4,365. 1/15/2003

“By January 2003, when the Bush administration was ratcheting up its claims of Iraq’s imminent threat, the intelligence reports were continuing to say the exact opposite–that Saddam Hussein had no intention of attacking the United States, unless he was about to be attacked first. The intelligence assessment found that ‘Saddam probably will not initiate hostilities for fear of providing Washington with justification to invade Iraq. Nevertheless, he might deal the first blow, especially if he perceives that an attack intended to end his regime is imminent.’ But intelligence estimates are only predictions, and when they don’t agree with a president’s preconceived views, they are often ignored.” [The 15th of the month used for date sorting purposes only.]

 – James Bamford, A Pretext for War, Pages 382-383

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