On Hardball Friday afternoon, Gen. Tommy Franks, the commander of the Iraq war, was defending Defense Secretary Rumsfeld against the recent offensive by the retired generals. In passing, he said this:
"Ask him about the 14 months we spent planning this thing."
That would put the operational, as opposed to contingency, planning as having started in roughly January of 2002, about eight months later than what was implied in Joint Chiefs head Peter Pace's statement at the Pentagon briefing earlier this week.
UPDATE: And of course, for giggles and historical comparison, there's this.