Skip to comments.Neocons Spin Iran (from The Nation; barf alert!)
Posted on 12/06/2007 1:33:36 PM PST by lesser_satan
The National Estimate Intelligence Estimate on Iran was a potentially earth-shattering rebuke of the Bush Administration, a pre-emptive strike by the nation's military and intelligence community to avoid a next war.
But the neoconservative contenders for president and their acolytes aren't interpreting things that way. All the see is a bunch of wimpy intelligence-types who are not to be trusted. If anything, they say, as John Bolton did, that the NIE is a reason to get "tougher" with Iran!
"The accuracy of the latest NIE on Iran should be received with a good deal of skepticism," said Fred Thompson, who was supposed to be the neocon's favored candidate, until his spectacularly underwhelming entrance into the race. "Our intelligence community has often underestimated the intentions of adversaries, including Saddam Hussein's Iraq and North Korea."
Um, Mr. Thompson, I know you're getting up there in age, but our intelligence community, manipulated by the Bush Administration, drastically overstated Saddam's supposed WMDs and the "imminent threat" he posed.
When I received Thompson's email, I was on the phone with Peter Galbraith, a noted expert on Iraq who recently published an excellent article on Iran in the New York Review of Books. Galbraith called Thompson's comments "the stupidest thing I've heard yet in the presidential campaign."
Not every neocon, to be fair, came to the same conclusion. David Frum, the Bush speechwriter who coined the phrase "axis of evil" and lumped Iran in that group, wrote that the NIE marked a "significant opportunity."
"This is the moment to take force off the table in all but the most extreme situations," Frum continued in a remarkable National Review blog. "The US should declare now that so long as the Iranian nuclear program remains demonstrably suspended, it guarantees no first use of military force against the territory of Iran."
Like the intelligence community, even Frum's come around. Let's hope the GOP candidates follow.
If the pinko loons at the Nation are bitching about him, he must be doing something right.
Okay, I knew by the title it had to be by either the loopy left or by the Paulbots.
Neither understands foriegn policy, but they do know how to bitch and whine.
All NIE’s should be acknowledged with some skepticism. They have the word “estimate” in them. By the way, where’s the NIE about Syria’s Nuclear Weapons Plant that the Israelis bombed in September?
Faith based intelligence has been more reliable? It’s like Iraq all over again, everyone believed ‘it’, well, except the inspectors on the ground who actually looked.
"The three main authors of this report are former State Department officials
with previous reputations that should lead one to doubt their conclusions.
These three officials, according to the Wall Street Journal, have "reputations as hyper-partisan anti-Bush officials".
They are Tom Fingar, formerly of the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research;
Vann Van Diepen, the National Intelligence Officer for WMD; and Kenneth Brill, the former U.S. Ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Tom Fingar was a State Department employee who was an expert on China and Germany --
he has no notable experience, according to his bio in the Middle East and its geopolitics.
Vann Van Diepen, one of the estimate's main authors, has spent the last five years trying to get America to accept Iran's right to enrich uranium.
Mr. Van Diepen no doubt reckons that in helping push the estimate through the system, he has succeeded in influencing the policy debate in Washington.
The bureaucrats may even think they are stopping another war''
Kenneth Brill served as the US Ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (the IAEA).
Brill also has no previous history of experience dealing with Iran.
(He graduated from Business School at Berkeley in 1973!).
* Recent reports, by Kenneth Timmerman and others, indicate that a single human source may be responsible for the conclusions of the NIE.
This would probably be a former aide to the Iranian defense minister and a retired general with long service in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard
(recently categorized as a terrorist entity) who disappeared in Europe earlier in the year. "
As usual, the libs cannot help but to over reach for clarity where there is none, “if” the NIE is to be trusted, then all that has changed is Iran needs to be watched even more closely to see if they restart their weaponization program.
“if” the NIE is wrong, then we need a clear policy of action if Iran moves farther along the path of nuclear weapon creation.
Oh, goodie...peace in our time!!
Them thar Neocons at it again Maudy!
The Nation is a communist agitprop rag. The only reason for having a copy is for starting campfires.
and when Iran uses its nuclear arsenal, President Hillary will say that “this is a problem we inherited from the previous administration.”
The author is apparently unaware that this is not their job. "The military and intelligence community" is supposed to provide unbiased information to the deciders, not try to influence those decisions themselves.
One "news" article I read yesterday said the the NIE had "confirmed" that the Iranians weren't working towards a bomb. Any intelligence estimate is a guess, hopefully a good one based on something other than wishful thinking. But anybody who thinks an NIE confirms anything doesn't understand what intelligence does.
Question. How long did it take us from fuel to A bomb?