Bushs Iraq/al Qaeda dog dont hunt
Recently a letter writer (I’ll take Iraq now Sierra Sun Sept. 22) repeated the false assertion that Neither President Bush nor anyone in his administration has ever tried to link Hussein directly to 9/11. Well, that dog dont hunt. If we take the writers word directly literally, he is merely incorrect, but if we understand our government has worked overtime to convince us that Hussein and Iraq were interchangeable, then he is dead wrong. Here are statements by President Bush and others intended to establish links between Iraq/Hussein and the 9/11 attackers. On Meet the Press in December 2001, Vice President Cheney stated: Well, what we now have thats developed since you and I last talked, Tim, of course, was that report that its been pretty well confirmed that he (Mohammad Atta, one of the 9/11 hijackers) did go to Prague and he did meet with a senior official of the Iraqi intelligence service in Czechoslovakia last April, several months before the attack. (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/nation/specials/attacked/transcripts/cheneytext_120901.html) At a Sept. 25, 2002 White House photo op President Bush stated: The war on terror, you can’t distinguish between al Qaeda and Saddam when you talk about the war on terror. http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2002/09/20020925-1.htmlFrom a Sept. 28, 2002 press conference with Ari Fleisher: We have solid evidence of the presence in Iraq of al Qaeda members, including some members who have been in Baghdad. We have solid reporting of senior-level contacts between al Qaeda and Iraqi officials going back a decade, and, as Condi said, of chemical and biological agent training. We know that al Qaeda have found refuge in Iraq. These are links between al Qaeda and Baghdad. http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2002/09/20020926-12.htmlIn the 2003 State of the Union address, President Bush flatly linked Hussein and the al-Qaeda attackers: Evidence from intelligence sources, secret communications, and statements by people now in custody reveal that Saddam Hussein aids and protects terrorists, including members of al Qaeda. http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2003/01/20030128-23.htmlBush wrote Congress on March 19, 2003 that acting against Iraq was consistent with continuing to take the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations, or persons who planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001. http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2003/03/20030319-1.html In March of 2003 Bush again linked 9/11 and Saddam: In his prime-time press conference last week, which focused almost solely on Iraq, President Bush mentioned Sept. 11 eight times. He referred to Saddam Hussein many more times than that, often in the same breath with Sept. 11. The overall effect was to reinforce an impression that persists among much of the American public: that the Iraqi dictator did play a direct role in the attacks. (http://www.csmonitor.com/2003/0314/p02s01-woiq.html)Even after declaring war, Cheney continued to link Iraq and 9/11. On Meet the Press, Cheney stated: If were successful in Iraq, we will have struck a major blow right at the heart of the base, if you will, the geographic base of the terrorists who have had us under assault now for many years, but most especially on 9/11. http://msnbc.msn.com/id/3080244/That same month, on Nightline, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice stated one of the reasons Mr. Bush went to war against Saddam was because he posed a threat in a region from which the 9-11 threat emerged. http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/attack/140133_bushiraq18.htmlIn 2004 Cheney told CNBCs Kudlow & Kramer: It’s clearly established in terms of training, provision of bomb-making experts, training of people with respect to chemical and biological warfare capabilities, that al-Qaeda sent personnel to Iraq for training and so forth. http://releases.usnewswire.com/GetRelease.asp?id=37549 In response to the 2004 release of the September 11th Commission Report that showed no al-Qaeda/Iraq link, Bush insisted the two were linked: The reason I keep insisting that there was a relationship between Iraq and Saddam and al Qaeda [is] because there was a relationship between Iraq and al Qaeda, Bush told reporters after a Cabinet meeting at the White House. http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn/A48970-2004Jun17?language=printerIf the above does not convince you that President Bush and his administration worked to create the lie that links existed between Iraq, Hussein and the al-Qaeda attackers of 9/11, I dont know what will. While it is true to say that Bush and others never literally said Saddam Hussein directly aided al Quaeda in the 9/11 attacks, they have done their best to foster that impression in the minds of Americans. Perhaps thats why just after the attacks of 9/11 only 3 percent of Americans thought Iraq had been involved, but today 46 percent of Americans believe that to be true. If you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it. Jennifer Montgomery is a Donner Summit resident.