Wednesday, January 28, 2004

This is getting somewhat amusing now. Or did it jut turn hilarious a few months ago?

Iraqi who gave MI6 45-minute claim says it was untrue

So, here's a brief summary...

  • The Sun claims that the Hutton Enquiry says that Andrew Gilligan acted wrongly, and that Dr Kelly did not say the dossier was sexed up.

  • It's looking more likely that the 45-minute claim itself came from a single source. From the article above:
    "Nick Theros, the Washington representative of Iyad Allawi, who headed the Iraqi National Accord in exile, said it was raw intelligence from a single source..."

  • Looking back at the Dossier, the entire claim was actually:
    "Iraq's military forces are able to use chemical and biological weapons, with command, control and logistical arrangements in place. The Iraqi military are able to deploy these weapons within 45 minutes of a decision to do so"

My take on it - the government didn't knowingly "sex" it up, per se, so the claims put forward by the BBC were perhaps a bit over the edge. But then, the govt are also guilty of the same thing that they accuse the BBC of - namely, citing information from an unreliable source that really should have been verified. Both parties got it wrong, both parties produced their claims as a supportive argument after the case had been made (IMHO, although the govt moreso than the Beeb), but the difference is that the BBC weren't making a case for International War.

Of course, the Dossier also makes the claim that "Iraq's chemical, biological, nuclear and ballistic missiles programmes are well-funded", which is true if you go with the argument that we supplied them.

So to summarise, the whole thing is full of hypocrisy, name-calling and blame-avoiding. They all deserve to go.

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