No Excuse for Bush’s Iraq Incompetence

Yet another report has come from inside the Bush administration revealing that there was very little planning done for post-war Iraq. In response to such reports, President Bush has previously offered two myths:

1) He simply made a miscalculation about what the conditions in post-war Iraq would be. “Mr. Bush also acknowledged for the first time that he made a ‘miscalculation of what the conditions would be’ in postwar Iraq.”

2) The intelligence agencies got it wrong. Bush: “It is true that much of the intelligence turned out to be wrong. As President, I’m responsible for the decision to go into Iraq — and I’m also responsible for fixing what went wrong by reforming our intelligence capabilities.”

While the intelligence agencies did make certain mistakes with regards to Iraqi weapons programs, they were on the mark about Bush’s incompetent pre-war planning. Bush did not make a “miscalculation”; he simply ignored report after report warning of future perils that would result from an Iraq invasion. The evidence is below:2006


The Bush administration never drew up a comprehensive plan for rebuilding Iraq after the March 2003 invasion, which contributed to a severe shortage of skilled federal workers in Baghdad and to the mismanagement of the country’s oil money, according to a new government report. [Washington Times, 2/28/06]


A review by former intelligence officers has concluded that the Bush administration ‘apparently paid little or no attention’ to prewar assessments by the Central Intelligence Agency that warned of major cultural and political obstacles to stability in postwar Iraq. [NYT, 10/13/05]


The same intelligence unit that produced a gloomy report in July about the prospect of growing instability in Iraq warned the Bush administration about the potential costly consequences of an American-led invasion two months before the war began, government officials said Monday. [NYT, 9/28/04]


A secret report for the Joint Chiefs of Staff lays the blame for setbacks in Iraq on a flawed and rushed war-planning process that ‘limited the focus’ for preparing for post-Saddam Hussein operations. [Washington Times, 9/3/03]

A yearlong State Department study predicted many of the problems that have plagued the American-led occupation of Iraq, according to internal State Department documents and interviews with administration and Congressional officials. [NYT, 10/19/03]


“U.S. intelligence agencies repeatedly warned the White House beginning more than two years ago that the insurgency in Iraq had deep local roots, was likely to worsen and could lead to civil war, according to former senior intelligence officials who helped craft the reports.” [Knight Ridder, 2/28/06]