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nAz
12-09-2003, 11:35 PM
Maybe Bush was lied to???

Israel Shares Blame on Iraq Intelligence, Report Says


By Molly Moore
Washington Post Foreign Service
Friday, December 5, 2003; Page A18

JERUSALEM, Dec. 4 -- Israel was a "full partner" in U.S. and British intelligence failures that exaggerated former president Saddam Hussein's nuclear, chemical and biological weapons programs before the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, a report by an Israeli military research center has charged.




"The failures of this war indicate weaknesses and inherent flaws within Israeli intelligence and among Israeli decision-makers," Brig. Gen. Shlomo Brom wrote in an analysis for Tel Aviv University's Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies.

Israeli intelligence services and political leaders provided "an exaggerated assessment of Iraqi capabilities," raising "the possibility that the intelligence picture was manipulated," wrote Brom, former deputy commander of the Israeli military's planning division.

David Baker, a spokesman for Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, declined to comment on the report.

The allegations parallel those raised in the United States and Britain. Officials have combed Iraq and interrogated former authorities for months, but have turned up little evidence to support the prewar assessments of Iraq's weapons programs.

"In the questioning of the picture painted by coalition intelligence, the third party in this intelligence failure, Israel, has remained in the shadows," the report said. "Israeli intelligence was a full partner to the picture presented by American and British intelligence regarding Iraq's non-conventional capabilities."

The report added, "A critical question to be answered is whether governmental bodies falsely manipulated the intelligence information in order to gain support for their decision to go to war in Iraq, while the real reasons for this decision were obfuscated or concealed."

The study did not cite specific exchanges of intelligence. Israeli officials frequently told foreign journalists before the war that Israel and the United States were sharing information, particularly regarding Iraqi missiles and nonconventional weapons that could possibly be used against Israel.

The report accused intelligence agencies of being blinded by a "one-dimensional perception of Saddam Hussein."

"At the heart of this perception lay the colorful portrait of an embodiment of evil, a man possessed by a compulsion to develop weapons of mass destruction in order to strike Israel and others, regardless of additional considerations," the report said.

The analysis said a "certain degree of intelligence wariness is justified," but added, "the problem lies in getting carried away to extremes, as was clearly the case with Israeli intelligence on Iraq."

The report said that when "Israeli intelligence became aware that certain items had been transferred by the head of the regime from Iraq to Syria, Israeli intelligence immediately portrayed it -- including in leaks to the media -- as if Iraq was moving banned weapons out of Iraq in order to conceal them."

The analysis faulted intelligence officials for discounting the more likely scenario that Hussein and his aides were moving cash or family members out of the country in anticipation of the attack.

The study noted that Israeli and U.S. governments have disagreed over the past decade on the "weight of various threats in the Middle East." The report said Israel has generally claimed that Iran poses a more serious threat than Iraq, because the latter was "contained and under control."

But, the author added, "Once the Bush administration decided to take action against Iraq, it was more difficult for Israel to maintain its position that dealing with Iraq was not the highest priority, especially when it was obvious that the war would serve Israel's interests."

The report prompted one Israeli lawmaker, Yossi Sarid, a member of the Meretz party, to renew demands for an investigation. The analysis said that creating an "inflated, overly-severe intelligence picture" undermined public and international trust in Israel's security services. The report also said the Israeli defense establishment was forced to spend "a great deal of money on addressing threats that were either non-existent or highly unlikely."

Wally_in_Cincy
12-10-2003, 07:17 AM
Shlomo Brom

<font color="blue">cool name </font color> /ccboard/images/graemlins/cool.gif

<font color="red">Does this mean we can blame the Israelis now instead of accusing Dubya of lying about WMD ? /ccboard/images/graemlins/confused.gif </font color>

Kato
12-10-2003, 01:24 PM
I'm sure the Israeli's didn't mind us going in there and taking off one of it's enemies. I wouldn't be suprised to hear of them manipulating the upper-echelon's of politicians in the US.

Kato