micah holmquist's irregular thoughts and links
Welcome to the musings and notes of a Cadillac, Michigan based writer named Micah Holmquist, who is bothered by his own sarcasm.
Please send him email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Holmquist's full archives are listed here.
Sites Holmquist trys, and often fails, to go no more than a couple of days without visiting (some of which Holmquist regularly swipes links from without attribution)
Blogs that for one reason or another Holmquist would like to read on at least something of a regular basis (always in development)
Sunday, July 20, 2003
"The White House, in the run-up to war in Iraq, did not seek CIA approval before charging that Saddam Hussein could launch a biological or chemical attack within 45 minutes, administration officials now say," Dana Milbank writes in today's Washington Post.
"President Bush and his national security adviser did not entirely read the most authoritative prewar assessment of U.S. intelligence on Iraq, including a State Department claim that an allegation Bush would later use in his State of the Union address was 'highly dubious,' White House officials said yesterday," Dana Milbank and Dana Priest write in yesterday's Washington Post. "The acknowledgment came in a briefing for reporters in which the administration released excerpts from last October's National Intelligence Estimate, a classified, 90-page summary that was the definitive assessment of Iraq's weapons programs by U.S. intelligence agencies. The report declared that 'most' of the six intelligence agencies believed there was 'compelling evidence that Saddam [Hussein] is reconstituting a uranium enrichment effort for Baghdad's nuclear weapons program.' But the document also included a pointed dissent by the State Department, which said the evidence did not 'add up to a compelling case' that Iraq was making a comprehensive effort to get nuclear weapons."
Greg Miller and James Gerstenzang have a story in yesterday's Los Angeles Times on the same briefing but puts the focus on some different points:
The excerpts suggest that the CIA and other agencies were more concerned than they have previously acknowledged that the build-up to war might provoke Saddam Hussein to attempt terrorist strikes in the United States.Did the Bush Administration get lucky?
"The FBI blew repeated chances to uncover the 9-11 plot because it failed to aggressively investigate evidence of Al Qaeda’s presence in the United States, especially in the San Diego area, where two of the hijackers were living with one of the bureau’s own informants, according to the congressional report set for release this week," writes Michael Isikoff in the issue of Newsweek dated July 28, 2003.
In a July 16 story, Reuters writes:
U.S. troops are facing a classic guerrilla war in Iraq spearheaded by Saddam Hussein loyalists, and American forces need to adapt their tactics to crush this increasingly organized resistance, the head of the U.S. Central Command said on Wednesday.***
"American air war commanders carried out a comprehensive plan to disrupt Iraq's military command and control system before the Iraq war, according to an internal briefing on the conflict by the senior allied air war commander," Michael R. Gordon writes in a July 19 New York Times story. "Known as Southern Focus, the plan called for attacks on the network of fiber-optic cable that Saddam Hussein's government used to transmit military communications, as well as airstrikes on key command centers, radars and other important military assets. The strikes, which were conducted from mid-2002 into the first few months of 2003, were justified publicly at the time as a reaction to Iraqi violations of a no-flight zone that the United States and Britain established in southern Iraq. But Lt. Gen. T. Michael Moseley, the chief allied war commander, said the attacks also laid the foundations for the military campaign against the Baghdad government."
"Saddam Hussein is probably still alive and hiding in Iraq, but the ousted leader is not orchestrating the daily attacks on American troops, the top U.S. official for the country said Sunday," the AP writes today. "Civilian administrator L. Paul Bremer also said Americans should prepare for a lengthy stay in Iraq."