Wednesday, January 23, 2008

War Card / Score Card - the Drumbeat of Lies

President George W. Bush and seven of his administration's top officials, including Vice President Dick Cheney, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, made at least 935 false statements in the two years following September 11, 2001, about the national security threat posed by Saddam Hussein's Iraq. Nearly five years after the U.S. invasion of Iraq, an exhaustive examination of the record shows that the statements were part of an orchestrated campaign that effectively galvanized public opinion and, in the process, led the nation to war under decidedly false pretenses.

On at least 532 separate occasions (in speeches, briefings, interviews, testimony, and the like), Bush and these three key officials, along with Secretary of State Colin Powell, Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, and White House press secretaries Ari Fleischer and Scott McClellan, stated unequivocally that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction (or was trying to produce or obtain them), links to Al Qaeda, or both. This concerted effort was the underpinning of the Bush administration's case for war.

It is now beyond dispute that Iraq did not possess any weapons of mass destruction or have meaningful ties to Al Qaeda. This was the conclusion of numerous bipartisan government investigations, including those by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (2004 and 2006), the 9/11 Commission, and the multinational Iraq Survey Group, whose "Duelfer Report" established that Saddam Hussein had terminated Iraq's nuclear program in 1991 and made little effort to restart it.

More after the click ...

My Comment:

All highly documented including a month by month graph showing the number of official public statements of untruths in the run-up to war. In my opinion, worth reading.

To those on the right who do lip service to the idea of "personal responsibility" I would say that "responsibility" and "accountability" are two aspects of the same idea as in: You are responsible therefore you must be accountable. Given the magnitude of the consequences of a war that has cost us all so greatly (in lives, in resources, in international prestige and credibility), why the reluctance to hold accountable the people responsible for those costs to those who are paying the price? Is that mantra of "responsibility" merely a talking point to be rolled out when its convenient like attacking "welfare queen" straw men?

Where is all that moral indignation that was expressed at such a deafening volume when a Democratic president lied to congress about a personal incident? Someone please explain to me why that lie and its national and international implications was so much worse, so much more damaging than these lies and their consequences.

Priorities keep on keepin' on.

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