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Wednesday | June 04, 2003

Pressure rises on WMD issue

Despite efforts to make it all go away, Congressional pressure on the WMD issue (something about lying to get their war on) has definitely put the administration on the defensive.

Facing mounting criticism, Bush administration officials on Wednesday denied they slanted U.S. intelligence on Iraq's alleged weapons of mass destruction to justify a war.

In separate appearances, Pentagon (news - web sites) and State Department officials tried to dampen rising concern in Congress that the administration exaggerated -- either deliberately or due to faulty intelligence -- the threat posed by Iraq's weapons.

Across the pond, Blair is now facing an inquiry from a Parliament which has been extremely aggressive in its pursuit of the truth. While comparatively much meeker, the US Congress is starting to move in that direction -- well, at least the Senate, where Armed Services Committee Chair John Warner (R), has announced plans to hold hearings.

Of all the presidential candidates, Graham is really running with this story:

Democratic presidential candidate Bob Graham said Wednesday that President Bush would be held accountable if evidence shows intelligence on Iraq's weapons program was intentionally manipulated to justify war.

Graham, a three-term Florida senator and former governor, said political manipulation of intelligence information is just one possible explanation for why an extensive weapons program in Iraq has yet to surface. But he said responsibility would fall directly on the president if such manipulation occurred.

"In our system of government, the president is ultimately accountable whether it's his decision, or the decisions of those responsible to the president," Graham said after attending a health policy forum at the University of California, San Francisco.

"It would raise serious questions about the political leadership that engaged in that manipulation and the misleading of the American people."

Posted June 04, 2003 04:37 PM | Comments (45)





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