Iraq war: the greatest intelligence failure in living memory

#2
I disagree, the intelligence was enormously successful. It achieved exactly what it was created to.
 
#3
The article relies rather heavily on hindsight for its 'intelligence failure' argument.

Untested Humint sources are notoriously unreliable (especially when financial reward and families are involved), so it should hardly come as a surprise that people did not rely on it to make their main assessments. If the sources made statements that went against the general assessment (however wrong) they were hardly going to independently sway opinion. Humint practitioners harp-on about how brilliant they are but alot of their product is guff and bullshit.

The fact that on this occasion they turned out to be stating the truth is a little embarrassing but the agencies involved should not be ridiculed for it. The report also does not state what other subjects were discussed, such as what the sources' assessment of Saddam mental condition was etc. IF other pieces of information were wrong or doubted then that will further damage the reputation of the source.

They were a big fat E6 from the beginning.
 
#6
The specifics of WMD threat assessments in Iraq are actually fairly irrelevant. That acronym is a weaselly way of muddying the waters between battle fileld chemical weapons and nukes, like the misinformation campaign linking Saddam to 9-11 it served its purpose. The main intelligence failure was that the easily available social data on the scope of Iranian influence and what shape a Shia dominated Iraq was likely to take was basically ignored.
 
#8
Since when did we start confusing 'intelligence' with '****ing lies'?
Now now, you make it sound like Alistair Campbell was instructing the JIC to re-write their intelligence assessment.

Oh wait...
 
#10
Since when did we start confusing 'intelligence' with '****ing lies'?
Probably since before Francis Walsingham was hyping the Papist menace and trying to get Lizzie to invade the low countries .
 
#11
....one dead scientist later.
"Classic suicide".

Odd phrase to use. Perhaps he should have said "Art nouveau suicide", or "baroque suicide"?
 
#12
Nah, GW1 was the greatest int. failure in living memory, closely followed by GW2.
GW2 was however the greatest "fitting the [alleged] intelligence to suit the policy already chosen" since somewhere on the Polish/German border around 1939.
The problem is that this stunt cannot ever be pulled again by HMG , even if it is necessary to do so as it will never ever be believable.....
So much squandered for so little gain, but still an int. failure to begin with
 
#14
The problem is that this stunt cannot ever be pulled again by HMG , even if it is necessary to do so as it will never ever be believable.....
So much squandered for so little gain, but still an int. failure to begin with
I also don't think another PM like Blair is likely to come along in a while, with quite so supine a Cabinet to ride roughshod over.

Hiding legal advice from your own Cabinet is pretty low.
 
#16
#18
Cruel but probably right.

If we had done a better job in Iraq ee may have saved some grief in Syria,.
Err, in Syria we are actually backing the blokes who will have Shia Iraq next on their list.

And I don't mean some nebulous bunch of Takfiri knuckle draggers out of al Anbar etc. I mean, the money behind them, our Gulf Kingship "allies".It's not so much the deception but the serial **** wittedness .But then we follow Foggy Bottom in these things, a failure of intelligence in another sense.
 
#20
Panorama on bbc1 about it just now. Incredible. Putting across what we all suspect/know that the intelligence was from a bunch of lunatics and hearsay and the political lunatics fitted it to their agenda.
It's a fvcking outrage & incredible that these liars are not being held to account.
 

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