Please, everyone get on the phone and help America

Please, everyone get on the phone and help America

To those of you that read this that have blocked my e-mails because I'm an obnoxious spamming jackass:

President Bush has pledged to release an unclassified version of the April 2006 NIE that has some conclusions about Iraq and the war on Terror. This is good, but thats not all there is.


This morning at TPM we got word that in addition to the already reported April Iraq/Terrorism NIE, there was another NIE exclusively on Iraq.

We talked to various Hill sources who confirmed its existence. And then Rep. Jane Harman (D-CA), ranking member of the House intel committee discussed the report and called for its release at an event at the National Press Club.

Only there was another wrinkle to the sources. Hill sources tell TPMmuckraker that the administration has been sitting on the report, trying to prevent its dissemination before the election, presumably. And it turns out, from what we've heard, that this NIE actually hasn't been given the official "NIE" label because doing that would have required sharing it with various members of Congress.

The President has already said he's releasing "parts" of the April NIE -- which likely means it'll cleansed of all the important details. But both should be released. The April NIE and this NIE that dare not speak its name too.

Please, call your senators and representatives and tell them that you support Senator Jane Harman's request that the Iraq "NIE" that is not an NIE be released to the public. Ask the staffers if the representative in question supports it, and if not, why.

You can find your Senators here and you can find your House Reps here

This may seem like a minor issue and I'm sure some of you don't care. But those of you that care about reasoned debate regarding facts and the accountability of our elected officials should call and let your elected officials know how you feel. Only when we as citizens possess all the facts about an issue can we make an informed decision about our future. The release or non-release of this document could have a big affect on the outcome of the mid-term elections.


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wadsbone's picture


Here's a link to the bits of the NIE that were declassified yesterday:
NIE Key Judgments

It's a quick read, just a little over three pages. It says, essentially, that staying in Iraq breeds terrorists, and leaving Iraq without a stable government would breed terrorists. Nice one.

Colin's picture

Not bad but not enough

I've read it and I'm glad that the administration has released that. I think they need to release the entire report if possible. Four sad bulleted pages out of a 30+ page report? The administration owes it to the American people to give us more. I think eventually we'll see more of it.

But whats more important is the second "draft" NIE that Rep. Harman has called on the administration to release. From what I've read, due to its damaging nature to the arguments the administration and the Rebpulican party have used in regards to the war in Iraq and the WoT they haven't labeled it an NIE even though it was produced by the same people and kept it as a draft so they can keep it under wraps until after the midterm elections.

wadsbone's picture

Partisan Bullshit

I doubt that the full April NIE says anything terribly interesting outside of the points that are covered in the summary. If there were any bombshells in there, they'd have already been leaked. IMHO, the folks calling for a full release already know that they won't get it. It's just a matter of making political noise before the elections.

The Iraq report probably doesn't exist yet. It was commissioned in August and it's not clear how much of it, if any, has been written. TPM has made plenty of arguments about why it could easily have been done by now, and they're probably right. They also accuse the administration of purposely stalling the report until after the elections. They're probably right about that, too.

Everybody's playing politics with this thing and very few people are actually talking about how to fix it. (here's some thoughts)

Meanwhile, a bill is about to be passed that allows the president to declare anyone he wants, citizen or not, to be detained indefinitely, pseudo-tortured and tried with secret evidence. Now, there's something to get pissed off about.

wadsbone's picture


Actually, it looks to me like the bill only applies to "alien" illegal combatants, but I've heard other interpretations that say otherwise. It may not be quite as disturbingly 1984-ish as I thought, but I still think it hands too much authority to the executive branch.