Washington Post Issues Correction to Story on Pentagon IG Report

The Washington Post has issued a correction to a story I quoted from earlier:

Correction to This Article
A Feb. 9 front-page article about the Pentagon inspector general’s report regarding the office of former undersecretary of defense Douglas J. Feith incorrectly attributed quotations to that report. References to Feith’s office producing “reporting of dubious quality or reliability” and that the office “was predisposed to finding a significant relationship between Iraq and al Qaeda” were from a report issued by Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) in Oct. 2004. Similarly, the quotes stating that Feith’s office drew on “both reliable and unreliable reporting” to produce a link between al-Qaeda and Iraq “that was much stronger than that assessed by the IC [Intelligence Community] and more in accord with the policy views of senior officials in the Administration” were also from Levin’s report. The article also stated that the intelligence provided by Feith’s office supported the political views of senior administration officials, a conclusion that the inspector general’s report did not draw.The two reports employ similar language to characterize the activities of Feith’s office: Levin’s report refers to an “alternative intelligence assessment process” developed in that office, while the inspector general’s report states that the office “developed, produced, and then disseminated alternative intelligence assessments on the Iraq and al Qaida relationship, which included some conclusions that were inconsistent with the consensus of the Intelligence Community, to senior decision-makers.” The inspector general’s report further states that Feith’s briefing to the White House in 2002 “undercuts the Intelligence Community” and “did draw conclusions that were not fully supported by the available intelligence.”

Hat tip to Hot Air, where I first found out about this correction. Obviously we should correct any errors caused by attributing conclusions about the report made by Carl Levin to the Pentagon’s Inspector General. I can also see that anyone on Hot Air’s side regarding support of the war would welcome anything which reduces the impact of this article, considering how much it harms their case–even after the corrections are made. While the report is less harmful to the Bush administration with the removal of Levin’s interpretations, the essential fact that they manipulated inteligence to serve their political purposes remains clear. As Baloon Juice points out:

I will state, however, that at this point it is a virtual certainty that EVERY time an opportunity was made available to portray intelligence in a certain light, it was done. The document dumps ofthe past few years, the revelations during the Libby trial, bits and pieces of investigative journalism here and there make this pretty clear. Additionally, this administration would then downplay any criticism of those portrayals or attack those questioning them. I fully expect the spin machines to pitch a fit about this IG report. After all, Carl Levin’s name was mentioned, so it must be liberal bias.

Facing South also presents other evidence that the intelligence was cooked.

No Comments

1 Trackbacks

Leave a comment