Bush Was All Too Willing to Use Emigres' Lies
Tuesday 02 September 2003
American experts urged the White House to be skeptical, but they hit a stone wall.
Oops. There are no weapons of mass destruction after all. That's the
emerging consensus of the second team of
Nothing, not a vial of the 38,000 liters of botulinum toxin or the 25,000 liters of anthrax or an ounce of the materials for the 500 tons of sarin, mustard and VX nerve agent claimed by George W. Bush in his State of the Union speech as justification for war. Nor any sign of the advanced nuclear weapons program, a claim based on a now-admitted forgery. Nor has anyone produced any evidence of ties between the deposed Hussein regime and the Al Qaeda terrorists responsible for 9/11.
The entire adventure was an immense fraud. "We were prisoners of our own beliefs," a senior U.S. weapons expert who worked with the Iraq Survey Group told The Times. "We said Saddam Hussein was a master of denial and deception. Then when we couldn't find anything, we said that proved it, instead of questioning our own assumptions."
How distressing that it turns out to be Bush, leader of the world's greatest democracy, who is the true master of denial and deception, rather than Hussein, who proved to be a paper tiger. Bush is such a master at deceiving the American public that even now he is not threatened with the prospect of impeachment or any serious congressional investigation into the possibility that he led this nation into war with lies.
But lie he did, at the very least in the crucial matter of pushing secret
evidence that even a president of his limited
That excuse for the U.S. intelligence failure in Iraq would be laughable were the circumstances not so appalling. It means Bush ignored all the cautions of career diplomats and intelligence experts in every branch of the U.S. government over the unsubstantiated word of Iraqi renegades.
Clearly, the administration, from the president on down, did not want
expert advice and intelligence that would have
American soldiers standing guard over the White House's imperial ambitions — a new Middle East as linchpin to a new world order — are now being shot like fish in a barrel.
Had Congress dared question Bush's claim of an immediate Iraqi military threat, there would have been no excuse for invasion. But Congress is kept on a tight leash by Republican leaders, subverting its basic role as a check and balance on executive power. Shame on congressional Democrats, especially those running for president, who went along with this disgusting charade.
In the disarray and dissolution of the U.S. role as leader of the free
world, we sadly witness America's pathetic and
One of those Iraqi exile leaders who clearly misled the U.S., Ahmad Chalabi, is now a senior figure in the fig-leaf Iraqi shadow government in U.S.-colonized Baghdad. Chalabi is a fugitive from Jordan, where he was convicted of major financial fraud, and he has no real base of support in Iraq. But Bush still backs him, trafficking all too easily with a liar who tells him what he wants to hear.
The British public, raised on a higher standard of official honesty, is properly shocked. Prime Minister Tony Blair is in deep trouble as Parliament and a high judge are embarked on a truth-finding investigation into their government's rationale regarding the reasons for war. On Friday, Blair's media spokesman, Alistair Campbell, accused by the BBC of "sexing up" the intelligence data used to justify going to war with Iraq, suddenly resigned.
The Brits don't like being fooled. That's not the case in the United States, where for too many pundits and politicians, accepting official mendacity has become a mark of political sophistication.
More American soldiers have died since Bush declared the war over than
during the war itself. This misadventure is