Bush lies again about his previous lies about Iraq
How would he know?
Bush’s handlers, who still include that teetering humpty Karl Rove, propped up the POTUS in front of a huge, Soviet-style “Strategy for Victory” slogan in Pennsylvania yesterday and directed him to say the following:
And what would those be? I wonder. Bush said:
Pause here for crowd applause. (You don’t think Bush gave this speech just anywhere, do you? He was speaking at the Tobyhanna Army Depot.) He continued:
They’re right, and Bush is a liar.
If you want to get technical about it, Dana Milbank and Walter Pincus of the Washington Post break down just how he lied, but they’re a lot more civil about it, stopping well short of wagging their fingers in his face. Here’s a segment of their analysis from this morning’s paper:
But the only committee investigating the matter in Congress, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, has not yet done its inquiry into whether officials mischaracterized intelligence by omitting caveats and dissenting opinions. And Judge Laurence H. Silberman, chairman of Bush’s commission on weapons of mass destruction, said in releasing his report on March 31, 2005: “Our executive order did not direct us to deal with the use of intelligence by policymakers, and all of us were agreed that that was not part of our inquiry.”
Bush, in Pennsylvania yesterday [November 11], was more precise, but he still implied that it had been proved that the administration did not manipulate intelligence, saying that those who suggest the administration “manipulated the intelligence” are “fully aware that a bipartisan Senate investigation found no evidence of political pressure to change the intelligence community’s judgments.”
In the same speech, Bush asserted that “more than 100 Democrats in the House and the Senate, who had access to the same intelligence, voted to support removing Saddam Hussein from power.” Giving a preview of Bush’s speech, Hadley had said that “we all looked at the same intelligence.”
But Bush does not share his most sensitive intelligence, such as the President’s Daily Brief, with lawmakers. Also, the National Intelligence Estimate summarizing the intelligence community’s views about the threat from Iraq was given to Congress just days before the vote to authorize the use of force in that country.
That’s assuming that Bush even occasionally glanced at the material that his staff secretary — you know, what’s her name, the star of the Harriet-Got-The-Gate scandal — allowed to even cross his desk after Vise President Dick Cheney saw it.
Milbank and Pincus do an OK job on the particulars, but if you want the best perspective on Bush’s Friday speech, go all the way back to May 5, 2003, for Seymour Hersh‘s breathtaking story “Selective Intelligence” in The New Yorker. In the piece, Hersh peers deep inside the Pentagon’s Office of Special Plans. His detailed reporting — fair and balanced, to borrow a continually abused phrase — reveals a goodly part of the unintelligent design behind the Iraq debacle.
And one thing particularly striking in retrospect is this passage from Hersh, in which he’s talking with “a former Bush administration intelligence official”:
No wonder the Bush regime is lashing out so strongly at its critics. Even beyond the content of the Cheney-Rumsfeld cabalists’ cuckoo dogma, they’re so dogmatic in style.
In the end, it won’t be the cabalists’ original lies that do them in, of course.
It will be their lies about those lies.
That’s what happened in Watergate, and that’s what got Scooter Libby indicted.
The more defensive they become, the more they attack their critics. The more they attack their critics, the more they talk about their pre-war plotting. Lies beget lies, to keep the whole Ponzi scheme of prefabrications still standing. And even the smart lawyers and other hucksters who surround the dumb president can’t help but make mistakes.
And so the evidence piles up from their own lips that could eventually sink them in some court or congressional hearing at a place and time yet to be determined.