Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Painfully Familiar

Occasionally, a phrase will pop out of page, striking so familiar a note that it bears a recollection of sorts. And so it was with a story over at Knight Ridder that begins thusly, painful and familiar as it is:
U.S. intelligence agencies repeatedly warned the White House beginning more than two years ago that the insurgency in Iraq had deep local roots, was likely to worsen and could lead to civil war.
Of course, such repeated warnings, like so many others, were ignored and US forces now find themselves caught in the middle of stewing pot of civil unrest. But it should not be forgotten that this is just latest in a long line of repeated warnings, warnings that this White House has ignored, time and again. In fact, as it will become apparent below, had the White House actually noted the warnings and acted on them appropriately, they wouldn't be nearly as big a bunch of screw ups as they are.

Then again, they probably wouldn't be the Bush administration; an addle-pated band of intrasigent louts whose only defining characteristic, outside of an unbridled sense of entitlement, is an intractable inability to listen to anyone else, especially anyone bearing opinions contrary to their own severly malfomed twaddle.

And so that highlighted phrase struck me. It was so painfully familiar, I decided to check out just how familiar it was. This is what I found.

On Al Qaeda and 9/11:

-- Senior Clinton administration officials called to testify next week before the independent commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks say they are prepared to detail how they repeatedly warned their Bush administration counterparts in late 2000 that Al Qaeda posed the worst security threat facing the nation....

-- Federal officials were repeatedly warned in the months before the 11 September 2001 terror attacks that Osama bin Laden and al-Qa'ida were planning aircraft hijackings and suicide attacks, according to a new report that the Bush administration has been suppressing.

-- First, the release of a previously classified report by the National Archives shows that the FAA had been warned repeatedly of the threat of terrorist hijackings between April and September, 2001.

-- was Chairman Tom Kean, the former Republican governor appointed by President Bush, who last fall repeatedly warned the administration to stop withholding key documents and witnesses.


On WMD intelligence, Iraq and the invasion:

-- A review of the facts shows the intelligence community repeatedly warned the Bush Administration about the weakness of its [WMD] case, but was circumvented, overruled, and ignored.

-- Intel Agencies Repeatedly Warn White House of Its Weak WMD Case
Throughout 2002, the CIA, DIA, Department of Energy and United Nations all warned the Bush Administration that its selective use of intelligence was painting a weak WMD case. Those warnings were repeatedly ignored.

-- The CIA and the State Department, in particular, distanced themselves from Iraqi defectors handed over by the Iraqi National Congress, a London-based umbrella group headed by Ahmad Chalabi. CIA and State Department officials repeatedly warned that the group's intelligence network had proved unreliable in the past.

-- In October 2002, CIA Director George Tenet personally and repeatedly warned Stephen Hadley, a deputy of Condoleezza Rice, as well as other White House officials that references to Niger be dropped from Bush's October 7 speech to the nation.

-- The German intelligence officials who interrogated “Curveball,” an Iraqi who provided intelligence that the Bush Administration used to justify the war in Iraq, said that they repeatedly warned the United States that Curveball (who may have been lying in order to obtain a German visa) could not be trusted.

-- The IAEA and U.N. both repeatedly warned the Administration that it had no evidence that Iraq possessed WMD. On 2/15/03, the IAEA said that, "We have to date found no evidence of ongoing prohibited nuclear or nuclear-related activities in Iraq."

-- The agency repeatedly warned the Bush Administration, both privately, through leaks, and openly, that Iraq was not a threat, did not possess significant offensive weapons systems, and was unlikely to greet American and British invaders as ‘liberators.'

-- British Attorney General, Lord Goldsmith, had repeatedly warned Tony Blair's government in 2002 and early 2003 that an invasion of Iraq would be a violation of international law.

-- Europeans repeatedly warned against invading Iraq. So did genuine Mideast experts, who were dismissed as pro-Arab....

-- In the weeks before the invasion, the U.S. military repeatedly warned the White House that its war plans did not include sufficient ground forces, air and naval operations and logistical support to guarantee a successful mission. Those warnings were discounted — even mocked — by administration officials....

-- Military and civilian intelligence agencies repeatedly warned prior to the invasion that Iraqi insurgent forces were preparing to fight and that their ranks would grow as other Iraqis came to resent the U.S. occupation and organize guerrilla attacks.

-- However, the review found that the president and many of his advisers ignored repeated warnings that rebuilding Iraq would be harder than ousting Saddam and tossed out years of planning about how to rebuild Iraq....

On torture, Gitmo and Abu Graib:

-- FBI agents repeatedly warned military interrogators at the U.S. prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, that their aggressive methods were legally risky and also likely to be ineffective....

-- Senior military and national security officials in the Bush administration were repeatedly warned by subordinates in 2002 and 2003 that prisoners in military custody were being abused....

-- Red Cross Says Repeatedly Warned U.S. on Iraq Jail
The International Committee of the Red Cross said Thursday it had repeatedly urged the United States to take "corrective action" at a Baghdad jail at the center of a scandal over abuse of Iraqi prisoners.

On Katrina:

-- In the weeks before Hurricane Katrina, state emergency-planning directors repeatedly warned that the Bush administration’s post-September 11 focus on terrorism was seriously undercutting the federal government’s ability to respond to catastrophic hurricanes and other natural disasters.

Now, doesn't that give you a warm fuzzy feeling about the Bush administration, especially when they stand up in front of the country and claim no one should be worried about any deal they cut because they have "reviewed it" and have found no problems?


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