With another presidential election at hand, and terror alerts and odd events about to descend upon us again, it's worth remembering that President George W. Bush admitted during a 2004 presidential debate that the country we invaded and now occupy to the tune of up to trillions of tax dollars spent, over a million Iraqis killed, and thousands of American troops killed and tens of thousands maimed for life, had nothing to do with 9/11.
Bush admitted Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11 at least three times.
- Once in response to polls showing his propaganda had convinced 70% of the public that Iraq was involved in 9/11,
- in 2006 when a reporter accidentally asked an important question,
- and in 2004 during a debate with Senator John Kerry (see below).
Kerry was not the perfect candidate, but at least in this exchange, he had the better handle on reality; or more precisely, he acknowledged reality whereas Bush lied about and tried to change the subject.
BUSH: I would hope I never have to. I understand how hard it is to commit troops. Never wanted to commit troops. When I was running -- when we had the debate in 2000, never dreamt I'd be doing that.
But the enemy attacked us, Jim, and I have a solemn duty to protect the American people, to do everything I can to protect us....
KERRY: Jim, the president just said something extraordinarily revealing and frankly very important in this debate. In answer to your question about Iraq and sending people into Iraq, he just said, "The enemy attacked us."
Saddam Hussein didn't attack us. Osama bin Laden attacked us. Al Qaida attacked us. And when we had Osama bin Laden cornered in the mountains of Tora Bora, 1,000 of his cohorts with him in those mountains. With the American military forces nearby and in the field, we didn't use the best trained troops in the world to go kill the world's number one criminal and terrorist...
He also said Saddam Hussein would have been stronger. That is just factually incorrect. Two-thirds of the country was a no-fly zone when we started this war. We would have had sanctions. We would have had the U.N. inspectors. Saddam Hussein would have been continually weakening...
LEHRER: Thirty seconds.
BUSH: First of all, of course I know Osama bin Laden attacked us. I know that.
Republicans have successfully sold themselves as the better party on national security, but when they lie to us on an issue as crucial as this, can we trust them with the safety of our country and families?