TEN YEARS LATER: CLINTON-ERA SUPPORT OF THE INVASION OF IRAQ

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George W. Bush: People forget that the Democrats overwhelmingly backed me to take down Saddam Hussein  (Press PLAY button to listen to Peter Robinson’s July 2012 interview with George W. Bush)

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… On August 8th, [1996] we got a break in our efforts to eliminate the vestiges of Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction when two of Saddam Hussein’s daughters and their husbands defected to Jordan and were given asylum by King Hussein. One of the men, Hussein Kamal Hassan al-Majid had headed Saddam’s secret effort to develop weapons of mass destruction and would supply valuable information on Iraq’s remaining WMD stocks, the size and significance of which contradicted what the UN inspectors had been told by Iraqi officials. When confronted with the evidence, the Iraqis simply acknowledged that Saddam’s son-in-law was telling the truth and took the inspectors to the site he had identified. After six months in exile, Saddam’s relatives were induced to return to Iraq. Within a couple of days, both sons-in-law were killed …” (Clinton, Bill. MY LIFE. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, © 2004.pp 669-670).

“… It seemed Saddam [Hussein] never moved [that is, complied to UN inspections] except when forced to do so …” (Clinton, Bill. ibid. p. 778).

“… The next day [the United States and the United Kingdom launched a series of attacks from airplanes and with cruise missiles on Iraq’s suspected chemical, biological, and nuclear lab sites … In my address to the American people that evening, I noted that Saddam [Hussein] had previously used chemical weapons on Iranians and Kurds in northern Iraq and had fired scud missiles at other countries. I said I had called off the attack four weeks earlier because Saddam had promised full compliance. Instead, the inspectors had repeatedly been threatened, ‘so Iraq has abused its final chance’ … At the time the strikes were launched, our intelligence indicated that substantial amounts of biological and chemical materials that had been in Iraq at the end of the [first] Gulf War as well as some missile war heads were still unaccounted for, and that some elementary laboratory work toward acquiring a nuclear weapon was being done …. After the attack we had no way to know how much of the proscribed [nuclear] material had been destroyed …” (Clinton, Bill. Ibid. pp. 833-834).

“ … [In December 2000] President-elect Bush came to the White House for the same meeting I had with his father eight years earlier … I said that my biggest disappointment [in my presidency] was not getting [Osama] bin Laden …” (Clinton, Bill. ibid. p. 935).

“… on December 16, [1998] … [President] Bill [Clinton] ordered air strikes to knock out Iraq’s known and suspected weapons of mass destruction sites and other military targets …” (Rodham Clinton, Hillary. LIVING HISTORY. New York: Simon & Schuster, © 2003. p. 488).

“… Saddam Hussein’s Iraq were hostile to the rules of the international system and sought to circumvent or subvert them …” (Albright, Madeleine. MADAM SECRETARY. New York: Miramax Books, © 2003. p. 175).

“…On September 12, 2002, President George W. Bush appeared before the UN General Assembly to make the case for international action to disarm Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. As I listened to his words, I had to nod in agreement. It was, after all, similar to speeches I had made time and again …” (Albright, ibid. p. 346).

“… [Saddam Hussein] squandered the country’s assets [after the first Gulf War] rebuilding weapons factories…” (Albright, ibid. p. 348).

“… [Saddam Hussein] yearned to build a nuclear bomb to impress the Arab world …” (Albright, ibid. 350).

“… if [Saddam Hussein] did not allow inspections to resume … I countered that [military force should be an] option on the table…” (Albright, ibid. p.351).

“… On television, [Clinton] Defense Secretary Cohen held up a five-pound bag of sugar and urged viewers to imagine that it was filled with anthrax – a bacterium Iraq had admitted producing prior to the Gulf War. ‘This amount of anthrax,’ he said, ‘if it’s spread over a city, let’s say the size of Washington, would destroy half the population.’ He then held up a test tube and said, ‘VX is a nerve agent. One drop from this particular thimble, one single drop, will kill you within a few minutes.’ Weapons inspectors had almost four tons of VX in Iraq…This was scary stuff. People were worried about Saddam’s weapons and asking what were we going to do. The problem was we [in the Clinton Administration] didn’t have a satisfactory answer. We were threatening [to use force] but air strikes, no matter how punishing, would not guarantee the return of inspectors to Iraq, nor permanently destroy Baghdad’s capacity to produce weapons of mass destruction…” (Albright, ibid. p. 352).

“… [On February 18, 1998] at Ohio State … it seemed obvious to me it would have been immoral not to confront Saddam Hussein …” (Albright, ibid. p. 359. Emphasis in the original).

“…I also cringed when, at a press conference, [Kofi Annan] called Saddam ‘a man with whom I can do business…’” (Albright, ibid. p. 361).

“… one of UNSCOM’s most aggressive inspectors resigned, claiming that I [Madeleine Albright] was obstructing the UN agency’s work. He said I stopped more [WMD] inspections than Saddam…” (Albright, ibid. p. 361).

“… Although I expressed many doubts about the Bush Administration’s diplomatic timing …I could not question the goal of ousting Saddam Hussein. As President Clinton said in 1998, the Iraqi leader threatens ‘the security of the world,’ and the best way to end that threat once and for all is with a new Iraqi government.’” (Albright, ibid. p. 365).

… Iraq’s 1991 invasion of Kuwait. Stopping these wars … is one of the single most important steps toward environmental protection the world can take …”  (Gore, Al. EARTH IN THE BALANCE. New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, © 1992 p. 345).

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Beginning with his ascendancy March 12, 1992 (Who Is Bill Clinton?) and through January 22, 2001 (Bill Cops A Plea) the Wall Street Journal ran a lengthy series chronicling the corruption of the Clinton Presidency.  I own the complete 6-volume set.  Here is what happened regarding Clinton and his policies regarding Saddam Hussein and Iraq:

“… it is argued that there is a crisis in the Mideast that demands the full attention of the president. Saddam, indeed, is challenging a president who has never demonstrated great resolve, but there is no clear and present danger. Saddam isn’t going anywhere and his weapons sites can be dealt with when the U.S. has a president who can command the respect of both his friends and his enemies ….” (WHITEWATER: INCLUDING MONICA, CHINA, AND THE STARR REPORT, A CLINTON RESIGNATION WON’T SHATTER WORLD ORDER – January 27,1998. New York: Dow Jones & Company, © 1998. p. 213).

“… Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr has been under remarkably harsh assault … The [Clinton] White House describes his approval ratings as on par with Saddam Hussein …” ( ibid. DUMPSTER POLITICS – March 6, 1998. p. 286).

“… On December 16, [1998] the President ordered air strikes against Iraq for violating United Nations Sanctions. The House suspended impeachment debate [against the President], and speculation flared that Clinton was trying to change the subject …” (WHITEWATER: THE IMPEACHMENT AND TRIAL OF WILLIAM JEFFERSON CLINTON, IMPEACHMENT ENDGAME – December 4, 1998. New York: Dow Jones & Company, © 1999. p. 190).

“… told to expect [air] strikes, Congressional leaders postponed their impeachment debate. That is to say, Saddam’s latest provocation was well-timed from Mr. Clinton’s point of view. The August strikes against terrorist facilities in Afghanistan and a suspected chemical weapons facility came immediately in the wake of Clinton’s testimony to the Starr grand jury. Now the Iraq strikes come on the eve of a planned House debate on impeachment, with announced positions it would pass …” (ibid. THE CREDIBILITY PROBLEM- December 17, 1998. pp. 228-229).

“… nearly all Republicans agree [with President Clinton] that Saddam must be punished. Their problem with Bill Clinton is personal. They don’t trust the message because they distrust the man … The tragedy for American interests is that Mr. Clinton is doubted even when he may be right. There may have been good strategic reasons for him to bomb when he did this week… Mr. Clinton used the excuse of bombing [when he did] before Sunday’s start of Ramadan, the 30-day Muslim holiday. [But] it made more strategic sense to start any [military] campaign last month when [Trent] Lott had pledged his support, but the President backed away at the last minute …”Three days after his August 17, [1998] Monica testimony, Mr. Clinton chose to bomb terrorists and a Sudan factory. (ibid. CLINTON’S BOMBS DON’T BUY A LOTT- December 18, 1998. pp. 244-245).

“… In August [1998] Mr. Clinton ordered missile attacks in Afghanistan and Sudan within days of his disastrous speech about Monicagate. When … news reports surfaced that the plant demolished by U.S. rockets in the Sudan was a benign pharmaceuticals factory, former President Carter called for an investigation … As missiles exploded in Iraq, Democrats cheered … Dick Gephardt and Minority Whip David Bonior – both of whom voted against the 1991 Gulf War …– this time pontificated shamelessly about threats to national security …(ibid. THE DEATH OF LIBERAL OUTRAGE – December 23, 1998. pp. 268-269).

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