Obama v. the National Intelligence Estimate on Iran

Posted: January 14th, 2009 by Militant Libertarian

by Glenn Greenwald

Regarding Barack Obama’s statements about Iran yesterday during his ABC News interview, Charles Davis makes an excellent point (h/t Jonathan Schwarz):

President-elect Barack Obama in an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos:

Iran is going to be one of our biggest challenges and as I said during the campaign we have a situation in which not only is Iran exporting terrorism through Hamas, through Hezbollah but they are pursuing a nuclear weapon that could potentially trigger a nuclear arms race.

The 2007 National Intelligence Estimate on Iran (pdf), the consensus opinion of all 16 U.S. intelligence agencies:

We judge with high confidence that in fall 2003, Tehran halted its nuclear weapons program.

Naturally, Stephanopolous asked Obama – as any competent, professional journalist would – to explain why he disagreed with the findings of the intelligence community and of the international inspectors on the ground:

STEPHANOPOULOS: And you have to do something about it in your first year.

So it goes.

There’s usually no shortage of people willing to defend Obama’s statements and explain what he really means. I recall, after Obama voted for warrantless eavesdropping and telecom immunity back last August, reading in numerous places – for the first time ever – that the FISA controversy wasn’t really all that important, that warrantless eavesdropping wasn’t much of a threat, that Democrats had no choice but to support this bill lest they lose the election, that nobody will die or starve if the Government eavesdrops, etc. etc.

Mili says: A neo-con is a neo-con, now matter how much “change” they pretend to espouse and how much media celebrity they gain. As I’ve said before, things will be no different just because Obama is in the White House.

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