Author Stephen Hayes’ gets hammered by Robbins and Bill Maher about Iraq; Maher plugs Ron Paul
by Larry Simons
August 26, 2007
On the debut episode of the new season of "Real Time with Bill Maher", Bush/Cheney supporter Stephen Hayes gets neutered by Bill Maher and Tim Robbins about Iraq. Hayes flat out lies and says the war was supported by 75-80% of Americans. Hayes also lies and says there was a Saddam Hussein/al Qaeda connection...a bold-faced lie which Robbins and Maher extinguishes quickly.
Hayes uses a quote from 9/11 Commission chairman Tom Kean to show there was proof of a Hussein/al Qaeda connection, although just about everyone else with a trace of intelligence, including the Senate Intel Committee, has said there was NO connection.
In fact, here is a list of agencies/organizations that conclude NO Saddam/ al Qaeda connection:
1993 WTC investigations
Neil Herman, who headed the FBI investigation into the attack, noted that despite Yasin's presence in Baghdad, there was no evidence of Iraqi support for the attack.
1998 National Security Council exercise
2001 Presidential Daily Briefing - Ten days after the September 11, 2001 attacks, President Bush receives a classified Presidential Daily Briefing (that had been prepared at his request) indicating that the U.S. intelligence community had no evidence linking Saddam Hussein to the September 11th attacks and that there was "scant credible evidence that Iraq had any significant collaborative ties with Al Qaeda."
2002 DIA reports
In April 2002, the DIA assessed that "there was no credible reporting on al-Qa'idatraining at Salman Pak or anywhere else in Iraq
2002 British intelligence report
We have no intelligence of current cooperation between Iraq and al Qaeda and do not believe that al Qaeda plans to conduct terrorist attacks under Iraqi direction
2003 CIA report
Michael Scheuer, the main researcher assigned to review the research into the project, described the review and his conclusions: "For about four weeks in late 2002 and early 2003, I and several others were engaged full time in searching CIA files -- seven days a week, often far more than eight hours a day. At the end of the effort, we had gone back ten years in the files and had reviewed nearly twenty thousand documents that amounted to well over fifty thousand pages of materials.... There was no information that remotely supported the analysis that claimed there was a strong working relationship between Iraq and al Qaeda. I was embarrassed because this reality invalidated the analysis I had presented on the subject in my book
2003 British intelligence report
In January 2003, British intelligence completed a classified report on Iraq that concluded that "there are no current links between the Iraqi regime and the al-Qaeda network."
2003 Israeli intelligence
In February 2003, Israeli intelligence sources told the Associated Press that no link has been conclusively established between Saddam and Al Qaeda
2004 Carnegie study
In January 2004, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace scholars Joseph Cirincione, Jessica Tuchman Mathews, and George Perkovich publish their study WMD in Iraq: Evidence and Implications, which looked into Saddam's relationship with al-Qaeda and concluded that "although there have been periodic meetings between Iraqi and Al Qaeda agents, and visits by Al Qaeda agents to Baghdad, the most intensive searching over the last two years has produced no solid evidence of a cooperative relationship between Saddam's government and Al Qaeda."
2004 9/11 Commission Report
The report addressed specific allegations of contacts between al-Qaeda and members of Saddam Hussein's government and concluded that there was no evidence that such contacts developed into a collaborative operational relationship
2004 Senate Report of Pre-war Intelligence on Iraq
The report focused specifically on the CIA's 2003 study. After examining all the intelligence, the Senate committee concluded that the CIA had accurately assessed that contacts between Saddam Hussein's regime and members of al-Qaeda "did not add up to an established formal relationship."
2004 CIA report
In August, the CIA finished another assessment of the question of Saddam's links to al-Qaeda. The assessment concluded that there was no evidence that Saddam Hussein's regime harbored Jordanian terrorist Abu Musab al-Zarqawi
2005 update of CIA report
In October 2005, the CIA updated the 2004 report to conclude that Saddam's regime "did not have a relationship, harbor, or even turn a blind eye toward Mr. Zarqawi and his associates," according to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence
2006 Pentagon study
It found evidence that al-Qaeda jihadists had viewed Saddam as an "infidel" and cautioned against working with him
2006 Senate Report of Pre-War Intelligence
The reports concluded that, according to David Stout of the New York Times, "there is no evidence that Saddam Hussein had prewar ties to Al Qaeda and one of the terror organization’s most notorious members, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi."
2007 Pentagon Inspector General Report
Senator Carl Levin, Chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee, stated that "The bottom line is that intelligence relating to the Iraq-al-Qaeda relationship was manipulated by high-ranking officials in the Department of Defense to support the administration's decision to invade Iraq. The inspector general's report is a devastating condemnation of inappropriate activities in the DOD policy office that helped take this nation to war."
I was disappointed at Maher for one thing. For not taking the opportunity to blast Hayes for quoting Tom Kean, who is the primary one responsible for stifling the hard questions of 9-11 and totally whitewashing the investigation. Do you really think he was appointed to head the 9-11 Commission by Bush to expose the truth? But, I forgave Maher when he plugged Ron Paul, so it all balanced out.
Enjoy the clip:
I thought I’d wrap up with a little humor from Bill Maher’s New Rules segment: