Hogan's Alley

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Dissembling On The Pre-war WMD Issue

The Washington Post has published a story with a deceptive lede today that starts with the news that a team of Pentagon analysts in 2003 concluded that the famous trailers (used by Colin Powell at the UN to bolster the White House case for action against Iraq) were not likely being used for weapons development. The left side of the blogosphere is all over this piece as further proof of the lies of the administration. The only problem is that the article itself reports that two other Pentagon groups simultaneously found that the trailers were likely weapons related. Thus the Bush administration had two of three reports pointing toward a WMD connection when it went to the UN.

Key quote from the WaPo piece:

Intelligence analysts involved in high-level discussions about the trailers noted that the technical team was among several groups that analyzed the suspected mobile labs throughout the spring and summer of 2003. Two teams of military experts who viewed the trailers soon after their discovery concluded that the facilities were weapons labs, a finding that strongly influenced views of intelligence officials in Washington, the analysts said. "It was hotly debated, and there were experts making arguments on both sides," said one former senior official who spoke on the condition that he not be identified.
This is paragraph 12, found at the bottom of the first page of the web version of the article. Apparently too far for most of those poised to jump to conclusions to read. Thanks to Capt.
for pointing this out.