Bush takes on critics of Iraq war
Friday, November 11, 2005; Posted: 2:40 p.m. EST (19:40 GMT)
President Bush Friday accused critics of the Iraq war of distorting the events that led to the U.S. invasion, saying Democrats viewed the same intelligence and came to similar conclusions.
“While it’s perfectly legitimate to criticize my decision or the conduct of the war, it is deeply irresponsible to rewrite the history of how that war began,” the president said.
“Some Democrats and anti-war critics are now claiming we manipulated the intelligence and misled the American people about why we went to war,” Bush said. “They also know that intelligence agencies from around the world agreed with our assessment of Saddam Hussein.”
“These baseless attacks send the wrong signal to our troops and to an enemy that is questioning America’s will,” Bush said.
Many anti-war critics are so blinded by inexhaustible hatred, so enraged by their impotency, so determined to seize power at any cost, that they care not what damage they do. They tolerate the intolerance of Islam and condemn the influence of Christianity. They excuse our attackers and betray our defenders. They see the world through a prism of fear. They are irrational. They cannot be persuaded by logic. Unfortunately these irrational critics are not a fringe minority. Among them are senior leaders of the second most powerful US political party:
Who Is Lying About Iraq?
Nancy Pelosi, the future leader of the Democrats in the House, and then a member of the House Intelligence Committee, added her voice to the chorus:
Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons-of-mass-destruction technology, which is a threat to countries in the region, and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process.
Senator Carl Levin also reaffirmed for Bush’s benefit what he had told Clinton some years earlier:
Saddam Hussein is a tyrant and a threat to the peace and stability of the region. He has ignored the mandate of the United Nations, and is building weapons of mass destruction and the means of delivering them.
Senator Jay Rockefeller, vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, agreed as well:
There is unmistakable evidence that Saddam Hussein is working aggressively to develop nuclear weapons and will likely have nuclear weapons within the next five years. . . . We also should remember we have always underestimated the progress Saddam has made in development of weapons of mass destruction.
Perhaps most startling of all, given the rhetoric that they would later employ against Bush after the invasion of Iraq, are statements made by Senators Ted Kennedy and Robert Byrd, also in 2002:
Kennedy: We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction.
Byrd: The last UN weapons inspectors left Iraq in October of 1998. We are confident that Saddam Hussein retains some stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, and that he has since embarked on a crash course to build up his chemical- and biological-warfare capabilities. Intelligence reports indicate that he is seeking nuclear weapons.
Even now these fevered American quislings stubbornly ignore the facts and busy themselves rewriting history…
The President Should Be Held Accountable
By Senator Ted Kennedy
t r u t h o u t | Statement
Thursday 10 November 2005
150,000 American troops are bogged down in a quagmire in Iraq because the Bush Administration misrepresented and distorted the intelligence to justify a war that America never should have fought.
As we know all too well, Iraq was not an imminent threat. It had no nuclear weapons. It had no persuasive links to al Qaeda, no connection to the terrorist attacks of September 11th, and no stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction.
But the President wrongly and repeatedly insisted that it was too dangerous to ignore the weapons of mass destruction in the hands of Saddam Hussein, and his ties to al Qaeda.
In his march to war, President Bush exaggerated the threat to the American people. It was not subtle. It was not nuanced. It was pure, unadulterated fear-mongering, based on a devious strategy to convince the American people that Saddam’s ability to provide nuclear weapons to al Qaeda justified immediate war.