While the editors of the New York Times take Chimpy’s WMD commission to task for another whitewash at taxpayer expense…
After more than a year’s dithering, the panel produced some 600 pages of conventional wisdom about the intelligence failures before the war with Iraq, along with a big dose of political spin that pleased the White House but provided little enlightenment for the public.
Sadly, there is nothing about the central issue – how the Bush administration handled the intelligence reports on Iraq’s weapons programs and presented them to the public to win support for the invasion of Iraq. All we get is an excuse: the panel was “not authorized” to look at this question, so it didn’t bother. The report says the panel “interviewed a host of current and former policy makers” about the intelligence on Iraq, but did not “review how policy makers subsequently used that information.” (We can just see it – an investigator holding up his hand and declaiming: “Stop right there, Mr. Secretary! We’re not authorized to know what you did.”)
As it stands, the report has mainly negative value. It reminds us that the Senate Intelligence Committee has yet to complete and publish its investigation of the handling of the Iraq intelligence. And it shows us what the 9/11 panel’s report might have looked like if Mr. Bush had succeeded in making Henry Kissinger chairman.
Juan Cole goes the extra mile by explaining the Schiavo debacle in reference to Bush’s vanity war.
It is like a parody of himself. He stresses that intelligence work is a) hard and b) secret.
That is supposed to make it all right that we sent a high-tech army into a poor, weak country and turned it into a failed state, killing 40,000 innocent Iraqis and suffering over 1500 coalition troops dead and over 10,000 US troops wounded, many maimed for life, and spending $300 billion on it? For no reason? When the poor weak state did not in fact have the weapons of mass destruction that Bush and Cheney and Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz insisted it had? When they bullied anyone who questioned their evidence for all this, and got their billionnaire buddies who own the media to have their anchors and editorialists also bully any dissidents?
Because intelligence work is hard and secret?
How does Bush square all the violence he has unleashed in the world with his praise of “life?” What is the link between war-mongering and being “pro-life?”
It turns out that anti-abortionism is not about life at all. It is about social control. It helps establish a hierarchical society in which men are at the pinnacle and women kept barefoot, pregnant and in the kitchen. Likewise, the Schiavo case was in part about the religious Right dictating to Michael Schiavo how he must lead his private life.