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3 June 2003  |     mail this article   |     print   |   
This article is part of the series: Blair deceptions
[ 1 - 2 ]
Blair lied to be able to wage war against Iraq - 1
The Dutch in the original article has been translated into English by Marienella Meulensteen.
Tony Blair is under fire because he allegedly lied. In a fine article in the Sunday Herald it appears that Blair let himself be lied to purposely and that he passed on the deceitful information to convince his own people. A crucial role in this scandal which could ruin Blair is reserved for Donald Rumsfeld's secret agency OSP.

By Daan de Wit

Robin Cook and Clair Short, two of Blair's ministers, did not want to listen to the lies any more and walked out. 'Short: 'Blair duped us all along. We were misled. We were deceived', headlines the Daily Telegraph. '"I have concluded that the PM had decided to go to war in August sometime and he duped us all along. He had decided for reasons that he alone knows to go to war over Iraq and to create this sense of urgency and drive it: the way the intelligence was spun was part of that drive.' Add to this the remarks by Wolfowitz in Vanity Fair and the remark by Powell, and you will realize that Blair has a problem. Not Bush, because the American mainstream press has totally nodded off, and thanks to the FCC decision of yesterday, it will only get worse.

'After days of mounting pressure, the Prime Minister was forced to issue his strongest denial that Downing Street had exaggerated the threat posed by Saddam Hussein's Iraq', writes The Independent today. Blair's variation on I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky (video) causes him to 'make an unprecedented attack on Clare Short, calling her a liar, and reject calls for an independent inquiry into the affair'.

OSP, the secret agency of Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz
The Sunday Herald writes: 'So how on earth did the British people come to believe Saddam was sitting in one of his palaces with an itchy trigger finger poised above a button marked 'WMD'? And if there were no WMDs, then why did we fight the war? The answer lies with Rumsfeld.
With September 11 as his ideological backdrop, Rumsfeld decided in autumn 2001 to establish a new intelligence agency, independent of the CIA and the Pentagon, called the Office of Special Plans (OSP). He put his deputy, Wolfowitz, in charge. The pair were dissatisfied with the failure of the CIA among others to provide firm proof of both Saddam's alleged WMD arsenal and links to Al Qaeda.
Regime change in Iraq had been a long-term goal of Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz. Even before Bush took over the presidency in September 2000 the pair were planning 'regime change' in Iraq. As founders of the Project for the New American Century (PNAC), one of the USA's most extreme neocon think tanks, the pair were behind what has been described as the 'blueprint' for U.S. global domination -- a document called Rebuilding America's Defenses.' (Regarding the PNAC and Rebuilding America's Defenses, also read the DeepJournal article entitled Long before September 11, 2001, Iraq was a target).

The dubious working method of OSP
The Sunday Herald: 'That was the policy blueprint, but to deliver it, Rumsfeld turned to the Office of Special Plans. Put simply, the OSP was told to come up with the evidence of WMD to give credence to US military intervention.' Normal secret agencies handle their collected information very carefully. They check and analyze it. ''That wasn't satisfactory in Secretary Rumsfeld's Pentagon so he set up a separate office to review this data, and the people in this office, although they're described as intelligence people, are by and large congressional staffers. They seemed to me not to have deceived intentionally but to have seen in the data what they believe is true. I think it's a very risky thing to do', said 'Colonel Patrick Lang [, ...] a former chief of human intelligence for the Pentagon's Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) in the 1990s. He was also the DIA's chief of Middle East intelligence and was regularly in Iraq. He said of the OSP : 'This office had a great deal of influence in a number of places in Washington in a way that seemed to me to be excessive and rather ill-advised.'

Blair a willing victim of OSP
'Most of the OSP intelligence was based on debriefings with Iraqi exiles -- a tactic, says Lang, which is highly questionable as the exiles have clear, personal agendas that might taint their claims. But even if the U.S. was using selective intelligence to justify war against Iraq, does that mean that Tony Blair was also being briefed with OSP intelligence? According to Melvin Goodman, veteran CIA analyst and current professor of national security at the National War College in Washington, the answer is an unequivocal 'yes'. Goodman says that there is 'no question' that Blair was 'brought along at the highest level' by Bush and Rumsfeld, adding that the Prime Minister was 'vulnerable because of his own evangelical bent' over bringing democracy to the Middle East', writes the Sunday Herald.

British spies sceptical about Blair's argumentation
'That U.S. view has been corroborated by British intelligence sources who have confirmed to the Sunday Herald that the U.K. government was being influenced by the selective intelligence emanating from the OSP. Senior U.K. intelligence sources representing a range of views from across all the spying services said: 'There was absolute scepticism among British intelligence over the invasion of Iraq. The intelligence we were working on was basically of a technical nature coming from satellite surveillance and eavesdropping. The only real Humint (human intelligence from agents) that we had was from Iraqi exiles and we were sceptical of their motives.'
It was this 'tainted' information which was used to compile the crucial dossier on Iraq which Blair presented to MPs last September. The most sensational part of the dossier claimed that Iraq could deploy chemical and biological weapons within 45 minutes -- a claim based on one single Iraqi defector. A British intelligence source said: 'The information had been lying around for ages. The problem was we didn't really trust the defectors as they were working in their own self-interest and really doing their master's bidding -- by that I mean us, the U.K. They also had one eye to the future and their role in any new Iraqi government'', writes the Sunday Herald.

Blair wanted a 'sexier' report
'Another source -- an official involved in preparing the Iraqi dossier for Blair -- told the BBC: 'Most people in intelligence weren't happy with [the dossier] as it didn't reflect the considered view they were putting forward.' Other sources said they accepted there was a 'small WMD programme' in Iraq, but not one that would either threaten the West or even Saddam's neighbors. Another said they were 'very unhappy' with the dossier, others said they were 'pissed off' and one described the claim that WMDs could be ready in 45 minutes as 'complete and utter bollocks'.
The Sunday Herald was told: 'The spooks were being asked to write this stuff. The dossier had been lying around for about six months. When it came time for publication Downing Street said it wasn't exciting or convincing enough. The message was that it didn't cut the mustard in terms of PR as there wasn't much more in it than a discerning newspaper reader would know.
'The intelligence services were asked if there was anything else that could be added into it. Intelligence told Downing Street that the 45-minute claim hadn't been added in as it only came from one source who was thought to be wrong.
'The intelligence services were asked to go back and do a rewrite even though Downing Street was told the 45 minute claim was unconvincing.' Another intelligence source was quoted as telling the BBC that they had been asked to rewrite the dossier as well to make it 'sexier'. The intelligence source said the dossier had been 'transformed' a week before publication. Blair has rejected each and every one of these claims as 'completely absurd'.

Blair also ignored French information
'The British intelligence source said the best Humint [human intelligence] on Saddam was held by the French who had agents in Iraq. 'French intelligence was telling us that there was effectively no real evidence of a WMD program. That's why France wanted a longer extension on the weapons inspections. The French, the Germans and the Russians all knew there were no weapons there -- and so did Blair and Bush as that's what the French told them directly. Blair ignored what the French told us and instead listened to the Americans.'

DeepJournal joins the act
With the article that you are reading now, DeepJournal joins the act around the war with Iraq. Despite the fact that the lead actor Bush has to recite his complete text and even keeps reading commas where there aren't any, all representatives of this world behave like the game is the reality. The people themselves will not be fooled and they are going into the streets en masse to protest. The game is that we are pretending that it is indeed about U.N. resolution 1441 and the criminal Saddam and his weapons of mass destruction.
The Americans are so focused on their Pax Americana and on the oil that they don't see that nuclear material is being stolen. Weren't they supposed to be scared of weapons of mass destruction? In addition, liberating (or wooing) people in need is the last thing that would interest the Americans. If that was really the case, they could choose from a long list. It is no coincidence that they chose the country with the second-largest oil reserves in the ground - Iraq. 'The war which will not end in our lifetimes will include: Saudi Arabia, Iran, Colombia, Venezuela, West Africa, and the Southwest Pacific; anywhere there are significant reserves of oil and gas. These conflicts are being created now through the National Security Strategy of the U.S. Afghanistan and Iraq were only the beginning', writes research journalist Mike Ruppert in a full-page advertisement in the Washington Post. To read more about oil, read our DeepJournal series.

Also this 'Blair case' proves again that even though all the residents of a democracy have decided that they do not want a war, and even though they have chosen a left-wing prime minister, the long-standing plans to wage a war will be carried out, if need be on the basis of lies. In fact, we should be happy that they take the trouble to lie at all.


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