Ron Rosenbaum, Writer

September 28, 2009

Huge Intelligence Scandal: Will All the Pundits Who Relied on the Discredited 2007 NIE on Iran Now…

Filed under: Uncategorized — ronrosenbaumwriter @ 4:39 pm

Will all the pundits who relied on the discredited 2007 NIE on Iran now admit that they were wrong? That they bought into and kept citing, without any serious questioning, the now clearly politically skewed analysis in the so-called National Intelligence Estimate of that year? You remember: the considered consensus wisdom of the entire U.S. intelligence community, which misled the world into believing there was nothing to worry about Iran’s nuclear program, that it had virtually ceased. When, in fact, out of the three components of a nuclear weapons program, at most one might have been suspended, if that.

Will the congressional intelligence committees demand to know how such a deliberately misleading report was being leaked and fed to the public by half-baked pundits even after (we now learn) some part of the “intelligence community” knew — before the the NIE was issued — about the secret nuclear fuel facility we’re now reading about?

What took them so long? Or if there were reasons to keep silent about it, why issue a report that deliberately misled the world into the opposite conclusion? The NIE now appears to be a deliberate LIE — deliberate disinformation, disingenuously written by its authors, who should be hauled before the committees and asked how they could have made such fools of the “intelligence community” and those who took their report seriously.

After all, it was not without consequences. The report essentially bought the Iranians two years of non-interfering in their obvious (to everyone but the “intelligence community”) drive to build nuclear weapons.

Who chose the authors of the LIE? How much did they get paid for distorting intelligence, betraying their trust, our trust (those who had any left after an unbroken record of intelligence community bungling)? Why do we still trust anything that comes out of the “intelligence community” since they are almost always wrong?

Just to review the bidding: there are three components to a nuclear weapons development program. The most difficult is manufacturing the highly enriched uranium (HEU) or plutonium fuel. The second is engineering the warhead itself, now no problem thanks to Pakistan’s A.Q. Khan, who sold the information to North Korea and Iran. And finally there is the delivery system, the missiles which, just yesterday, Iran demonstrated their successful development of.



  1. […] Read the entire story here. […]

    Pingback by Pajamas Media » The 2007 NIE Was a Deliberate LIE — September 28, 2009 @ 5:15 pm | Reply

  2. Ron — Good questions. I sure wonder about them too. Thanks for the article.

    Comment by huxley — September 28, 2009 @ 5:33 pm | Reply

  3. I’m not sure anyone would have needed to be paid.

    There were two ongoing wars, one of which going very badly and the Bush administration were banging the drum for a third against Iran. At the time i assumed that report was released by desperate people in the US military trying to prevent the over stretched US armed forces being broken by that 3rd war.

    Comment by Greying Wanderer — September 28, 2009 @ 6:43 pm | Reply

  4. No one seriously believed the NIE report. The purpose of the report was to create a fig leaf for the real scandal: that the CFR types have accepted universal nuclear proliferation as a fait accompli and retreated into the fantasy that “no one will ever use them.” The rationale is that, as long as Ahmedinajad can avail himself of trips to the UN, consular parties in New York and interviews on CNN that he would never drop the big one. This is the tattered drum that I have been beating on this blog for two years, the fundamental fact that the world elites are so disconnected by their wealth, self-regard and Davos like access to each other that the values system of those elites is completely different from traditional values of liberty and justice. As long as the top layer frosts itself with the sugar of its special status “nothing” can happen. Hence Lockerbie, suicide bombers, genocide, mortgage meltdowns, religious strife, etc. are irritants, distractions to the elite self-preservation rubric: “Why worry if Iran has the bomb, Amedinajad just had a sitdown with Diane Sawyer.” And the elites constantly manufacture new personalities to assuage the people; Glenn Beck IS Rachel Maddow. The appearance of everything is the only thing and said appearances wipe the ugly facts away. If the bomb drops, can they still have Davos?

    Comment by charlie finch — September 28, 2009 @ 6:52 pm | Reply

  5. “What took them so long?”

    They probably wanted, in the back of their minds, to make sure to help the Democrats in the 2008 elections. A high number of CIA employees and other intelligence professionals are very left-wing. Barack Obama may not have been elected president had the American public known about the true situation in Iran. The odds would have slightly favored John McCain.

    Comment by David Thomson — September 28, 2009 @ 6:59 pm | Reply

  6. I also thought that this report must have been an out and out lie. But then I realized that it may have been a lie on purpose. If the US had just recently discovered this secret base, it may have been in their interest to not let on to Iran that we did indeed know about it. That being said. If GW Bush allowed for a false report to be released for the good of our national security and then sat back and took all of the loathing and cheap shots that were sent his way without saying a word? What a man!

    Comment by halqeye — September 28, 2009 @ 7:10 pm | Reply

  7. Charlie, #4–

    “If the bomb drops, will we still have Davos?”

    painfully perfect, that… an exact rendering of the elites’ view of the world.. who cares what happens as long as the system isn’t disrupted enough to hurt US?? We, after all, ARE the future, the decision makers, the leaders, the influential and important.. who cares if a few million die here and there? Who did THEY know, how much money did THEY have, NOBODY AND NOTHING, they’re worthless, might as well die in a nuke blast so we, the influential, don’t have to figure out a way to feed them… such a nuisance, these hoi polloi..

    THat’s what we got from Stalin, Mao, Hitler, and dozens of others.. once you get power, your entire life now revolves around NOT losing it, and also around INCREASING it.. conventional morality and decency fades into the background noise..

    This is why the constitution is so important, and why the left wants to rid themselves of it.

    Comment by Dave — September 28, 2009 @ 7:10 pm | Reply

  8. One thing is for certain and that is that Obama will not do anything to rock world opinion until the olympic vote is completed on the next summer games site. This man has priorities of a thirteen year old girl the day before a prom. I believe that the NIE was payback for the way Bush/Cheney used the CIA information to justify their actions in Iraq and the lefties in the intel community could not allow such behavior. Even if there was infighting in the CIA once the info was leaked, true or not, it became the NIE.

    Comment by inspectorudy — September 28, 2009 @ 7:51 pm | Reply

  9. “It’s a huge intelligence scandal and we should demand answers because the Iranian preparations for nuclear war were given a free ride and we may never know — until it’s too late — just how terrible the consequences will be.”

    I think it’s already too late. 😦

    Comment by Delia — September 28, 2009 @ 7:52 pm | Reply

  10. Why aren’t any journalists beating down the doors of the three baboons, “see no evil(except the US), hear no evil(except the US), speak no evil(except the US)” who wrote the 2007 NIE report?

    Here’s a good post from 2007 about the authors of the report.

    Comment by mshatto — September 28, 2009 @ 7:52 pm | Reply

  11. This is what the CIA gets for being liberally biased against the Bush administration: bent over by the current administration regardless and letting the Iranians get away with progress on their bomb.

    Comment by Anonymous — September 28, 2009 @ 7:59 pm | Reply

  12. “Government Intelligence” is information gathered about foreign countries by massive government bureauracies. Why on earth would it be accurate?

    Comment by westerncanadian — September 28, 2009 @ 8:04 pm | Reply

  13. Can’t spell – have to set fire to another beaver tail to get more light – “bureaucracy” – there, that’s better,

    Comment by westerncanadian — September 28, 2009 @ 8:18 pm | Reply

  14. Heads must roll. The people responsible for the NIE reports must be put on trial for treason. That is not to say that they are guilty. But only a trial for treason can bring out the facts that the American people must know.

    Comment by Theo Goodwin — September 28, 2009 @ 8:19 pm | Reply

  15. I’ve been desensitized to outright lies from the government, scientists and other ‘experts’ just from the Global Warming ‘crisis’.

    What else can I say?

    Comment by Euler — September 28, 2009 @ 9:46 pm | Reply

  16. “There were two ongoing wars, one of which going very badly and the Bush administration were banging the drum for a third against Iran. At the time i assumed that report was released by desperate people in the US military trying to prevent the over stretched US armed forces being broken by that 3rd war.”

    The surge, which had been going on all summer, had pretty much proven a success by the time this report was published (NOV 07). The Bush administration wasn’t beating any drums for war with Iran, what made you think that? The house and the senate were both under the direction Pelosi and Reid.

    President Bush was trying to draw up enough international pressure to stop the Iranian bomb. i.e. Diplomacy. Not that it worked, but there wasn’t a plan advanced to invade Iran.

    Stop reading the daily Kos. It rots your brain.

    Comment by Smashmaster — September 28, 2009 @ 9:53 pm | Reply

  17. Just more grist for the mill of wretchard’s Three Conjectures.

    Fecklessness and gunpowder are a lethal combination. The terrible ifs accumulate.

    Comment by Robohobo — September 28, 2009 @ 10:20 pm | Reply

  18. Everyone knew that the 2007 NIE report was a total joke. But, this is the same media who went out of their way to distort the Presidential campaign enough to get an America-hating marxist with an IQ in the mid 80’s elected, and they have gone on to make pretend the guy has a brain in his head, as he makes one awful and stupid mistake after another. This is the same media that ignored a million people in Washington. The same media that lied about the town hall protests. And on and on …

    There are many things that everyone knows but that the neo-Pravda media ignores. They will continue to do so until there is some real bloodshed, and then they will try to act as if they care. I hope that people don’t forget what the neo-Pravda media has done to our nation. Bush should have taken some at the Times and WaPo to stand trial for treason, when they published national security secrets in a purely political maneuver. The neo-Pravda media has only gotten worse, and far bolder, since they were allowed to run wild and harm the US at their leisure. People should not forget.

    Comment by progressoverpeace — September 28, 2009 @ 10:23 pm | Reply

  19. It’s quite obvious that current American Foreign policy is in shambles. Left wing democrats seriously think the American air force should defend Iranian nuclear installations from attack by Israel. The principle administration objection to doubling down in Afghanistan is election fraud, although the administration has no major problems with the Iranian election fraud; curiously, the administration even wants the former Honduran dictator on the make back in power, after he was legally removed for violating the Honduran constitution. Former allies are thrown under the bus while democrats grovel before old adversaries and call it “realism.” And the same cast of characters who want to throw the towel in on Afghanistan were taking basically the same position on Iraq. Are the neocons back yet? After all, Obama is always blaming Bush for the problems the democrats created or only made worse. And their principle pragmatic objection to a military solution to Iran is that it would only buy time; apparently unconditional surrender is off the table, except for the United States.

    Comment by don — September 28, 2009 @ 10:37 pm | Reply

  20. This should be the new definition of chutzpah: the same people who told us that Saddam Hussein was about to attack our cities with his WMDs demanding that their opponents own up to false intel estimates. I really almost admire zealotry as fierce and blind as this.

    Comment by Shef Rogers — September 29, 2009 @ 12:16 am | Reply

  21. 20. Shef Rogers: Chutzpah or not, your gripe should be directed to our Intelligence Services not to the author. Unless because you’re a leftist you would support the NIE eventhough it was fraudulent. They gave us misinformation about Saddam’s WMD and misinformation about Iran’s nuclear plant. They cannot and should never be trusted again.

    The Brits don’t trust us, nor the Israelis, nor the Arabs. They planned without our unintelligent Intelligence Services.

    Comment by ic — September 29, 2009 @ 1:00 am | Reply

  22. […] ROSENBAUM: Huge Intelligence Scandal: Will All the Pundits Who Relied on the Discredited 2007 NIE on Iran Now A… “Will the congressional intelligence committees demand to know how such a deliberately […]

    Pingback by Instapundit » Blog Archive » RON ROSENBAUM: Huge Intelligence Scandal: Will All the Pundits Who Relied on the Discredited 2007 N… — September 29, 2009 @ 5:16 am | Reply

  23. Yep. The Davos bit is key. The elites have never cared about anybody but themselves, their power, and their money. Ever. In any society. During any time. At any place.

    Eat the rich.

    Comment by Letalis Maximus, Esq. — September 29, 2009 @ 6:09 am | Reply

  24. Any thoughtful observer discounted the NIE’s weasel words about Iran. It was not even a consistent and complete statement of the situation.

    However, it was crafted that way with intent and for a purpose. Somewhere within our government, portions of it act at cross-purposes to our elected leaders and to the interests of the citizens.

    I think Scooter Libby’s conviction was a victory for the same people who put out the NIE. Ms. Plame was of both groups.

    The story is still vague, the connections tenative, and the motivations foggy – but I don’t like what I can discern.

    Comment by Whitehall — September 29, 2009 @ 9:35 am | Reply

  25. Didn’t you vote for Obama Ron?

    BTW name some of the pundits. If they have blogs or e-mail addresses I will be happy to forward a link to your column. It is a good point. Some of us (probably not you) thought the NIE non-credible but hey here we are.

    Comment by aloysiusmiller — September 29, 2009 @ 10:00 am | Reply

  26. The elites are working from a standpoint that Iran is rational when it clearly isn’t. No rational actor would intentionally use nuclear weapons first against a nuclear-armed enemy, except as a last resort against overwhelming conventional force, and even then, low yield weapons would be used. In the hands of rational actors, city killers prevent war because they make the risks too great- not so with homicidal maniacs intent on conquering the world or dying trying.

    Comment by myth buster — September 29, 2009 @ 12:20 pm | Reply

  27. halqeye:

    NIE’s are produced at the request of Congress.


    I think just about no journalists were actually “conned by the 2007 NIE.” I think they embraced the windfall. The belief that Bush was just looking for an excuse to invade Iran was practically gospel, in all the usual corners. Even the NIE’s agenda driven authors were slightly nonplussed at how over-the-top the headlines were, as the world proclaimed Iran an innocent accused.

    Comment by JM Hanes — September 30, 2009 @ 12:57 am | Reply

  28. The 2007 NIE was just one more in a series of CIA leaks during the Bush administration that were designed to politically damage the Bush administration. Who was it that said during his years at the CIA he never met a stupid person, an assassin or a Republican?

    Now that the folks at the CIA have their preferred party in power, I can’t work up any outrage for Eric Holder’s ill considered and destructive decision to prosecute CIA officers for actions that their attorneys told them were legal at the time. On the other hand, I guess that it is not too surprising that the people who missed 9/11 and the collapse of the Soviet Union didn’t see that one coming.

    Comment by Mark in Texas — September 30, 2009 @ 1:14 am | Reply

  29. […] Ron Rosenbaum’s demand for pundit apologies is likely to remain […]

    Pingback by Instapundit » Blog Archive » BACKING OFF ON THAT 2007 NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE ESTIMATE: “U.S. intelligence agencies are quietly re… — January 17, 2010 @ 7:07 am | Reply

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