Timeline of a Failed Policy

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"Timeline of a Failed Policy"

Early 2004: CIA Warns Bush About the Potential of a Civil War in Iraq

“CIA officers in Iraq are warning that the country may be on a path to civil war, current and former U.S. officials said Wednesday, starkly contradicting the upbeat assessment that President Bush gave in his State of the Union address.”

Mid-September 2004: Leaked National Intelligence Council Report Warns of Possible Civil War In Iraq

“A classified National Intelligence Estimate prepared for President Bush in late July spells out a dark assessment of prospects for Iraq, government officials said Wednesday. The estimate outlines three possibilities for Iraq through the end of 2005, with the worst case being developments that could lead to civil war, the officials said. The most favorable outcome described is an Iraq whose stability would remain tenuous in political, economic and security terms.”

Mid-September 2004: Bush, White House Downplay Significance of Civil War Possibility in Iraq

Bush: “The CIA laid out a — several scenarios that said, life could be lousy, like could be okay, life could be better. And they were just guessing as to what the conditions might be like.”

McClellan’s response: White House spokesman Scott McClellan said the intelligence assessment “states the obvious,” and he dismissed skeptics of the Iraq policy as “pessimists and naysayers.”

Late-September 2004: CIA Reacts With Indignation at Bush’s Resistance to Change Course

“People at the CIA ‘are mad at the policy in Iraq because it’s a disaster, and they’re digging the hole deeper and deeper and deeper,’ said one former intelligence officer who maintains contact with CIA officials.”

Now: Bush Administration Desperately Seeking Help In Confronting Threat of Iraq Civil War

“The Bush administration, seeking to close the continuing rift between Shiite and dissident Sunni Arab leaders in Iraq, is enlisting Europe, the Arab world and the United Nations to pressure the Baghdad government to include minorities in the political process, administration and other diplomats say.”

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