Swiftboating Anthony Zinni

Jonah Goldberg says GOTCHYA after he read Brit Hume:

Former Clinton CENTCOM commander, Anthony Zinni … But in early 2000, Zinni told Congress “Iraq remains the most significant near-term threat to U.S. interests in the Arabian Gulf region,” adding, “Iraq probably is continuing clandestine nuclear research, [and] retains stocks of chemical and biological munitions … Even if Baghdad reversed its course and surrendered all WMD capabilities, it retains scientific, technical, and industrial infrastructure to replace agents and munitions within weeks or months.”

I see. The criticism of Rumsfeld is all Clinton’s fault. Zinni is some Michael Moore leftie who has flip-flopped. I’m wondering if Hume got this some from this source:

Nevertheless, in February of 2000, long before President Bush assumed office, Zinni felt confident enough to provide a strikingly familiar threat assessment on Iraq to the Senate Armed Services Committee.

The “American Thinking” went so far as to suggest that General Zinni told Congress that Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein were allies. But we can also thank him for this link to Zinni’s 29 page testimony.

Iraq is not even mentioned until page 9 of this 29 page document and Zinni led with:

While Iraq’s WMD capabilities were degraded under UN supervision and set back by Coalition strikes, some capabilities remain and others could quickly be regenerated.

Read the entire threat assessment for yourself and you’ll likely agree with me – Brit Hume has lied again. But why would Hume and Goldberg launch such a pathetic and dishonest attack against the former CENTCOM commander? Maybe they are afraid he’ll do in 2008 what GeneraL Wesley Clark did in 2004 – run for the White House as a Democrat. Yes – the Swift Boat campaign has started early this time.

But I have a question for Mr. Goldberg. Since it took me all of two minutes to find the actual testimony, why couldn’t you? I am assuming you actually know how to read. But then – I might be incorrect in this assumption.

(Link corrected – and AB reader Greg notes that the first reference to Iraq was on page 7 with the total number of pages being 39 not 29)

Update: Credit should go to Amanda over at Think Progress for her post on Monday, which links to the Usual Suspects at the National Review, Fox News, and even “American Thinker”.