Who is telling the lies?
While I was out of commisssion, I have had a lot goodies pile up in the in-box (ladylogician at hope4america dot net) so be patient with me while I write on a couple of things that are a little dated.
Since the Department of Defense released the "Saddam Documents" more and more information has come out about Saddam's WMD program and whether the weapons existed or not. The Wall Street Journal reported (subscription only) last week on Saddam's ties to Osama bin Laden and his al Qaeda network
"Most dramatically, an Iraqi intelligence report, apparently written in early 1997, describes Iraqi efforts to establish ties with various elements in the Saudi opposition, including Osama bin Laden. Until 1996, the Saudi renegade was based in Sudan, then ruled by Hassan Turabi's National Islamic Front. One of Iraq's few allies, Sudan served as an intermediary between Baghdad and bin Laden, as well as other Islamic radicals. On Feb. 19, 1995, an Iraqi intelligence agent met with bin Laden in Khartoum. Bin Laden asked for two things: to carry out joint operations against foreign forces in Saudi Arabia and to broadcast the speeches of a radical Saudi cleric. Iraq agreed to the latter, but apparently not the former, at least as far as the author of this report knew. "
The Christian Science Monitor reports that President Bush had good reason to believe that the WMDs did indeed exist and emphatically states that the President did NOT lie to the American people about the reasons for war.
"...is also clear from captured documents now coming to light is that Mr. Bush had every reason to believe they still existed at the time he launched the military campaign in Iraq. Not only did US and allied intelligence agencies assert that the weapons were there, but Hussein himself played a dangerous game of convincing enemies such as Iran, and even his own generals, that he had such weapons, while protesting to United Nations inspectors that he did not."
Lastly, Christopher Hitchens (hardly a conservative in his political thinking) writes in Slate about the connections to Niger that Joe Wilson swore didn't exist:
"In February 1999, Zahawie (Wissam al-Zahawie Saddam's Ambassador to the Holy See) left his Vatican office for a few days and paid an official visit to Niger, a country known for absolutely nothing except its vast deposits of uranium ore. It was from Niger that Iraq had originally acquired uranium in 1981, as confirmed in the Duelfer Report. In order to take the Joseph Wilson view of this Baathist ambassadorial initiative, you have to be able to believe that Saddam Hussein's long-term main man on nuclear issues was in Niger to talk about something other than the obvious. Italian intelligence (which first noticed the Zahawie trip from Rome) found it difficult to take this view and alerted French intelligence (which has better contacts in West Africa and a stronger interest in nuclear questions). In due time, the French tipped off the British, who in their cousinly way conveyed the suggestive information to Washington. As everyone now knows, the disclosure appeared in watered-down and secondhand form in the president's State of the Union address in January 2003"
And speaking of Ambassador Wilson, the New York Sun reports that his wife was NOT a covert agent:
"Contrary to published reports, a State Department memorandum at the center of the investigation into the leak of the name of a CIA operative, Valerie Plame, appears to offer no particular indication that Ms. Plame's role at the agency was classified or covert."
Now given all of this information that has come out recently, one has to wonder just who is lying....the President or his detractors. The evidence seems to indicate that it was not the President who was lying...