It's About Time: The President's Counter-Offensive Continues
"Some of our elected leaders have opposed this war all along. I disagree with them, but I respect their willingness to take a consistent stand. Yet some Democrats who voted to authorize the use of force are now rewriting the past. They are playing politics with this issue and sending mixed signals to our troops and the enemy. That is irresponsible.
Reasonable people can disagree about the conduct of the war – but it is irresponsible for Democrats to now claim that we misled them and the American people. Leaders in my Administration and members of Congress from both parties looked at the same intelligence on Iraq – and reached the conclusion that Saddam Hussein was a threat.
In early 2004, when weapons inspector David Kay testified that he had not found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, he also testified that, quote, “Iraq was in clear material violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1441. They maintained programs and activities, and they certainly had the intentions at a point to resume their programs. So there was a lot they wanted to hide because it showed what they were doing that was illegal.”
Eight months later, weapons inspector Charles Duelfer issued a report that found, quote, “Saddam Hussein so dominated the Iraqi Regime that its strategic intent was his alone. He wanted to end sanctions while preserving the capability to reconstitute his weapons of mass destruction when sanctions were lifted."
As our troops fight a ruthless enemy determined to destroy our way of life, they deserve to know that their elected leaders who voted to send them to war continue to stand behind them. Our troops deserve to know that this support will remain firm when the going gets tough. And our troops deserve to know that whatever our differences in Washington, our will is strong, our nation is united, and we will settle for nothing less than victory."
George W. Bush
Speaking at Elmendorf Air Force Base in Alaska
November 14, 2005
Full text here.
John Hawkins of Right Wing News believes the President's timing is planned. Could he be on to something here?
"Bush allowed the Democrats to throw everything the had at him for an entire year. They called him a liar, he said nothing. They were shrill, contradicted themselves, and became increasingly hypocritical and yet, Bush said nothing.
Now that the Dems have gotten way up high in the tree and way out on a branch, Bush is whipping out the hacksaw and getting to work. It would have been great if he'd gotten started on this a couple of months ago, but sometimes patience is a virtue, and because Bush took his time, he's going to be particularly effective at cutting these liberals down to size -- and oh yeah -- it'll be a lot of fun watching him do it."