Breaking news…George Bush says that Saddam was not responsible for 9/11.
Now, to be completely fair, he’s said similar things before, but they’ve always been couched with notions like, “Well, but he did have ties to Al Qaeda…” or he would mention Saddam and 9/11 in many of the same sentences in the same speech. You know, stuff that makes it clear the two aren’t linked.
Of course, the administration says this isn’t their fault. They blame the media for blurring the line.
I’m sorry, but that’s crazy.
Look at this Zogby poll released on September 5, 2006 which found that 46% of those asked still thought there was a connection between Saddam and 9/11. This is how that breaks down on a party affiliation basis: Democrats: 32%; Republicans: 65%; Independents: 39%.
What does this prove? Well, come on…Republicans overwhelmingly think that Saddam and 9/11 were linked? It’s the “liberal” media doing that? Unlikely…
So then, let’s revisit that idea of the media blurring the line. In the same interview where Cheney accuses the media of doing just that, and saying the administration has never said Saddam was responsible, we still get this (linked above):
Cheney, however, insisted the case was not closed into whether there was an Iraq connection to the Sept. 11 attacks. “We don’t know.”
The vice president noted a disputed report about an alleged meeting between an Iraqi intelligence official and lead hijacker Mohamed Atta in the Czech Republic in April 2001. “We’ve never been able to confirm or to knock it down,” Cheney said.
But who was able to knock it down? Well, the 9/11 Commission report:
The 9/11 commission, however, said in one of three reports issued this week that “based on the evidence available ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬? including investigation by Czech and U.S. authorities plus detainee reporting ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬? we do not believe that such a meeting occurred.”
“It doesn’t add anything from my perspective. I mean, I still am a skeptic.”
So that exchange was from 2004. Check out what Cheney said just 2 days ago on Meet The Press:
…MR. RUSSERT: All right. Now the president has been asked, “What did Iraq have to do with the attack on the World Trade Center?” and he said “nothing.” Do you agree with that?
VICE PRES. CHENEY: I do. So it’s not…
MR. RUSSERT: So it’s case, case closed.
VICE PRES. CHENEY: We’ve never been able to confirm any connection between Iraq and 9/11.
MR. RUSSERT: And the meeting with Atta did not occur?
VICE PRES. CHENEY: We don’t know. I mean, we’ve never been able to, to, to link it, and the FBI and CIA have worked it aggressively. I would say, at this point, nobody has been able to confirm…
“We’ve never been able to confirm…”…”We don’t know…”…”Nobody has been able to confirm…”
My questions are pretty simple. Why doesn’t Bush come out, lay down the law and say “No, Saddam had absolutely no connection to 9/11”? They say they’re not politicizing the WoT, so why don’t they make it crystal clear? Obviously they started this meme…so why won’t they end this alarming piece of misinformation that 46% of the voting population, and 65% of their base believes?
There’s only one person who has the power to kill this meme once and for all, but he simply won’t do it.