Monday, July 12, 2004

Middle America: Bush's pre-emption policy is softened for Iran and North Korea

Middle America: "Bush's pre-emption policy is softened for Iran and North Korea: 'Bush's pre-emption policy is softened for Iran and North Korea
David E. Sanger NYT
Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Even as President George W. Bush turns his doctrine of pre-emptive action against powers threatening the United States into a campaign theme, Washington is using a far more subdued, take-it-slowly approach to the dangers of unconventional weapons in Iran and North Korea. There are many reasons for the yawning gap between Bush's campaign language and the reality. One of the most important is woven throughout the searing 511-page critique of the intelligence that led America to war last year, released Friday by the Senate Intelligence Committee.

The report details, in one painful anecdote after another, misjudgments that the CIA and other intelligence agencies made as they put together what the committee called an 'assumption train' about Iraq's nuclear, biological and chemical weapons programs. That same train powered Bush's own justification for a pre-emptive strike against Saddam Hussein, down to his now-discredited argument that the Iraqi leader was developing unmanned aerial vehicles capable of dropping biological weapons on American troops in the Middle East, or perhaps even in the United States itself."

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