We are the 99%

August 23, 2006

Bush vs Santorum

I'm sure everyone's seen this by now. Take a look at this. It's Dubya discussing Iraq, 911, and those pesky WMD.

Now remember this is The President talking.
Q Quick follow-up. A lot of the consequences you mentioned for pulling out seem like maybe they never would have been there if we hadn't gone in. How do you square all of that?

THE PRESIDENT: I square it because, imagine a world in which you had Saddam Hussein who had the capacity to make a weapon of mass destruction, who was paying suiciders to kill innocent life, who would -- who had relations with Zarqawi. Imagine what the world would be like with him in power. The idea is to try to help change the Middle East.

Now, look, part of the reason we went into Iraq was -- the main reason we went into Iraq at the time was we thought he had weapons of mass destruction. It turns out he didn't, but he had the capacity to make weapons of mass destruction. But I also talked about the human suffering in Iraq, and I also talked the need to advance a freedom agenda. And so my question -- my answer to your question is, is that, imagine a world in which Saddam Hussein was there, stirring up even more trouble in a part of the world that had so much resentment and so much hatred that people came and killed 3,000 of our citizens.

You know, I've heard this theory about everything was just fine until we arrived, and kind of "we're going to stir up the hornet's nest" theory. It just doesn't hold water, as far as I'm concerned. The terrorists attacked us and killed 3,000 of our citizens before we started the freedom agenda in the Middle East.

Q What did Iraq have to do with that?

THE PRESIDENT: What did Iraq have to do with what?

Q The attack on the World Trade Center?

THE PRESIDENT: Nothing, except for it's part of -- and nobody has ever suggested in this administration that Saddam Hussein ordered the attack. Iraq was a -- the lesson of September the 11th is, take threats before they fully materialize, Ken. Nobody has ever suggested that the attacks of September the 11th were ordered by Iraq. [emphasis added]
I want to make sure everyone's on the same page here. The President of the United States, the "leader" of the free world, and the man who sits atop probably the largest intelligence community in history is quoted as saying these things:
  • there were no WMD in Iraq when "we went into Iraq" and
  • Iraq had "nothing" do to with 911.
I do want to point everyone's attention to that last part:
Nobody has ever suggested that the attacks of September the 11th were ordered by Iraq.
Notice what he did there. Interesting, isn't it? He changed the idea from "Iraq's connected to 911" to "Iraq ordered the attack" which is something very different.

I guess he's hoping that since the latter is true (no one in his administration said that Iraq ordered the attack), people will believe that his administration didn't try to make the case for the former.

No dice, pal. Take a look at this. It's from the Christian Science Monitor in 2003.
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.

Bush never pinned blame for the attacks directly on the Iraqi president. Still, 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.[emphasis added]
But better yet, take a look at this. It's our good old friend Senator Santorum. The same day that Bush says that Iraq had no WMD and no connection to 911, we find Lil Ricky saying, well precisely the opposite.

The Rick part of the clip is from Monday's appearance on Hardball. Take a minute to watch how Rick dances. Maybe he's still got the Cleveland-style polkas running through his head.

Chris Matthews gives the Senator a going-over. Quoting at him the President's words about no connection between 911 and Iraq and then quoting at him what the Vice President said:
more and more that there was a relationship between Iraq and Al Qaida that stretched back through most of the decade of the ‘90s.

With respect to 9/11, of course you‘ve had the story that‘s been public out there, the Czechs alleged that Mohammed Atta, the lead attacker, met in Prague with a senior Iraqi intelligence official five months before the attack.
To which Ricky says:
Well, I don‘t think Vice President Cheney is saying there‘s a connection. He‘s saying there was a meeting. We don‘t know whether there‘s a connection or not.
But his President just said no connection, right? Or am I missing something? Rick goes on:
Well, because we‘re asked the question all the time, as I‘m asked the question all the time, was there any relationship? And I think the vice president is right that we‘re finding. And as you know, there‘s these Iraqi document dump that‘s going on that we have 48,000 cases of boxes full of documents from the Iraq regime, the former regime, and a lot of the documents are indicating there certainly was relationships between Iraqi intelligence and military officials and terrorist groups like Al Qaida.

I don‘t think the administration has come forward and said or anyone has come forward and said there is a direct link. But to suggest there was no relationship is inaccurate.
Take a look at Ricky's rhetorical slither.
...there certainly was relationships between Iraqi intelligence and military officials and terrorist groups like Al Qaida.
Our boy changed the subject on us, didn't he? We were talking about al-Qaeda and now he's talking about groups like al-Qaeda. But look again at that last paragraph.
But to suggest there was no relationship is inaccurate.
I'll write it again. His President just said that Iraq had no connection to 911 - yet Rick says otherwise.

And then there's this little gem from our Ricky:
...and that having a major military power like Iraq did, which had chemical weapons, which we have now found...
One last time. Bush said Iraq had NO WMD when "when we went in."

Who's telling the truth and who's lying?

Rick even slithers through the "ordered the attack" loophole that Bush opened:
Order the attack. That‘s the operative word: Ordered the attack. What Vice President Cheney‘s just suggested was they were meeting. I don‘t think he suggested in his comment that Saddam ordered the attack.

What I think we‘ve seen from the documents that have been released and the evidence that‘s been uncovered is that Saddam supported with training camps and training terrorists, including Al Qaida terrorists, that there was a relationship.
And again he asserts something his President says didn't exist. After some more back and forth, Chris Matthews unloads the big question on Rick:
Chris MatthewsWas there a connection between Iraq and 9/11? Any connection?

SANTORUM: I don‘t think we know that.
Yes, Rick we do. And the President said just so.

Rick Santorum - He sticks to the lies that even his President has abandoned.

Technorati Tags:, ,

2 comments:

EdHeath said...

You know, OK, if this was a trial you might be able to nail one or the other of Bush or Santorum on this. But in the “court of public opinion” I think that both Bush and Santorum are having exactly the effect they desire, though of course events have hurt both of them. Bush, not running, is trying to acknowledge reality and still justify himself. He is trying to lessen his effect as lightening rod for antiwar rhetoric as best he can, to help republicans swing undecided voters and independents. Santorum is trying swing a few undecided voters by scaring them with some vague security rhetoric; he’s not going to be able to attract voters who are single issue anti war.

At some point there will be an official pronouncement on IRAQ and a sort of generally agreed view of it, although likely Jack Kelly will have a different opinion. Meanwhile, I have to say the reality as I understand it is pretty complex; that a lot of what the President says could be true, although the notion of imminent threat was never established, even by his standards. I was not surprised that some poison gas shells were found, for example, since Iraq did have them back in the 80’s when they used them on Iran and we were good buddies. The past sentence, by the way, shows some of the complexity of history and part of why Iraq would not have been any terrorist’s first choice of haven. The point is, Saddam did have powerful weapons, but most were probably taken out by, what, eight years of weapons inspectors? And terrorists can have almost as powerful a weapon by driving a truck full of fertilizer onto Neville Island. But 9/11 is a powerful image, and Bush and Santorum will use it to swing undecideds I hope the democrats can either be precise (if longwinded) or more realistically hammer the republicans on what they seem unable to do, like protect chemical factories.

Sherry P said...

have you seen the latest santorum ad? the one with the billboard of casey waving, god, his campaign is really sinking low. i HATE politics when they get this sleazy and disqusting.
casey's team had better counter this one fast.