As part of its latest report — Iraq: The War Card— the Center for Public Integrity created a False Statements Database, which allows the public to search 380,000 words of Iraq-related statements made by Bush administration officials. The overall report concludes that President Bush and seven of his top officials made at least 935 false statements in the two years following September 11, 2001, regarding the threat posed by Saddam Hussein's Iraq.
The report states:
"An exhaustive examination of the record shows that the statements were part of an orchestrated campaign that effectively galvanized public opinion and, in the process, led the nation to war under decidedly false pretenses."
Each false statement is highlighted in the searchable interviews, press conferences, etc. Whether or not the Bush Administration intentionally misled the public, this manifestation of incorrect information promulgated throughout the media scares me. Years later, thousands of soldiers and civilians face the horrors of war in Iraq.
Search the database yourself for a solemn walk down memory lane. And to find out what came up when I searched "mushroom cloud" read more.
September 8, 2002
National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, Interview on CNN's Late Edition
Wolf Blitzer: Based on what you know right now, how close is Saddam Hussein's government—how close is that government to developing a nuclear capability?
Condoleezza Rice: You will get different estimates about precisely how close he is. We do know that he is actively pursuing a nuclear weapon. We do know that there have been shipments going into Iran, for instance—into Iraq, for instance, of aluminum tubes that really are only suited to—high-quality aluminum tools that are only really suited for nuclear weapons programs, centrifuge programs.
We know that he has the infrastructure, nuclear scientists to make a nuclear weapon. And we know that when the inspectors assessed this after the Gulf War, he was far, far closer to a crude nuclear device than anybody thought, maybe six months from a crude nuclear device.
The problem here is that there will always be some uncertainty about how quickly he can acquire nuclear weapons. But we don't what the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud.