We all know about the lies that Bush and the neocons spewed to deceive the American people into supporting the war in Iraq (Remember that one about the chemical weapons drone that could attack the east coast? Classic!). Well now, with support for Bush's excellent adventure in Iraq crumbling by the day (repeat after me Wizbangers: "Luuuuugar"), Bush is spewing a fresh fountain of lies exaggerating the role Al Qaeda is playing in the violence and mayhem in Iraq.
Facing eroding support for his Iraq policy, even among Republicans, President Bush on Thursday called al Qaida "the main enemy" in Iraq, an assertion rejected by his administration's senior intelligence analysts.
The reference, in a major speech at the Naval War College that referred to al Qaida at least 27 times, seemed calculated to use lingering outrage over the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, to bolster support for the current buildup of U.S. troops in Iraq, despite evidence that sending more troops hasn't reduced the violence or sped Iraqi government action on key issues.
Now, get ready for the big whoppers:
Bush called al Qaida in Iraq the perpetrator of the worst violence racking that country and said it was the same group that had carried out the Sept. 11 attacks in New York and Washington.
"Al Qaida is the main enemy for Shia, Sunni and Kurds alike," Bush asserted. "Al Qaida's responsible for the most sensational killings in Iraq. They're responsible for the sensational killings on U.S. soil."
Bush seems to have forgotten that his own military and intelligence people don't agree with his assessment. Al Qaida has been variously estimated to have between 2,000 and 10,000 fighters in Iraq. In a country of 26 million, it's physically impossible for such a small group to bear such a large responsibility for the carnage that we see on a daily basis.
What's more, the group that calls itself "Al Qaida in Iraq" only pledged loyalty to Osama bin Laden in October of 2004. These people clearly were not Al Qaida at the time of the September 11 attacks or they would not have had to join that organization in 2004. How stupid does Bush think the American people are?
The military, probably on orders from above, is starting to echo the Bush line:
A similar pattern has developed in Iraq, where the U.S. military has cited al Qaida 33 times in a barrage of news releases in the last seven days, and some news organizations have echoed the drumbeat. Last month, al Qaida was mentioned only nine times in U.S. military news releases.
I like these news releases that announce "60 Al Qaida fighters" have been killed in action. First of all, the US military doesn't do body counts, and for good reason. Second of all, do these dead people have a stamp on their foreheads that reads "Al Qaida"? Isn't it possible that we're killing a lot of ordinary Iraqi insurgents who are members of one of the myriad number of groups that are fighting the US occupation in Iraq? Of course it is.
The deception continue:
He (Bush) claimed that U.S. troops were fighting "block by block" in Baqouba, a city northeast of Baghdad, as part of an offensive to clear out al Qaida fighters.
But Gen. Raymond Odierno, the U.S. ground commander in Iraq, said earlier this month that 80 percent of the insurgents American troops expected to encounter in Baqouba had fled before the operation began, including much of the insurgent leadership. There was little heavy fighting. Out of 10,000 U.S. troops involved, only one has been killed.
Bush continues to say that Al Qaida was behind the destruction of the sacred Shiite shrine in Samarra even though there's no proof of that:
Bush categorically blamed al Qaida for the Feb. 22, 2006, bombing of the Askariya mosque, a sacred Shiite shrine in Samarra whose destruction accelerated sectarian bloodshed.
But no group has claimed responsibility for the attack, and U.S. officials say there's no proof that al Qaida in Iraq was responsible, only strong suspicions.
There is certainly a significant Al Qaida presence in Iraq now thanks to our drawing them in like flies from around the region, but to pretend that they are the only problem and the only group our troops are fighting is outright deception. Fortunately, George W Bush has zero credibility with the American people anymore and they aren't buying his propaganda. This latest effort in deception hasn't budged the poll numbers on Iraq an inch.
Note: Wizbang Blue is now closed and our authors have moved on. Paul Hooson can now be found at Wizbang Pop!. Please come see him there!