lie: to present false information with the intention of deceivingThe Progressive Zone is full of posts flat out calling president George W. Bush a liar. I regularly correspond with a circle of friends about political matters. As you might expect, I have also referred to Bush as a liar a number of times in those email discussions.
When I do, a friend of mine always responds that it's unfair to call the president a liar. It's not that my friend is a Bush supporter -- he concedes that many inaccuracies have come from the administration. My friend just believes that I cannot be sure that the president's deception was intentional.
Of course, I respond by saying that my friend is just not connecting the dots. There's a mountain of evidence that Bush is a liar. But even I have to concede that all that evidence was circumstantial. There was no smoking gun, so to speak -- until recently.
The Washington Post reports today that the Pentagon sponsored a secret fact-finding mission to Iraq in early 2003. The mission was to investigate two trailers captured by US troops shortly after the invasion of Iraq that Bush claimed were "biological laboratories" and "weapons of mass destruction." The pentagon sent a technical team on this mission to validate that claim so Bush would be vindicated for the war.
The mission yielded a 122-page report that was quickly stamped "secret." The technical team reported conclusively that the trailers were not intended to manufacture biological weapons. Even though they had communicated their unanimous findings to Washington before the aforementioned statement by Bush, the administration continued to publicly assert that the trailers were weapons factories for almost a year. This is unequivocally a lie on the part of the president.
That wasn't the first smoking gun. During a discussion on the USA PATRIOT Act in 2004, Bush told America:
"Now, by the way, any time you hear the United States government talking about wiretap, it requires -- a wiretap requires a court order. Nothing has changed, by the way. When we're talking about chasing down terrorists, we're talking about getting a court order before we do so."There's no way this statement can be reconciled with Bush's now infamous NSA espionage program. Of course, Bush now claims he approved of the NSA spying on US citizens without a court order because it protected the American people. He asserts that the NSA only conducts warrantless wiretaps on conversations held by international terrorists. But that still directly contradicts his 2004 statement. Regardless, the latest news out just this month is the real picture of the scope of Bush's espionage program. It turns out that the NSA is doing wholesale spying on communications where both parties are domestically-based Americans.
No matter what contortion of logic you make, there's no way that either of these two statements by Bush could be construed as unintentionally misleading. These are unquestionably bald-faced lies.