During an interview to be broadcast on 60 Minutes this Sunday, former Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Doug Feith was asked why the US chose to go after Saddam Hussein instead of Osama bin Laden.
CBS's Steve Kroft asked Feith, "Why was the decision made to go after him after 9/11? Because we knew even then, he didn't have anything to do with it."
"What we did after 9/11 was to look broadly at the international terrorism network from which the next attack on the United States might come," Feith replied, "and we did not focus narrowly only on the people who were specifically responsible for 9/11. Our main goal was preventing the next attack."
While at the Pentagon, Feith led the Office of Special Plans, which has been accused of "stovepiping" intelligence during the run-up to the invasion of Iraq and passing along questionable information that could help make a case for war. A 2004 report (pdf) initiated by Sen. Carl Levin found that "in the case of
Iraq’s relationship with al Qaeda, intelligence was exaggerated to support Administration policy aims primarily by the Feith policy office, which was determined to find a strong connection between Iraq and al Qaeda, rather than by the [Intelligence Community], which was consistently dubious of such a connection."
In 2006, RAW STORY's Larisa Alexandrovna reported that Feith was being investigated for both his manipulation of intelligence and his possible role in an Israeli spy case, as well as that a Senate Intelligence Committee inquiry was being held up because "Feith and the Pentagon have made the case that they will not share any information until the Senate provides them with full documentation of what the investigation is looking into, documentary evidence that Senate staff have acquired, and any other key findings that Feith's lawyers believe should be made available to them."