War and Deception
By Todd Smyth
The war in Iraq could have been justified based on the non-compliance
of the Gulf War Treaty and the defiance of weapons inspections.
But that didn’t happen. It would have required the cooperation
of the UN and NATO and that would have taken too long. Not
because of an imminent threat of terrorism. But because of
an imminent threat of not getting re-elected.
The Bush administration systematically mislead the American
people to create the perception of a link between Saddam Hussein
and terrorism that presented an imminent threat to the American
people. Meanwhile intelligence officials were pressured to
find enough evidence to support the case for a unilateral,
"preemptive" war in Iraq.
The purpose of this deception was to make the actions of
the president legal, based on the power given to him by congress,
to fight a war on terrorism. The result of this deception
was an unnecessary war that has cost thousands of human lives
and hundreds of billions of dollars. The purpose of this war
was political re-election and crony, war profiteering.
After creating a financial disaster in the US with massive
tax cuts for the wealthy, outrageous deficit spending, a loss
of more jobs in America than any president since Herbert Hoover
and a failure to capture Osama bin Laden, GW was looking for
a good scapegoat and Iraq won the coin toss. Bush knew US
troops could beat Saddam easily because he knew Iraq was no
Among the many damaging results of this war have been the
betrayal of trust between the American people and her government
as well as the loss of respect from countries we once called
allies. To the rest of the world our democracy now looks like
Shortly after George W. Bush's inauguration, Secretary of
State Colin L. Powell said: "We have kept him contained, kept
him in his box." Hussein "has not developed any significant
capability with respect to weapons of mass destruction." Seven
months before 9/11, 2001 CIA Director George Tenet, testified
before Congress that Iraq posed no immediate threat to the
United States or to other countries in the Middle East.
Four months before 9/11, 2001 Colin Powell testified before
the Senate Appropriations Committee: "The sanctions, as they
are called, have succeeded over the last 10 years.... The
Iraqi regime militarily remains fairly weak. ... It has been
contained." On February 24, 2001, during a visit to Cairo,
Egypt Colin Powell stated: ”He [Saddam Hussein] has not developed
any significant capability with respect to weapons of mass
destruction. He is unable to project conventional power against
After the events of 9/11, in his 2002 State of the Union
address, President Bush introduced the "axis of evil" Iraq,
Iran and North Korea. He spoke at length about the war on
terrorism without mentioning the Taliban or Osama bin Laden.
In February 2003, just before the war in Iraq, Powell said:
"We know that Saddam Hussein is determined to keep his weapons
of mass destruction, is determined to make more." After the
war in Iraq on September 23, 2003 Colin Powell stated: “Iraq
has no WMD.”
The following are a few of the many references President
Bush made in speeches leading up to the war in Iraq:
"The Iraqi regime ... possesses and produces chemical
and biological weapons. It is seeking nuclear weapons."
-- George W. Bush
"We know that the regime has produced thousands
of tons of chemical agents, including mustard gas, sarin
nerve gas, VX nerve gas." -- George W. Bush
"We've also discovered through intelligence that Iraq
has a growing fleet of manned and unmanned aerial vehicles
that could be used to disperse chemical or biological
weapons across broad areas. We're concerned that Iraq
is exploring ways of using these UAVS for missions targeting
the United States." -- George W. Bush
"The evidence indicates that Iraq is reconstituting
its nuclear weapons program. ... Iraq has attempted to
purchase high-strength aluminum tubes and other equipment
needed for gas centrifuges, which are used to enrich uranium
for nuclear weapons." -- Cincinnati, Ohio Speech, October
7, 2002 -- George W. Bush
"Our intelligence officials estimate that Saddam Hussein
had the materials to produce as much as 500 tons of sarin,
mustard and VX nerve agent." -- State of the Union Address,
January 28, 2003 -- George W. Bush
"Intelligence gathered by this and other governments
leaves no doubt that the Iraq regime continues to possess
and conceal some of the most lethal weapons ever devised."
-- Address to the Nation, March 17, 2003 -- George W.
David Kay was named by the CIA in June 2003 to head the Iraq
Survey Group to search for chemical, nuclear and biological
weapons in Iraq. Seven months after the war ended, no evidence
was found. In Dec 2003 David Kay resigned before the group
submitted its final report. In early January 2004, the US
brought home 400 members of the Iraq Survey Group tasked with
searching for chemical or biological weapons, indicating the
US has given up real hope of finding WMD.
In a Jan 7, 2004 Washington Post article "Iraq's Arsenal
Was Only on Paper" by Barton Gellman, interviews with Iraqi
scientists explain why Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction
of any kind. The article states that while there was evidence
Iraqi leaders wanted to develop such weapons they had no success.
A combination of international boycotts, U.N. weapons inspections
and destruction, and internal squabbling and incompetence
prevented Iraq from putting together any credible threat to
the United States, or even neighboring countries.
In a 60 Minutes report on Jan 11, former Treasury Secretary,
Paul O'Neill, revealed that President Bush had decided long
before 9/11 that he wanted to remove Saddam Hussein from power.
O'Neill, who sat in on National Security Council meetings,
said he never saw legitimate evidence that Hussein had weapons
of mass destruction.
The Army War College report, Jan. 11 by Jeffrey Record, strongly
criticizes the Bush administration calling the war in Iraq
"a war-of-choice" and "unnecessary" citing that it has drawn
resources away from fighting terrorism.
The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace published
a report (WMD in Iraq: Evidence and Implications, Jan 2004)
confirming that military intelligence concerning Iraqi WMD
was terribly distorted and that Iraq posed no danger for the
US. The study states that the "intelligence community overestimated
the chemical and biological weapons in Iraq" and "appears
to have been unduly influenced by policy makers' views." There
is "no solid evidence of a cooperative relationship between
Saddam's government and al-Qaeda."
Senator Edward Kennedy gave a speech at the Mayflower Hotel,
Washington, D.C. on January 14th, 2004. Below are excerpts
from that speech.
"The Administration capitalized on the fear
created by 9/11 and put a spin on the intelligence and a
spin on the truth to justify a war that could well become
one of the worst blunders in more than two centuries of
American foreign policy." ... "After repeatedly linking
Saddam Hussein to Al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden in his justification
for war, the President now admits there was no such link.”
... "When Ambassador Joseph Wilson publicly challenged the
Administration for wrongly claiming that Iraq had purchased
uranium from Niger for its nuclear weapons program, the
Administration retaliated against his wife, potentially
endangering her life and her career." ... "The threat he
[Saddam Hussein ] posed was not imminent. The war has made
America more hated in the world, especially in the Islamic
world. And it has made our people more vulnerable to attacks
both here and overseas." ... "By far the most serious consequence
of the unjustified and unnecessary war in Iraq is that it
made the war on terrorism harder to win. We knocked Al Qaeda
down in the war in Afghanistan, but we let it regroup by
going to war in Iraq." ... "War with Iraq has given Al Qaeda
a new recruiting program for terrorists. For each new group
of terrorist recruits, the pool is growing of others ready
to support them and encourage them." -- Senator Edward Kennedy
On September 17th 2003 President Bush admitted that Iraq
had no connection to the 9/11 attacks on national television.
Stating: “We have no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved
with the 11 September attacks" And yet more than 50% of Americans
still think Iraq was involved in 9/11. Now President Bush
is trying to justify the war based on Mommar Khadafi's agreement
to open Libya up to WMD inspections. This would have been
more impressive if he actually had weapons of mass destruction.
Khadafi just didn’t want to be the next scapegoat.
Here's what George Bush will be running on in November:
- An unjust war, responsible for thousands of civilian
deaths and hundreds of US military deaths based on lies
for the purpose of re-election and crony profiteering.
- A foreign policy that has destabilized our position
in the world and made us more dangerous than we were before
- Healthcare policies that benefit large insurance and
drug companies while sticking it to most Americans.
- A phony Wall Street, economic recovery, inflated by
deficit spending and tax cuts for the rich that has not
produced good paying jobs for the middle class.
- A loss of more jobs in America than any other president
since Herbert Hoover.
- Tens of thousands more jobs heading overseas.
- A new immigration plan that would legally displace tens
of millions of low paying American jobs while providing
almost slave labor conditions for immigrant workers.
- 2.6 million good paying, median income jobs have been
replaced by part time and minimum wage jobs.
- The typical American now works 184 hours longer than
in 1970, an additional 4.5 weeks on the job for only nine
percent more pay.
- Unfunded mandates in education that leave all but rich
- The US is last in education among first world countries.
- The richest 20% of the US population now own 85% of
the nations total wealth while poverty has reached an
all time high.
- Homelessness has risen by 40-50% on a nationwide level.
- The national debt is now over 7 trillion dollars; that’s
- The worst environmental record of any US president
- And now he wants to spend a trillion dollars to go to
None of this is funny.