In a unique interview with an official at the highest policy levels of the Pentagon, White House and, eventually, CIA, we are offered a unique â€œbehind the curtainsâ€ look at areas of policy making during the period between 1999 and 2007. Extensive notes have been taken of meetings with President Bush and all his top policy advisors. This is only a teaser.
A highly placed source within the White House and CIA confirmed, in an interview, that the invasion of Iran was scheduled for 2006 but planned in 1999. We have heard some of this before but not with so many pieces and, I am told, more to come. In an interview with a Bush administration policy official:Q. What is the first thing that comes to mind when you think of your work at the White House? You have read my articles, what do you think of my take on things?A. You are closer than anyone else in understanding how things worked, the only person willing to simply put it out there. You also come at things like the Pentagon people I have worked with, the ones who stood against Bush, Cheney and the AIPAC gang at the NSC (National Security Council.) I can also see that you donâ€™t have background material that you need. Some of it you have wrong, particularly the motives for Iraq. It was always Iran, Iraq was simply a door.â€The Iraq invasion was a `done dealâ€™ in 1999, but not as you thought to steal oil and bilk billions, that was all gravy. Iraq, the entire Bush presidency, had one purpose, to remove Iran from the picture.â€
Q. You talk about journalists. What has your experience been?A. I have good friends at the New York Times, Time Magazine, the Washington Post and others. They know all of this. They arenâ€™t fooled. They could write anything but it would never hit print.Q. Back to the 2000 election. The first impediment was, I am told, removing John McCain from the picture. Was this the case?
A. â€œHe was enemy # 1, stubborn, unpredictable and already tarnished by the Keating 5 scandal, with all his faults, he didnâ€™t have the serous skeletons in his closet that would fit the bill. McCain couldnâ€™t be blackmailed like Bush, thus McCain is a risk. Unless you can be controlled, blackmailed or bought or both, you will go nowhere in Washington.McCain is a womanizer, the real thing. For a war hero, with McCainâ€™s charm thatâ€™s nothing, he would never fall into the kind of trap Clinton did. Rove was assigned the job of getting rid of McCain. We all saw what was done in South Carolina. It was a masterful job.â€
Q. When you talk about McCain not being vulnerable, he certainly was in South Carolina, a few rumours and smears and he was gone. You say Bush is more vulnerable?
A. â€œA window into a lot of this can be found in the Rosen-AIPAC lawsuit. Bush has serious issues, letâ€™s just leave it at that.As for Rosen, he just wasnâ€™t an AIPAC lobbyist, he sat inside the National Security Council until 2005 as the Rand Corporationâ€™s Director of Foreign Policy. When the press talks about an AIPAC employee and spying, he didnâ€™t join AIPAC until later, after his arrest.The FBI investigation and his indictment for spying covered a time when he was at the centre of the Bush administration, a key policy formulator at the highest levels of government. Rosen, indicted in 2004 for spying for Israel, was responsible for formulating American policy in the Middle East and largely responsible for the fate of the Palestinian people, a bit of a conflict of interest for an Israeli lobbyist and accused spy.â€
Q. Rosen has made some accusations, says AIPAC spies all the time and that they do nothing but watch pornography there. You worked with this guy, what do you know?
A. â€œRosen has dirt on absolutely everyone. His divorce depositions are fascinating reading. They are sealed now but there are copies out there. I know that reporters at Time Magazine have them, others too. The FBI has tons, they were after Rosen for years. As for AIPAC, Rosen told me of their spy operations many times, but nobody needed telling, they were more than obvious to all of us.
Q. You talk about Rosen and his â€œblack book,â€ that he has dirt on â€œeveryone.â€ The news stories mentioned only porn. That doesnâ€™t sound so serious. Dirt, not just porn, what kind of dirt?
A. â€œMostly sex stuff, gay bondage, clubs, expense money being spent on sex, liaisons in public restrooms, that kind of thing. Many of the key people around the president are involved and there is FBI surveillance, massive amounts of it, photographs, videos, and one or more undercover informants recorded conversations with top National Security Council members. Spying, nuclear secrets passed to Israel, this was common place.
I witnessed, with two others, the top Bush counter-terrorism official, actually primary advisor to Bush on counter-terrorism, who had served Clinton and others, pass nuclear weapons plans to an Israeli agent, like it was nothing.â€Q. Did the FBI know about this?A. â€œFor years, FBI agents, I have a list of names, worked to stop this. Then I learned that the Department of Justice killed the prosecution, Rosenâ€™s lasted into the Obama administration before it was dropped. Witnesses were threatened with prosecution and the guilty, the spies, were allowed to keep doing what they are doing. This is what Rosen knows and what he is talking about when he says AIPAC was involved in spying.It isnâ€™t just that AIPAC is said to receive information it is that it came from top administration officials.â€
Q. Letâ€™s get back to the sex thing. How high up does it go?
A. â€œOne famous joke around the NSC, there was a photo of someone kissing Laura Bush on the cheek and shaking hands with President Bush. The same person had, not that long before, using those same lips and hands in a menâ€™s restroom.â€
Q. What do you know about 9/11?
A. â€œ9/11 was planned as early as 1999 or before, to be executed as soon as the Bush team was in place. One meeting in April 2001, a meeting outlining the invasion of Iraq, may have been the green light.â€™ Chalibi was in place early on, from day number one. I remember telling them he was a known crook, totally disreputable and that things in Iraq would fall apart immediately. Nobody in the National Security Council ever spoke about what they would do once Saddam was overthrown. Nobody really seemed to care.Of course, none of those people have real experience with military issues or, in fact, much of anything else.â€
Q. How was the Iran invasion supposed to work?
A. â€œThis is where so many have it wrong. In fact, there was never serious discussion about terrorism or Al Qaeda or bin Laden. These things werenâ€™t even a sideshow. The only talk about any of it was how it could be used to justify going into Iraq and then attacking Iran.
Q. The intel on Iraq, we all know it was wrong. When was that learned?
A. â€œThe administration didnâ€™t believe false intelligence, it created it, order it in place before the election to be ready for, well I guess, 9/11. Silencing Plame and Joe Wilson, those were the same people who planned the creation of the phony intelligence. There was never a discussion of a serious terrorist threat against the United States. These guys would have fallen off their chairs laughing themselves to death. It was all a joke to them, 9/11, the Iraq invasion, all of it.â€
Q. Back to Iran, how was the invasion to start?
A. â€œEverything was going to happen in Bahrain. Plans were to attack Americans, blow up clubs, restaurants. There were plans to stage a â€œTonkin Gulfâ€™ type attack and blame it on Iranian torpedo boats. Guys in the military were aware of this and there was strong opposition. Marine Colonel Joe Molofsky was the real hero here. He did more to scramble administration plans than anyone else, Molofky and General Mattis. These were really straight shooters, how I learned to trust the Marine Corps.
The government there, their security services, I believe they were deeply involved. It would have been good to see something about this in Wikileaks.â€
Q. You said that war had to start by 2006. Was there a timetable?
A. â€œAbsolutely. General Petraeus was sent to Iraq to quiet things down, not to win a war or create a lasting peace, nothing like that. His job was to shut things down so an operation against Iran could be staged from Iraq.â€Q. But that never got off the groundâ€¦A. â€œNo kidding, and Bush was enraged. It was the only reason he was put in office in the first place, as long as Iran survived, he was a failure, no matter what happened to the US.â€
Q. Didnâ€™t they know that war with Iran would have driven oil to $300 a barrel and collapsed the American economy?
A. â€œThere were never briefings on that like there were never briefings on stabilizing Iraq. Nobody cared, nobody noticed and it was never discussed. It was really all about Iran and orders came in and people did what they were told like good little soldiers.â€
Q. Orders? From where?
A. â€œAll of it, all foreign policy issues, were out of AIPAC, they ran everything in the Bush administration. That was the whole point of it. We never were told why we had to destroy Iran only that it had to be done. Nobody ever asked why. Nobody ever believed Iran had a credible nuclear program and, eventually, we were all very certain they never would. There was never an issue about Iran being a threat or not. There was never an issue of motive of any kind. These were orders, plain and simple, the administration that will come into office in 2001 will be tasked with destroying Iran, tasked by AIPAC who will control all key position in the administration.â€
Q. Was there talk about Lebanon and … Hezbollah?
A. â€œThere really werenâ€™t talks at all, only planning on how to follow policy, never on what policy should be or what was right or wrong. There was never a discussion about the United States, what was good for America or bad for America. People were generally oblivious to there being an American.â€