Ford on Bolton

FORD ON BOLTON….Here’s an interesting tidbit about John Bolton’s increasingly precarious nomination as UN ambassador:

A former chief of the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research is expected to testify in opposition to John R. Bolton’s nomination as ambassador to the United Nations when the Senate Foreign Relations Committee holds hearings on Mr. Bolton next week.

….Carl W. Ford Jr., the former State Department official, and Mr. Bolton clashed while at the State Department over what Mr. Ford regarded as Mr. Bolton’s intimidation of intelligence officials.

Carl Ford. Carl Ford. Why do I recognize that name?

Oh yeah: it’s because INR, the intelligence service he ran, was the only one in all of Washington DC that got it right on the question of Iraq’s WMD capability. As Justin Rood pointed out in an incisive but little noticed Washington Monthly piece in January:

There’s a simple bottom-line test for intelligence: Who called it right most often? And on the big questions, INR has consistently gotten right what other agencies have gotten wrong.

It’s also worth noting that Ford has previously poo-pooed the idea that administration pressure was responsible for intelligence failures in Iraq. That makes it more noteworthy than usual that he’s apparently planning to go public with accusations that Bolton tried to intimidate intelligence officials into providing hawkish assessments of Iraqi capabilities.

Needless to say, Steve Clemons has more.

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