What Was Old Is Now New Again

From Holden:


Former spy Mike Scheuer, who spent six years as head of the CIA’s Osama bin Laden unit, told an Australian television interviewer the Bush administration received detailed intelligence about Abu Musab al-Zarqawi’s training camp in Iraq well before the U.S.-led invasion in 2003.

Scheuer claimed that a July 2002 plan to destroy the camp lapsed because the United States did not want to “give the Europeans the impression we were gunslingers,” The Age newspaper reported.

“Almost every day we sent a package to the White House that had overhead imagery of the house he was staying in,” Scheuer said. “It was a terrorist training camp … any collateral damage there would have been terrorists.”

Surprising No One:

According to two former high level counterintelligence officials, one former senior counterterrorist official and another intelligence officer, Chalabi is acting as broker between the US Ambassador to Iraq, Zalmay Khalilzad, and Iranian officials in what are now stalled diplomatic efforts between the US and Iran.

“[Ahmed] Chalabi inserted himself and brought a proposal to Zel,” one intelligence source said.


It is unclear, however, who has tasked Chalabi to act as middleman or who he is representing in these attempts at negotiations.

“Either he is taking it upon himself or being asked to intervene,” one former senior counterintelligence official said. “What we know is that Chalabi has approached the US Ambassador to Iraq with a request from what appears to be the Iranian leadership to engage in talks.”

Asked what is motivating Chalabi to attempt talks between Iran and the United States, another former intelligence official put it simply: “He is close to Iran.”

This “closeness” to Iran could also be the reason the Office of the Vice President and the Pentagon decided to re-employ Iran-Contra middleman and arms dealer, Manucher Ghorbanifar. An earlier RAW STORY report revealed that Vice President Cheney and the Pentagon re-hired Ghorbanifar as “the man on the ground” in order to monitor any talks between the US ambassador and Iran.


Chalabi’s reemergence has created no small concern in the intelligence community.

“Ask yourself: who has most benefited by [Chalabi’s] actions of the last five years? Where does he own a house? What languages does he speak?” one former intelligence official said.

The answer, of course, is Iran.