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US war planning for Iraq insufficient: Secret report

September 03, 2003 17:09 IST

The planning for Operation Iraqi Freedom was flawed and rushed, that 'limited the focus' for post-war operations in that country, says a secret report for the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Prepared last month, the report says the search for Iraq's weapons of mass destruction was planned so late that it was impossible for the US Central Command to carry it out effectively.

"Insufficient US government assets existed to accomplish the mission," The Washington Times said on Wednesday quoting the classified document titled 'Operation Iraqi Freedom: Strategic Lessons Learned' and stamped 'secret'.

Not naming any individual, the report claims late formation of the Department of Defence organisations limited the time available for the development of detailed plans and pre-deployment coordination.

"Command relationships (and communication requirements) and responsibilities were not clearly defined for DoD organisations until shortly before Operation Iraqi Freedom," the report notes

On the search for Iraqi WMDs, the report says, "Weapons of mass destruction elimination and exploitation planning efforts did not occur early enough in the process to allow CentCom to effectively execute the mission. The extent of the planning required was underestimated."

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