Cheney Caught In Another Major Lie

Everyone knew that Iraq did not possess weapons of mass destruction (update here).

Dick Cheney admits that he lied about 9/11.

MSNBC recently noted that these two facts are intertwined:

Mark Rossini, was then an FBI counter-terrorism agent detailed to the CIA. He was assigned the task of evaluating a Czech intelligence report that Mohammed Atta, the lead 9/11 hijacker, had met with an Iraqi intelligence agent in Prague before the attack on the World Trade Towers.

Cheney repeatedly invoked the report as evidence of Iraqi involvement in 9/11. “It’s been pretty well confirmed that he [Atta] did go to Prague and he did meet with  a senior official of the Iraqi intelligence service in Czechoslovakia  last April,” Cheney said on Meet the Press on Dec. 9, 2001.

But the evidence used to support the claim–a supposed photograph of Atta in Prague the day of the alleged meeting—had already been debunked by Rossini. He analyzed the photo and immediately saw it was bogus: the picture of the Czech “Atta” looked nothing like the real terrorist. It was a conclusion he relayed up the chain, assuming he had put the matter to rest.

Then he heard Cheney endorsing the discredited report on national television. “I remember looking at the TV screen and saying, ‘What did I just hear?’ And I–first time in my life, I actually threw something at the television because I couldn’t believe what I just heard,” Rossini says.

Rossini gave MSNBC an example in an interview for the documentary Hubris:

Mohammed Atta was a sleight guy … barely 5’5 or 5’6, and skinny.  The guy in the photograph was muscular, thick, and had a neck like the size of two of my necks.  And I thought, “that’s not Mohammed Atta in the photograph!”  But I sent it to the lab anyway, knowing that would put it to rest.

McClatchy confirmed in 2009:

Former senior U.S. intelligence official familiar with the interrogation issue said that Cheney and former Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld demanded that the interrogators find evidence of al Qaida-Iraq collaboration…

For most of 2002 and into 2003, Cheney and Rumsfeld, especially, were also demanding proof of the links between al Qaida and Iraq that (former Iraqi exile leader Ahmed) Chalabi and others had told them were there.”

It was during this period that CIA interrogators waterboarded two alleged top al Qaida detainees repeatedly — Abu Zubaydah at least 83 times in August 2002 and Khalid Sheik Muhammed 183 times in March 2003 — according to a newly released Justice Department document…

When people kept coming up empty, they were told by Cheney’s and Rumsfeld’s people to push harder,” he continued.”Cheney’s and Rumsfeld’s people were told repeatedly, by CIA . . . and by others, that there wasn’t any reliable intelligence that pointed to operational ties between bin Laden and Saddam . . .

A former U.S. Army psychiatrist, Maj. Charles Burney, told Army investigators in 2006 that interrogators at the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detention facility were under “pressure” to produce evidence of ties between al Qaida and Iraq.

“While we were there a large part of the time we were focused on trying to establish a link between al Qaida and Iraq and we were not successful in establishing a link between al Qaida and Iraq,” Burney told staff of the Army Inspector General. “The more frustrated people got in not being able to establish that link . . . there was more and more pressure to resort to measures that might produce more immediate results.”

“I think it’s obvious that the administration was scrambling then to try to find a connection, a link (between al Qaida and Iraq),” [Senator] Levin said in a conference call with reporters. “They made out links where they didn’t exist.”

Levin recalled Cheney’s assertions that a senior Iraqi intelligence officer had met Mohammad Atta, the leader of the 9/11 hijackers, in the Czech Republic capital of Prague just months before the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

The FBI and CIA found that no such meeting occurred.

Postscript:  Indeed the entire torture program was implemented in an attempt to justify the Iraq war.  And the 9/11 Commission was set up with false torture testimony.  More background on the Iraq war.

Category: Think Tank, War/Defense

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

19 Responses to “CIA & FBI: Cheney Lied About 9/11 Hijacker”

  1. Petey Wheatstraw says:

    Interesting that this made your blog, BR, and thanks. Politics iS money and money is political.

    Reminds me of the old Twain (or Charles Dudley Warner), chestnut: “Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.”

    Seems that everyone with an IQ above 100 knows WTF really was and is happening, with enough of those who should know better tipping the scales in favor of continuing down the road of The Big Lie.

    As is the way of equilibrium, in the long term, there will be hell to pay. The real question is who will pay it, and when.

    Is there anything that will wash this stain off our common (invisible) hands?

    Makes me want to believe there is a just god. Sad to think that IBD,YBD is the one and only Great Equalizer.

  2. PeterR says:

    “Agent Cheney has always operated within the parameters of his field assignment.”

    2001: A Space Odyssey

  3. BennyProfane says:

    Almost a cliche to say I hope there is a special place in Hell for Cheney, but, on second thought, It seems that he was sent from Hell to torture the living. And, he’s still alive, after, what, five heart attacks?. I can envision a time when his head is kept in a jar, advising a future clueless born again president from the patrician class on which war to start and what torture techniques really get the good stuff out of the poor souls who happen to be strapped to a certain chair.

  4. ilsm says:

    Neocon’s running the pentagon 2003:

    Project for New American Century, latest evolution of militarists’ humbug factories, one of many fronts in the “wars of unwarranted influence” plundering the US.

    “National security experts” are infiltrators, whose mission is to ruin the US.

  5. A says:

    Sad reality: you’ll never survive politics without the associated lying skills.

    Ask Henry Kissenger.

  6. PeterR says:

    “Assumptions that Agent Cheney is an HNU ( human natal unit) may be incorrect.”


  7. djfnyc says:

    This lie was perpetrated over a three-year period after 9/11 by William Safire in the New York Times, see “How Douglas Feith and William Safire Transformed an Elvis Sighting Into a Case for War,”

  8. theseeker says:

    This is just the tip of the iceberg. The documentary “Loose Change” seems to tie it all up in a nice package. Anyone who was involved in the “Project For a New American Century” (Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Jeb Bush) should be hanged for treason. No wonder they were so desperate to make a connection between Iraq and 9/11. They needed to make sure that there wasn’t any light cast back on them and make the case for a never-ending state of war. ‘Cause that’s where the money is. PATHETIC!!

  9. rekesk says:

    This is absolutely worth watching if you want insights into Cheney.

  10. Robert M says:

    To theseeker

    I agree about treason though I think the punishment is too merciful. a public stoning w/ pea gravel is more in order.

    As to treason, would you argue that not voting for the increase in the debt ceiling the same? Or is it sedition?

  11. PeterR says:

    Great Borowitz Report on this, quoting Cheney:

    “Making up a reason to invade a country is the easy part,” Mr. Cheney told them. “Sticking to a pretend story for ten years—that is the stuff of valor.”

  12. Lugnut says:

    I’m curious if you’ve read a bunch of this guys other material before and decided to include this piece, or whether it happened across your desk and it aligned with your confimation bias against Bush & Co. Not trying to be snarky, but including him in your blog is “unexpected”.

    PS – Don’t mistake this comment as me saying Cheney isn’t a self aggrandizing scum bag. .

  13. WFTA says:

    Speaking of self-aggrandizing scum bags, did anyone else listen to Richard Pearle on Morning Edition yesterday? What a totally self-serving asshole.

  14. [...] Al Queda links were always tenous and as we are finding out this week pretty much non-existent. The arguments that a foreign invasion would magically turn the Arab Yugoslavia into a beacon of [...]

  15. Blurtman says:

    Clearly Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice and others need to be tried for war crimes. But Rice is feted at the US Open. Douglas Feith is a professor at Georgetown. That hemmorhoid Dan Senor is a media talking head.

  16. richardbraverman says:


    Its 2013 and any who does not have their head in the sand should know that the entire justification for the Iraq war was a pack of lies.

    Just a minor fib that cost, Americans several thousand lives, several trillion dollars. Horrifically, it cost Iraqis several millions lives, the destruction of infrastructure, the mutilation of families, the eradication of civil society, the tearing apart of cities, towns, neighborhoods and streets, the toxic poisoning of the country side, and the destabilization of the region.

    This premeditated war was never about Al-Qaeda, never about Oil, never about Mass Graves (you can find them now!); never about freedom of women (welcome to rape central!) and never ever ever about Weapons of Mass Destruction because Sadaam had been disarmed since 1995, besides how were the Iraqi people responsible for a dicatator.

    This (ongoing, criminal) war was and is about regional power and imposing our will and political preferences on a foreign people. The IRON FIST of Adam Smith and making the world safe for Israel, one hopeless chump at a time.

    Even if you reject power politics, it should be clear that the outcomes could have been accomplished much sooner, at much less cost, without the absurd consequences. Maybe a boat load of cash?

    Instead the world was give Shock and Awe.

    Shock and Awe was a childhood wet dream perpetrated by insane arm chair warriors who never faced combat in their lives but were happy to use America’s soldiers and America’s armaments on any alleged bad guy.

    The tragedy was we did not stop it. We never stop it. And it will happen again.

    Iran anyone ??

  17. MDenny says:

    Richardbraverman… Did you know that the human brain has a great knack for constructing a reality that follows a previously held belief? Its been demonstrated many times, and I think we can all think of examples in our own lives when we’ve had the small glimmer that this may actually be occurring to us. The reality you have constructed may be correct, but I would submit that you may have viewed certain information (or in most cases, only viewed certain biased data) in a biased manner. The search for actual truth must be less emotional.

  18. cyaker says:

    Knowing may make some of us feel good but does nothing to change things. I suspect Barry read this letter of condemnation of Bush Cheney by a dying veteren’s but many of you probably havn’t (unless I missed something that was posted here)

  19. richardbraverman says:

    @ MDenny
    Forgive me. I have a very low tolerance for murder.