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article imageOp-Ed: Pathological President

By John Rickman     Dec 7, 2007 in Politics
The President's story about hysterical warnings on Iran's nonexistent nuclear weapons program were lies. And as it continues to unravel, White House apologists are scrambling to explain what the president didn't know, and when he didn't know it.
For more than a year George Bush and his administration has been beating the war drums, warning of an imminent threat from Iran. That carefully orchestrated scare campaign began disintegrate on Monday with the release of the National Intelligence Estimate.
The document, which is the considered opinion of all sixteen US intelligence agencies, unanimously concluded that, far from pursuing a nuclear weapons program as the Administration has been claiming, that the Iranians had in fact suspended the program in 2003, four years ago.
At first Bush tried to claim that he had only been briefed on the new findings on Wednesday of last week and that prior to that he had no knowledge of this information. It now turns out that Bush had been told at least as far back as August that there was new information on Iran's nuclear program. Admiral Mike McConnel, director of national intelligence, warned that the new information might cause intelligence to change their assessment of the Iranian program.
While now admitting that he was in fact told this back in August, Bush now claims that he did not bother to ask anything about the new information and that no one bothered to tell the President of the United States that his speeches were wrong. Bush continued to rattle his saber and hype an Iranian threat that did not in fact exist. On October 17 Bush warned that a nuclear armed Iran could lead to World War III.
In order for this scenario to work as the Administration claims the President has to admit that he was simply too intellectually lazy, or stupid, to ask if the new information might be important to his policy and that everyone around was too dumb, lazy or frightened to tell the president anything he did not want to know, no matter how that lack of information might effect foreign policy. In short we are asked to believe that when it comes to intelligence reports that might embarrass the president this administration has a "don't ask, don't tell" policy.
If this had been the first time that Bush had been caught in a situation where his super heated rhetoric had been in stark contrast to the facts we might be forgiven for accepting the well known conclusion that Bush is, in fact, dumber than dirt. But, as they say in Texas "this ain't his first time at the rodeo." Bush's entire tenure of office has been filled with a long series of what we are asked to believe were "intelligence failures," made by someone else.
The Bush Administration claims that they had no warning of imminent terrorist attacks on US soil prior to 9/11 despite a memo and a briefing that the President received on August 6, 2001, a full month before the attack, warning that Osama bin Laden was planning such attacks.
Then the Administration, in its frantic campaign to hype a war with Iraq, claimed in the famous "sixteen words" in Bush's State of the Union speech that Saddam was seeking to purchase large quantities of nuclear "Yellow Cake" from the African state of Niger. This despite the fact that the CIA had warned ten months earlier that the claim was false. In July of 2003 the White House officially admitted that the Niger claim was false and should not have been used in Bush's speech.
Then there were claims of links between Saddam and al-Qaeda which a whole series of investigations have shown to be false as have the claims that Iraq had stockpiled WMD's. Even General Powell, Bush's former Secretary of State has publicly admitted that the stories were false.
Taken together this string of "intelligence failures" hype or outright lies allowed Bush to lead the country into the disastrous war in Iraq. Then, over a year ago the Bush Administration began a series of statements eerily similar to the string of lies and half truths that led this country into Iraq only this time the we were asked to believe that the culprit was Iran.
In a series of speeches the Administration claimed that it had "proof" that high level officials in the Government of Iran were arming the anti-US insurgents in Iraq and that they were working to develop nuclear weapons. Once again both claims turned out to be false.
In February 2007 General Peter Pace, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the Armed Forces admitted that no such evidence existed. Once again we are asked to believe that someone else had made a mistake and that Bush was simply too lazy or to stupid to ask questions before going public with false claims and hype for a threat that did not exist.
Despite all the evidence to the contrary it is hard to believe that even Bush is that stupid. But if he is not a total idiot then the only other conclusion left is that he is a pathological liar of absolutely monumental proportions.
Thanks for your votes--suckers!
More about Bush creditability, Iran nuclear weapons, Putin
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