Saturday, April 15, 2006
Colonel Sam Gardiner is the retired colonel who taught at the National War College, the Air War College and the Naval Warfare College and who found more than 50 instances of demonstrably false stories planted in the press in the run up to the war, back in 2003. He was just on CNN:
CLANCY: Well, Colonel Gardiner, from what you're saying, it would seem like military men, then, might be cautioning, don't go ahead with this. But what are the signs that are out there right now? Is there any evidence of any movement in that direction?
GARDINER: Sure. Actually, Jim, I would say -- and this may shock some -- I think the decision has been made and military operations are under way.
GARDINER: And let me say this -- I'm saying this carefully. First of all, Sy Hersh said in that article which was...
CLANCY: Yes, but that's one unnamed source.
GARDINER: Let me check that. Not unnamed source as not being valid.
The way "The New Yorker" does it, if somebody tells Sy Hersh something, somebody else in the magazine calls them and says, "Did you tell Sy Hersh that?" That's one point.
The secretary[sic] point is, the Iranians have been saying American military troops are in there, have been saying it for almost a year. I was in Berlin two weeks ago, sat next to the ambassador, the Iranian ambassador to the IAEA. And I said, "Hey, I hear you're accusing Americans of being in there operating with some of the units that have shot up revolution guard units."
He said, quite frankly, "Yes, we know they are. We've captured some of the units, and they've confessed to working with the Americans."
The evidence is mounting that that decision has already been made, and I don't know that the other part of that has been completed, that there has been any congressional approval to do this.
My view of the plan is, there is this period in which some kinds of ground troops will operate inside Iran, and then what we're talking about is the second part, which is this air strike.
CLANCY: All right. You lay this whole scenario, but there are still a lot of caution flags that one would see out here.
GARDINER: Sure. True.
CLANCY: If they do decide on a military option...
CLANCY: ... what's the realistic chance of success? What's your -- your prognosis for that kind of reaction here?
GARDINER: Yes. Let me give you two answers to that. First of all, the chance of getting the facilities and setting back the program, I think the chances go from maybe two years to actually accelerating the program. You know, we could cause them to redouble their efforts. That's on one side.
The other side is this sort of horizontal escalation by the Iranians.
My assessment is -- and it's because of regime problems at home -- that if we strike, they're likely to want to blame Israel. Now that's -- because that sells well at home.
Blaming Israel means that there's a chance that we could see Hezbollah, Hamas targeting Israel. We could very easily see this thing escalate into a broader Middle East war, particularly when you add Muslim rage.
You know, if you take the cartoon problem and multiply it times a hundred -- you know, the Danish cartoons, you could see how we could end up very quickly with a very serious problem in the Middle East.
CLANCY: Former U.S. Air Force Colonel Sam Gardiner. Not a very rosy outlook here. A man who thinks the decision may have already been made.
Thank you for being with us.
My tin foil hat is beeping and honking like crazy right now. These generals coming forward is huge.
I really think it's possible that Bush and Rummy have already got a secret war going on, one that has not been revealed to congress in any form. It's designed that way. Bush is not going to fire Rummy --- he can't. He's already committed himself to this thing. This could be the ultimate action of the unitary executive.