Tonight on 60 Minutes, Tyler Drumheller, the former chief of the CIA’s Europe division, revealed that in the fall of 2002, President Bush, Vice President Cheney, then-National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice and others were told by CIA Director George Tenet that Iraq’s foreign minister — who agreed to act as a spy for the United States — had reported that Iraq had no active weapons of mass destruction program.Josh Micah Marshall over on Talking Points Memo reports that he called Mr. Drumheller early Sunday evening to find out why, if that was so, did none of it show up in any of the investigations that Republicans and Bush apologists point to as vindicating the White House, albeit by blaming the intelligence community.
Here’s Marshall’s take on 60 minutes, and his own personal interview of Drumheller:
Drumheller's account is pretty probative evidence on the question of whether the White House politicized and cherry-picked the Iraq intelligence.It is pretty late in the day to be arguing about whether or not Bush and his cult of criminals lied to America and the United Nations about Iraq’s nonexistent WMD program. To deny that they lied is to reveal yourself as a kool-aid drunk muffin-head. But now, Josh Micah Marshall points out, it can no longer be denied that the so-called investigations by the Rob Silverman Commission and the Roberts Committee were anything other than a papering over of the truth.
So why didn't we hear about any of this in the reports of those Iraq intel commissions that have given the White House a clean bill of health on distorting the intel and misleading the country on what we knew about Iraq's alleged WMD programs?
Think about it. It's devastating evidence against their credibility on a slew of levels.
Did you read in any of those reports -- even in a way that would protect sources and methods -- that the CIA had turned a key member of the Iraqi regime, that that guy had said there weren't any active weapons programs, and that the White House lost interest in what he was saying as soon as they realized it didn't help the case for war? What about what he said about the Niger story?
Did the Robb-Silverman Commission not hear about what Drumheller had to say? What about the Roberts Committee?
I asked Drumheller just those questions when I spoke to him early this evening. He was quite clear. He was interviewed by the Robb-Silverman Commission. Three times apparently.
Did he tell them everything he revealed on tonight's 60 Minutes segment. Absolutely.
Let me be clear: the President lied us into war, and the commissions and committees that investigated the matter are guilty as accessories after the fact, and misprision of a felony.
There’s a theme emerging in the blogosphere that the mainstream media are turning on King George. I don’t know if Rolling Stone Magazine is the mainstream media, but about 12,077,000 households had the tube turned to 60 Minutes tonight. And 1,392,672 copies of the Los Angeles Times hit the streets with an editorial saying that Bush should fire Cheney!
The only way these lying bastards can hold on to power is if they continue to deny the Democrats subpoena power by holding on to both houses of Congress in the fall. That’s why Karl Rove was told to focus on that and nothing else.
… and tell ’em Big Mitch sent ya!