Tuesday, October 14, 2003

Truth from These Podia

Wilson adds ammo to hit war credibility gap

Just as former Ambassador Joseph Wilson's story that Bushies blew his CIA wife's cover to get back at his criticism of the war in Iraq was getting old, he has stumbled on new ammo to hit the administration's credibility. Wilson tells us he plans to circulate the text of a briefing by analyst Sam Gardiner that suggests the White House and Pentagon made up or distorted over 50 war stories. You know some tall tales, like the Pvt. Jessica Lynch story. But there's more, says Gardiner, a war gamer who has taught at the National War College. Like how defense officials said the first Iraqi unit marines encountered, the 51st Mechanized Infantry Division, had surrendered four days before it actually did. And he says Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Richard Myers gave bad or deliberately incomplete info on several topics. Sure, propaganda has always been used in war to deceive and demoralize the enemy. But these guys went way overboard, Gardiner says. "Never before have so many stories been created to sell a war," he insists. "And they probably didn't need it."

Political Wire provides a link to the actual memo (PDF file).

Sam Gardiner is, according to the memo, a retired USAF Colonel and a teacher of "strategy and military operations at the National War College, Air War College and Naval War College. He was recently a visiting scholar at the Swedish Defence College. During Gulf II he was a regular on the NewsHour with Jim Leher as well as on BBC radio and television, and National Public Radio." So this is not just the work of some crackpot.

I'll be back after I have read the memo thoroughly.


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