LJWorld.com weblogs Congressional Briefing

Roberts did read intelligence report before Iraq invasion


Here are today's headlines from the Kansas congressional delegation:Sen. Pat Roberts (R)![][1][(The Hill) Few senators read Iraq NIE report:][2] Only a handful of senators outside the Intelligence Committee say they read the full 92-page National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq's ability to attack the U.S. before voting to go to war, according to a survey conducted by The Hill. The low interest in the classified estimate, or NIE, could offer valuable cover to the five senators seeking the presidency who acknowledged during recent debates that they did not read the complete document before the pivotal Iraq vote. ... Vermont Democrat Patrick Leahy, one of the senators who read the report and a staunch critic of the war, said the findings were "enough to have me vote against going to war in Iraq." But others said that the NIE report had enough intelligence to back the administration's vehement claims that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction (WMD) in his possession. "I thought he had WMD based on the NIE report of 2002," said Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), who read the report and sat on the Intelligence panel. [Earlier: Brownback didn't read intelligence report before Iraq invasion][3][(Pratt Tribune) Bill threatens private fliers:][4] The new Federal Aviation Administration re-authorization bill includes creating a new $25 user fee for all turbine prop aircraft for every operation that uses air traffic control and creates a 360 percent increase in fuel taxes for general aviation. The combination would have a serious impact on all general aviation. ... Kansas leads the nation in revenue generated by general aviation with $7 billion annually per capita or $2,500 per resident, Bell said. ... Kansas Congressmen are not supporting the bill. "I will work to fight against this new scheme and to ensure that general aviation gets a fair shake from the FAA," said Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts. The bill is headed to the Senate Finance Committee. Roberts is a member of the committee and he does have jurisdiction, said Sarah Little, Roberts's communications director. Rep. Todd Tiahrt and Sen. Sam Brownback also oppose user fees, Little said. Rep. Dennis Moore (D) ![][5][(OhMyNews commentary) Iraqi Unions Speak Out Against U.S. Occupation:][6] Democratic Congressman Dennis Moore of Kansas insisted to Hussein that there would be "chaos" if the U.S. military withdrew, to which the Iraqi labor leader replied, "isn't there right now bloodshed and occupation?" Hussein also argued that the peaceful areas in Iraq are where occupation forces have withdrawn. But Moore insisted that Iraqi Shias and Sunnis have hated and fought each other for generations. When Hussein denied this, Moore asked her whether she was Shia or Sunni, to which Hussein replied, "Iraqi."[(Providence Journal) Commemorative coins will help fund Disabled Veterans Memorial:][7] In order to finance construction of the Disabled Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., the U.S. House of Representatives passed unanimously on May 14 the American Veterans Disabled for Life Commemorative Coin Act. This requires the Secretary of the Treasury to mint coins to help finance construction of the American Veterans Disabled for Life Memorial. The bill awaits Senate approval. The bill, cosponsored by Representatives Dennis Moore, R-Kan., and Mark Kirk, R-Ill., would mean the production of 350,000 silver dollars to honor the estimated 3 million living disabled American veterans and all those throughout U.S. military history. Rep. Nancy Boyda (D) ![][8][(LJW) Boyda: Time to tell Bush no more war:][9] U.S. Rep. Nancy Boyda on Monday criticized President Bush's handling of the war in Iraq, and touted a record $6.7 billion appropriations bill for medical services for veterans. "I think it's time to say 'President Bush, Congress no longer authorizes you to take this war in the direction we're going,'" said Boyda, a Democrat from Topeka whose district includes west Lawrence. Boyda had a news conference at a Veterans of Foreign Wars post to promote the House-approved veterans bill aimed at improving medical services at Veterans Affairs hospitals - especially for soldiers suffering mental health illnesses - and processing medical claims more rapidly.[(Washington Times) Democrats have own immigration problems:][10] Clear divisions exist on the House side, where several freshman Democrats, such as Rep. Nancy Boyda of Kansas, a member of the Immigration Reform Caucus, oppose the current Senate plan. "Congress needs to prove to the American people that it can control the borders, and that comes with addressing border security first and only until that trust can be restored," said Boyda spokeswoman Shanan Guinn. "Until you take care of that problem, talking about anything else is not going to satisfy rebuilding that trust."Rep. Jerry Moran (R) ![][11][(The Hill) Intern of the Week: Moran intern is not in Kansas anymore:][12] He may feel more comfortable driving a tractor than riding the Metro, but Taylor Calcara, 20, likes his job on the Hill. Calcara comes from Great Bend, Kan., a town of 15,000, where he grew up working on a wheat farm. Now he is interning with Rep. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), having arrived in D.C. May 21. The Kansas State junior had never been to the East Coast before. "It's kind of different here; you can't just go fishing," he said. He is surprised at how young Hill staff seems to be. Do they get things done? "Definitely in Congressman Moran's office," he said. [1]: http://roberts.senate.gov/Roberts-020405-18060-080-CFFflipped.jpg [2]: http://thehill.com/leading-the-news/few-senators-read-iraq-nie-report-2007-06-19.html [3]: http://www2.ljworld.com/blogs/brownback_report/2007/jun/06/brownback_report/ [4]: http://www.pratttribune.com/articles/2007/06/18/news/01.txt [5]: http://ljworld.com/specials/election04/primary/moore.jpg [6]: http://english.ohmynews.com/ArticleView/article_view.asp?menu=A11100&no=367478&rel_no=1&back_url= [7]: http://www.projo.com/news/veteransjournal/Veterans_column_18_06-18-07_846202A.23088d8.html [8]: http://ljworld.com/specials/election04/primary/boyda.jpg [9]: http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2007/jun... [10]: http://washingtontimes.com/national/20070618-033136-9117r.htm [11]: http://ljworld.com/specials/kudole/bios/art/moran.jpg [12]: http://thehill.com/onward--upward/intern-of-the-week-moran-intern-is-not-in-kansas-anymore-2007-06-19.html


JohnBrown 11 years ago

All I can say is "nobody's perfect", and we need politicians with a vision that goes beyond the next election.

Immigration. Before we pass any more immigration bills, I'd like to see the borders secured. Only then should we discuss and vote on what to do with all the illegals.

Iraq is a real FUBAR. First thing we need to do is get a new commander in chief. Then devise the policy that best serves American interests. I'm not sure that anyone outside the intelligence briefings can realistically elucidate an effective future policy now. What I'm looking for is someone that can retrieve America's moral standing, be tough on the real terrorists, and secure our borders and ports.

Our military is broken. Anyone associated with having created this mess should be put out of office, whether they read the 2002 NIE report or not. We can no longer react to any incidents outside the areas where we are currently deployed. We have no reserve, and the other side knows this. As well, our VA and active military is overwhelmed with PTSD cases, with most being untreated. FUBAR.

At some point, but not now, Bush and Cheney should be held legally accountable for the total mess they have created by pushing NEOCON values into every aspect of our government.

Jamesaust 11 years ago

So, to summarize:

Roberts read a secret intelligence briefing (one not available to the public) saying --

  1. That several hundred thousands troops would be necessary to occupy Iraq.

  2. That setting in place a stable Iraqi government would be "long, difficult, and probably turbulent."

  3. That Iraqi society was deeply factionalized and would likely head to civil conflict. Sunnis would reject Shiite domination. The Kurds would attempt to grab oil and territory for themselves. "Score-settling" would be rampant.

  4. Terrorism would be fueled by an extended occupation of Iraq, giving strength to fundamentalist Islam and increasing funding and support to radical groups.

  5. Saddam's example would not itself cause other nations to abandon WMD efforts but rather emphasize the need for WMDs as protection against attack and invasion. Cooperating counties on the 'war on terror' would lessen their cooperation.

But then Roberts decided to unquestionably support the Bush Administration's entire effort without so much as a "just a second"?

What does that say about Roberts ability or inclination in fulfillment of the duties of his office? At least if he hadn't read the briefing he'd have a lame excuse.

dagopman 11 years ago

An equal concern is those that had the report available and bothered not to read it.

yourworstnightmare 11 years ago

Why are we all still so surprised that Bush and lackeys ignored objective intelligence and continued down their dogmatic, primrose path? The evidence just keeps piling up.

What would the people of Kansas be thinking if they reelect this guy? That responsibility and accountability do not matter? That only adherence to a failed extremist social agenda is important?

Trouble is, someone must step up and run against him.

Jamesaust 11 years ago

"An equal concern is those that had the report available and bothered not to read it."

No, that's a concern but it is distinctly a lesser concern.

Its one thing to ask: why did you not look before you drove the bus over that cliff? Its quite another to ask: why did you see the cliff and keep driving the bus?

Commenting has been disabled for this item.