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British Intelligence Leak - Iraq Invasion Strategy

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Progressive Democrats of America Make National Call of Support for Congressional Letter Demanding Investigation of British Intelligence Leak on Iraq Invasion Strategy


(WASHINGTON, DC) — Rep. John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), ranking minority member of the House Judiciary Committee, has released a letter signed by 88 fellow Representatives. The letter demands an investigation into the revelation that the American and British governments colluded secretly to manipulate intelligence as a means of justifying a decision to invade Iraq that had already been made. The Conyers letter and names of the House signatories can be read here:

http://www.house.gov/judiciary_democrats/letters/bushsecretmemoltr5505.pdf

The revelations came on Monday, May 2nd by way of a report published in the London Telegraph, which described a leaked British intelligence memo from July of 2002. The memo, stamped “Secret,” described concerted efforts by both British and American officials to “fix intelligence and facts around the policy.” The policy in question was the invasion of Iraq. The memo noted specifically that the invasion would be illegal if a justification were not found or created.

The London Telegraph report can be read here:
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2087-1592724,00.html

The British memo in question can be read here:
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2087-1593607,00.html

Rep. Conyers’ letter specifically notes that the secret British memo includes revelations that:

· Prime Minister Tony Blair chaired a meeting at which he discussed military
options, having already committed himself to supporting President Bush’s plans for invading Iraq.

· British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw acknowledged that the case for war
was “thin” as “Saddam was not threatening his neighbours and his WMD capability was less than that of Libya, North Korea, or Iran.”

· A separate secret briefing for the meeting said that Britain and America
had to “create” conditions to justify a war.

· A British official “reported on his recent talks in Washington. There was
a perceptible shift in attitude. Military action was now seen as inevitable.
Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.”

The information revealed by this memo, which has not been denied by either the American or British governments, confirms accusations by a wide variety of ‘whistleblowers’ who have accused the Bush administration of manufacturing evidence for war against Iraq. Among these are:

· Richard Clarke, former White House Counter-Terrorism Czar, who accused the
administration of using the September 11 attacks to justify an Iraq invasion, thus creating the political cover described in the British memo.

· Tom Maertens, National Security Council director for nuclear
non-proliferation for both the Clinton and Bush White House, backed up Clarke's story with his own eyewitness testimony.

· Roger Cressey, Clarke's former deputy, who witnessed one of the most
damning charges that has been leveled against the administration by Clarke:
They blew past al Qaeda after the 9/11 attacks, focusing instead on Iraq.

· Donald Kerrick, a three-star General who served as deputy National
Security Advisor under Clinton and stayed for several months in the Bush White House, likewise saw this happening.

· Paul O'Neill, former Treasury Secretary for George W. Bush, was afforded a
position on the National Security Council because of his job as Treasury Secretary, and sat in on the Iraq invasion planning sessions which were taking place months before the attacks of September 11. Those planning sessions kicked into high gear when the Towers came down.

· Greg Thielmann, former Director of the Office of Strategic, Proliferation,
and Military Issues in the State Department, who was stunned to see the White House use the 'uranium from Niger' war justifications that had been so thoroughly debunked.

· Joseph Wilson, former ambassador and career diplomat, who personally
debunked the uranium story after traveling to Niger to investigate the claims.

The most damning testimony regarding "fixing intelligence and facts around the policy" came from Air Force Lt. Colonel Karen Kwiatkowski in a 2004 interview with Salon magazine.

The Kwiakatowski interview with Salon can be read here:
http://www.salon.com/opinion/feature/2004/03/10/osp_moveon/

Kwiatkowski worked in the office of Undersecretary for Policy Douglas Feith, and worked specifically with a secretive Pentagon organization run by Feith called the Office of Special Plans. Kwiatkowski reported: "From May 2002 until February 2003, I observed firsthand the formation of the Pentagon's Office of Special Plans and watched the latter stages of the neoconservative capture of the policy-intelligence nexus in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq."

"I saw a narrow and deeply flawed policy," continued Kwiatkowski, "favored by some executive appointees in the Pentagon used to manipulate and pressurize the traditional relationship between policymakers in the Pentagon and U.S. intelligence agencies. I witnessed neoconservative agenda bearers within OSP usurp measured and carefully considered assessments, and through suppression and distortion of intelligence analysis promulgate what were in fact falsehoods to both Congress and the executive office of the president."

Progressive Democrats of America stands with Rep. Conyers and the 88 House members who are signatories to his letter and demands that a full and complete investigation be immediately undertaken into this matter.

Media Contact:
Kimberly Krautter
Toll Free (877) 368-9221
kimberly@pdamerica.org


# # #

ABOUT PROGRESSIVE DEMOCRATS OF AMERICA
Progressive Democrats of America is one of the fastest growing political organizations in the country. PDA is currently active in all 50 states. PDA was formed to provide a counter-balance inside the Democratic Party to the Democratic Leadership Council. PDA has a national policy board of noteworthy thought leaders who are formulating the true Progressive position on issues of national security, economic progress, shared prosperity, sustainable ecology, equality for all and a peaceful, just future. Learn more about Progressive Democrats of America by visiting: http://www.pdamerica.org.

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