RUSH: Yesterday, late afternoon, there’s something that a lot of people, I think consider a bombshell, came out in The Daily Beast. Not to be confused with The Daily Caller. The Daily Caller is the website of Chatsworth Osborne Jr. The Daily Beast is a left-wing website.
And here’s the headline: “Insiders Blame Rove for Covering Up IraqÂ’s Real WMD — Starting in 2004, some members of the George W. Bush administration and Republican lawmakers began to find evidence of discarded chemical weapons in Iraq. But when the information was brought up with the White House, senior adviser Karl Rove told them to ‘let these sleeping dogs lie.’
“The issue of IraqÂ’s WMD remnants was suddenly thrust back into the fore this week, with a blockbuster New York Times report accusing the Bush administration of covering up American troopsÂ’ chemically induced wounds. To people familiar with the issue, both inside that administration and outside, the blame for the coverup falls on one particular set of shoulders: RoveÂ’s.”
There are a lot of insiders dumping on Karl Rove here for covering up the news that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. They weren’t discovered shortly after the invasion. It took a year or two. And Rove didn’t want to look back. He didn’t want to revive the story, so goes the story here. He just wanted to sweep it under the rug and continue to look forward.
Rove also has admitted — let me tell you why this is important. Well, I mean obvious reasons why it’s important. But I’ll tell you what resonates about this to me, this business with ISIS and Obama being weak on terrorism. The reason we’re involved with ISIS, the reason all this is happening is because Obama made tracks to get out of Iraq as quickly as he could after winning the election. And that was political, too. It was a political requirement based on the Obama campaign.
Now, you might recall that I’ve made a big deal in recent months in characterizing the way the Democrat Party literally drove their base insane with all of these treasonous allegations they essentially were making about the Iraq war. From the moment the Iraq war began in 2003, the Democrat Party, after a couple days of making it look like they were all for it because public support was, it didn’t take long before the Democrat Party and the media began an ongoing, never-ending 24/7, 365 effort to discredit it, to discredit the effort, to discredit the war, to discredit the motivation.
They did everything they could to undermine every aspect of it, and in the process they drove their own supporters insane with hatred for George W. Bush. You could arguably say now, since there were weapons of mass destruction, that all of this that happened, all of the mischaracterizations of the military in Iraq — remember John Kerry and Jack Murtha said, oh, they’re racist and they’re terrorists and they’re blowing down doors in homes in Iraq, our troops and the Marines in Haditha. And they were going in and terrorizing women and children. Kerry is out there making this allegation, trying to sabotage the surge before Petraeus had even testified on this.
You remember this. It was like it was yesterday, and it was never-ending five years, folks, every day, every night, they body count. The Democrat Party and the media did everything they could to lose that war and saddle that loss around the neck of George W. Bush. And of course leading their charge, which they thought gave them credibility, was there weren’t any weapons of mass destruction. The whole thing was unnecessary. Bush lied, people died, remember all this?
So in the midst of it we now learn there were weapons of mass destruction, chemical weapons and so forth that were found, military people are coming out of the woodwork now admitting it. They were told to put a lid on it back then because the Bush administration didn’t want to go back in time. They had a philosophy in the White House: Never respond to criticism. Never defend yourself against any criticism no matter what happens because that’ll just prolong the story. They had a belief, just let it go because the news cycle will take care of it. “Okay, they’re calling us chumps today, but there will be a new story tomorrow and everybody will forget about it.”
That’s not what happened. All of these charges and all of these allegations just piled on, one on top of another, and it became a full-fledged indictment and an allegation against the entire premise of the Iraq war. And over half of this country was talked into literal hatred for the administration, for the military, for the war, and even to a certain extent the War on Terror. And it was unnecessary. And Rove has even admitted now that one of the big mistakes he made strategically while he was chief of staff of the White House was letting some of these allegations day to day, whatever they were, not just about the Iraq war, but let ’em all go by and not comment on it. And he’s absolutely right about that.
But this one is particularly damaging because those five years of pounding, the five years of never-ending charges that Bush lied, people died, you got the books and the movies on how to assassinate Bush. The disrespect that was foisted upon the US military. The illegitimacy of their existence. The illegitimacy of the mission. The illegitimacy of the Bush administration, and all of that was allowed to happen because somebody decided to not report that they had indeed found weapons of mass destruction. Man, what a miscalculation. And I know the strategy. I mean, I know the theory. Sometimes I employ it myself here. Somebody will tell me about a newspaper story or a website story on me in some penny saver type publication. “You better respond to that!”
No, I’m not gonna respond to that. Ninety-nine percent of people don’t even know about it. Why should I make them aware of it? But this is different. Everybody knew about weapons of mass destruction. Everybody knew that was the reason for going in there. It doesn’t matter when you find them, why not report it? What is the point of covering it up? What’s the point of ignoring it? (imitating Rove) “Well, we want to let sleeping dogs lie. We’ve dealt with the fact that there weren’t any, and that just opens up a can of worms that we don’t need because we want to keep moving forward, move our agenda forward. We don’t want to get tied up in these things that happened in the past.”
But everything that happened was unnecessary, all of this criticism. I would venture to say that those five years of incessant, I mean, it was hate-filled pounding criticism, lies, as it turns out, about Bush, about the Bush administration, about the military, arguably gave us Obama. It arguably rendered the Republican Party practically impotent when it came to the 2008 election. Allowing those allegations to stand, the lies after lies after lies that they were, no question it shackled the Republican effort in 2008.
RUSH: Now, I want to be clear about something. The weapons of mass destruction The Daily Beast is talking about is not the same weapons that both Republicans and Democrats and every intelligence service in the world claimed were being manufactured by Saddam, 1998-2003. These are not the WMD we’re talking about. These were basically chemical weapons that are prior to 1991. It doesn’t matter. They were found in 2004. They were discovered by US troops in 2004 and they show that Saddam was investing and manufacturing weapons of mass destruction.
They show that Saddam was in violation of all of those UN resolutions. He was in violation of the first Gulf War ceasefire. And Saddam’s violation of the first Gulf War ceasefire, including shooting at our planes, was enough on its own to justify the 2003 invasion of Iraq. This is so horrible what’s happened here. So the war for weapons of mass destruction commences in 2003, shortly after there aren’t any, and the whole premise dies and the Bush administration gets creamed for five years and everybody knows it’s not the case and nobody stands up and says, “Wait a minute, all these allegations are false.”
They’re just allowed to stand. The American people have no choice but than to believe this crap they’re being told, when in fact Saddam Hussein was doing and had done pretty much everything he was being accused of that justified that invasion and justified getting rid of him.
RUSH: I look back on so much, so damn unnecessary. All because a political calculation was made to not revisit something that had already been determined, that there were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. I swear, I do not understand this. How can you be a member of the Bush administration and know every day the lies that are being told, the allegations that are being made, the absolute crumbling of the integrity of the institution of the presidency that was undergoing, and not even stand up and defend it. I don’t understand it.
I don’t understand this entire Republican Party. I don’t understand how in the world you stand mute when lies are being told about you for five years in a row. Lies that are destroying the military. Lies that are destroying a necessary military operation in the War on Terror. Lies that are destroying the institution and believability and the credibility of the office of the presidency. How you stand by and let that happen all on the belief that people will forget about it once the next news cycle hits.
Now, again, this cost us the Senate and the House in 2006. It gave the Republican nominee, who had no chance anyway — even less of a chance in 2008. The Republican Party has still not recovered from those five years of lies and distortions, how unnecessary, how unjust, how immoral the entire Iraq war — remember all that Joe Wilson stuff and Valerie Plame stuff, and Scooter Libby! All of this stuff that was on unnecessary. I also remember that Rove was being pursued, the left wanted him in jail over something, the Valerie Plame leak. Who knows how intimidated he might have felt by that. I have no idea.
But I look back on this, and those five years, from 2003 to 2008, the Iraq war and the lies, and I knew they were lies. Everything the Democrat Party was saying, I got so sick of it. I know you did, too. From Abu Ghraib on, I just got sick of the glee and the happiness that the Democrats and the media were showing and exhibiting every day as they reported lies about the US military. False allegations about Marines engaging in terrorism against Iraqi citizens. That the war was nothing but an attempt by Dick Cheney to secure oil for Halliburton.
All of these incessant, stupid, silly lies that people had no choice but than to believe because nobody was telling them they weren’t true. And then, of course, the big one, weapons of mass destruction, the whole premise of the Iraq war. Here are the details, by the way, just quickly from this Daily Beast story.
“In an interview with The Daily Beast, Santorum said he and his staff began receiving photographs of discarded sarin and mustard-gas shells from US soldiers in 2004.” In Iraq. “Two years later, when he was up for re-election, Santorum even went public with some of this information in a press conference disclosing a Pentagon report that found 500 chemical-weapons shells had been found in Iraq.” This is from The Daily Beast story. Let me read what they say here.
“One might think a politically vulnerable Bush White House wouldÂ’ve seized on SantorumÂ’s discovery. After all, Bush and his subordinates famously accused Iraq of having active weapons of mass destruction programs. But at least in 2005 and 2006, the Bush White House wasnÂ’t interested. ‘We donÂ’t want to look back,’ Santorum recalled Rove as saying.” Now, Santorum stressed that he was not quoting verbatim these conversations he had with Rove. These are eight years ago so he doesn’t remember them verbatim, but his takeaway is that Rove said, “We don’t want to look back.”
Santorum said, “‘I will say that the gist of the comments from the presidentÂ’s senior people was “We donÂ’t want to look back, we want to look forward.”‘ Dave Wurmser –who served at the time as a senior adviser to Vice President Dick Cheney on national-security issues — remembers receiving a similar message from Rove. According to Wurmser, ‘in 2005-6, Karl Rove and his team blocked public disclosure of these (findings),” of mustard and sarin gas in Iraq in 2004, “and said ‘Let these sleeping dogs lie; we have lost that fight so better not to remind anyone of it.'”
See, the thinking was, okay, yeah, you’ve got sarin and mustard gas, but this is not the same weapons of mass destruction that we went to war for. And again, I want to stress that. The chemical weapons refuse that was found in 2004 was all prior to 1991, that’s the first Gulf War. The evidence of weapons of mass destruction that Colin Powell demoed at the United Nations and all that, that stuff, some of that, I mean, minor evidence was found, but not massive stockpiles of it.
I’m sure Rove is saying, “That doesn’t help us. This stuff from 1991, that doesn’t help us. We went to war. We lost that battle. We’ve lost that fight. Let’s let sleeping dogs lie. Better not to remind people.” He was thinking, I don’t care what you found over there, it’s from 1991, and it’s not going to help us change people’s minds about why we went in 2003. But it could have.
It could have spelled out exactly who Saddam Hussein was for anybody who didn’t want to believe it. It could have spelled out exactly why Saddam had to be targeted. It would have spelled out and made clear why Saddam Hussein had to go. It would have spelled out loud and clear why we couldn’t take the chance that Saddam and Al-Qaeda weren’t attached and Saddam didn’t have anything to do with 9/11 in 2001. He might have.
It was more than enough to justify what we did. And yet for five years, I just think how unnecessary it all ends up having been. And, by the way, it’s not insignificant that over half of this country was driven to real hatred. That is an emotion that has deep roots, and it lasts a long time. The Democrat Party and the media savaged everything having to do with the Iraq war, from Bush to Cheney to Colin Powell — they gave him a pass not long ago after that Valerie Plame, but he got his taste of it originally. They savaged anything and anybody that had anything to do with it, except themselves, of course. They had all voted for it, too. They conveniently forgot that.
David Petraeus, it didn’t matter. Anybody that wore the uniform was gonna be destroyed. The daily body counts and how unnecessary it was and John Kerry and Jack Murtha, some of the things they were saying. Over half of this country was driven insane with hatred and anger. And there were answers for it. That was it chosen to ignore them is mind-boggling and it lasts to this day, does it not?
Doesn’t it seem to be the operative theory of the Republican Party, don’t challenge any lies told about them? Just let it go. Don’t get into a fight. The American people don’t want partisanship. The American people don’t want to see President Obama attacked.
Here, follow me on this. For five years the American people have no problem being talked into genuine hatred, just naked, rank partisanship, filled with lies about everything having to do with the Iraq war. And it didn’t send them running to the Republicans ’cause they hated the Democrats being partisan. Didn’t do that at all. It’s a baseless charge that defending yourself is seen as partisan and will cause the precious independents to run to the other party, in this case, the Democrats. That cost us the 2006 Congress, the House and Senate.
The damage done, if you want to say branding, of the Republican Party, the reputation of Bush and Cheney and Scooter Libby, you name it, David Petraeus, the US military as a whole. And then the individual soldiers, the sailors the cadets. I mean, look at what Dick Durbin was doing. Dick Durbin goes to the floor of the House and was comparing US military personnel down at Guantanamo Bay to the gulags of the Soviet Union and the stalags of the Nazis. I haven’t forgotten any of this.
Some of the most baseless, you want to call it un-American, criticism I’ve ever heard in my life was in this five-year period, and it was relentless. It was unstoppable. It didn’t end. It just piled on one on top of another day after day after day, with no retort, with no reply, with no defense, with no correction, whatever you want to call it. The lies were just allowed to sit there, and they festered, they effervesced, and they boiled over. And I, you know, I remember during the 2008 campaign we all had to listen to Obama talk about how he was gonna make the US respected again and loved again. The implication being, we were hated all over the world because of the Iraq war and because of Bush and Cheney.
I knew even that was a lie, but even the Republicans were on the defensive about that. Yeah, it’s one thing to lose when you put your best forward and the other guys beat it, okay, fine. We didn’t even get in the ring on this! And this wasn’t something like the next continuing resolution or the Medicare Part B vote. This was serious stuff. There were real weapons of mass destruction. When the news was discovered it was decided to sit on it because talking about it would simply remind people of the flawed premise of the Iraq war in 2003.
To not even have a desire to take what you had, the discovery of WMD, even if they were pre-1991 and build on that and explain things, when you are in the White House, when you have the bully pulpit, when you have the ability to command the attention of the whole nation?
RUSH: Just a couple of more things that even The Daily Beast — again, this is a left-wing oriented publication. Tina Brown founded it. I don’t know who still runs it. It’s part of the Newsweek/Tina Brown, a bumbling leftist operation. Even they, in this article… Eli Lake is the author of the article. Even they write, “At least part of the Bush administration’s case against Saddam was based on the fact that he never properly accounted for the chemical weapons stockpile he had built up in the 1980s. “
There were a lot of reasons, in other words — I hope you’ll remember this — besides weapons of mass destruction that we went into Iraq. That was not the sole reason we went in. Saddam Hussein had violated United Nations resolutions. They were not US resolutions, and they were one after another. You would think the left would be really outraged over that. They love the UN! The UN is the future government of the world.
And Saddam was thumbing his nose at the UN. But for a chance to destroy the Republican Party, the Bush administration, and maybe even parts of the military for a while? “To hell with the UN! We’ll destroy the Republican Party,” and they did. Look at this. See if you recall this. This is an AP story from July 5th of 2008, five years ago. George W. Bush was still in office. I remember when I first saw this, I just… I was reduced to scratching my head. I was almost babbling incoherently, saying (babbling incoherently). “What?”
“The last major remnant of Saddam’s nuclear program, a huge stockpile of concentrated natural uranium, reached a Canadian port Saturday to complete a secret US operation that included a two-week airlift from Baghdad and a ship voyage crossing two oceans: The removal of 550 metric tons of yellowcake, seed material for higher grade nuclear enrichment.” Wait, what? Yellowcake!
Why, Joe Wilson — the estimable, the esteemed and the highly regarded Joe Wilson, the husband of Valerie Plame, the power outed CIA agent — said there wasn’t any yellowcake. And the media said, “Bush lied and people died. There wasn’t any yellowcake! He went and looked; he couldn’t find any.” Here in 2008, “the last major remnant of Saddam’s nuclear program”? What the hell? Nuclear program? “A huge stockpile of concentrated yellowcake reached a Canadian port”?
Look at all that turned out to have been accurate about this. If I’m a member of the Democrat Party all during this, I have to be really scratching my head, saying, “Why are these guys shutting up? Why are we getting away with this? Why are they letting us get away with lying about them and this war every day?” And after a while you stop asking and you just keep piling the lies on top of one another.
What we’re told here is, the active theory was, “Well, that’s 2003, 2004, 2005. We lost that battle. We didn’t find any weapons of mass destruction then, and it just won’t work to tell everybody we have now, ’cause they won’t believe us and they’ll think we’re lying. Better to let sleeping dogs lie and just move on to the next news story.” Those five years drove me nuts, too. Not insane with rage, but disbelief that the news was so filled with lies and so filled with distortions every day, with not one day of reality.
RUSH: Yes, yes, yes. I know Eli Lake is solid conservative and a great reporter on national security/defense issues. The Daily Beast is a very liberal publication. They ran it, is my point. At any rate, folks, there’s still more to this, some more intricacies to this, some more observations to make about it, too.