This makes me think less of everyone involved. Reading between the lines, it’s clear what happened: the WH speechwriters and the NSC staff put the b.s. assertion in, the CIA folks said it had to come out, the WH bludgeoned them into accepting the silly compromise where the false assertion was attributed to the Brits. So the White House folks make the CIA take the rap for not standing up to the White House, and Tenet goes along with it. Amazing!
Note that “the CIA never briefed the Vice President” doesn’t mean “the CIA never reported back to the VP’s office on the investigation the VP had asked for.”
I don’t know how the Bush White House manages to make seemingly self-respecting people crawl like this: first DiIulio, now Tenet. But it’s pretty disgusting.