Monday, May 24, 2004

Questions about the Chalabi brou-ha-ha
Now that Chalabi has been cast into the outer darkness and is no longer our best friend. I don't think he'll find many defenders in Left Blogistan. Most lefties who have followed his career (I'm not part of that group, so catching up over the last couple months has been very interesting for me) have had no trouble at all assembling lists of reasons for cutting him off. But now that the right has discovered to their shock that he is a bad person, I think we need to go over that list and ask some questions.

The reasons for getting rid of Chalabi boil down to three points, he's corrupt, he sold us worthless intelligence, and he's in bed with the Iranians.

  • His corruption has been well reported in the press; why has the administration tolerated him for so long?

  • When an audit showed $22 million in his care missing, why did the administration continue to pay him and trust him?

  • When his intelligence turned out to be worthless, why did the administration continue to stand by it?

  • We are accusing him of passing classified information to the Iranians; who gave him (a foreign civilian) access to that information?

  • How long has the administration known he was in bed with the Iranians?

  • Why did they choose this moment to break relations with him?

  • Is the administration trying to scapegoat all of their failures in Iraq on to Chalabi and the Iranians?

  • Will this result in new investigations of the administration or just add flavor to the existing investigations?

  • Is the administration setting the stage for some election-time saber-rattling at the Iranians?

  • Are we still stupid enough to fall for that?

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