Why Leak Instead of Openly Declassify? To Deceive

The New York Times, the recipient of the Bush-Libby-NIE leak, finally weighs in with a breakdown of the deceptive nature of the leak entitled Iraq Findings Leaked by Cheney’s Aide Were Disputed.

Though the whole thing deserves a read, here’s a key portion of the story:

The court filing asserts that Mr. Bush authorized the disclosure of the intelligence in part to rebut claims that Mr. Wilson was making, including those in a television appearance and in an Op-Ed article in The New York Times on July 6, 2003. The filing revealed for the first time testimony by Mr. Libby saying that Mr. Bush, through Mr. Cheney, had authorized Mr. Libby to tell reporters that “a key judgment of the N.I.E. held that Iraq was ‘vigorously trying to procure’ uranium.”

In fact, that was not one of the “key judgments” of the document. Instead, it was the subject of several paragraphs on Page 24 of the document, which also acknowledged that Mr. Hussein had long possessed 500 tons of uranium that was under seal by international inspectors, and that no intelligence agencies had ever confirmed whether he had obtained any more of the material from Africa.

Too bad the NYT didn’t think enough of the American public to bring a lil skepticism to the Bush administration’s leaks back in the day. Liberal indeed.

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