Tuesday, April 05, 2005


Fooled 'Em With the Curveball

As promised, Truespeak will be taking a closer look at the section of the report from The Commission on the Intelligence Capabilities of the United States Regarding Weapons of Mass Destruction that discusses Iraq's biological weapons (BW) capabilities. A word of warning: It's not pretty.

At the beginning of this section of the report, the commission states its "Biological Warfare Summary Finding." It reads:

If there were an award given for the year's biggest understatement, this particular statement would have to be considered the odds-on favorite to win.

It appears that Curveball came onto the scene in early 2000 through a foriegn liaison service and quickly endeared himself to the Intelligence Community by telling them exactly what they wanted to hear. His information was passed on to senior policymakers and was incorporated into the National Intelligence Estimate (NIE). By October, 2001, with the attacks of September 11 still fresh in everyone's memory, Curveball's information about Iraq's mobile BW facilities and their continued efforts to pursue BW agents seemed more appropriate than ever. And by the following year, his information, seemingly corroborated by other sources, became the basis for the October 2002 NIE.

So basically Powell was going to the UN with bullshit. Kind of lends credence to all those reports of Powell's tirade prior to the presentation, doesn't it?

Now we all know what the post-war inspectors found. Jack Squat! (I have to attribute that quote to the late Chris Farley's character Matt Foley.) But let's let the commission tell us what they think.

Now you might be asking yourself, "How could we have possibly got things so wrong?" Obviously our intelligence agencies are smart enough to check out the validity of any intelligence that comes accross their desk, right? Well, apparently not. The failure to vet any of this newly acquired information provided by Curveball appears to be how we got ourselves into war. Not only was the information not confirmed, but doubts about its veracity were roundly ignored. The commission's Biological Warfare Finding 1 states:

Did you catch that? They didn't even attempt to validate this information. God damn I feel safe! But wait, it gets worse.

Commission's Biological Warfare Finding 2:

Unduly wedded. That's just a fancy way of saying they refused to listen to dissenting opinions. I apologize for the length of the next quote, but the incompetence exhibited by the intelligence community is truly frightening.

WTF? They're being told specifically that the information is questionable, but nobody does anything about it. Instead they make Curveball the basis for their entire case.

Biological Warfare Finding 3:

And Biological Warfare Finding 4:

Basically what ensued was some extremely heated discussions between some rather high-ranking officials in the intelligence community over whether or not the information provided by Curveball was accurate. The concerns centered around the fact that as of this point Curveball had not been adequately vetted. By December of 2002, almost two months before Powell's speech the UN, this doubt led to some high-level meetings amongst the intelligence officials to discuss the problem. In an e-mail to several officers of the DO, the group chief stated:

However, her view of the situation lost out. The information was deemed credible enough, despite this lack of verification and the objections of some rather high-ranking individuals.
Biological Warfare Finding 5:


What? They're giving up already? Holy Shit! All the evidence was there. He was a liar! And instead of taking our time and making sure that we had it right, we said "Fuck it! We're going in!" And now here we are, over 1500 dead soldiers later, and for what? A fucking green card!

That's all I can take for tonight. Tomorrow night, we'll take a little trip in the Wayback Machine (there it is oldwhitelady) and take a look at what was said after we already knew the information was bullshit and we'll explore why this is still George W. Bush's responsibility.

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