ICE blogs

February 6, 2008

Bush and aides lied 935 times in run-up to Iraq invasion

Filed under: Headlines, journalism, politics, conflict — news_editor @ 8:53 pm

President Bush and his top aides publicly made 935 false statements about the security risk posed by Iraq in the two years following 11 September 2001, according to a major new study. The study, by the Center for Public Integrity and its affiliated group, the Fund for Independence in Journalism, concluded: ‘In short, the Bush administration led the nation to war on the basis of erroneous information that it methodically propagated and that culminated in military action against Iraq on 19 March 2003.’

Bush and seven top officials - including Vice-President Dick Cheney, former Secretary of State Colin Powell and then-National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice - made 935 false statements about Iraq during those two years. The study says Bush made 232 false statements about Iraq and former leader Saddam Hussein’s possessing weapons of mass destruction, and 28 false statements about Iraq’s links to al Qaeda.

The study suggests that Powell had the second-highest number of false statements, with 244 about weapons and 10 about Iraq and al Qaeda. Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and Press Secretary Ari Fleischer each made 109 false statements. ‘It is now beyond dispute that Iraq did not possess any weapons of mass destruction or have meaningful ties to al Qaeda,’ the report reads.

The authors of the report accuse the media of failing to investigate adequately the truth of the claims. ‘Some journalists - indeed, even some entire news organizations - have since acknowledged that their coverage during those pre-war months was far too deferential and uncritical.’

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