The United States declassified National Intelligence Estimate states with "a high degree of confidence" that Iran halted its nuclear weapons program years ago. If it restarted it the earliest possible weapons deployment would be around five years, more likely around ten years. “We judge with high confidence that Iran will not be technically capable of producing and reprocessing enough plutonium for a weapon before about 2015.”
Loud expletives are being heard from the VP's office.
Added: Kevin points out Bush and Cheney have known about this as they tried to push for war. Is Kevin correct that this NIE is only released now because of very strong Democratic pressure? Matt notes in 2003 when Iran stopped its nuclear program it made a big diplomatic push to work with the United States on a new relationship. The administration decided they liked their tough guy rhetoric better than real progress and rejected Iran's overtures.
Time surprisingly concludes from a CIA connection that Bush leaked the report because he no longer wants to attack Iran. This report now stops the rabid warhawk neo-cons in their tracks.
Iran came up in the Democrat's Nice Polite Republicans radio debate today. Hillary was the loser. NPR debate online. Edwards the debate winner. Transcript.
Five stages of wingnut grief over a lost war.
We know that Cheney and some rabid Republican officials were pushing the "Iran almost has a nuke, attack now" line. E&P points to the media pundits doing the same. Kenneth Pollack, not surprisingly, made an ass of himself on Iran as well as Iraq. Of course, the right blogs were even worse. Most can't let a week go by without urging killing someone and Iran was a favorite target.
UPDATES: More Bush lies, lies, lies. - Why Glen Beck is the new media darling, "Bush has Abraham Lincoln-like honesty."
Cheney blocked this new NIE for a year. Michael McConnell covered up for Bush-Cheney on this estimate to Congress.
BTW, how is Bush/Cheney's other war going? Iraq government fragments further.
Can we concentrate on our real problems for awhile and have the media ignore these always wrong idiots? Or can we simply start impeaching the ones in the White House?
Late Update because I don't want to start a new post. Hersh: Cheney knew and kept NIE bottled up.