Former congressman Tom Andrews is calling on Congress to censure President Bush for misleading the world about the invasion of Iraq. Andrews contends the growing chorus of complaints from world leaders about being misled on Iraq as the so-called coalition falls apart points up the need for Congress to take action.
Congress should censure the president for distorting and manipulating the truth, Andrews said.
Polish president Aleksander Kwasniewski, in a recent statement, said: I feel uncomfortable due to the fact that we were misled with the information on weapons of mass destruction.
Spains newly elected prime minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said President Bush will have to reflect and engage in some self-criticism, so that things like that dont happen again.
Andrews said: We cant win the war against terrorism without allies, and we wont have any left if our presidents word cant be trusted. This is becoming a matter of our national security.
He added: Since the president wont admit error and take responsibility, Congress should act to re-establish our international credibility. The best way to restore the confidence of our allies is to pass a resolution that censures President Bush. We have to send a signal that our leaders can be trusted in matters of war and peace.
Andrews, who heads an anti-war group called Win Without War, conducted a press conference with mothers of US soldiers who served in Iraq and presented petitions signed by more than 500,000 Americans, calling for censure of the president. MoveOn.org, a member group in Andrews organization, has begun running a television ad calling for censure.
On March 19, 2003, as the invasion of Iraq began, George W. Bush told the American public: The people of the United States and our friends and allies will not live at the mercy of an outlaw regime that threatens the peace with weapons of mass murder.
A year later this and other statements by Bush and his department heads have raised many questions and strong doubts about the wisdom of the war. Rep. Henry A. Waxman has helped to create The Iraq on the Record Report, a database of statements by five administration officials most responsible for furnishing public information on Iraq. They are: President George Bush, Vice-President Richard Cheney, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Secretary of State Colin Powell, and National Security Advisor Condoleeza Rice.
The database contains 237 specific lies about the threat posed by Iraq made in 125 public appearances in the period leading up to the invasion and after the start of hostilities. These statements were drawn from speeches, press conferences and briefings, interviews, written statements and testimony. The database is available at: www. House.gov/reform/min/features/iraq_on_the_record/
At the same time the administration was making WMD statements, a retired Navy Lt. Commander and 28-year veteran of the Defense Department, Nelda Rogers, a Pentagon whistleblower, issued a report stating that the administrations confidence about finding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq was based on a CIA plan to plant WMDs inside Iraq. Rogers said the plan failed when the secret mission was wiped out by friendly fire.
According to Al Martin Raw.com, Ms Rogers is number two in the chain of command within this D(epartment) of D(efense) special intelligence office. This is a ten-person debriefing unit with the central debriefing office for the Department of Defense.
Al Martin is a retired Lt. Commander in the Navy and author of The Conspirators: Secrets of an Iran-Contra Insider. He is considered a leading expert on corporate and government fraud.
According to Ms Rogers, Martin wrote, there was a covert military operation that took place both preceding and during the hostilities in Iraq. Rogers said this particular covert operation team was made up of former military personnel and the unit was paid through the Department of Agriculture in order to hide it, which is also very commonplace.
Rogers report concerns a secret operation aimed at locating the assets of Saddam Hussein and his family, which included cash, gold bullion, jewelry and valuable antiquities. The operation in Iraq involved 100 people, all of whom apparently are now dead, having succumbed to so-called friendly fire. The scope of this operation included penetration of the Central Bank of Iraq, other large commercial banks in Baghdad, the Iraqi National Museum and certain presidential palaces where monies and bullion were secreted, Rogers said.
In the past several days, following the bombings in Karbala and the disputes over signing of Iraqs interim constitution, reports have been surfacing that US forces have unloaded a large cargo of parts for building long-range missiles and weapons of mass destruction. The Mehr News Agency in Tehran reported this activity has been taking place in Iraqs southern ports.
A source within the Iraqi Governing Council, who was not identified, told Mehr that U.S. troops, aided by British soldiers stationed in southern Iraq, made great efforts to hide their actions.
The source said the cargo was off-loaded at night while attention was still on the bombings at Karbala. He said ordinary cargo ships were used to unload the cargo, which he claimed was weapons made in the 1980s and 1990s.
The source noted that the U.S. had backed Iraqs WMD program during the Iran-Iraq war between 1980 and 1988. He said some of the weapons being brought in are similar to those weapons. He added that the remainder of the arms probably were taken in vans to an unknown location in the vicinity of Basra.
Most of these weapons are of Eastern European origin, and some parts are from the former Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc, he said. The U.S. obtained these through confiscations during sales of banned arms over the past two decades.
The fact that no weapons of mass destruction have been found in Iraq has been pointed out again and again by some U.S. and European leaders, and the matter of Saddams trial edges closer to center stage.
Former chief U.N. weapons inspector Hans Blix has stressed that the U.S. and British intelligence agencies promulgated false reports on Iraq, which led to the U.S. attack.
Sources: Daily Times Monitor, Mehr News Agency, The Guardian, USA Today, Greg Palast.com, The New York Times, House Government Reform Committee, Common Dreams.org