At Fort Polk, Louisiana yesterday President Bush continued the administration’s misinformation campaign to justify the war in Iraq. The president’s new line is, “My administration looked at the intelligence information, and we saw a danger. Members of Congress looked at the same intelligence, and they saw a danger. The United Nations Security Council looked at the intelligence, and it saw a danger,” – a blatant deception masking the administration’s distorted presentation of evidence to everyone involved. The historical record now shows that the Bush administration alone – not Congress or the United Nations or President Clinton – is responsible for sending the country to war based on false pretenses and ideological judgments about disputed intelligence information.
- The Bush administration deliberately misled the American public, Congress, and the entire international community about WMD in Iraq. Despite the president’s attempts to drag everyone into its spider hole of deception, the administration itself created an atmosphere of impending danger that required the rapid invasion of Iraq last spring.
- The administration systematically eliminated caveats and dissenting views from its prewar intelligence presentations. Members of Congress and the U.N. Security Council maintain that the administration’s prewar evidence – particularly Secretary of State Colin Powell’s presentation to the United Nations – overstated and misrepresented the threat posed by Iraqi WMD.
- In a troubling sign of on-going denial in the White House, President Bush and his allies have decided to tour the country extolling its wisdom and fortitude in facing danger, rather than looking at the facts and finding a way to solve real problems with intelligence gathering. But the president’s “tough-guy” posturing does little to restore American credibility or plan effectively for future terrorist battles.
Daily Talking Points is a product of the Center for American Progress, a non-partisan research and educational institute committed to progressive principles for a strong, just and free America.