Bush slapped down Abrams, Cheney in March by dissolving ISOG

I would say this explains why the rogue Vice President has been trying to lead Israel down the garden path to attacking Iran.

The Bush administration has dismantled a special committee that was established last year to coordinate aggressive actions against Iran and Syria, State Department officials said this week.

R. Nicholas Burns , the State Department’s Under Secretary for Political Affairs, revealed in a written statement to a senator this week that the group was disbanded in March 2007 in “favor of a more standard process” of coordinating between the White House, the State Department, Defense Department, and intelligence agencies.

The interagency group, known as the Iran Syria Policy and Operations Group, met weekly throughout much of 2006 to coordinate actions such as curtailing Iran’s access to credit and banking institutions, organizing the sale of military equipment to Iran’s neighbors, and supporting democratic forces that oppose the two regimes.

State Department and White House officials said the dissolution of the group was simply a bureaucratic reorganization, but many analysts saw it as evidence of a softening in the US strategy toward the two countries. It comes as the Bush administration has embarked on a significant new effort to hold high-level meetings with Iran and Syria.

The group had become the focus for administration critics who feared that it was plotting covert actions that could escalate into a military conflict with Iran or Syria. The air of secrecy surrounding the group when it was established in March 2006, coupled with the fact that it was modeled after a similar special committee on Iraq, contributed to those suspicions.

A senior State Department official, speaking on the condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to the press, said the group was shut down because of a widespread public perception that it was designed to enact regime change. State Department officials have said that the focus of the group, known as ISOG, was persuading the two regimes to change their behavior, not toppling them.

R. Nicholas Burns , the State Department’s Under Secretary for Political Affairs, revealed in a written statement to a senator this week that the group was disbanded in March 2007 in “favor of a more standard process” of coordinating between the White House, the State Department, Defense Department, and intelligence agencies.

link

I guess Condi’ s makeover made it impossible for W. to resist her wiles, but OTLS! will also take a minor share of the credit. But, gee, what is Elliott Abrams going to do now? What am I gonna write about?

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Filed under Bill Kristol: is he smarter than you?, Condoleezza Rice: tell me again, what is her job?, Countdown to attack on Iran, Dick Cheney: Hannibal Lector in disguise?, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, Iran, Middle East

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