Observations on the world today.

Saturday, March 20, 2004


USATODAY.com - Former counterterror adviser slams White House, Rumsfeld
Almost immediately after the Sept. 11 terror attacks, Clarke said the president asked him directly to find whether Iraq was involved in the suicide hijackings.

"Now he never said, 'Make it up.' But the entire conversation left me in absolutely no doubt that George Bush wanted me to come back with a report that said, 'Iraq did this,'" said Clarke, who told the president that U.S. intelligence agencies had never found a connection between Iraq and al-Qaeda.

"He came back at me and said, 'Iraq! Saddam! Find out if there's a connection,' and in a very intimidating way," Clarke said.

CBS said it asked Stephen Hadley, Rice's deputy on the national security council, about the incident, and Hadley said: "We cannot find evidence that this conversation between Mr. Clarke and the president ever occurred."

CBS responded to Hadley that it found two people it did not identify who recounted the incident independently, and one of them witnessed the conversation.

"I stand on what I said," Hadley told CBS, "but the point I think we're missing in this is, of course the president wanted to know if there was any evidence linking Iraq to 9-11."
Why of course? And why Iraq alone? It would be one thing if the president had asked for evidence associating any government with the attacks, or for evidence linking or clearing Iraq, but to specifically ask for evidence linking Iraq to the attacks is not good governance.

It's simply not.

The other really great quote from the above quoted section is that Hadley says they have not found evidence that the conversation took place, and when told that CBS has already independently verified the conversation they simply stood by their statement. That statement again:
"We cannot find evidence that this conversation between Mr. Clarke and the president ever occurred."
The follow up question should have been, "Have you looked?" Because as any second grader in trouble for having lost his homework can tell you, it's not a lie to say you can't find it if you haven't even looked. It's called plausible deniability.
Comments: Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?