By now, you’ve all seen the big Chalabi news. There’s a post I wanted to write last night but didn’t because PRI’s The World doesn’t publish transcripts. In any case, the reporter (Lisa Mullins?) was interviewing the soon-to-be-raided Chalabi. Since it’s rather timely now, I offer the following loose paraphrase of the interview:
Mullins: You’re not getting $350,000/month any more. What happened?
Chalabi: We decided we didn’t want it anymore. It made us look not independent. [I broke up with her, dammit!].
Mullins: Well, what were you getting the money for before?
Chalabi: For our cooperation. [Seriously, he basically just called it a bribe.] And for intelligence.
Mullins: But much of that intelligence turned out to be wrong. For example, Secretary Powell just said that the defectors fabricating stories.
Chalabi: Defectors? What defectors? We [the INC] never supplied any defectors to anybody.
Mullins: What about the WMD claims?
Chalabi: WMD? Who said anything about that? Not me.
The actual interview lasted five minutes or so, but it was mostly along the lines of Chalabi claiming that he gave valuable information to the US, but denying that he or the INC was the source of any of the information that has turned out to be wrong (i.e., all the information that formed the ex-ante rationale for the war.) You may think I’m paraphrasing for comedic, or perhaps tragic, effect, but I’m not — well, only slightly. You can listen to last night’s The World here (scroll down to “Chalabi interview”.)
My thought in real time was, “How does anyone ever believe anything this guy says? He’s an obvious and blatant liar.”