Bush on Iran: I'm right because ... I'm right

The president is asked what assurances he can give Americans that the intelligence is accurate this time.



Tim Grieve
February 15, 2007 1:35AM (UTC)

Today, nearly four years after the start of the war in Iraq, CNN's Ed Henry asked the president of the United States a question that struck us as pretty reasonable: With contradictory claims now being made about Iranian involvement in Iraq, "What assurances can you give the American people that the intelligence this time will be accurate?"

The president's answer: Trust me.

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No wait, that's not exactly true. It suggests that the president actually engaged with the question -- that he said that he knows that there were problems with the intelligence and the way it was used in the run-up to Iraq and that he has worked double-triple hard to make sure he's right about what he's saying this time.

That's not how the president answered the question. What he said was this:

"Ed, we know [that Iranian-supplied weapons are] there, we know they're provided by the Quds force. We know the Quds force is a part of the Iranian government. I don't think we know who picked up the phone and said to the Quds force, 'Go do this,' but we know it's a vital part of the Iranian government.

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"What matters is, is that we're responding. The idea that somehow we're manufacturing the idea that the Iranians are providing IEDs is preposterous."


Tim Grieve

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

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George W. Bush Iran Middle East War Room

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