It’s been almost four months since former President Bush left office, and many would like to leave his administration in the past. But that may not be possible since there’s a constant dripping of information about what really went on during those eight years.
The latest comes by way of GQ Magazine, which has released a series of cover sheets for intelligence reports written for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and other top Pentagon brass during the early days of the Iraq war.
They featured “triumphant, color images” like soldiers praying or in action or a tank at sunset along with Biblical passages. For example: “Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.”
Besides the obvious question of appropriateness, what if these covers had leaked out at the time? The Muslim world could have interpreted the war as a religiously-driven battle against Islam. You think they were upset about Abu Ghraib?
But the general who thought up the covers told anyone that complained about them that his seniors, including Rumsfeld and President Bush, appreciated them. In fact, GQ says Rumsfeld hand-delivered many of these reports to President Bush.
The magazine suggests the mixing of Crusades-like messages with war imagery might not have been Rumsfeld’s style — but he likely saw it as a way to connect with the deeply religious President Bush.
This is just another in a growing list of questions, and just like torture and the reasons for invading Iraq, they don’t seem to be going away.
Here’s my question to you: Is a complete investigation of the Bush administration and the Iraq war becoming inevitable?
Larry from Cincinnati, Ohio writes:
First, the war in Iraq was justified by Hussein’s development of WMD, which were never found. Now it is coming to light that prisoners were tortured to find a link between Iraq and al Qaeda, after Iraq was invaded. You’d better believe that war needs to be investigated. And Obama needs to get off the kick that “It’s all in the past.” War crimes are crimes and they have no statute of limitations.
Judy from Rochelle, Illinois writes:
What will an investigation achieve other than deflecting attention from other issues such as health care and the economy?
The entire world is aware that Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld should be incarcerated. That will never happen, therefore an investigation is meaningless.
Kari from Wisconsin writes:
Jack, Since the religious right believed that Bush had a mission in the Middle East, it doesn’t surprise me that we are finding such a trail but it does sicken me. Maybe the only way around it is through it.
Moving forward is certainly a good thing, but how can you ever move forward without accountability? If we don’t hold the previous administration accountable for what they did or did not do, then we will never restore trust in the government. I used the word “trust” here instead of “faith” because faith is unquestioning belief and that is one thing we should never have when it comes to the government.
There will be an investigation, whether it is historians or congressional investigators. Sending American troops into harm’s way based on manufactured evidence and cherry-picked intelligence is in fact a war crime. Bush and Cheney will never be tried for this, but the facts will speak for themselves forever.