From Pillar to post

What a difference a year makes. Regarding Paul Pillar’s current critique of the Bush administration, the left-wing Tom Paine.com suggests that Pillar’s testimony to the Robb-Silberman Commission told a slightly different story. According to this April 2005 column by John Prados, Pillar — who was on the front page of the Washington Post today asserting the Bush administration subtly manipulated the intelligence it received — told the Robb-Silberman Commission that the intelligence community censored itself:

Similarly Paul Pillar, a senior intelligence officer at CIA who drafted part of the Iraq estimate, told the commission that a certain climate had become pervasive in the intelligence community with respect to permissible judgments about Iraqi weapons. To put it another way, self-censorship prevailed. The commission then concludes-and Charles Robb reiterated this at the press conference marking the release of its report–that no one had come forward to claim they had been forced to change a conclusion due to political pressure. Ergo, “The Commission has found no evidence of ‘politicization’ of the Intelligence Community’s assessments.”

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