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June 08, 2005

George Bush Makes Up His Mind

I just mentioned this, but let's take a closer look at the precise phrases Bush has used to describe his views on Iraq.

On April 4, 2002, he was interviewed on British television:

Question: I take your point about no immediate plans, but in a sense, have you made up your mind that Iraq must be attacked?

The President: I made up my mind that Saddam needs to go.

Three months later in July, 2002, the high level British government meeting took place that's recorded in the Downing Street memo:

C reported on his recent talks in Washington... Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action...

Yesterday, June 7, 2005, Bush was asked about the Downing Street memo, and said this:

THE PRESIDENT: And somebody said, well, you know, we had made up our mind to go to use military force to deal with Saddam. There's nothing farther from the truth.

It's enjoyably pathological: not only does he lie, but he makes sure to contradict himself with the exact same words.

Posted at June 8, 2005 02:11 PM | TrackBack

It's evident that his government will collapse as a result of this, now that you've convincingly demonstrated it violates non-contradiction. Fucking math, man!

Posted by: saurabh at June 8, 2005 03:46 PM

While I have no doubt that Bush indeed had made up his mind to go to war, the statements you list are not contradictory. Bush is making a distinction between Saddam no longer being in power and Saddam being removed by United States military power. If Saddam had stepped down voluntarily, Bush would say, then we would not have invaded.

Posted by: Jennifer at June 8, 2005 07:31 PM

I was kind of amused by his use of the royal "we". It always makes a lie sound that much worse.

Posted by: Anna in Cairo at June 9, 2005 08:26 AM

Actually, Jennfier, though I don't have the quote handy, I'm fairly sure at some point someone said we would invade regardless of whether Saddam stepped down or not.

Posted by: saurabh at June 9, 2005 08:32 AM

In all fairness, he said originally that "Saddam needs to go". As loyal Americans, we must assume, of course, that he meant "Saddam will happily resign his throne of blood, cash, oil, and chicks and let the people he's been oppressing for decades assume said throne."

Of course, the only way Bush would have thought this possible is if he thought Saddam was a benevolent dictator who was simply incompetent. Unfortunately, only one nation in this war can claim that.

So technically he didn't lie (according to those quotes), but he did choose his words to avoid speaking the whole truth. What he should have said was, "I made up my mind that Saddam needs to go, and by 'go' I mean go into a shallow grave crushed under the tank treads of my mighty righteous army sent from GAWD-uh, from on HIGH-uh, amen."

Or something like that.


Posted by: Matthew at June 9, 2005 09:10 AM

It makes the Mark Twain comment, that you should never lie because then you have to remember to much, so, so true.

Posted by: Elayne at June 9, 2005 09:58 AM

Oh, well, as long as he didn't technically lie us into an obtuse, unending quagmire, that's OK. Good to know he got us there honestly, and forthrightly.

Posted by: Keith at June 9, 2005 01:01 PM