Iraq Intelligence Thread: Did Bush Lie?



The purpose of this thread is to determine if the Bush Administration lied about reasons for the Iraq War (WMDs, Terror Connections), and where the blame lies for the statements made.

I am of the position the Bush Administration not only lied, but fabricated it and conspired to hide the truth from the American public and Congress.

I'll kick it off with:

9/11 Commission Report saying there was no connection between Iraq and (9/11 / Al Q / Osama).

I'll do an indepth post about the nonexistant WMDs and the Bush Administrations dealings on that issue at a later time if it is needed.



Mecha said:
I am of the position the Bush Administration not only lied, but fabricated it and conspired to hide the truth from the American public and Congress...
Mecha: I'll state my opinion and if you need verification of any allegation I make simply ask... I do not believe the President lied about anything, nor hid any information or embarked on any coverup; indeed his actions since 09/11/01 represent and honest man trying to a credible job of defending the country... In the hours immediately after 09.11.01 there were a series of high level meetings at the White House to determine who was guilty and what the nation should do involving all the top politicians from the Executive and Congressional branch... these meetings actually went on several days, leading to Congressional support for a war resolution and the president's later Statement to the Nation...the rest is as they say history...intelligence used in these meetings was the best available at the time, from the CIA and MI-6, as well as pieced togther from several other sources. This information was what led us to war, in Afghanistan and in Iraq, and remained the sole justification. The president has been quite plain, up front, and detailed about what information was used to make war decisions and why.


For a Free Scotland
Well, I find this to be a topic of distinction:


President Bush obviously said many things that were in fact wrong, but I doubt that he did so intentionally. A fair portion of the intelligence community believed that, indeed, there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Saddam Hussein had tried for decades to acquire them, had them at an earlier date, and was making motions to reacquire them.

The CIA may have been ordered to extend the facts to untruth (the yellowcake in Nigeria, for example), but it is doubtful that Bush himself did it, and may have had no knowledge of that ever happening.

Iraq-Al-Qaeda Connection

Iraq certainly had ties to terrorist groups, though it is established that Al-Qaeda was not one of them. Again, I doubt that Bush knew that this was purposefully untrue. People who pushed this were probably ones that had encouraged a pre-emptive attack on Iraq for years, such as Paul Wolfowitz.


Nefarious Kaizoku Capt'n
Did he lie u ask? Well to me I think he was going off from rumors to make some of the statements he said about the war and all. Though he did lie on some parts because afterwards when the public asked he tried to make a believeable speech to act as if he didn't or he would get that problem skipped over by talking about another one here and how he was gonna fix that, like the border's.
I think he lied... but it wasn't his fault. It's quite obvious that a number of the reasons we went to war with Iraq are false (WMDs, ties to Osama, etc.), so by telling us that those were true when in fact they were not, he has lied to us. However, at the time he may not have known that they were lies, so while they still were lies, they were unintentional and therefore not as bad. I still think he should have taken more actions to try and remedy his intelligence and make sure he wasn't getting false information to base his decisions and statements on, but at the same time, I doubt he was lying on purpose...

Plus Ultra

Bush didn't lie, he didn't say something he knew wasn't true, he exagerated, highlighted facts which supported his argument, characterized those facts in a way that was more compelling to his case against Saddam.

There were a variety of good reasons to intervene; the WMDs, terrorist ties, threats to neighbors, repression, regional stability, geostrategic interests, breach of the ceasefire agreements... Each of these could be tolerated in some degree, for some time, under certain circumstances.

After 911 US foreign policy was substantially adjusted to take a much more proactive approach towards Islamic fundamentalist inspired terrorism and WMD proliferation. Saddam couldn't appreciate the mood swing, he thought things would continue as they had, that he just didn't have enough terrorist ties or evidence of WMDs for Bush to come after him.

Bush didn't really lie, but he could have been more frank, he should have told us the rules were changing or had changed, that tolerance for proscribed weapons proliferation, when coupled with a lower level of terrorist connection, would be enough to trigger a military response which would exceed what had been previously seen from the US.

These are the new rules, we really don't know what the lower threshholds are, but it seems their lowering is objectionable to some. I suspect Bush realized an enhanced proclivity to intervene would be opposed so he magnified things that would justify it.


For a Free Scotland
I concur. In essence he did what all politicians, businessmen, and academics do: push his agenda. He wanted war with Iraq? Why? Oil probably, maybe some others. And he did some pretty low things to get us there, but I don't think he ever outright lied.


Well lying is not telling the truth, and ignorance is not knowing the truth (and not wanting to know). So i think he may have lied in some parts and in other parts was just plain ignorance. I think there is a word for that, but i am not sure.

Plus Ultra

Bush did say Saddam had WMDs and this was subsequently disproven. It could be what little Saddam did have was removed or may even still be hidden. Apparently poor intelligence backed this conclusion, but unless it was known to Bush that the intelligence was inadequate, he could rely on it and reach that conclusion honestly. Critics now have access to some of that intelligence and wonder how it could premise a belief there were WMDs in Iraq. They fail to consider the active role played by Saddam in creating the impression his pursuit for such weapons was much greater than the evidence now suggests. It was known Saddam had used WMDs before, that Iraq had developed such weapons and was trying to improve them and acquire means to deliver them. There were installations and equipment to make WMDs and most, if not all of this was destroyed in Desert Storm, but there wasn't certainty everything had. The UN inspectors were in Iraq for about 3 months before intervention and couldn't conclusively assure anyone there were no more forbidden weapons. There was evidence WMDs had been destroyed, though not always the same numbers or types as had been documented. There were suspicions these weapons had been stored in specific locations which were not immediately accesible and in some places where they had been traces of different sorts of weapons were found. There was uncertainty over Saddam's possession, but there wasn't a way to readily clear the doubts and Saddam continued to act as though he had something to hide.


There is a difference between false assertions and lies. George Bush made many false assertions on matters such as WMDs, no doubt, but those are not necessarily lies. His administration has since lied on the same topics, though.