By Rob Kall
Just the way the Bush administration is titling the investigation: "independent commission to investigate pre-war US intelligence" tells us that it is being set up to further hide the real problem, which was not at all about the failure of intelligence sources.
We already know that the administration was warned amply by many sources that the WMD threat information was unreliable. We already know that Cheney and other Neocons set up their own (oxymoronic) "intelligence" operation within the pentagon. We already know that they chose to ignore usual procedure for acquiring, transmitting and processing intelligence information, instead, going with filtered and selected only information that reinforced their views and goals-- that Saddam was an immediate danger, that he had massive quantities off WMDs, that Saddam was working with Al Qaeda.
This administration is extraordinarily savvy when it comes to the way they phrase and frame issues. They have a play book on how to match their words to their demographics. In this case, the word game involves focusing on failures in Intelligence/spy research rather than on the big truth, which was the intentional abuse and manipulation of the intelligence to distort and mislead congress, the UN and the American public.
There's that old canard about the man who's looking looking for his lost keys. A friend comes and offers to help. "Where were you when you dropped them?"
The man replies, "About 20 yards over that way."
"Then why," the friend asks, "are you looking over here?"
The explanation; "The light is better here."
Well, in this case the light is worse where Bush is focusing the investigation, and all that can come of this is a shallow whitewash that may satisfy the partisan percentage of the population that believes that Bush and the right-wingers in congress can do no wrong. Anyone else should clearly see that this is so-called investigation is no such thing at all and that it is not intended to do anything other than distract from the real issues and protect the guilty parties.
To make this investigation even less credible, the deadline for the investigation is some time in 2005, long after the November elections. It's interesting that Bush wants the 911 commission investigation ended prematurely, long before it has been allowed to fully do its job. But on this investigation, he wants it to wrap up and produce a report after the elections.
The need for a real investigation is the highest. Even, according to CNN, "Sen. Chuck Hagel, R- Nebraska, of the Foreign Relations and Intelligence committees agreed that an investigation is needed. "We need to open this up in a very nonpartisan, outside commission to see where we are," Hagel said. "I don't think there's any way around it. ... America's credibility is at stake."
At some point, it may become necessary to declare a real war, or to take action against a danger that is factual, not contrived, like the WMD/Saddam misadventure. When that time comes, we need to have the trust of our allies. Right now, with this administration, the US does not have it and does not deserve it. If we went to Germany or Russia, France or Australia and told them there was a danger. They'd be totally justified questioning not just our intelligence, but also our judgment in the evaluation of that intelligence.
That's the bottom line-- judgment and use of intelligence resources. The Bush administration, at best failed to use good judgment in its evaluation of the intelligence it was provided. In the worst case, they intentionally lied and distorted some information, hid other information and ignored interpretations and opinions that didn't support their military goals. And if that's the case, the guilty parties should be prosecuted and jailed.
Bottom line... whoever gets placed on this whitewash investigative body MUST reframe and re-define its mission to include not only the quality of the intelligence but also its use and abuse.
Rob Kall email@example.com is editor/founder of OpEdNews.com, president of Futurehealth, Inc. and organizer of the Futurehealth Winter Brain, Optimal Functioning and StoryCon Meeting. This article is copyright Rob Kall and originally published by opednews.com but permission is granted for reprint in print, email, blog or web media so long as this credit paragraph is attached. Over 85 other articles by Rob Kall