Think Progress.org
Three Words To Explain Manipulation of Intel:
Tue Jun 27, 2006 05:21

 

WILKERSON: But I understand it. I’d answer you with two words. Let me put the article in there and make it three. The Vice President.


Former Admin. Official Needs Only Three Words To Explain Manipulation of Intel: ‘The Vice President’


The Democratic Policy Committee held a hearing this afternoon to examine the manipulation of pre-war Iraq intelligence. Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC), who previously disavowed his vote for the war, attended the hearing and asked the panelists why a small number of individuals in the administration “had more influence…than the professionals.” Lawrence Wilkerson, former chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell, said he only needed three words.
Watch it.



Full transcript:

JONES: My question is this to all four of you who would like to answer, maybe it’s a very simple question. I apologize if it’s been asked before. But what perplexes me is how in the world could professionals – I’m not criticizing anybody here at this table – but how could the professionals see what was happening and nobody speak out?

I’m not saying you did not do your duty, please understand. My point is as a congressman who trusted what I was being told – I’m was not on the Intelligence Committee, Senator Dorgan, but I am on the Armed Services Committee – and I was being told this information. And I wish I’d the wisdom then that I might have now. I would have known what to ask. But I think many of my colleagues – they did not have the experience on the Intelligence Committee – we just pretty much accepted.

So where along the way – how did these people so early on get so much power that they had more influence in those in the administration to make decisions than you the professionals.

WILKERSON: Let me try to answer you first. Let me say right off the bat I’m glad to see you here.

JONES: Thank you sir.

WILKERSON: As a Republican, I’m somewhat embarrassed by the fact that you’re the only member of my party here.

JONES: I agree.

WILKERSON: But I understand it. I’d answer you with two words. Let me put the article in there and make it three. The Vice President.

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