4,479. 2/4/2003

According to information from the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Report on the U.S. Intelligence Community’s Prewar Intelligence Assessments on Iraq, delivered on July 7, 2004: “On the day before Secretary of State Colin Powell’s address before the UN Security Council [February 4, 2003]…a [anonymous] military intelligence officer became alarmed that Powell was relying on a number of informants the officer knew to be dubious. One in particular was a source code-named Curveball. As an expert in biological warfare and the only American intelligence official to have actually spent time with Curveball, he decided to issue an urgent warning to the deputy chief of the CIA’s Iraqi task force. The CIA official, however, knew that objecting to the war, even with grave concerns about the veracity of the intelligence going to the Secretary of State and the White House, was useless. He therefore rejected the suggested warning, ‘Let’s keep in mind the fact that this war’s going to happen regardless of what Curveball said or didn’t say,’ the senior CIA official wrote to the military intelligence officer in an e-mail obtained by the committee, ‘and that the Powers That Be probably aren’t terribly interested in whether Curveball knows what he’s talking about.’ ”

 – James Bamford, A Pretext for War, Pages 385-386

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