Bush administration rationales for war in Iraq
Most recently, on August 30, 2005, "standing against a backdrop of the USS Ronald Reagan, the newest aircraft carrier in the Navy's fleet," President George W. Bush "answered growing antiwar protests ... with a fresh reason for US troops to continue fighting in Iraq: protection of the country's vast oil fields, which he said would otherwise fall under the control of terrorist extremists.
A little more than a week earlier, while speaking to the national convention of Veterans of Foreign Wars in Salt Lake City, Utah, "Bush again linked the Iraq war with efforts to protect the United States from another September 11-style attack -- a link critics say is an attempt to shift the justification for war."
Earlier in the day, while meeting "briefly with reporters aboard Air Force One, Trent Duffy, a White House spokesman subbing for Scott McClellan, said that President Bush believes that those who want the U.S. to begin to change course in Iraq do not want America to win the overall 'war on terror'." 
"For political reasons, the president has a history of silence on America's war dead," Maureen Dowd wrote August 24, 2005. "But he finally mentioned them on Monday [August 22nd] because it became politically useful to use them as a rationale for war - now that all the other rationales have gone up in smoke.
"'We owe them something,' he told veterans in Salt Lake City (even though his administration tried to shortchange the veterans agency by $1.5 billion). 'We will finish the task that they gave their lives for.'
"What twisted logic: with no W.M.D., no link to 9/11 and no democracy, now we have to keep killing people and have our kids killed because so many of our kids have been killed already? Talk about a vicious circle: the killing keeps justifying itself," Dowd said.
The Bush administration "used 27 rationales for war in Iraq ... all floated between Sept. 12, 2001, and Oct. 11, 2002," according to Devon M. Lario in her 212-page senior honors thesis at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign: 
- "Uncovering the Rationales for the War on Iraq: The Words of the Bush Administration, Congress and the Media from September 12, 2001, to October 11, 2002."
Additionally, "all but four of the rationales originated with the administration of President George W. Bush," Andrea Lynn, Humanities Editor of the news bureau at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign reports. 
"The  study," Lynn adds, "also finds that the Bush administration switched its focus from Osama bin Laden to Saddam Hussein early on - only five months after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States."
Largio used "all available public statements the Bush administration and selected members of Congress made pertaining to war with Iraq. ... Largio not only identified the rationales offered for going to war, but also established when they emerged and who promoted them. She also charted the appearance of critical keywords such as Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein and Iraq to trace the administration's shift in interest from the al Qaeda leader to the Iraqi despot, and the news media's response to that shift ... for her analysis."
- "Largio mapped the road to war over three phases: Sept. 12, 2001, to December 2001; January 2002, from Bush's State of the Union address, to April 2002; and Sept. 12, 2002, to Oct. 11, 2002, the period from Bush's address to the United Nations to Congress's approval of the resolution to use force in Iraq.
- "She drew from statements by President Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, Secretary of State Colin L. Powell, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, Defense Policy Board member and long-time adviser Richard Perle; by U.S. senators Tom Daschle, Joe Lieberman, Trent Lott and John McCain; and from stories in the Congressional Record, the New York Times and The Associated Press. She logged 1,500 statements and stories."
- 'A war sold on deception'
- Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002
- Axis of Evil
- Bush administration: beginning of the end
- Bush administration: duped into war with Iraq?
- Bush administration fetish for government secrecy
- Bush administration propaganda and disinformation
- Bush administration lies that led to war
- Bush doctrine
- Bush lies and deceptions
- civil war in Iraq
- Exit Strategy from Iraq
- Iraq as an imminent threat
- Iraq has replaced Afghanistan as the prime training ground for foreign terrorists
- spreading the seeds of democracy
- The alleged linkage of Saddam Hussein with Osama bin Laden, al Qaeda and weapons of mass destruction
- The Cheney-Rumsfeld Cabal Deception
- The leaked Cabinet Office briefing paper, July 21, 2002: "Iraq: Conditions for Military Action"
- U.S. congressional elections in 2006
- U.S. presidential election, 2004
- U.S. presidential election, 2008
- violence in the Middle East
- war on terrorism
- weapons of mass destruction
- Tom Wright, "Lies, Damn Lies, and George W. Bush,", originally published in Works In Progress, no date.
- Michael Kinsley, "Ours Not To Reason Why," Slate, September 26, 2002.
- "The Anti-War Movement's Response to Tonight's Televised Speech by George Bush: Hundreds of Thousands Will March Against War with Iraq on October 26 in Washington, D.C., San Francisco & Cities Around the World," International Action Center, October 7, 2002. "Make no mistake about it, the Bush administration has taken a giant step towards war with tonight's televised address to the country. ... For months Bush has presented an ever-changing set of rationales for war with Iraq, switching from one to another when the falsity of the argument becomes too obvious. Tonight Bush simply strung all these lies together into an argument for a war that is becoming increasingly unpopular."
- Richard Heinberg, "Rationales for War", "Muse Letter", October 2002.
- Bill Winter, "10 reasons why the USA should not attack Iraq," Libertarian Party, March 2003.
- Brad Knickerbocker, "Behind the changing rationales for war. Even as questions stir around the prewar case for ousting Hussein, current challenges in Iraq could test the US public's support for Bush," Christian Science Monitor, June 13, 2003: "Why did the United States invade Iraq? And why are 146,000 American troops still there?"
- John Walcott, "Analysis of Bush's Iraq Address: Speech, rationales were oversimplified," Detroit Free Press, September 9, 2003.
- Justifications for War, Global Policy, 2003/2004.
- "The lying game. An A-Z of the Iraq war and its aftermath, focusing on misrepresentation, manipulation, and mistakes," Independent/UK, June 1, 2004.
- Don Van Natta, Jr., "Bush Was Set on Path to War, British Memo Says," New York Times, March 27, 2006.
- "Bush calls terror fight WWIII. US President George W. Bush has said the September 11 revolt of passengers against their hijackers on board Flight 93 had struck the first blow of 'World War III'," Agence France Presse (News.com.au), May 6, 2006.
- Craig Unger, "The War They Wanted, The Lies They Needed," Vanity Fair, June 6, 2006: "The Bush administration invaded Iraq claiming Saddam Hussein had tried to buy yellowcake uranium in Niger. As much of Washington knew, and the world soon learned, the charge was false. Worse, it appears to have been the cornerstone of a highly successful 'black propaganda' campaign with links to the White House."
- Gretchen Peters, "Where Is Osama Bin Laden? Five Years After the 9/11 Attacks, There Are Few Explanations About Why He Has Not Been Caught," ABC News, September 11, 2006.
- Tom Raum, "Bush Keeps Revising War Justification," Associated Press (1010 WINS), October 14, 2006.
- Colin Brown and Andy McSmith, "Diplomat's suppressed document lays bare the lies behind Iraq war," The Independent (UK), December 15, 2006.