by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Jamie Weinstein of the Daily Caller reminds readers that, despite the resurgence of left-wing claims to the contrary, George W. Bush’s administration did not “lie” about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.
Liberals, please stop it with the Iraq war lies.
There is plenty of criticism that can be leveled against George W. Bush’s decision to invade Iraq in 2003, but he didn’t deliberately mislead the country about Iraq possessing weapons of mass destruction (WMD).
With the new cool question for 2016 Republican contenders being “knowing what we know now, would you have invaded Iraq,” the debate about pre-Iraq war intelligence has once again come to the forefront. Predictably, some liberals have used the occasion to again trot out the wholly dishonest spin that the Bush administration concocted evidence and pressured the intelligence community into saying that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction. …
… In fact, [CIA deputy director Mike] Morell recently published a book where he reiterates the aforementioned point and emphatically states that the Bush administration did not pressure the CIA whatsoever to conclude there were WMDs in Iraq.
“The view that hardliners in the Bush administration forced the intelligence community into its position on WMD is just flat wrong,” he writes. “No one pushed. The analysts were already there and they had been there for years, long before Bush came to office.”
This is similar to the conclusion of 2005’s bipartisan Robb-Silberman Commission.
“[W]e closely examined the possibility that intelligence analysts were pressured by policymakers to change their judgments about Iraq’s nuclear, biological, chemical weapons programs,” the report reads. “The analysts who worked Iraqi weapons issues universally agreed that in no instance did political pressure cause them to skew or alter any of their analytical judgments.”