“A classified National Intelligence Estimate prepared for President Bush in late July [2004] spells out a dark assessment of prospects for Iraq, government officials said Wednesday [September 15, 2004]. The estimate outlines three possibilities for Iraq through the end of 2005, with the worst case being developments that could lead to civil war, the officials said. The most favorable outcome described is an Iraq whose stability would remain tenuous in political, economic and security terms. ‘There’s a significant amount of pessimism,’ said one government official who has read the document, which runs about 50 pages.” [The 25th of the month used for date sorting purposes only.]

 – Douglas Jehl, “U.S. Intelligence Shows Pessimism On Iraq’s Future,” The New York Times, Sep. 16, 2004