Letter: A little history tied into today

Published 10:35 pm Wednesday, July 12, 2017

In the run-up to the Iraq War, Lt. Colonel Karen Kwiatkowski (Libertarian/Republican) was assigned to the Office of Special Plans in the Pentagon. This office was created and set up by Paul Wolfowitz to craft proof that we needed to go to war with Iraq. Dick Cheney pressured intelligence agents every day to give him the information he wanted to hear in order to justify a war for profits for Halliburton. Kwiatkowski said because of this pressure, the people in the Office of Special Plans “took bits and pieces of intelligence and put them together to make them say things they knew were not true.” She resigned her commission rather than be a part of such dishonesty. She tried to get the word out and was ridiculed for telling the truth — something those who wanted to go to war did not want to hear. We now know Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz and Cheney had several wars planned. They thought the Iraq War would go well — Wolfowitz said it would cost $50 billion, (it is now in the trillions), and Rumsfeld said it might last “three days, three weeks, I doubt three months,” and then they would move on to “regime change” in other countries. Obviously, the Iraq War did not go as they expected.

One untruth they came up with and tried to sell Congress and the public was that Iraq was reconstituting weapons of mass destruction. The actual intelligence agencies never claimed this, but those who wanted to take us to war did. They crafted their words very carefully to not actually claim that Iraq had WMDs, only that they had been led to believe that Iraq was in possession of such. Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, who worked for then-Secretary of State Gen. Colin Powell, said that the night Powell gave his speech making that claim was the worst night of his life. Powell, himself, could not stomach being part of such a lie and resigned after Bush’s first term.

Trump, of course, has been misrepresenting what the intelligence agencies claimed at the time in order to support his claim that we can’t know it was the Russians who interfered with our 2016 election, and that our intelligence agencies cannot be trusted (although he trusts Breitbart and Alex Jones of the child labor colonies on Mars claims). He did this on foreign soil while also insulting our media to leaders who don’t allow a really free press and who murder, persecute and imprison journalists and dissenters. He also used this platform to insult our former president, who has an approval rating of higher than 60 percent worldwide, while his own approval rating is in the low 20s. Today he had a private, and basically secret meeting with former KGB agent Vladimir Putin, who almost certainly has financial and/or personal information on Trump he can use to blackmail him with. Prediction: Trump will find ways to justify lifting sanctions on Russia in return for a piece of the oil pie.

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Lonna Gooden Van Horn