Being pressed for time, I have not really had the chance to really take in this and the previous article
. It seems the wheels just keep coming off the Bush War Wagon with every news cycle. We have all heard stories and whitewash to keep the profile low on this and other not so secret looks into the inner workings of the lies and corruption, incompetence, deceit and spin. This has been a truely historic week in the downfall of the Bush - NeoCon Dream. And not a moment too soon. I intend to do a week in review thing with links to all the major happenings but I thought this deserved it's own post. - fc
Under the Spell of 'Curveball'
The Iraqi informant's German handlers say they had told U.S. officials that his information was 'not proven,' and were shocked when President Bush and Colin L. Powell used it in key prewar speeches.
By Bob Drogin and John Goetz, Special to The Times
BERLIN - The German intelligence officials responsible for one of the most important informants on Saddam Hussein's suspected weapons of mass destruction say that the Bush administration and the CIA repeatedly exaggerated his claims during the run-up to the war in Iraq.
Five senior officials from Germany's Federal Intelligence Service, or BND, said in interviews with The Times that they warned U.S. intelligence authorities that the source, an Iraqi defector code-named Curveball, never claimed to produce germ weapons and never saw anyone else do so.
According to the Germans, President Bush mischaracterized Curveball's information when he warned before the war that Iraq had at least seven mobile factories brewing biological poisons. Then-Secretary of State Colin L. Powell also misstated Curveball's accounts in his prewar presentation to the United Nations on Feb. 5, 2003, the Germans said.
Curveball's German handlers for the last six years said his information was often vague, mostly secondhand and impossible to confirm.
"This was not substantial evidence," said a senior German intelligence official. "We made clear we could not verify the things he said."
The German authorities, speaking about the case for the first time, also said that their informant suffered from emotional and mental problems. "He is not a stable, psychologically stable guy," said a BND official who supervised the case. "He is not a completely normal person," agreed a BND analyst.