Saturday, May 28, 2005

Analysts Linked to Intel Failures Rewarded

Yahoo! News

Awards for analysts behind Iraq finding report

Sat May 28, 2:02 AM ET

Two U.S. Army analysts whose work was cited as part of a key intelligence failure on Iraq have received job performance awards for the past three years, The Washington Post reported on Saturday.

The civilian analysts work at the Army's National Ground Intelligence Center, an agency criticized by President Bush's commission investigating U.S. intelligence.

Ahead of the U.S. attack on Iraq, the analysts concluded it was unlikely that aluminum tubes sought by Baghdad were for use in Iraq's rocket arsenal. The Bush administration used that finding as evidence that Saddam Hussein was rebuilding Iraq's nuclear weapons program, the paper said.

The intelligence commission said the analysts failed to seek or get information from the Energy Department and elsewhere indicating the tubes were the kind used as rocket-motor cases by the Iraqi military.

A Pentagon spokesman said the awards to the analysts were to recognize their overall contributions on the job.

But some unnamed current and formal officials said granting such awards shows how the administration has not held people accountable for mistakes on prewar intelligence, the paper wrote.