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Topic Started: Jul 12 2018, 02:08:26 AM (16 Views)
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WASHINGTON, Aug. 11 (Xinhua) -- Senior leaders at U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) manipulated intelligence assessments on the campaign against the extremist group the Islamic State (IS) to present a rosier picture, a U.S. House preliminary report said on Thursday.

The 15-page report by a House Republican task force detailed "persistent problems" at the CENTCOM starting in mid-2014 that caused "production and dissemination of intelligence products that were inconsistent with the judgements" of senior CENTCOM analysts.

According to the report, the leadership environment within the CENTCOM deteriorated after then-commander Marine General James Mattis and other senior leaders left in 2013, with 40 percent of CENTCOM analysts responding to surveys saying that they had experienced an attempt to distort or suppress intelligence in the past year.

Two patterns existed in the senior-level edit of intelligence assessments, said the report, with the CENTCOM senior leaders using operational reporting as a "justification to alter or 'soften' an analytic product so it would cast U.S. efforts in a more positive light."

Additionally, analysts said senior leaders consistently "softened" intelligence assessments to provide more uncertainty about possible outcomes.

As a result, analysis assessments by CENTCOM consistently depicted U.S. actions "in a more positive light" than other assessments from the U.S. Intelligence Community and were "typically more optimistic than actual events warranted," the report concluded.

The report cited CENTCOM's assessment about the campaign to retake Mosul, Iraq's second largest city still controlled by IS, as an example.

Despite a CENTCOM senior official's public claim that a major military assault to take back Mosul "could begin as early as April or May 2015," as of August 2016, Mosul remains under IS control and there has been no major military assault to retake it.

Allegations of senior-level manipulation of counter-IS intelligence assessments at CENTCOM first surfaced in July, 2015, when two senior analysts at CENTCOM filed a written complaint to the U.S. Defense Department inspector general, saying that their reports on the anti-IS campaign, some of which were for Obama, played down the real significance of the threat posed by the militant group.

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Resources Available

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