Bush knew Saddam had no WMD

On Sept. 18, 2002, CIA director George Tenet briefed President Bush in the Oval Office on top-secret intelligence that Saddam Hussein did not have weapons of mass destruction, according to two former senior CIA officers. Bush dismissed as worthless this information from the Iraqi foreign minister, a member of Saddam's inner circle, although it turned out to be accurate in every detail...[more]

Your rating: None Average: 1 (1 vote)

...on Sept. 18, 2002, Bush would have trusted the Iraqi foreign minister ... why?

I think that the information given to the president that day needs to be put into context.

Bush and the leaders of a lot of other nations all thought Saddam had wmd - even B. Clinton said he did ... and Saddam had shown a propensity to use such weapons in the past. What reason would the president have to believe the Iraqi foreign minister - who worked for Saddam - over the other intelligence data from the US and our allies?

Hindsight is always 20-20.

To further make the point: if today Bob Reinbolt tells us that Carty's really changed, would many dismiss such a statement as "worthless"?

is hardly qualified to even make a base assessment of whether to believe or not believe what the Iraqi foreign minister said or did not say.

That only question that matters is whether the CIA case handlers and/or Tenet himself believed it to be true.

It's clear: this administration was going to war anyway, no matter what. They didn't want to hear any assessments that would undercut their 'case', such as it was.

...on Sept. 18, 2002, Bush would have trusted the Iraqi foreign minister ... why?

Here's an excerpt from later in the article:

But the CIA officers working on the Sabri case kept collecting information. "We checked on everything he told us." French intelligence eavesdropped on his telephone conversations and shared them with the CIA. These taps "validated" Sabri's claims, according to one of the CIA officers. The officers brought this material to the attention of the newly formed Iraqi Operations Group within the CIA. But those in charge of the IOG were on a mission to prove that Saddam did have WMD and would not give credit to anything that came from the French. "They kept saying the French were trying to undermine the war," said one of the CIA officers.

So then it becomes why would we listen to the French? It becomes increasingly clear that they were only looking for intelligence that fit the policy.

...I don't think this is an accurate headline for this post. There's nothing to say that Bush knew...rather, he was told.

By the neo-cons what the neo-cons wanted he to here and believe.

The Iranian-Iraqi war depleted many of the Iraqi's weapons.

Iraq used chemical weapons on the people of Iraq in plain site and little if anything was done.

The claim of WMD's included not only having the weapons but also the planning of more weapons as in nuclear, which we found was unfounded.

There were doubters in the government but they were drowned out and look where we are now.

In the middle of a civil war that Cheney predicted would be the case in the first Gulf War.

"...on Sept. 18, 2002, Bush would have trusted the Iraqi foreign minister ... why?"

Because the Minister knew the jig was up and let us not forget that some of the WMD reports also came from people like Ahmed Chalabi.

People told Bush wanted they wanted him to hear and what was going on after the attacks of September 11, 2001. The neo-cons and friends were looking for reasons to attack Iraq.

What Bush knew and was told is simply, plausible deniability in action, the same as Reagan and Iran-Contra.
http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

"And "enemy" was in quotes for a reason-duh."

Ah, so if you put something in quotes you're not really saying it...you're just "saying" it? I see.

"When your friends and even your predecessor say that someone is doing something wrong ... and then those tied to the someone say "no - we're not doing anything wrong," is it any wonder such a denial was discarded?"

It's as if you completely glossed over my point on this:

"All the other intelligence...say yes wmd"? I assume this is a hypothetical question, since this is not the case (David Kay, Scott Ritter, etc.) I suppose we could always debate whether our CIA confirms intelligence from an "enemy", does it then become CIA intelligence or does it remain "enemy" intelligence.

"On the issue of commiting the nation to war, I have faith that any person we've elected to make such a decision wouldn't make it lightly, in a preconceived manner, or with reckless disregard for other options. If you do, I think that's very sad."

I guess I just try to look at things a little more critically, rather than just accept something on "blind faith".

You will believe what you want to believe and nothing that I - or others say - can deter you. But I just wonder...what excuse do you offer for Clinton and all these others believing the same thing as Bush?

You refer to Bill Clinton in every post. Why? I thought this was about what Bush knew, and when he knew it? Do you feel that Clinton, as a civilian, was privy to the same info on the President?

Between September, 2002 and June, 2003, Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz created a Pentagon unit known as the Office of Special Plans (OSP), headed by Douglas Feith. It was created to supply senior Bush administration officials with raw intelligence pertaining to Iraq, unvetted by intelligence analysts, and circumventing traditional intelligence gathering operations by the CIA. One former CIA officer described the OSP as dangerous for U.S. national security and a threat to world peace, and that it lied and manipulated intelligence to further its agenda of removing Saddam Hussein. He described it as a group of ideologues with pre-determined notions of truth and reality, taking bits of intelligence to support their agenda and ignoring anything contrary.

---wikipedia

Entire Iraq War entry which does a credible job of summarizing the the buildup to the war:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2003_invasion_of_Iraq

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Office_of_special_plans

It should be pointed out there is a 'question of neutrality' tag with this. I guess Don Rumsfeld cried foul often and loud enough...

Note this disturbing paragraph:

"An allegedly-similar unit, called the Iranian Directorate, was created several years later, in 2006, to deal with intelligence on Iran"

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6108983

Maybe, perhaps, because Hussein was thought of as an ally in the region and when he turned away and did as he wished and was no longer towing the line as the U.S. and a lot of other countries gave him or sold him the technology the cooperative partnership broke down and now the U.S. had to do all it could to show disdain for a dictator that got what he wanted in the guise of cooperation.

Sure people inside and outside of government knew that he "had" weapons, heck they were given or sold to him.

This is a surprise?

When Hussein bit the hands that were feeding him, the reason for regime change had to be shown. There was and it was on poor footing and here we are.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

You will believe what you want to believe and nothing that I - or others say - can deter you. But I just wonder...what excuse do you offer for Clinton and all these others believing the same thing as Bush?

He was forced! They forced him to say those things...

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

In addition to the excellent content posted by Maggie and McCaskey, I will indulge my desire to point out the obvious: With the possible exception of Iceland, every single nation in the world wants nuclear weapons along with a delivery system. The fact that Iraq wanted nuclear capabilities and was trying to obtain them is hardly news, and should come as no surprise to anyone.

The technology to build a nuclear weapon is old and generally well known. The trouble comes from obtaining fissionables, which the country in question has to either manufacture or buy from some other country. Since manufacturing isn

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

The only answer I can come up with is oil. Good old black gold. Texas tea. We need it, they

And don't care who likes it. I believe, personal life aside, that he lead the country well with the resources at hand.

One of the saddest experiences in recent years for me was to hear him reply to an interviewer asking him about Usama Bin Laden (or Osama in some places).

He related that he an opportunity to take out Bin Laden and elected not to do it. He almost cried. He said it was the worst mistake.

I also heard him say he would not criticize President Bush on his decisions and I haven't heard him quoted as doing so.

The intelligence (albeit late in the Bush administration) regarding the terrorist organizations that is known at the top level of our government is such that these two men refuse to criticize each other over it. That caught my attention. And I don't really want to KNOW what they both know. I don't think I'd be able to sleep at night.

But there have been plenty of mistakes made. I hope everybody learns from them going forward. And I hope everybody learns how to decipher a history book.

If you're here to tell me it's my fault - you're right. I meant to do it. It was alot of fun. That's why I have this happy smile on my face.

You ask the most interesting questions of me mccaskey. Why this one?

If you're here to tell me it's my fault - you're right. I meant to do it. It was alot of fun. That's why I have this happy smile on my face.

Forget I said it.

You are an interesting character though.

If you're here to tell me it's my fault - you're right. I meant to do it. It was alot of fun. That's why I have this happy smile on my face.

I highly suggest "The Breach" by Peter Baker. It details the impeachment of Bill Clinton. An interesting side note is that on at least 3 different occasions during the impeachment ordeal, Clinton went after bin Laden. I wonder how much more time he could have spent on him, if it wasn't for the right-wing blow job police. And yet Bush had zero meetings about bin Laden during his first 8 months in office. But one of Bush's first meetings was about Iraq.

Was one comment during the eight months. Not going to swat flies regarding Bin Laden.

Who the U.S. supported in the fight to get the Russians out of Afghanistan.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

...Clinton:

"I also heard him say he would not criticize President Bush on his decisions and I haven't heard him quoted as doing so."

Maybe former Pres. Clinton knows something that none of us do. I brought him up because he said/says the same things as Bush - but for some reason, Bush is wrong but Clinton gets a pass, despite statements like the following which are attributed to him (and which he did not deny nor correct):

"When Clinton was here recently he told me he was absolutely convinced, given his years in the White House and the access to privileged information which he had, that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction until the end of the Saddam regime."

And I never thought I'd see/hear myself say this - but perhaps all of us here could learn something from Clinton's position on the issue????

What is to be learned from the position?

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

First there were weapons of mass destruction, then we were spreading democracy, now we are surging the troops and still waiting for a political resolution. It is hard to tell fact from opinion and our National Media doesn't help us out, with regard to acctually helping us understand the best way to get us out of this mess.

It is clear that the current administration does not want the decision to take troops out on their time, so they are stalling until the next president is elected. That is almost 1.5 years from now, come on.

And the fact that no one who sides with this administration, even local citizens, is willing to actually ask tough questions makes me question beyond belief, why there is still support for this open ended debacle. Can anyone say with any certainty what is the end game? When is the war on terror over? How is occupying a country considered a war?

There is no doubt that General Patreus has made some progress on the military solution in Iraq, but the polotical situation (iraqi's coming together to manage their own country) may never be resolved.

What the international security intel is. I really don't. I do want to make very sure that we pick a good President this next go around - one who has a good idea of where to go and a determined agenda on international relations.

(Not criticizing any OTHER President but I just think this next election is really critical)

If you're here to tell me it's my fault - you're right. I meant to do it. It was alot of fun. That's why I have this happy smile on my face.

To understand the Administrations actions you must also understand how intelligence is gathered and sorted.

Generally it's in a matrix that on one side is shown as a strong to less in terms of a threat level. On the other side it's how credible the intelligence is.

I would venture to believe this piece of intelligence wasn't given a high credibility rating. Also intelligence is normally compared with other intelligence to see how they line up. Many say the administration only was building a case for war and discounted any other intelligence. Well the administration knew a few things.

First, Iraq had used WMD's before on it's own citizens. This lends credibility that Iraq would be inclinded to use WMD's on people who had no connection to the country.

Secondly, Iraq was increasingly hostile to the U.S.

and when you use this with the thinking of the enemy of my enemy is my friend (common thinking for foreign policy makers of any country) it's not a far jump to think that Iraq would aid groups like Al Qaeda in an effort to weaken the U.S.

MikeyA

MikeyA

I find it funny when people try to say conspiracy theories about the "neocons" trying to go to war over Iraq.

I think what Maggie's posts are explaining about Clinton and Bush's admin's actionable intelligence was that they were both being collected by the same people... George Tenet and the CIA.

Now we know that the CIA intelligence gathering was severely limited in the late 90's due to many different legislations that were passed.

I'd say that knowing that it's easy to conclude that Tenet's intelligence gathering was greatly dimished and intelligence was easily misconstrued or not gathered correctly due to these limitations. This makes much more sense than any conspiracy theory I've ever seen.

MikeyA

MikeyA

I find it funny when people try to say conspiracy theories about the "neocons" trying to go to war over Iraq.

How much evidence does one need before it ceases to be a conspiracy theory? We know that there were very influential war hawks looking to lead America into a new century (check out the names at the bottom). These folks were just waiting for a "new Pearl Harbor". We know from Bush former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill that Bush's first few months in office were spent figuring out how to invade Iraq. And then low and behold, 6 years ago today they got their "new Pearl Harbor".

But in his previous post Mr Wolfowitz aroused extreme reactions as well. As US Deputy Secretary of Defence in the administration of President George W Bush, he was widely seen as one of the most hawkish of the so-called neo-conservatives in the Republican Party.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/1564448.stm

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

The Senator voted for the invasion based on the information the neocons put forth as did all the Senate and House members.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

"So then it becomes why would we listen to the French?"

yes - I rest my case! :)

Actually, you draw a conclusion about the motivations of people you've probably never met.

If the French and the Iraqi foreign minister say "no wmd," and all the other intelligence, and our allies-including the previous president who was a member of the opposite party, say "yes wmd" ... why would the Administration - or anyone - trust the 'enemy' over the 'friends'?

Again, it's easy to sit here and look back and cherrypick statements, comments, etc... to further demonstrate reasons for an opinion.

Further, I reject the idea that Bush 'wanted' to go to war - just as I rejected the claim that Clinton bombed an aspirin factory to detract from the Lewinsky scandal. I don't believe ANY U.S. president has 'wanted' to put Americans into harm's way - or looked for reasons to do so.

There is too much at stake personally when faced with making such a decision to think that any person we've elected as our leader would be so callous.

Putting aside your dislike of the individual currently sitting in the Oval Office, do you really believe any President looks for ways to subject this country to the hazards of a war?

Why are more and more of them leaving or no longer there?

The mission to topple Hussein is over, maybe?

Now the mission is the war on terror.

I personally think that we as a country can not just say well the reason for the invasion was not found, even though there were doubters in the government and the country was attacked and we will continue the war because we shifted the reason for the war from WMD's to Al-Queda to the war on terror to a civil war that is not a civil war back to the war on terror.

Credibility has been seriously eroded.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

I used 'enemy' in quotes for ease of distinguishing Saddam and his supporters, as it was an easy way to refer to him different from the references to our allies. Sorry you don't like my choice of wording and are endeavoring to read into it more than was meant. Pick whatever word you like as a substitute if you're not happy with one I chose.

Since you think I glossed over your point about others who didn't think there were wmds in Iraq, I offer the following quotations:

"So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real..."
- Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Jan. 23. 2003 |

"...I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a real and grave threat to our security."
- Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Oct. 9, 2002

"We want to seriously diminish the threat posed by Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program."
- President Bill Clinton, Feb. 17, 1998

"He will use those weapons of mass destruction again, as he has ten times since 1983."
- Sandy Berger, Clinton National Security Adviser, Feb, 18, 1998

"Hussein has ... chosen to spend his money on building weapons of mass destruction and palaces for his cronies."
- Madeline Albright, Clinton Secretary of State, Nov. 10, 1999

"We begin with the common belief that 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."
- Sen. Carl Levin (D, MI), Sept. 19, 2002

"Iraq's search for weapons of mass destruction has proven impossible to deter and we should assume that it will continue for as long as Saddam is in power."
- Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002

"We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction."
- Sen. Ted Kennedy (D, MA), Sept. 27, 2002

"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..."
- Sen. Robert Byrd (D, WV), Oct. 3, 2002

"In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al Qaeda members ... It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons."
- Sen. Hillary Clinton (D, NY), Oct 10, 2002

LISBON (AFP) Jan 09, 2004
"Former US president Bill Clinton said in October during a visit to Portugal that he was convinced Iraq had weapons of mass destruction up until the fall of Saddam Hussein, Portuguese Prime Minister Jose Manuel Durao Barroso said late Thursday.

"When Clinton was here recently he told me he was absolutely convinced, given his years in the White House and the access to privileged information which he had, that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction until the end of the Saddam regime," he said in an interview with Portuguese cable news channel SIC Noticias.

Clinton, a Democrat who left office in 2001, met with Durao Barroso on October 21 when he travelled to Lisbon to give a speech on globalization."

And the U.N. believed Saddam was violating 16 of their security resolutions:

#1441 Passed on November 8, 2002, UNSCR 1441 found that Iraq has been and remains in material breach of its disarmament obligations. The resolution gave Iraq a final opportunity to comply with those obligations. The resolution demanded that Iraq submit a currently accurate, full and complete declaration of its weapons of mass destruction and related programs within 30 days. Further demanded that Iraq cooperate immediately, unconditionally, and actively with the UN inspections. The resolution decided that false statements or omissions in Iraq's declarations and failure by Iraq at any time to comply with and cooperate fully in the implementation of this resolution would constitute further material breach.

Note - this resolution is dated November 8, 2002 which is after Bush rejected the denials by Saddam's foreign minister. From this resolution, it appears that a majority of countries rejected such denials.

Specifially, one of the points reads:

"Recognizing the threat Iraq

LOL

::McCaskey stirs from his torpor and affixes his red rimmed eyes on a horizon that only he can see::

And I hope everybody learns how to decipher a history book.

I think most of us on here are capable of doing this quite well already. Maybe you have someone specific in mind.

would've helped out the understanding, as well.

Of course if we had that double-naught spy, Jethro on the job, we would've known that So-damn-insane didn't have WMD's.

Ahh the wisdom of Jed Clampett!

Ya'll come back, ya hear!

you caught that, eh? Good catch.

Thanks for the invite, and I'll probably be back around Thanksgiving and again around Christmas.

Mad Jack
Mad Jack's Shack

for some reason, Bush is wrong but Clinton gets a pass

Did Clinton have the CIA explain to him that Saddam had no WMD?

...the impression I had from the comments was that Clinton wasn't going to criticize the president for the decisions he's made - my interpretation is that he knows - better than any of us - that it's easy to second-guess and criticize, especially after the fact. That's what we can learn...how easy it is for someone to say today "oh - I told them that was a mistake" when at the time, such a comment - for many different reasons - might have been discarded.

Clinton and Bush, by virtue of the position, both made decisions based upon the information they had at the time and what they thought the right thing to do was. Both of them probably understand how difficult it is to be in that position, knowing that any fact, comment or idea which seemed unlikely or irrelevant at the time, could come back to haunt you both personally and politically.

How easy for all of us to criticize - what's that phrase 'walk a mile?' How do any of us, should have found ourselves in the same position, know that we'd pay more attention to one thing than the other? We don't.

That was my point of what could be learned.

Well the administration knew a few things.

The only thing that's emphatically clear at this point in time is that the administration didn't actually know what they were talking about or what they thought they knew about.

Preface, George Tenet's book At The Center Of The Storm:

Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2001: the day after 9/11 attacks. Tenet runs into Richard Perle, who, as Tenet puts it, was "one of the godfathers of the neoconservative movement."

Perle goes through a door to the West Wing ahead of Tenet, turns to Tenet, and says, "Iraq has to pay a price for what happened yesterday. They bear responsibility."

Tenet says he is stunned, but says nothing. And, as stated in the book, "Over the months and years to follow, we would carefully examine the potential of a collaborative role for state sponsors (in association with al-Qa'ida). The intelligence then and now, however, showed no evidence of Iraqi duplicity."

with their lives once Bush and Cheney are out of office? Probably won't have much of a life left, as they only live to hate them.

----------------------

BRING THE TROOPS HOME-NOW!

_________________
"They keep talking about drafting a constitution for Iraq.Why don't we give them ours? It was written by a lot of really smart guys, and we're not using it any more".

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

'I used to have compassion, but they taxed it and legislated it out of existence.'

I suppose the World Trade Center was blown up as well?

Your Rosie O'Donnell talking points are laughable Chris. I suppose the metal didn't melt too huh?

MikeyA

MikeyA

Sorry neighborhood that's a copout answer.

Obama voted against the war. Hilary voted for. They both recieved the same reports.

The information the neocons put forth.... George Tenet was one of the ones putting for the information. Under your assessment he's a neocon. Why did Bill Clinton appoint neocons?

MikeyA

MikeyA

I must say, your faith in gov't and those in charge is certainly refreshing.

If the French and the Iraqi foreign minister say "no wmd," and all the other intelligence, and our allies-including the previous president who was a member of the opposite party, say "yes wmd" ... why would the Administration - or anyone - trust the 'enemy' over the 'friends'?

"All the other intelligence...say yes wmd"? I assume this is a hypothetical question, since this is not the case (David Kay, Scott Ritter, etc.)

Also, "trust the enemy"? Is this to say that the French are included with the "enemy". Was Iraq considered "the enemy" in 2002? If so, this would almost seem to validate the case of going to war with them before the intelligence warranted it, no?

...and neither do you. No one has access to the detailed daily security briefings from Clinton or Bush to know exactly what they were told or not - or the emphasis or context of what they were told.

The individual and organization who actually was responsible for the 9/11 attacks, six years ago today, is still out there, making videos and whatnot, and essentially taunting us from some cave or wherever the hell he is.

But that's ok, because everything's going great in Iraq.

What will people do with their lives once Bush and Cheney are out of office?

I imagine millions around the world will celebrate, get drunk, and screw. Except for the old farts that always find something to piss about, like smoking bans.

No not really. I was not defending Clinton.

"George Tenet was one of the ones putting for the information. Under your assessment he's a neocon."

Well, you could view it that way but I did not state.

Do I think Tenet was/is a neo-con?

No in the greater sense of term but he could have been influenced by the group and made a poor decision based on the poor information being used by everyone.

http://toledoohioneighborhoodconcerns.com/blog

Rosie O'Donnell has talking points? You better fill me in, I don't watch her show.

Is the PNAC document I referenced real? Were their goals of agressive foreign policy and pre-emption real? Are the PNAC signers make believe? Did they, or did they not have great influence on foreign policy? How about the first few months of the Bush administration--are you saying they didn't have any meetings about Iraq?

Chris - the French, at the time, were very closely tied to Saddam and there are numerous articles about the close relationship and dependency. And "enemy" was in quotes for a reason-duh.

But you're missing the point. When your friends and even your predecessor say that someone is doing something wrong ... and then those tied to the someone say "no - we're not doing anything wrong," is it any wonder such a denial was discarded?

Even if Saddam had had wmds, do you expect that the foreign minister would admit to that fact? I think everyone expected, at the time, that he'd say 'no wmd' no matter what the truth was.

So, when you've got people who might have wmds denying it, and your allies (Great Britain, Italy, Australia, your internal agents, your predecessor) contradicting them, who do you believe - especially when the consequences of your decision have such serious ramifications?

You interpret this dilemna as a 'preference' for war. And you're entitled to such a belief. I interpret this dilemna as a decision to trust a more 'reliable' source, than the person being accused of wrongdoing in the first place.

Aside..."I must say, your faith in gov't and those in charge is certainly refreshing." On the issue of commiting the nation to war, I have faith that any person we've elected to make such a decision wouldn't make it lightly, in a preconceived manner, or with reckless disregard for other options. If you do, I think that's very sad.

Hilary Clinton was for the Iraq war. Would you consider her a neocon?

MikeyA

MikeyA

Bin Laden has been hiding since 9-11. All he can do is put out videos. He is not actively involved nor funding terrorist activities as he once was.

His influence has been marginalized.

This month represents six years of no terror attacks on U.S. soil. This hasn't been from Al Qaeda's lack of trying. That to me is the most telling stat anyone has ever put forth.

MikeyA

MikeyA

Thanks for the clarification NC.

Here's my assessment of the situation. Hopefully it'll answer Chris' question as well.

The administration was concerned more about Iraq than Al Qaeda at the begining of it's term. This is because Iraq dominated so much of the previous two administrations time that the belief was they would still pose a bigger threat.

We know that due to constraints put upon the gathering of intelligence in the late 90's severely limited our ability to gather credible intelligence. While these were lifted with the Patriot Act and other legislation there had still been an intelligence gap that had already been created. I believe we still are fighting that today.

After 9-11 Bush vowed to confront the 'Axis of Evil'. Each member was confronted different ways. Due to past hostilities Iraq was at the top of that list. Having already had success in Afghanistan they turned to the next available target that had both the means to attack the US and the willingness to do so. Iraq then stood before Iran and N. Korea as a threat in their eyes.

Do I think they wanted to go to war against Iraq at all costs? No. Do I think they were predisposed to thinking Iraq would be the next aggressor towards the US? Yes So with this assumption plus intelligence that was inherently flawed we then end up at war with Iraq.

If we could have removed the predisposition or the flawed intelligence it would have prevented war. However since both were so deeply ingrained during early 2003 it's doubtful that could have happened.

MikeyA

MikeyA

Practically every expert on terrorism agrees that al-Queda as a group is currently at least close to or at pre-9/11 strength.

In addition, the Taliban has regrouped in Afghanistan.

We took our eye off the ball with the Iraq misadventure and I'll wager even most conservatives by this point in time would agree with that.

If there were a Democrat in the White House, particularly one named Clinton, and the head of the terrorist organization that caused 3,000 deaths on American soil six years ago was still at large, we'd be holding impeachment hearings again...at least if the Republicans still controlled Congress.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.