So This is the Foundation for the US Decision to Invade Iraq?

CNN: “Source of Iraq WMD intelligence tells his story

Subsequent U.S. investigations into the intelligence failure around the claims found that German intelligence considered the defector “crazy” and “out of control,” while friends said he was a “liar.”

And, it turned out, the CIA not only never spoke with him, it never even saw transcripts of the German interviews, only the Germans’ analysis of the interviews.

I remember very vividly following the debate on the war and watching then-Secretary of State Colin Powell address the UN Security Council, to whom he showed some grainy aerial photos of some trucks. I concluded that if that was all they had to offer, there was no way that such a war could be justified. “Bad intelligence” barely begins to describe the flimsy foundations for the case that was presented for war. That the public debate was lost, and a foolish, optional, and terribly destructive war launched, tells us a lot about how well prepared the forces for peace must be the next time around.

One Response to “So This is the Foundation for the US Decision to Invade Iraq?”

  1. Ryan Hagemann

    I had an intelligence professor at Boston University, Joe Wippl, who was head of the European Division of the CIA and told us the whole story about “curveball” and the unreliability of the source. Even after he asked to speak with the asset, the Germans refused to offer him for interviews and, despite recommending the source be classified as unreliable, George Tenet passed the information along. The rest is history I suppose – I think the whole affair is what really got him pushed out of the CIA and into academia. A better use of his talents, I think.

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