Just who knew what when?
This whole CIA / Bush / British intellgence issue over the Niger Uranium is the perfect Rashomon scenario. Everybody has a different story to tell all of which support nothing but self interest.
Bush and Rice Say C.I.A. Approved Uranium Comment
The CIA tried unsuccessfully in early September 2002 to persuade the British government to drop from an official intelligence paper a reference to Iraqi attempts to buy uranium in Africa that President Bush included in his State of the Union address four months later, senior Bush administration officials said yesterday.
...the White House knowingly included in a presidential address information its own CIA had explicitly warned might not be true.
So NOW CIA Director George Tenet takes the fall:
But questions certainly remain.
For instance in the CBS story it notes that Powell didn't use the Niger info in his presentation to the UN:
“There was no effort or attempt on the part of the president or anyone else in the administration to mislead or to deceive the American people,” said Powell.
But eight days after the State of the Union, when Powell addressed the U.N., he deliberately left out any reference to Iraqi attempts to buy uranium from Africa.
“I didn’t use the uranium at that point because I didn’t think that was sufficiently strong as evidence to present before the world,” Powell said.
Okay, wait. So it wasn’t good enough for the Secretary of State to present to the U.N (who the Administration knew would question it) but it was good enough for the President to convince and scare the American people so that he could hastily go to war?
And I'm not buying that the CIA had that much control over what went into the State of the Union address. Either does Atrios.