Thursday, August 14, 2003

A couple of weeks ago I predicted that the Bush administration would try to release David Kay's report on Iraq weapons right around the time of the early Democratic primaries and the State of the Union address. Now it looks as if the administration is planning to give us what it's got in September. In his blog, Joshua Micah Marshall speculates on what we'll get. You should read the whole thing, but here's an excerpt:

What many suspect is that Kay is going to pull an intel version of a classic 1990s-era document dump. In other words, come forward with a mound of documents detailing the Iraqis' extensive programs, their histories, the means used to conceal them, whom they imported parts from, and so forth. And then conveniently leave as a footnote the fact that these program had gone pretty dormant by 2002. The idea will be to make up with paper poundage what the report lacks in relevance. Hit them with twenty reams of report about the Iraqi WMD programs and then figure that the follow-on reports about how little was actually happening in 2002 are buried in the back of the papers after no one is paying attention.

All of this is to say that we're probably set for an elaborate festival of goal post moving courtesy of Mr Kay -- the widely telegraphed switch from weapons to 'programs' being the key sign.

Sounds about right to me -- although I still think it's possible we'll get a multimedia spectacle like the now-discredited Powell dog-and-pony show at the U.N.

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