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Monday, April 30


Dr Rice made the television rounds yesterday to counter George Tenet's book. (Not that anyone is taking every word in his book to be true.)

Yesterday on CNN's Late Edition, Dr Rice countered Tenet's claim that there was no serious debate before the US invaded and occupied Iraq by saying, “We all thought that the intelligence case was strong,” adding that even “the U.N weapons inspectors [thought] Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction.” She concluded, “So there’s no blame here of anyone.”

Even I remember the lead up to the war and that the UN weapons inspectors claimed that there were no WMD's in Iraq. I sort of remember the bushista's character assassinations of the inspectors as well. Think Progress was so kind to look up some of the news back then. (and don't forget that the wingers will call this "spin" because to them, the truth makes them feel bad.
[On March 7, 2003], the head of the IAEA, Mohamed El-Baradei, reported that there was no evidence that Saddam Hussein had any nuclear weapons or was in the process of acquiring them. Mr Blix said: “By then, Mohamed ElBaradei revealed that Niger was not authentic.” British intelligence falsely claimed Iraq had been trying to acquire uranium from Niger. [4/28/05]

So frustrated have the inspectors become that one source has referred to the U.S. intelligence they’ve been getting as “garbage after garbage after garbage.” … The inspectors find themselves caught between the Iraqis, who are masters at the weapons-hiding shell game, and the United States, whose intelligence they’ve found to be circumstantial, outdated or just plain wrong. [2/20/03]

Chief United Nations weapons inspector Hans Blix told the U.N. Security Council that his inspection teams had not found any “smoking guns” after visiting some 125 Iraqi sites. [1/9/03]
I think a lot of us remember that. In fact I had a hard time trying to explain this to people in 2003 who I knew were in support of the invasion and occupation of Iraq as a pre-emptive strike (that being the reason for invasion du jour at the time.)

In an extreme example of irony, Dr Rice also went on Face the Nation yesterday to respond to Tenet's charge that no one in the administration took action in July of 2001 when the threat of a terrorist attack [9/11] had become evident. He wrote in the book about July 2001, "We need to consider immediate action inside Afghanistan now. We need to move to the offensive."
She commented, “I don’t know what we were supposed to preemptively strike in Afghanistan. Perhaps somebody can ask that.”

Um. How about going after Osama bin Laden?

Tenet's book also describes al Qaida's plan to assassinate Vice President Al Gore in Saudi Arabia and that U.S. intelligence agencies “established that Al Qaeda had clear intent to acquire chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear weapons to cause mass casualties in the United States.” While the US was busy invading Iraq, "Saudi extremist elements were planning to conduct a cyanide gas attack on the New York subway system in fall 2003 using a homemade device.” Tenet's book also outlines al Qaida's efforts to actually acquire WMD's from scientists in Pakistan. Al Qaida's goal is to set off a nuclear device in a US city, preferably NY. But no, let's give lots of Homeland Security money to everywhere else but NY, why don't we. And Mr America's Mayor is so full of shit, I could scream.
Just read this thing

But getting back to the war on Iraq, Dr. Rice decided to explain what "imminent" means in bushista. On ABC's morning program "This Week" she explains it to George Stephanopoulos. [Raw story]
"I think that -- an imminent threat. Certainly Iraq posed a threat," Rice responds. "The question was, was it going to get worse over time or was it going to get better."

Rice goes on to say that the Bush administration assessment was that the threat from Iraq was "getting worse" and had to be dealt with.

"But [Iraq was] not an imminent threat," presses Stephanopoulous.

"George, the question of imminence isn't whether or not someone will strike tomorrow, it's whether you believe you're in a stronger position today to deal with the threat or whether you're going to be in a stronger position tomorrow," replies Rice. "It was the president's assessment that the situation in Iraq was getting worse from our point of view."

Rice's redefinition of the term "imminent threat," comes just over a month after former US Ambassador to the UN John Bolton appeared on CNN claiming that the President never made the argument that Saddam Hussein posed an "imminent threat."
Silly me. mushroom cloud mushroom cloud mushroom cloud Of course I didn't understand what "imminent" meant before she explained it, or I wouldn't have been an anti-war, unpatriotic, pinko, commie, America-hater all this time.

Condoleeza Rice. You're our biggest lying sack of spew of the week.

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