Wednesday, October 06, 2004


Why George W. Bush Should Not Be Re-elected

Not surprisingly, the Iraq Survey Group has determined that Saddam Hussein did not possess stockpiles of WMD when the United States invaded in March, 2003. As stated in the report, the WMD programs were basically destroyed back in 1991 after the end of the first Gulf War. According to Charles Duelfer, the U.N. sanctions had further weakened the programs causing them to deteriorate into a dormant state. In other words, the U.N. sanctions were working. (I don't care what Tony Blair says.)

All of this started me thinking about the original rationale for going to war. I remembered phrases like "mushroom cloud," "smoking gun," "sarin nerve gas," and numerous others. But as I get older, my memory gets cloudy, so I thought I'd better do a little research before jumping to conclusions. What I found was even worse than I had expected.

On October 7, 2002, President George W. Bush laid out the threat from Iraq in a speech at the Cincinnati Museum Center in Cinncinati, Ohio. In hindsight, it is astounding how inaccurate the speech was. Claims were made and accusations were leveled that we now know to be false. Although I recommend that everyone reads the transcript, there are a number of passages that I think deserve special attention.

According to Charles Duelfer, all of these statements are false. By Duelfer's account, Iraq not only didn't possess these weapons, but they were unable to produce them. While the report does state that Saddam wanted to reconstitute his WMD programs, it clearly states that he had not and was unable to do so because of the sactions against him. He did not pose the threat that President Bush said he did.

In light of recent events, I was also struck by some of the other comments made during the speech. As many of us saw in last night's V.P. debate, Dick Cheney falsely asserted that he has not suggested there was a connection between al Qaeda and Iraq. He most certainly has. Although, it appears as if he was simply following the lead of our President. In his speech in Cincinnati that day, the President made no less than five references to September 11, 2001, while speaking about the threat posed by Iraq.

As John Edwards pointed out last night, there is no connection between 9/11 and Saddam Hussein. However, in a recent Gallup poll, 62% of Republicans think there is. I guess I can understand where they would get that idea.

Finally, I found many of the President's comments during this speech ironic in light of what we know today. For instance:

(Instead, we've staked over 1,000 lives on the lies told to us by our own President.)

(It's clear that things have not improved dramatically.)

(To hear them talk about it now, this was a vote for war, not to tell the U.N. that we were determined to make the demands of the civilized world mean something.)

In my opinion, this speech is proof enough that we were lied to. Intentionally or not, the Presiedent mislead the country into the wrong war for the wrong reasons. And the most shocking part of the story is that when asked at the V.P. debate last night, Dick Cheney stated unequivocally:

So let me make sure I understand this: Given the choice, Vice President Cheney would choose to have over 1,000 American soldiers die for lies.

That's all I need to know.

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