Bush lies

Recently Bush had a press conference, which is unusual for him, and he called on Helen Thomas, which is even more unusual. While side-stepping her actual question, he declared:

BUSH: I think your premise — in all due respect to your question and to you as a lifelong journalist — is that, you know, I didn’t want war. To assume I wanted war is just — is just flat wrong, Helen, in all due respect —

THOMAS: Everything —

BUSH: Hold on for a second, please.

THOMAS: Everything I’ve heard —

BUSH: Let me — excuse me, excuse me. No president wants war. Everything you may have heard is that, but it’s just simply not true.

And in the New York Times today, following up on a story in the Brtish press, we find that Bush most definitely did want war, and intended to have a war in Iraq no matter what he had to do to get it.

But behind closed doors, the president was certain that war was inevitable. During a private two-hour meeting in the Oval Office on Jan. 31, 2003, he made clear to Prime Minister Tony Blair of Britain that he was determined to invade Iraq without the second resolution, or even if international arms inspectors failed to find unconventional weapons, said a confidential memo about the meeting written by Mr. Blair’s top foreign policy adviser and reviewed by The New York Times.

“Our diplomatic strategy had to be arranged around the military planning,” David Manning, Mr. Blair’s chief foreign policy adviser at the time, wrote in the memo that summarized the discussion between Mr. Bush, Mr. Blair and six of their top aides.

“The start date for the military campaign was now penciled in for 10 March,” Mr. Manning wrote, paraphrasing the president. “This was when the bombing would begin.”…
The memo also shows that the president and the prime minister acknowledged that no unconventional weapons had been found inside Iraq. Faced with the possibility of not finding any before the planned invasion, Mr. Bush talked about several ways to provoke a confrontation, including a proposal to paint a United States surveillance plane in the colors of the United Nations in hopes of drawing fire, or assassinating Mr. Hussein.

Please let’s not pretend any longer that Bush told the truth when he forced this war on Iraq.

Editor & Publisher addresses the memo.

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Bush lies — 1 Comment

  1. I too found the British revelation troubling, but one could easily see where Bush both did not crave war, but believed his own rhetoric that by January 2003 it was inevitable and he must push for it at that point. It isn’t one or the other. Nice blog — thanks