Recent article by Joe Duarte In recent articles, we have pointed out that New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd opened up a can of worms about the intelligence failure that led to the U.S. not having found WMD in Iraq. Dowds views, can be summarized by saying that the Bush and Rumsfeld camp in the Bush administration were fed bad intelligence consistently from one single source, the Iraqi National Council chief, Ahmed Chalabi, now a member of the Iraqi Governing Council. Stratfor added to the plausibility of the Dowd report by describing a situation in which there was clear evidence of Chalabi having had significant contacts with the Iranian government for many years. The logic that emerges is fairly straight forward. Chalabi is the only really known link between the U.S. and Iran. Chalabi is a Shiite. The Shiites are the majority population in Iraq. It is known that the Iranians are hoping that Iraq becomes a Shiite dominated country. Stratfor, for months has been putting forth the thought that the Iranians, the U.S., and the Iraqi Shiites, led by Ayatollah al-Sistani, have come to some sort of agreement, and that because Americans and Iranians have been taught to hate each other for 30 years, their respective governments have been very slow to break the news to their populations, that the two governments have reached an agreement as to how the new Iraqi government will be divided. Now, the new developments. Means Justify Ends According to a 2-19 report in the London Daily Telegraph: An Iraqi leader accused of feeding faulty prewar intelligence to Washington said his information about Saddam Hussein's weapons - even if discredited - achieved the aim of persuading the United States to topple the dictator. Ahmed Chalabi and his London-based exile group, the Iraqi National Congress, for years provided a conduit for Iraqi defectors who were debriefed by U.S. intelligence agents. The Telegraph noted that many American officials now blame Mr. Chalabi for providing what turned out to be false or wildly exaggerated intelligence about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. Other than Maureen Dowd, and Stratfor.com, were not sure who the many are, though, since we havent seen this story taken up anywhere else, aside from our own web site. Our own submissions to major outlets about the story were met with a resounding silence. Nevertheless, the Telegraph gave the story a good run, and noted that during an interview, Mr. Chalabi, by far the most effective anti-Saddam lobbyist in Washington, shrugged off charges that he had deliberately misled U.S. intelligence. ["We are heroes in error,"] he said in Baghdad on Wednesday. ["As far as we're concerned, we've been entirely successful. Our objective has been achieved. That tyrant Saddam is gone, and the Americans are in Baghdad. What was said before is not important."] And now, it gets more interesting, and suggestive that indeed Dowd and Stratfors reports and analysis were correct, as the Telegraph wrote: Mr. Chalabi added: ["The Bush administration is looking for a scapegoat. We're ready to fall on our swords if [President Bush] wants."] Our own assertion that this is a very significant story, and that because the U.S. media is enamoured with the trials and tribulations of Senators Edwards and Kerry, they have totally ignored it, is echoed by the Telegraph, who wrote: (Chalabis) comments are likely to inflame the debate on both sides of the Atlantic over the quality of prewar intelligence, and over the way it was presented by Mr. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair as they argued for military action. The Telegraph continued by reprising the situation as it is being spun in Washington: U.S. officials said last week that one of the most celebrated pieces of false intelligence, the claim that Saddam had mobile biological-weapons laboratories, had come from a major in the Iraqi intelligence service made available by the INC. But, then the report took a more somber tone as the paper revealed that U.S. officials at first found the information credible, and the defector passed a lie-detector test. But in later interviews it became apparent that he was stretching the truth and had been ["coached by the INC."] He failed a second polygraph test, and intelligence agencies were warned that the information was unreliable in May 2002. And here is where the whole thing gets very dicey. According to the Telegraph analysts missed the warning, and the mobile-lab story remained firmly established in the catalog of purported Iraqi violations until months after the overthrow of Saddam. The United States at one point claimed to have found two mobile labs, but the trucks were later reported to have held equipment to make hydrogen for weather balloons. The Telegraph then added: Last week, State Department officials conceded that much of the firsthand testimony they had received was ["shaky."] [What the INC told us formed one part of the intelligence picture,"] said a senior official in Baghdad. ["But what Chalabi told us, we accepted in good faith. Now there are going to be a lot of question marks over his motives."] Our sources inside the beltway tell us that not too many insiders in Washington have picked up on the Iran-Chalabi connection yet. When they do, it could be devastating for the Administration. Our source suggests that such a moment of lucidity among the Washington insider crowd could lead to some head scratching, and question asking such [You mean we were tricked into fighting the wrong enemy (which actually had no nuclear weapons) because the right enemy (which has nuclear weapons) played us?" ] Also interesting, and confirmatory of the negative potential this story could have on the Bush chances for re-election, if the major media began to get involved, was the reaction of a well connected fellow off of whom we often bounce ideas about the state of the Republican party in general. While he said little, as we ran the story past him, the color of his face, pale, and the size of his eyes, wide, spoke in volumes. More interesting was the speed with which he changed subject, and excused himself.