News today that the government possessed an intelligence estimate stating Iran suspended nuclear weapon research back in 2003. Despite this, for the past several months the Bush administration has been drum beating about the dangers of Iran and tossing around terms like “World War III”. Today, President Bush had to face the music regarding the NIE and told reporters he “wasn’t briefed” about the information. For all intents and purposes, the leader of the free world said “My dog ate my homework.”
I don’t particularly like Joe Biden. He’s too much of an attention hound for my taste, but his perspective on this matter is none-the-less dead on:
“Are you telling me a president that’s briefed every single morning, who’s fixated on Iran, is not told back in August that the tentative conclusion of 16 intelligence agencies in the U.S. government said they had abandoned their effort for a nuclear weapon in ’03?” Biden asked in a conference call with reporters.”
If George W. Bush “wasn’t briefed” about the current state of Iran’s efforts or lack thereof to obtain nuclear weapons, who was? Isn’t it the President’s job to know which countries are really a threat and which are just paying lip service? Isn’t he the Decider in Chief?
Bush is lying. Again. Anyone who says differently is selling something.
UPDATE: Joe Scarborough agrees with me. The conclusion is really inescapable.
UPDATE II: Well what do you know? CNN now reports that Bush was informed in August that Iran had indeed suspended their nuclear program. So according to the White House’s own press release, Bush was lying. At the very least, he wasn’t being truthful when he said he “wasn’t briefed”. I am speechless.