Gonzales and the WMDs

US Rep. Waxman condemns former AG over intelligence abuses

Gonzales: Off Waxman's Christmas card list, seemingly
Gonzales: Off Waxman's Christmas card list, seemingly

It's not been a great week for former U.S. Attorney General, former Texas Secretary of State and former board director for the State Bar of Texas Alberto Gonzales. Last week the Senate Armed Services Committee put him firmly in the legal decision making process that somehow made torture OK: Now Congressional inquiries are circling around Gonzo about how CIA intelligence was abused in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq.

In a Dec. 18 memo to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, US Rep. Henry Waxman argues that "evidence would appear to raise serious questions about the veracity of the assertions that Mr. Gonzales made to Congress on behalf of (National Security Advisor Condoleezza) Rice about a key part of the President's case for going to war in Iraq."

Waxman writes that Gonzales, responding to a request to Rice from the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, told them that the CIA had "orally cleared" the now thoroughly discredited claims that Iraq had sought to buy yellow cake uranium from Niger. Only the CIA hadn't.

The problem is that CIA Deputy Director of Intelligence Jami Miscik and Director of Speechwriting for Foreign Policy at the National Security Council John Gibson both say it was not cleared and the CIA had asked that it not be included in Bush's famous 2003 State of the Union address. But Gonzo and the Bush administration spread the word that it was fine with the company anyway.

Oh, for the happy, care-free days when he was only under suspicion of firing U.S. Attorneys for political ends (a matter still being investigated by Special Prosecutor Nora Dannehy.)

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