Monday, July 28, 2003


Pete Yost of AP here:

The congressional report on pre-Sept. 11 intelligence calls into question answers that National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice gave the public last year about the White House's knowledge of terrorism threats.

President Bush's adviser told the public in May 2002 that a pre-Sept. 11 intelligence briefing for the president on terrorism contained only a general warning of threats and largely historical information, not specific plots.

But the authors of the congressional report, released last week, stated the briefing given to the president a month before the suicide hijackings included recent intelligence that al-Qaida was planning to send operatives into the United States to carry out an attack using high explosives.

The Sept. 11 congressional investigators underscore their point three times in their report, using nearly identical language to contrast Rice's answers with the actual information in the presidential briefing.

"Dr. Rice's briefing was a full and accurate accounting of the materials in question without compromising classified material that could endanger national security," National Security Council spokesman Sean McCormack said.

Right. "It's full and accurate, with the single exception that what we told you is white, is black."

"Full and accurate"—I think that's going to get a plaque in the Orwell Hall of Shame right next to "technically accurate."