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Paul Wolfowitz, former under secretary of defense, has been identified in recently released grand jury transcripts as being involved in a White House smear campaign against Joseph Wilson, the former US ambassador who accused the Bush administration of manipulating intelligence in the run-up to the Iraq War.
The previously undisclosed development comes on the heels of a scathing report released last week by the Defense Department's Office of the Inspector General that said Wolfowitz played a key role in the cooking of intelligence related to Iraq's ties to al-Qaeda and its supposed cache of chemical and biological weapons. That effort helped the White House lay the groundwork for a US-led invasion.
Taken as a whole, the involvement of Wolfowitz in a full-scale effort to undermine the credibility of an Iraq War critic, and his hands-on role in knowingly providing the White House with the sort of dubious intelligence that came under scrutiny by people like Wilson, shows how widespread the issues surrounding manipulated intelligence truly were, and how crucial it became for senior members of the Bush administration to discredit anyone who threatened to expose their ruse. <more>