Friday, February 18, 2011

A quick visit to the past...

Isn't it curious to revisit blog posts like this one, five years after the event?

The news this week - best summary I have found comes from the Guardian...
The defector who convinced the White House that Iraq had a secret biological weapons programme has admitted for the first time that he lied about his story, then watched in shock as it was used to justify the war.

Rafid Ahmed Alwan al-Janabi, codenamed Curveball by German and American intelligence officials who dealt with his claims, has told the Guardian that he fabricated tales of mobile bioweapons trucks and clandestine factories in an attempt to bring down the Saddam Hussein regime, from which he had fled in 1995.

"Maybe I was right, maybe I was not right," he said. "They gave me this chance. I had the chance to fabricate something to topple the regime. I and my sons are proud of that and we are proud that we were the reason to give Iraq the margin of democracy."

The admission comes just after the eighth anniversary of Colin Powell's speech to the United Nations in which the then-US secretary of state relied heavily on lies that Janabi had told the German secret service, the BND. It also follows the release of former defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld's memoirs, in which he admitted Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction programme.

I remember the news video of that speech well. I recall posting that I had the strong impression Powell was speaking with at least one of his minders (Cheyney? Rumsfeld?) "holding a gun" to his side.

Be that as it may, I hope that Mr Janabi has been able to comfort his conscience with the 20 talents of silver... sorry, German citizenship and Mercedes Benz car that he was given for his story.

More important, take the time to go back and re-read the commentary from the link I gave at the beginning. That was the beginning of the legacy he created.

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