Special Prosecutor

John W. Dean has written a comprehensive editorial in FindLaw that analyses eight purported statements by Bush in the State of the Union about WMD and Saddam, and demonstrates in each case how the claims were not supported by the references that Bush used- a clear example of how the administration politicizes intelligence for pursuing ideological, not fact-based, policy.

The purported statements are:

  1. "The United Nations concluded in 1999 that Saddam Hussein had biological weapons materials sufficient to produce over 25,000 liters of anthrax - enough doses to kill several million people. He hasn't accounted for that material. He has given no evidence that he has destroyed it. "

  2. "The Union Nations concluded that Saddam Hussein had materials sufficient to produce more than 38,000 liters of botulinum toxin - enough to subject millions of people to death by respiratory failure. He hasn't accounted for that material. He has given no evidence that he has destroyed it."

  3. "Our intelligence sources estimate that Saddam Hussein had the materials to produce as much as 500 tons of sarin, mustard, and VX nerve agent. In such quantities, these chemical agents also could kill untold thousands. He has not accounted for these materials."

  4. "U.S. intelligence indicates that Saddam Hussein had upwards of 30,000 munitions capable of delivering chemical agents. Inspectors recently turned up 16 of them, despite Iraq's recent declaration denying their existence. Saddam Hussein has not accounted for the remaining 29,984 of these prohibited munitions. He has given no evidence that he has destroyed them."

  5. "From three Iraqi defectors we know that Iraq, in the late 1990s, had several mobile biological weapons labs. These are designed to produce germ warfare agents, and can be moved from place to place to evade inspectors. Saddam Hussein has not disclosed these facilities. He has given no evidence that he has destroyed them."

  6. "The International Atomic Energy Agency confirmed in the 1990s that Saddam Hussein had an advanced nuclear weapons development program, had a design for a nuclear weapon and was working on five different methods of enriching uranium for a bomb."

  7. "The British government has learned Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa."

  8. "Our intelligence sources tell us that [Saddam Hussein] has attempted to purchase high strength aluminum tubes suitable for nuclear weapons production."

in each of these claims, Dean demonstrates how critical facts were left out, and the picture was deliberately distorted, to arrive at a picture of Iraq's WMD capability that was (as is now obvious) completely exaggerated.

He concludes with a call for a Special Prosecutor:

There are simply too many unanswered questions, which have been growing daily. If the Independent Counsel law were still in existence, this situation would justify the appointment of an Independent Counsel.

Because that law has expired, if President Bush truly has nothing to hide, he should appoint a special prosecutor. After all, Presidents Nixon and Clinton, when not subject to the Independent Counsel law, appointed special prosecutors to investigate matters much less serious. If President Bush is truly the square shooter he portrays himself to be, he should appoint a special prosecutor to undertake an investigation.

It's obvious that Bush will not do any such thing, and therefore equally obvious where Bush's integrity is positioned relative to Nixon and Clinton.

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