Why U.S. Intelligence Failed
October 22, 2003
To read the complete article,
click on-http://www.consortiumnews.com/2003/102203.html [The above link was found on the Consortium News website
through a Google search on 3/21/04]
... Though a bit corny, Ryan’s
Tom Clancy’s "Sum of All Fears"] captures the credo of professional intelligence analysts.
Solid information, they believe, must be the foundation for sound decisions, especially when lives and the national security
are at stake. The battle over that principle is the real back story to the recent dispute over Iraq’s alleged weapons
of mass destruction. It is a story of how the CIA’s vaunted analytical division has been corrupted – or “politicized”
– by conservative ideologues over the past quarter century. ...
For his part, the younger George Bush has shown little but disdain for any information
that puts his policies or “gut” judgments in a negative light. ...
Dating Back to Watergate ...Though one cost of corrupting U.S. intelligence
can now be counted in the growing U.S. death toll in Iraq, the origins of the current problem can be traced back to the mid-1970s
Backward Filter Time and again, Bush and his administration have replaced the principle that good intelligence makes for good
policy with the near-opposite approach: you start with a conclusion and then distort all available information to sell the
pre-ordained policy to a gullible, ill-informed or frightened public. ...
Unlike the fictional president in Tom Clancy's “Sum of All Fears”
– who was tricked into that “really bad information” – Bush and his team have actively sought out
the bad information and assembled it as justification for going to war. This administration, which can sometimes be stranger-than-fiction,
didn't just peer into the fog of war. It set up the fog machine.
While a correspondent for the Associated Press and Newsweek
in the 1980s, Robert Parry broke many of the stories now known as the Iran-contra scandal. His latest book on the manipulation
of intelligence is entitled Lost History.
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