President George W. Bush made the mistake of invading Iraq based on inaccurate intelligence claiming Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. The UN International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Dr. Mohammed ElBaradei said there were no such weapons, but the Bush Administration chose to believe its trusted sources-the Israeli Mossad and its trusted source, Ahmed Abdel Hadi Chalabi.
Ahmed Chalabi is a Shi'a Muslim Iraqi with a rather colorful history. He was convicted of bank fraud and sentenced to 22 years in prison in Jordan, so he left Jordan as a fugitive and became a favorite of Washington's neoconservatives in the Bush Administration as a specialist on Iraq.
Chalabi aspired to political power in Iraq but Saddam was Sunni Muslim and had no use for Chalabi. Chalabi reportedly conspired with his Shi'a sympathizers in Iran to get rid of Saddam and found a method that succeeded. He began feeding information to the Israeli Mossad that Saddam had missiles and weapons of mass destruction capable of reaching Israel. He reported that the Iraqi government had secret underground laboratories where nuclear and biological weapons were being developed and stored. The Mossad bought into his story and passed it along to the Bush Administration, Poland's government, the German government and the Italian government. They all contacted each other to confirm that the information was true, and since they all believed the others must have something solid, they all believed Chalabi's story.
Bush invaded Iraq and learned too late that he and his advisors had been duped.
Now there is a crowd in Washington and a party on the campaign trail for President of the United States who are getting upset because President Obama and his advisors are not as gullible as was the Bush-Cheney team. They want Obama to get ready to either back the Israelis in an attack on weapons of mass destruction in Iran or to prepare for the United States to attack Iran's weapons of mass destruction.
Once again, the International Atomic Energy Agency says the Israeli intelligence is wrong about weapons of mass destruction. The IAEA says Iran is at least six years away from being able to produce a nuclear weapon and that there is plenty of time to negotiate for a solution to Iranian nuclear weapons.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is working members of Congress and Mitt Romney with claims Obama is weak on Iran in an effort to manipulate Obama just as Bush was manipulated regarding Iraq.
President Obama has exercised amazing restraint in the Middle East during his time in office. We have not seen bluster, bluff and empty show from either Obama or advisors, but they have been very effective in addressing the most serious issues for our nation.
Obama made no grandiose pledges about getting Bin Laden but he got the job done.
In the Libyan struggle to get rid of Moammar Gadhafi, Obama successfully persuaded Nato allies to handle the situation without American military intervention and the potential of another nation for us to rebuild.
Obama has gotten our troops out of Iraq and is moving toward the same goal in Afghanistan, both places where our presence encourages instability.
In Syria, where all NATO military leaders say intervention would be counterproductive, Obama has resisted pressure for foolish unilateral intervention.
In the present crisis with foreign demonstrations at our embassies related to an offensive movie about Mohammed, the Muslim prophet, Obama has mobilized defences at the embassies and is working with involved governments to see that those responsible for violence are apprehended and punished.
In every instance, Obama acts deliberately and effectively once the facts are known. It is an approach that always works better than taking action before you know what is happening and what the facts are in a crisis.
We cannot afford to be dragged into another war with another Muslim nation ready for civil war.
We cannot afford to take on nation-building in Iran after an attack on facilities there that the Mossad are convinced may be a threat to Israel.
Our experience with Iraq's non-existent weapons of mass destruction should be a lesson about accepting Israeli allegations which conflict with those of the IAEA. Let's hope our politicians remember the lesson as Netanyahu hammers on them with his demand for the U.S. to draw a "Red Line" as a prelude to an invasion of Iran.