Notes: The Butler report on British intelligence in the run-up to the Iraq war was made public last Wednesday. It found the intelligence was faulty, that there were no weapons of mass destruction, but that Tony Blair did not intentionally mislead the country in taking it to war.
Initially, the feeling was that it was easier on Blair and British intelligence services than the Senate Intelligence committee report was on Bush and American intelligence services. However, by Saturday there were reports in the British press that the report contained many bombs in it which, once digested, would be used to criticize the British intel. One report said to watch for the London Sunday papers.
Unlike George W. Bush, last week Tony Blair took responsibility for any errors in pre-war intelligence. Bush never has. In fact, I've read that a Bush-Rove policy is to avoid apologies. They know more about election politics than I do so maybe they're right from that narrow perspective. There will be a second Senate report after the election on what the Bush administration's role was in use of the intelligence.
Regardless, Bush led the nation to war based on his false representation that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction as did Blair. That was a huge mistake. If Bush was a corporate C.E.O., he would have been fired by now. You and I are not expected to know if there was W.M.D. in Iraq -- Bush was expected to know. After all, he's the leader of the country. As Harry Truman's desk sign said, "The buck stops here." 07.18.04