Obama's Lies About Bush and Iraq
The president’s speech on the Iranian deal, delivered at American University on Wednesday, was vintage Obama, as in a compendium of demagoguery, historical revisionism and outright lying. Nothing emphasized that more forcefully than the portion of the Obama’s speech addressing the war in Iraq. Obama insisted U.S. involvement there was the result of “a mindset characterized by a preference for military action over diplomacy, a mindset that put a premium on unilateral U.S. action over the painstaking work of building international consensus, a mindset that exaggerated threats beyond what the intelligence supported.”
That is litany of falsehoods. First, it was a complete lack of military action against a rapidly metastasizing Islamist terror threat, studiously ignored during the Clinton years, that gave Osama bin Laden the ability to plan and execute the 9/11 attacks from the terrorist sanctuary provided to al Qaeda by the Taliban government in Afghanistan. That would be the same Bill Clinton, along with numerous other Democrats, including Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi, John Kerry, Hillary Clinton and Al Gore who provided ample incentive for the invasion of Iraq, characterizing Saddam Hussein and his burgeoning WMD program as a mortal threat to world peace and stability. Moreover, as David Horowitz and Ben Johnson explain in their book “Party of Defeat,” every Democrat who voted to authorize the use of military force in Iraq — including Hillary Clinton, John Kerry, John Edwards, Joe Biden, and Chuck Schumer — had access to the same National Intelligence Estimate that Bush and Republicans did.
It was a report, despite years of Democratic lying, that ultimately turned out to be correct. Two separate reports revealed the existence of large stocks of chemical weapons contained in the Al Muthanna Chemicals Weapons Complex that was overrun by ISIS last year. And in 2008, after Democrats had campaigned for years on the slogan, “Bush Lied, people died,” the New York Times reported that “hundreds of tons of natural uranium” had been removed from Iraq’s main nuclear site and moved to Canada.
As Horowitz and Johnson explain, none of it mattered to a Democratic Party intent on undermining Bush and the war, an effort driven by pure partisan politics arising from the reality that anti-war Democrat Howard Dean vaulted to the top of the pack of Democratic presidential contenders in the 2004 campaign. Without missing a beat, presidential candidates John Edwards and John Kerry suddenly decided they were against the same war they had previously supported, and their Democrat colleagues embraced that defeatist change of heart with all the gusto they could muster. No one more so than Harry Reid and Hillary Clinton. Even before the surge that turned the tide of the Iraq war decisively in America’s favor was completed, Reid declared the war to be “lost.” Less than six months later, Clinton, with an eye towards her own 2008 presidential ambitions, attacked the integrity of Iraq commander Gen. David Petraeus, insisting reports on that success “require the willing suspension of disbelief.”
In short, the Party of Defeat was willing to facilitate America’s defeat in Iraq if it accrued to their political advantage. Toward the end they were aided and abetted by a cadre of leftists, from epidemiologist and unsuccessful New York Democrat congressman wannabe Les Roberts, who grossly overestimated “collateral damage” caused by coalition troops, to leftist newspapers such as the New York Times who elevated anti-war crank Cindy Sheehan to celebrity status, and the Washington Post, who along with the Times, published stories about the Bush administration’s top secret anti-terror programs, destroying them in the process.
Moreover, Obama’s assertions that Bush chose action over diplomacy and failed to build an international consensus are equally preposterous. Between 9/11 and the invasion of Iraq in March of 2003, both the United States and the United Kingdom undertook a painstaking effort to give Saddam Hussein an alternative to war, one that culminated in the unanimous adoption of Resolution 1441 by the U.N. Security Council in November 2002. That resolution gave Iraq “a final opportunity to comply with its disarmament obligations” engendered by a series of previous resolutions Saddam Hussein had ignored for years. As for building international consensus, Bush amassed a coalition of 49 countries as of March 27, 2003, all of whom were willing to abet Hussein’s removal.
What about the notable exceptions of France, Germany and Russia who resisted the idea of invading Iraq? All three were involved in the massive U.N.-based Oil for Food scandal involving billions of dollars in bribes between those nations and the Iraqi dictator that Horowitz and Johnson noted was the “largest theft on record.”
That scandal is worth remembering following Obama’s demonstration of contempt for America’s national sovereignty, revealed by the part of his speech explaining the deal was reached “between the international community and the Islamic Republic of Iran.”
Obama dug an even deeper hole for himself further on. “Today, Iraq remains gripped by sectarian conflict, and the emergence of al-Qaida in Iraq has now evolved into ISIL,” he stated. “And ironically, the single greatest beneficiary in the region of that war was the Islamic Republic of Iran, which saw its strategic position strengthened by the removal of its long-standing enemy, Saddam Hussein.”
It wasn’t the removal of Saddam Hussein that precipitated the rise of ISIS, the resurgence of al Qaeda and the strategic strengthening of Iran in that war-torn nation. It was Obama’s determination, against the advice of his military experts, to completely remove American troops in 2011, even as he told the nation he left behind “an Iraq that is sovereign, stable, and self-reliant,” a completely cynical election campaign calculation that was nonetheless described by Vice President Joe Biden as “one of the great achievements of this administration.”
Trying to deflect his disastrous foreign policy failures, Obama continued to bash Bush. “When the Bush administration took office, Iran had no centrifuges, the machines necessary to produce material for a bomb, that were spinning to enrich uranium,” Obama said. “But despite repeated warnings from the United States government, by the time I took office, Iran had installed several thousand centrifuges and showed no inclination to slow, much less halt, its program.”
Like everything with this president, the devil in in the details. According to a report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the majority of the growth in the number of first-generation IR-1 centrifuges at Iran’s main fuel enrichment plant at Natanz occurred after Obama took office. That facility had around 5,500 centrifuges at the beginning of Obama’s first term, and over 15,000 by May 2015. Add the Fordow facility to the mix, and the number increases to 19,000.
That would be the same President Obama who promised the nation in 2012 that any deal with Iran would require them to shut down all of their centrifuges.
Make no mistake: the very same leftist disinformation campaign, replete with lying, historical revisionism and blatant propaganda points used to discredit the war in Iraq is the template being used to sell the Iranian deal to a recalcitrant public, as well as Democratic members of Congress who are once again being urged to elevate their loyalty to their party over their loyalty to the nation. It is a political pitch so simultaneously desperate and despicable that Obama felt compelled to insist Iranian leaders are “making common cause with the Republican caucus.” That unprecedented slander flies in the face of the reality that, completely unlike Republicans, the Iranian mullahs got everything they wanted in this deal, even as “Death to America, Death to Israel” remains their operative agenda.
“The war against Islamofacism cannot be won if its religious roots are denied or its global reach is ignored,” Horowitz and Johnson warn. Obama’s Iranian deal represents both damning realities. Iranian leadership believes in the version of Islam that must clear the way for the reemergence of the Twelfth or Hidden Imam and the final apocalypse that will allow Islam to prevail worldwide. With regard to global reach, the final deal completely contradicted the advice of Gen. Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who told Congress on July 7 the United States should, “under no circumstances … relieve pressure on Iran relative to ballistic missile capabilities and arms trafficking.” Only a week later the Washington Post reported negotiators “split the difference between lifting current U.N. prohibitions and keeping them indefinitely in place.” Iran will ostensibly adhere to an eight-year missile ban and a five-year conventional weapons ban. After that (or sooner if they cheat), Israeli Prime Minister’s warning will become reality. “I want to make it clear to you,” he told the American Jewish community Tuesday. “Iran is not building these ICBMs to hit Israel. They already have missiles that can hit Israel everywhere. They are building these ICBMs to hit you. To hit the United States.”
Horowitz and Johnson offered an even more important warning to Americans. The war on terror will not be won if “we allow a disloyal and hostile Left to dictate terms of the debate,” they state.
It is a debate being framed by a president so ideologically bankrupt he is willing to tell the nation there is no moral distinction to be made between members of an American opposition party and a cadre of terrorist-sponsoring Islamist fanatics determined to impose Sharia Law on the entire world by any means necessary. Above all else, Obama’s speech makes one thing abundantly clear: for the first time in the history of the nation, we have a man in the Oval Office who doesn’t have America’s best interests at heart. Even worse the Party of Defeat will either back him directly or countenance their own irrelevancy and allow international "agreements" to supersede national security. It doesn’t get more terrifying than that.
Originally published at FrontPage Magazine.