Saturday, December 13, 2003

Once again, for the willfully obtuse:

Iraqi Agent Denies He Met 9/11 Hijacker in Prague Before Attacks on the U.S.

A former Iraqi intelligence officer who was said to have met with the suspected leader of the Sept. 11 attacks has told American interrogators the meeting never happened, according to United States officials familiar with classified intelligence reports on the matter.

Ahmad Khalil Ibrahim Samir al-Ani, the former intelligence officer, was taken into custody by the United States in July. Under questioning he has said that he did not meet with Mohamed Atta in Prague, according to the officials, who have reviewed classified debriefing reports based on the interrogations....

--New York Times

This tall tale can't be debunked often enough, even though I'm sure it will never go away, not until the last neocon dog dies -- William Safire will never stop believing it, nor will Laurie Mylroie, nor will Dick Cheney.

And don't assume for a minute that Bush knows it's nonsense. You remember that Cheney told the tall tale on Meet the Press last September, and you remember that Bush immediately contradicted him. But he contradicted him only on 9/11, and he didn't say there wasn't a connection -- he said only that there was "no evidence" of one. The SOB absolutely thinks there was a connection. Here's what he said:

Mr. Bush, asked by a reporter today about Mr. Cheney's statement, said, "No, we've had no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved with September the 11th," a far more definitive statement than his vice president made.

"Now, what the vice president said was is that he has been involved with Al Qaeda," Mr. Bush said. "And al-Zarqawi, an Al Qaeda operative, was in Baghdad. He's the guy that order the killing of a U.S. diplomat," he said, a reference to the killing in October of Lawrence Foley, on the doorstep of his home in Amman, Jordan.

Mr. Bush said that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi is "still running loose, involved with the poisons network," and concluded, "there's no question that Saddam Hussein had Al Qaeda ties."

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