph Wilson is a lying political hack. The Washington Post reports that the Senate intelligence committee report found that Wilson…

    New England Republican (28eb22)

  46. The Lies of Joseph Wilson
    As far as I’m concerned, Joseph Wilson’s credibility was already dead and buried a long time ago…  but the Senate intelligence committee decided to exhume it on Friday to pound a few more nails into the coffin.  Patterico is not…

    Watcher of Weasels (07c6c2)

  47. The Lies of Joseph Wilson
    As far as I’m concerned, Joseph Wilson’s credibility was already dead and buried a long time ago…  but the Senate intelligence committee decided to exhume it on Friday to pound a few more nails into the coffin.  Patterico is not…

    The Axis of Weasels (73e7e2)

  48. A Reminder of What the Media Won’t Report
    Last Saturday (the least read day based on newspaper sales), the Washington Post published on page A9 a story on the bipartisan Senate Intelligence report stating (diplomatically) that former Ambassador and current John Kerry advisor, Joe Wilson, is a …

    Blogs for Bush (fa5c0c)

  49. A Reminder of What the Media Won’t Report
    Last Saturday (the least read day based on newspaper sales), the Washington Post published on page A9 a story on the bipartisan Senate Intelligence report stating (diplomatically) that former Ambassador and current John Kerry advisor, Joe Wilson, is a …

    Blogs for Bush (fa5c0c)

  50. [...] That’s a defensible position, albeit one with which I disagree. Oops, I almost forgot; that wasn’t what Lyin’ Joe wrote, after all; in fact, Lyin’ Xrlq just made it up. Sorry about that. Actually, that’s a lie, too; I’m not sorry about that, but am ready to move on. Here’s what Lyin’ Joe actually wrote: (h/t: Patrick Non-Fitzgerald): “Valerie had nothing to do with the matter,” Wilson wrote in a memoir published [in 2004]. “She definitely had not proposed that I make the trip.” [...]

    damnum absque injuria » Larry Johnson: Lyin’ Joe Wilson Lied (38c04c)


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