By Brigitte L. Nacos
The Washington Post reported today that a crucial intelligence source fabricated information about Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction and that the CIA was aware of his made up stories before then Secretary of State Colin Powell presented powerful "evidence" of Iraq's WMD at the United Nations. It is troublesome to learn from yet another CIA source that the official number one justification for invading Iraq was based on cooked up intelligence and that highest officials in the administration knew it. This story is also a reminder that in the months leading up to the Iraq War major news organizations, including The Washington Post and The New York Times, knew better as well. Still, they reported frequently and prominently on sources that were sure of Iraqi WMD while covering contrary voices rarely and on some inside pages. As media critic Michael Massing wrote in Now They Tell Us: The American Press and Iraq: "Some maintain that the many analysts who've spoken out since the end of the war were mute before. But that's not true. Beginning in the summer of 2002, the intelligence community war rent by bitter disputes over how Bush officials were using the data on Iray. Many journalists knew about this, yet few chose to write about it."