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Thursday, November 03, 2005

Parsing Clinton

Posted by: Hammer / 9:49 AM

The Republican talking point that Clinton though Iraq was a threat doesn't hold water does it? No one really buys this nonsense, do they?

"If Democrats want to talk about the threat that Saddam Hussein posed and the intelligence, they might want to start with looking at the previous administration and their own statements that they've made," White House press secretary Scott McClellan said.

He said the Clinton administration and fellow Democrats "used the intelligence to come to the same conclusion that Saddam Hussein and his regime were a threat."

Yes, Iraq was, or at least could have been, a threat, all through the Clinton and Bush administrations. You can read the GOP talking points yourself. Here's a great one from John Kerry:

The Crisis Is Even More Threatening By Virtue Of The Fact That Iraq Has Developed A Chemical Weapons Capability, And Is Pursuing A Nuclear Weapons Development Program.

Frankly, I find the GOP's capitalization pattern to be blatantly anti-American, but that's beside the point.

Look at Kerry's statement -- it's pretty clear that he believed Iraq was pursuing a nuclear weapons program. The obvious question would be why Kerry came to that conclusion. The intelligence was flawed, to be sure, but did the administration actively skew the information to promote their plan to invade Iraq?

In this case, the answer is unambiguously NO. W's administration did NOT manipulate any intelligence that could have possibly influenced John Kerry's conclusion. I am 100% certain of that fact.

I am certain of that fact, because John Kerry came to his conclusion in October, 1990 -- more than a decade before W began his drum beat for war.

Any history buffs out there? Did anything of any significance happen in Iraq between October, 1990 and 2002 which could have affected Iraq's military capacities?

In 2002, the IAEA firmly believed that Iraq had no nuclear capabilities because they had boots on the ground throughout the 1990s. The inspections worked. When the GOP starts blowing this smoke, remember this: they are desperate enough to use quotes from 1990 to defend their record in 2002.


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