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[casi] Former Intelligence Official Blows the Whistle on Iraq/9-11 Connection

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Published on Tuesday, November 11, 2003 by

'Nothing but Poison Plants Can Grow from Poison Seeds'
Another Former Intelligence Official Blows the Whistle on Iraq/9-11

by Amy Goodman, Jeremy Scahill
and the staff of Democracy Now!

Veterans from several US wars are protesting across the country today. But at
the vigil outside Walter Reed Medical Center in Maryland, there is an unusual
presence in their ranks. Peter Molan spent years listening to Arab radio
broadcasts, watching Al Jazeera and visiting Arabic Internet chat-rooms. As one of
the many intelligence bureaucrats in the chambers of Washington's
war-planning center, the Pentagon, he had his ear to what was happening on the "Arab
street." In August, 2001, the 25 year veteran Middle East analyst retired to spend
more time with his family, continue his scholarship and pursue his hobbies:
photography, carving duck decoys and dry-fly fishing. But then came September
11th. Not long after the planes hit the World Trade Center and Pentagon, Molan
received a call from the Pentagon saying his services were once again needed.
Fluent in Arabic, he was pulled out of retirement to work on the bin Laden
case for the Defense Department. After four months of work, Molan went back to
retirement. Then he began hearing the Bush administration amplifying the
rhetoric against Iraq, implying that Saddam Hussein was tied to the 9-11 attacks.
"The justifications for that war were completely counter to everything that I had
learned in that 20-odd years of government service working on the Middle
East," Molan told Democracy Now!. "I was simply outraged by the twisting and
turning of intelligence information that I had helped develop to what was clearly,
to my mind, a preordained policy decision that I felt to be profoundly wrong.
Nothing about this suggests that Saddam Hussein was anything but a brutal
dictator. He was. But that's not why we went to war." Molan said that due to
restrictions on revealing classified information, he cannot discuss details of his
work on the bin Laden/9-11 investigation. "But what I can tell you," he said.
"Is that my involvement, my direct, immediate involvement, day-to-day
involvement with Veterans for Peace arises precisely out of the subsequent decision by
the Bush administration to go to war with Iraq." Molan said that had the
White House worked with the United Nations in dealing with Iraq, he may have
supported the administration. "But nothing but poison plants can grow from poison
seeds," he said. "This administration's goals and intentions and policies,
which are quite clearly articulated in the Security Strategy Document and in the
work of the Project for the New American Century, are completely at odds,
radically at odds, with America's now more than a century-old tradition of trying
to build international institutions." Molan began his military career in 1963,
studying Arabic and Near Eastern Studies at the Defense Language Institute in
Monterey, California. After graduating with honors, he was deployed to
Ethiopia during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War, for which he received the US Army
Commendation Medal. After 12 years in academia, where he taught at a number of
universities and colleges, Molan went to work at the Pentagon as a Middle East
analyst. He was frequently sent on foreign assignments in addition to his job of
teaching in federal government training programs. Today, he was one of dozens of
veterans commemorating Veterans Day by protesting outside of Walter Reed
Medical Center, the main facility treating wounded soldiers returning from Iraq and
Afghanistan. "We believe that the Bush Administration is dishonoring both the
commitment that is required by today's holiday-to the veterans and to
concurrently serving GIs, as well as to that notion of international peace and
justice," he said. "All the talk about support for the troops that we hear from the
White House is belied by the fact that facilities are being closed, charges
are being placed on the veterans. This administration is not in support of these
troops." Democracy Now! is a daily national grassroots radio/tv newshour,
broadcast on more than 170 stations. <A 
HREF=""></A>. ###

Roger Stroope
Northern Arizona University
Flagstaff USA

In response to reporters and critics queries during the first Gulf War;
"I firmly believed we should not march into Baghdad ...To occupy Iraq would
instantly shatter our coalition, turning the whole Arab world against us and
make a broken tyrant, into a latter-day Arab hero …" George H. W. Bush (41)

"...assigning young soldiers to a fruitless hunt for a securely entrenched
dictator and condemning them to fight in what would be an unwinnable urban
guerrilla war." George H. W. Bush (41)

In response to reporters query relating to attacks against US service people;
"Bring 'em on!" George W. Bush (43) July 3, 2003

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