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Read It And Weep

The White House seized on the new National Intelligence Estimate on al Qaeda has bolstering all of Bush's arguments. As the president's team sees it,

The White House seized on the new National Intelligence Estimate on al Qaeda has bolstering all of Bush's arguments. As the president's team sees it, the NIE is evidence that we need to stay in Iraq.

Slate's Fred Kaplan explains just how wrong the White House is.

The National Intelligence Estimate that was released today—titled "The Terrorist Threat to the Homeland"—amounts to a devastating critique of the Bush administration's policies on Iraq, Iran, and the terrorist threat itself.

Its main point is that the threat—after having greatly receded over the past five years—is back in full force. Al-Qaida has "protected or regenerated key elements" of its ability to attack the United States. It has a "safe haven" in Pakistan. Its "top leadership" and "operational lieutenants" are intact. It is cooperating more with "regional terrorist groups."

As a result, the report concludes, "the U.S. Homeland will face a persistent and evolving terrorist threat over the next three years" and is, even now, "in a heightened threat environment."

More proof that the war is making us less safe.

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