A Step In the Right Direction

Thomas Joscelyn points out that the Senate Intelligence Committee’s recent, dishonest report does acknowledge that Saddam’s Iraq harbored al Qaeda terrorists:

The Senate Intelligence Committee’s report includes this conclusion at the end of a terse section on the Bush administration’s claims about Saddam’s prewar terror ties:

Statements that Iraq provided safe haven for Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and other al Qaeda-related terrorist members were substantiated by the intelligence assessments.

Intelligence assessments noted Zarqawi’s presence in Iraq and his ability to travel and operate within the country. The intelligence community generally believed that Iraqi intelligence must have known about, and therefore at least tolerated, Zarqawi’s presence in the country.

Regarding postwar information collected by the U.S. intelligence community, the report reads:

Postwar information supports prewar assessments and statements that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was in Baghdad and that al Qaeda was present in northern Iraq.

These conclusions should not be surprising. In his book At the Center of the Storm, former Director of Central Intelligence George Tenet provided a number of details concerning the safe haven al Qaeda members received in Saddam’s Iraq. For example, Tenet wrote that two of Ayman al-Zawahiri’s top operatives, Thirwat Shihata and Yussef Dardiri, received safe haven in Baghdad. Tenet says that there was “concern that these two might be planning operations outside Iraq.”

Read Tom’s column in its entirety for evidence that Saddam was doing more than harboring terrorists.

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