Sanitized for your protection


Tim Grieve
February 23, 2005 11:39PM (UTC)

We're used to having the White House and its allies downplay bad news about Iraq, but this is something new: The Bush administration has deleted an entire chapter from a new report by the president's Council of Economic Advisers because the chapter painted a too-rosy picture of Iraq's economy.

The Washington Post has the story. The Post says there were all sorts of reasons for deleting the chapter: There was a turf war between the Council of Economic Advisers and the National Security Council, there were concerns that an analysis of Iraq's economy didn't belong in a report about the U.S. economy, and the White House says that the chapter may still be published in some form sometime in the future.

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But "administration officials and economists" told the Post that those reasons capture only "part of the story." "Against a steady drumbeat of suicide bombings, assassinations, sabotage and mile-long gasoline lines, some White House staff members believed that such a positive take on the Iraqi reconstruction would undermine the White House's credibility," the Post reports.


Tim Grieve

Tim Grieve is a senior writer and the author of Salon's War Room blog.

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