The Corner

Sabri & Yglesias

Matt responds to Corner readers.

Update: Matt makes two points. The first is that “60 Minutes” didn’t merely recycle an old story but it advanced it. Okay, I guess. The new news is that the information went higher up the chain than previously reported. Again, fine. But hardly earth shattering stuff. It clearly made it to George Tenet who in turn thought about the source and other intelligence and then told the President that the case against Iraq on the WMD score was “a slam dunk.” The president, according to Matt, should have parsed this intelligence and told Tenet he was wrong. And because he didn’t do this, Bush in turn “lied” to the American people when he said things his intelligence agency and various allied intelligence agencies told him was true. Got it.

The gist of Matt’s second point, it seems, is that chemical and biological weapons are merely, in Matt’s words, “semantic” weapons of mass destruction (this would be news to some Kurds, by the way). If the goal posts are going to be moved like that, I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to catch up with them. But we should at least recall that America was pretty concerned with things like anthrax and sarin in 2002-2003. That some people are suddenly blasé about chemical and biological weapons is interesting, but not really central to the argument at hand.

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