A Cautious Man
September 17, 2003
 
In the Light of Day
News reports today, after the admission of the Secretary of Defense noted below, indicate that even the President is saying that there was no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved in the attacks of September 11. The fact that this is news, is just an indication of how the general public was deceived. Another, more troubling, fact is that until now there does not seem to have been any real, sustained examination of this allegation, especially when made time and again by the Administration's spokespersons.

This was brought home to me the other night, around the dinner table, when it was mentioned that the President was going to be giving a speech about Iraq. Someone noted that the weapons programs and the linking of Saddam to 9/11 might be brought up, and our high school senior said simply, "The theories don't match." We asked what that meant. "If Iraq really had programs to produce weapons of mass destruction, then why would Saddam Hussein get involved in an attack like that? Why wouldn't he just wait until his weapons were ready?" You know, I don't know if anyone has a good answer to that.

Anyway, I see from postings around the internet (such as by Tom Tomorrow and Atrios) that folks are noticing that this week's admissions, that Saddam was not involved with 9/11, are inconsistent with the President's representations to Congress in order to support the military action taken. I haven't been doing this blog thing that long, but that's been one of my big pet peeves so far, and for a while now. Now that folks have noticed the inconsistency, between the representations now versus those which were used to spur us to war, I hope that more attention is paid to the following provision of the joint War Powers Resolution (also referred to below):
The President shall, at least once every 60 days, submit to the Congress a report on matters relevant to this joint resolution, including actions taken pursuant to the exercise of authority granted in section 3 and the status of planning for efforts that are expected to be required after such actions are completed, ...
So, we can ask: Where are those reports? Specifically, Congress has to demand reports which update and explain the President's representations, pursuant to Section 3 of the Resolution, that:
1) reliance by the United States on further diplomatic or other peaceful means alone either (A) will not adequately protect the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq or (B) is not likely to lead to enforcement of all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq; and

(2) acting pursuant to this joint resolution is consistent with the United States and other countries continuing to take the necessary actions against international terrorist and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations, or persons who planned, authorized, committed or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001.
This is a lot worse than lying about getting a you-know-what from an intern. Congress has the authority, in its authorization of the war, to demand the truth.

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