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maddezmom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-18-04 12:35 PM
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Bush denies planning Iraq war shortly after 9/11
Bush denies planning Iraq war shortly after 9/11
By Edward Alden in Washington
Published: April 17 2004 5:00 | Last Updated: April 17 2004 5:00

President George W. Bush has denied that his administration began drafting plans for the invasion of Iraq shortly after the September 11 attacks, insisting he did not begin to focus on Iraq until nearly a year later.

The comments came in response to the publication of excerpts from Plan of Attack, a new book by Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward, which says Mr Bush ordered Donald Rumsfeld, his defence secretary, to draw up a fresh war plan for Iraq in November 2001.

The book quotes Mr Bush saying the decision was held very closely because "I knew what would happen if people thought we were developing a potential war plan for Iraq", according to AP, which obtained a copy prior to its release next Monday.

"It was such a high-stakes moment and. . . it would look like that I was anxious to go to war," Mr Bush says in the book. "And I'm not anxious to go to war."

He told Mr Woodward that if the news had leaked it would have caused "enormous international angst and domestic speculation".

But Mr Bush told reporters he could not recall what plans were being developed in November 2001, and said he had focused on defeating al-Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan in the immediate aftermath of the attacks.


Q Scott, the President said he couldn't recall whether it was in November, 2001 when he asked Secretary Rumsfeld to draw up war plans for Iraq, and he said he was going to check and try to refresh his memory. Do you know whether it was -- that's the correct date, November?

MR. McCLELLAN: First of all, I think what he was referring to was the September time period in the immediate aftermath of the September 11th attacks, and when he was meeting with his national security team. And at that point in September, all our focus was on Afghanistan and removing the Taliban regime from power and taking away the safe harbor for al Qaeda that existed in Afghanistan.

Certainly, late November it was becoming increasingly clear what direction things were headed in Afghanistan. It was clear that the Taliban was no longer going to have a hold on Afghanistan. We began combat operations in Afghanistan in the earlier period of October, and by November and early December things were winding down. And the President did talk to Secretary Rumsfeld about Iraq. But there is a difference between planning and making a decision.

Q So he did ask him to draw up invasion plans in November of 2001?

MR. McCLELLAN: You're talking about the late period of November, when things were winding down in Afghanistan. He did talk to Secretary Rumsfeld about planning related to Iraq.

Q And that would include an invasion?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, again, let me walk back, let's talk about planning versus the actual decision, because as I said, there is a difference there.

Remember that when we came into office, the President was talking about Iraq very early on. He talked about the threat posed by Iraq from the very early period in this administration. In fact, the very first time that the President and Prime Minister Blair met, they talked about how the sanctions on Iraq were not effective and how they weren't working. And they talked about the importance of Iraq complying with all relevant U.N. Security Council resolutions. That was back in February of 2001.

I'm going to go with Woodward's assertion that is was Nov. 2001...
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wryter2000 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-18-04 12:40 PM
Response to Original message
1. It's a pointless lie
He ought to just admit it. There are too many people who've told the truth -- Woodward, Clarke, Paul O'Neill. There's no way he can deny it. Heck, he himself was Woodward's source. He ought to fess up and say that he thought SH was involved in 9/11 and so he planned to attack. Is he so compulsive a liar he can't see that this just hurts him?

Bring on the lies, Whistle Ass. Keep digging that hole deeper.
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napi21 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-18-04 12:42 PM
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2. I find it interesting that the 3 books so far ALL
support the same theory that this Admin. was planning on invading Iraq from day one. John Dean, Paul O'Neil and Richard Clark. Now there's the Woodward book.

I don't believe anyone should totally accept any ONE report on such a subject, but when there are four different people saying almost the smae thing (any perhaps more to come), it's very difficult to believe the accused!
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Taylor Mason Powell Donating Member (681 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-18-04 12:43 PM
Response to Original message
3. Um.... more like January 2001!
Have we all forgotten Paul O'Neill?


And what happened at President Bush's very first National Security Council meeting is one of O'Neill's most startling revelations.

From the very beginning, there was a conviction, that Saddam Hussein was a bad person and that he needed to go, says ONeill, who adds that going after Saddam was topic "A" 10 days after the inauguration - eight months before Sept. 11.

From the very first instance, it was about Iraq. It was about what we can do to change this regime, says Suskind. Day one, these things were laid and sealed.
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liarliartieonfire Donating Member (448 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-18-04 01:03 PM
Response to Reply #3
7. I believe the REAL smoking gun lies in Cheneys secret
energy policy meetings.
We all know the two involve each other, that is, Cheneys top secret energy meets and Bush's push for Iraqi invasion, but the dots connect when access to Cheneys secret energy documents are exposed.

The pretend election was staged for a reason, the Cheney energy wish list and the need for a dummie president to push a Middle East occupation were planned long before either men arrived at the Oval Office.
They knew how to pull off the election and implement Cheney's wish list, and they got their feet in the Middle East Door via the bombings of the Towers, ah the "Trifecta". But what they didn't count on was the bloody mess currently being faced.
It will take a new President and a new cabinet to rearrange the Cheney/Bush foothold to Middle East oil, to satisfy the Middle East Nations at this point.

These plans were certainly being implemented long before the last Presidential election.
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maddezmom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-18-04 12:47 PM
Response to Original message
4. condi answers same question today~transcript
Edited on Sun Apr-18-04 12:48 PM by maddezmom
WALLACE: All right. Let's talk about the book, Bob Woodward's account of the lead-up to the war in Iraq.

According to Woodward, the president asked Donald Rumsfeld, secretary of defense, in November of 2001, 72 days after 9/11, to come up with plans for a possible war against Iraq. This is at a time when we were still heavily engaged in Afghanistan.


RICE: The president apparently did talk to Don Rumsfeld and say to him, you know, "I need to know what my options might be concerning Iraq."

The president, on September the 15th at Camp David, decided that our response to September 11th was going to be against Afghanistan. We planned for Afghanistan; we fought the war in Afghanistan.

By the end of November, things are starting to wind down in Afghanistan, and I do think the president's mind was beginning to move to what else he would have to do to deal with the blow, with the threat that had emerged as a result of 9/11.

And Saddam Hussein and Iraq was, of course this was the most hostile relationship that we had in the Middle East. It's not at all surprising that the president wanted to know what his options were before he began a course of diplomatic activity, of going to the United Nations, of trying to figure out how to carry out, by the way, a regime-change policy that had been the law of the land in the United States since 1998.

scripted response by condi and snotty.
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Killarney Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-18-04 12:49 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. Yes, Afghanistan was winding down all right
bin laden still out there, Al Queda still planning, carrying out attacks

how incompetent is this administration?
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lebkuchen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-18-04 12:50 PM
Response to Original message
6. Bush was lambasting Iraq during his debates w/Gore
It's on tape.
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