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GAMBIA-L  January 2004

GAMBIA-L January 2004

Subject:

*** Come clean, President Bush

From:

uga479 <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

The Gambia and related-issues mailing list <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Sat, 24 Jan 2004 15:14:16 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (115 lines)

----- Original Message -----
From: "Andy Mensah" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Friday, January 23, 2004 4:42 PM
Subject: [unioNews] Come clean, President Bush


UPDATED AT 10:36 AM EST  Friday, Jan. 23, 2004
<H3>Come clean, President Bush</H3>
<B><i>Last year's State of the Union address by U.S. President George
W. Bush contained 17 paragraphs about Iraq's weapons of mass
destruction. This year's had four sentences. The reason is clear. No
such weapons have been found. An exhaustive postwar search by
American intelligence and military experts has failed to uncover any
convincing evidence that Saddam Hussein's regime had an arsenal of
chemical, biological or nuclear weapons.</i></B>

That is obviously a serious matter. Mr. Bush's case for invading Iraq
rested heavily on the threat that the Iraqi dictator would pose to
the United States and the world if armed with WMDs. The failure to
find them undermines his case and hurts Washington's credibility.

A more forthright president might have acknowledged the failure and
tried to explain why he feels (as this newspaper does) that the
invasion was still justified. Instead, Mr. Bush insisted that
American experts had found "dozens of weapons of mass destruction-
related program activities" and "significant amounts of equipment
that Iraq concealed from the United Nations."

<B>Well, "weapons of mass destruction-related program activities" are
not the same as weapons of mass destruction. Before it invaded Iraq,
the United States made it clear that it expected to find either an
arsenal of WMDs or an advanced program to create one. It found
neither.</B>

Mr. Bush's harshest critics say he knew all along that Iraq had no
WMDs but pushed the invasion anyway for various selfish or cynical
purposes (to grab Iraqi oil, to pump up the U.S. economy, to
guarantee his re-election and so on). It seems more likely that it
was an honest mistake. Intelligence agencies not just in the United
States but around the world sincerely believed that Mr. Hussein was
up to something and told their governments so. Why else would he have
spent so many years defying the United Nations' efforts to disarm him?

But if it was a mistake, shouldn't Mr. Bush say so? An intelligence
failure of this magnitude casts a cloud on every claim that
Washington makes in its continued effort to fight terrorism and strip
dangerous regimes of their WMDs. Mr. Bush and his administration
should be doing their utmost to find out how it happened and make
sure it does not happen again.

Admitting Washington was wrong about WMDs need not mean conceding the
invasion was wrong. As Mr. Bush noted on Tuesday night, backing down
from a fight with Iraq after its repeated defiance of the
international community would have undermined the UN, encouraged
dictators around the world and condemned the Iraqi people to years
more of oppression and suffering. He is right to say that "the world
without Saddam Hussein's regime is a better and safer place." Given
everything that we knew about that regime at the time, it was
reasonable to suspect that Iraq had WMDs or was trying hard to get
them, an unacceptable risk in the post-Sept.-11 world.

<B>But Mr. Bush did not say he suspected. He said he knew. Now it
appears the weapons do not exist. This is a problem. The least Mr.
Bush can do is admitit.</B>


  2004 Bell Globemedia Publishing Inc. All Rights Reserved.




lllll
QUOTATION:

"All of us may not live to see the higher accomplishments of an African
empire, so strong and powerful as to compel the respect of mankind, but we
in our lifetime can so work and act as to make the dream a possibility
within another generation"
-<html><A HREF="http://members.aol.com/GhanaUnion/afrohero.html">Ancestor
Marcus Mosiah Garvey <i>(1887 - 1940)</i></A></html>

llllllllll
 *  //\\//\\ unioNews Newsgroup //\\//\\   *
 * http://members.aol.com/GhanaUnion *
 *          We're One People         *
 *          Join the Chorus          *
 -    African Union Shall Succeed    -
 =====================================
A luta Continua!

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