(noon. – promoted by ek hornbeck)
Remember the Bush administration’s claim that Saddam Hussein could launch a WMD attack on the United States in 45 minutes time?
It was one of the centerpieces of his claims as to why we “needed” to go to war.
Well, turns out that claim came from ….. (drum roll please) ……
A taxi driver.
I’m not making this up.
The UK has a lot of problems. They are far more advanced in their “Big Brother” surveillance of their own citizens, in fact it’s gotten so ridiculous they have more cameras watching people than they have to actually monitor them, to the point where they’re asking for volunteers to watch the damn cameras now. They have serious issues there.
But what they do have, still, is something of a “free press”.
I’ve found that I can learn more about my own country through the UK press than I can through our corporate media press here.
For instance, today there’s an article that is actually describing the UK’s own public hearings as to why the UK helped invade Iraq.
Can you imagine that? In a Democracy? An actual public hearing as to why we went into a war?
Must be nice.
Anyway, today it turns out that the claim that Saddam Hussein could attack us in 45 minutes came from a taxi driver.
An Iraqi taxi driver was the source of the discredited claim that Saddam Hussein could unleash weapons of mass destruction within 45 minutes, a Tory MP claimed today.
Adam Holloway, a defence specialist, said MI6 obtained the information indirectly from a taxi driver who had overheard two Iraqi military commanders talking about Saddam’s weapons.
The 45-minute claim was a key feature of the dossier about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction that was released by Tony Blair in September 2002. Blair published the information to bolster public support for war.
After the war the dossier became hugely controversial when it became clear that some of the information it contained was not true. An inquiry headed by Lord Butler into the use of intelligence in the run-up to the war revealed that MI6 had subsequently accepted that some of its Iraqi sources were unreliable, but his report did not identify who they were.
Today, in an interview with the Daily Mail, Holloway said the key piece of information about 45 minutes came from an Iraqi officer who was using a taxi driver as his own sub-source.
“[MI6] were running a senior Iraqi army officer who had a source of his own, a cab driver on the Iraqi-Jordanian border,” said Holloway, a former Grenadier Guardsman and television journalist.
“He apparently overheard two Iraqi army officers two years before who had spoken about weapons with the range to hit targets elsewhere in the Middle East.”
Good thing we’re looking “foward instead of back” in this country. Heaven forbid we’d want to know the truth about the criminals who are walking free among us.
In seven years, time, when we have a new President, people will have forgotten completely about this. Perfect.
h/t to Cryptogon.