Ron Suskind is standing by his version of the forged Iraq letter, The Forged Iraqi Letter: What Just Happened?
So, here we go again: the administration full attack mode, calling me names, George Tenet is claiming he doesn’t remember any such thing — just like he couldn’t remember “slam dunk” — and reporters are scratching their heads. Everything in the book is on the record. Many sources. And so, we watch and wait….
American Conservative is trying to dump the whole mess on the former Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Doug Feith who in 2001 created the Counter Terrorism Evaluation Group (CPEG) at the Pentagon ( disbanded in 2004). This group of “experts” was supposed to look at the intelligence about Iraq and give some kind of perspective and insights that the CIA, the intelligence unit at the State Department and military intelligence could not. Feith’s former deputy Karen Kwiatkowski had this to say about his intelligence gathering,
“He was very arrogant,” Karen Kwiatkowski, Feith’s former deputy, says, describing what it was like to work with him. “He doesn’t utilize a wide variety of inputs. He seeks information that confirms what he already thinks. And he may go to jail for leaking classified information to The Weekly Standard.” (As she explains, an article appeared in The Weekly Standard that included a leaked memo written by Feith alleging ties between Saddam Hussein and al-Qaeda.)
It seems unlikely that Feith will face time for the leaked memo. But he may well be forced to look for a new job soon. As he knows all too well, regime change isn’t pretty.
My source also notes that Dick Cheney, who was behind the forgery, hated and mistrusted the Agency and would not have used it for such a sensitive assignment. Instead, he went to Doug Feith’s Office of Special Plans and asked them to do the job. … It was Feith’s office that produced the letter and then surfaced it to the media in Iraq. Unlike the [Central Intelligence] Agency, the Pentagon had no restrictions on it regarding the production of false information to mislead the public. Indeed, one might argue that Doug Feith’s office specialized in such activity.
Doug makes a convenient fall guy. He has barely escaped being prosecuted ( Bush probably would have pardoned him anyway). I’ve heard the argument that the forgery which was exposed as such rather quickly thus was just too obvious and sloppy for CIA handiwork. New evidence suggests Ron Suskind is right
On Dec. 14, 2003, the Sunday Telegraph hyped the phony Habbush memo as a front-page exclusive over the byline of Con Coughlin, the paper’s foreign editor and chief Mideast correspondent, who has earned a reputation for promoting neoconservative claptrap. As I explained in a Salon blog post on Dec. 18, the story’s sudden appearance in London was the harbinger of a disinformation campaign that quickly blew back to the United States — where it was cited by William Safire on the New York Times Op-Ed page. Ignoring the bizarre Niger yellowcake reference, which practically screamed bullshit, Safire seized on Coughlin’s story as proof of his own cherished theory about Saddam’s sponsorship of 9/11.
Coughlin’s source was Ayad Allawi. Allawi, as Joe Conason notes was, as asserted by then Conservative NYT columist William Safire “an Iraqi leader long considered reliable by intelligence agencies.” Intelligence agencies equal CIA asset. Allawi was also part of the creation of a new Iraqi intelligence agency that was to be trained according to CIA standards. Allawi spent some time at Langley and is reported to have spent over a decade working with the CIA. Read the full Conason’s report for some more details that make for a compelling case that Suskind rather then American Conservative is on the right track.
Another day means another report of John McCain’s high standards of integrity and great judgement, DHL deal gone sour haunts McCain in Ohio
Now, its business in a tailspin, DHL wants to combine operations with rival United Parcel Service and close its huge hub here. If the merger goes through, community officials and union leaders warn, staggering job losses will eviscerate the economy and the social fabric of nine struggling counties in southeast Ohio.
[ ]…But on Wednesday, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported that McCain’s campaign manager, Rick Davis, previously worked as a lobbyist for the German group, Deutsche Post World Net, and was paid $185,000 to help engineer the 2003 deal, plus another $405,000 for other work.
Davis helped Deutsche Post overcome objections in the Senate when the German company was negotiating the purchase, the paper reported. As head of the commerce committee, McCain fought back proposed amendments in a defense spending bill that would have barred a foreign-owned company from flying U.S. military equipment or troops
In a few months America will have the opportunity to put McCain’s decision making skills and his cronies in the Whitehouse.