Bush administration talking points on Iraq
- 1 "more tough fighting ahead" in Iraq
- 2 Readiness of Iraqi Armed Forces
- 3 Stay the Course
- 4 Embolden the Terrorists
- 5 Scaling Back U.S. Troop Levels
- 6 Previous: 2002-2004
- 7 External links
- 8 Related SourceWatch Resources
- 9 Additional SourceWatch Resources
"more tough fighting ahead" in Iraq
On March 20, 2006, President Bush said that there will be "more tough fighting ahead" in Iraq. Actually, over the past three years, there have been several warnings that "more tough fighting" is ahead in Iraq:
- Transcript: Operation Iraqi Freedom update, U.S. Department of Defense Briefing, April 10, 2003: Victoria Clarke: "Troops had a fierce fight in north-central Baghdad within the past 24 hours, leaving at least one Marine dead, and we may well face more tough fighting ahead."
- "Bush, Iraq Minister al-Jaafari Meet," Associated Press (First Coast News), June 24, 2005: "'This is a critical moment in Iraq and it is a critical moment for us in the war on terrorism,' White House press secretary Scott McClellan said. 'This is a real time of testing. The American people have seen some of the disturbing images on their televisions. ... We can expect more tough fighting ahead.'"
- Tom Regan, "More violence likely to follow Iraq election results. US military says insurgents trying to use transition to destablize country," Christian Science Monitor, January 13, 2006: "Reuters reported that earlier this week in a speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars, President George W. Bush had also said there would be more 'tough fighting ahead,' but there would also be 'progress towards victory'."
- Terence Hunt, "Bush Warns of More Tough Fighting in Iraq," Associated Press (Philadelphia Journal Register), March 20, 2006.
Readiness of Iraqi Armed Forces
- On Fox News Sunday, November 20, 2005, Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld said: "The U.S.-led coalition continues to make progress in training Iraqi security forces, [placing] their number at 212,000[, disputing] reports that fewer than 1,000 Iraqis were capable of fighting the insurgency without coalition assistance." Rumsfeld called "the lower number 'a red herring'" and said "it does not reflect the involvement of Iraqis in securing their country."
- Before the December 15, 2005, elections in Iraq, starting with a speech by President Bush in Annapolis focusing on "what the administration says is clear progress in training of the Iraqi security force," White House officials will make other speeches in an "attempt to use the final weeks of this year and early next year to shape public opinion." --Washington Post, November 25, 2005.
Stay the Course
- In his November 19, 2005, statement, Press Secretary Scott McClellan said that "Victory in Iraq is key to prevailing in the war on terrorism and laying the foundation of peace for our children and grandchildren. Our commanders and troops know how high the stakes are, and they understand the importance of completing the mission. For the second time this week, Congress in strong, bipartisan fashion rejected the call to cut and run. The best strategy to keep America safe is to continue taking the fight to the terrorists, not to retreat in the face of the despicable attacks of a determined enemy. We will succeed in Iraq by hunting down the terrorists, training Iraqi forces and supporting the Iraqi people as they build the foundations for a lasting democracy in the heart of a dangerous region of the world. When victory is achieved our troops will return home with the honor they deserve."
- On November 23, 2005, Senator Joseph I. Lieberman (D-CT) told Iraq's Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari that "U.S. forces will remain in Iraq until their mission is complete, despite growing unease in Congress about the progress of the conflict here."
Scaling Back U.S. Troop Levels
- Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld said November 20, 2005, on CBS' Face the Nation: "There's no doubt in my mind that were we to pull out precipitously, the American people would be in greater danger than they are today."
- Rumsfeld said November 21, 2005, that U.S. troop levels in Iraq "will remain at 160,000 as Iraqis prepare for elections Dec. 15, ... and will return to a baseline strength of 130,000 when the commanders there determine that conditions on the ground warrant a drawdown. Pentagon policy has long based significant redeployments on the situation at hand."
- "The Bush administration and military leaders are sounding optimistic notes about scaling back U.S. troops in Iraq next year, as public opposition to the war and congressional demands for withdrawal get louder." --Associated Press, November 25, 2005.
"The central rationale for going to war against Iraq, of course, was that Saddam Hussein had biological and chemical weapons, and that he was pursuing an aggressive program to build nuclear weapons." 
- On April 11, 2004, Phyllis Bennis examined point-by-point Bush administration talking points regarding the war in Iraq:
- "We have liberated Iraq from tyranny."
- "We are bringing democracy to Iraq."
- "Iraqis view us as liberators and support our troops being in their country."
- "We have enough troops in Iraq and our lean-and-mean military is capable of whatever needs to be done."
- "We are in Iraq leading a broad international coalition – dozens of countries are participating in the Coalition with us."
- "The United Nations will support our transfer of power, and UN endorsement of the new interim Iraqi government after June 30th  will pave the way for the UN to return to Iraq."
- "Our liberation of Iraq is only the first step in a broad campaign to bring democracy to the Middle East."
- "The overthrow of Saddam Hussein makes America and the whole world safer."
- Trudy Rubin, "Vague Bush Case for Iraq War Spurs Worry in GOP, Pentagon," Philadelphia Inquirer (Common Dreams), August 2, 2002.
- Stephen Zunes, "Why Not to Wage War with Iraq," Foreign Policy in Focus (Project Against the Present Danger), October 2, 2002.
- George W. Bush, "Winning the War on Terrorism," November 16, 2002, posted on Office of Management and Budget website.
- George W. Bush, "National Strategy for Combating Terrorism," posted on the United States Mission to the European Union website, February 14, 2003.
- Tony Karon, "Why Bush Can't Muster an Iraq Coalition. Last night, the President offered familiar talking points. But he's unlikely to sway Security Council skeptics in a dispute driven by starkly different views of the Saddam problem," Time, March 7, 2003.
- Ann McFeatters, "Bush, aides make point of talking up 'coalition'," Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, March 27, 2003.
- Omar, "Talking Points on Iraq Regime's Collapse," peacenowar.net, April 9, 2003.
- Stephen Zunes, "Talking Points on Recent Concerns Raised by Bush Administration Officials Regarding Syria," Foreign Policy in Focus, April 14, 2003. re regime change in Syria
- Tom Raum, "Bush scrambles to limit Iraq damage," Capitol Hill Blue, July 22, 2003.
- "Bush in Free Fall," World in Conflict, July 25, 2003.
- Sean-Paul, "In Need of Repair," The Agonist, September 13, 2003.
- Carol Devine-Molin, "Bush's PR difficulties with Iraq," Enter Stage Right, September 15, 2003.
- "Powell: Iraq action 'was fully justified. Administration makes push to answer critics of war," CNN, October 11, 2003.
- Billmon, "Recycled Talking Points," Whiskey Bar, October 27, 2003.
- Fred Kaplan, "Bush at Sea. Does this war president have any idea what he's talking about?" Slate, February 9, 2004.
- tgirsch, "Iraq War Refresher Course -- UPDATED," Lean Left, February 17, 2004.
- Marc Cooper, "Soldier for the Truth. Exposing Bush’s talking-points war," LA Weekly, February 20-26, 2004. re Karen Kwiatkowski
- Bob Zimmerman, "The Bush Record Exposed - 62 Talking Points," MikeHersh.com, April 5, 2004.
- Phyllis Bennis, "Iraq Talking Points. The Vulnerabilities of the Bush Iraq Policies," Institute For Policy Studies (ZMag), April 11, 2004.
- "Administration Misled Country On Iraq-al Qaeda Connection," Center for American Progress, June 17, 2004.
- "Bush Administration's Self-Delusions on Iraq-al Qaeda 'Contacts' Harmful for National Security," Center for American Progress, June 18, 2004.
- "Bush team stays firm on Iraq, al-Qaida ties," Seattle Times, June 19, 2004.
- Kevin, "The Republican Talking Points," Lean Left, June 21, 2004.
- John Lofton, "Sean Hannity Behaves Hatefully Toward Those Who Question Bush’s Unnecessary, Un-Constitutional War In Iraq," The American Cause, July 22, 2004.
- kentbye, "Overview of the PR Campaign to Sell the War in Iraq," Echo Chamber Project, August 26, 2004: "The Bush Administration began to sell the war in Iraq to the American public on August 26th, 2002 and continued their highly-coordinated public relations campaign for 30 weeks until March 19, 2003."
- Kentay, "Iraqi Prime Minister Parrots Dishonest Bush Talking Points," Arianna Online Forums, September 23, 2004: "We are succeeding in Iraq."
- "Under Some Pressure, Administration's Iraq Talking Points Get Muddy," The Left Coaster, September 24, 2004.
- "Bush's Top Ten Flip-Flops," CBS News, September 28, 2004.
- Curt, "Opposing Luntz' Talking Points," Hunting The Muse, November 21, 2004.
- Peter Savodnik, "Bush's Iraq memo seeks echo on Hill," The Hill, February 2, 2005: "The White House yesterday sent congressional Republicans a memo suggesting that GOP lawmakers should refer to Iraqi voters as courageous and to the elections as transparent. The talking-points memo is silent on a timeline for pulling out the 150,000 U.S. troops in country."
- "Iraq insurgency in 'last throes,' Cheney says," CNN, June 20, 2005.
- Kevin Whitelaw, "Hit by friendly fire. With his polls down, Bush takes flak on Iraq from a host of critics--including some in his own party," US News & World Report, June 27, 2005.
- Robert Scheer, "Lying with Intelligence," The Nation, November 8, 2005 (posted); November 21, 2005 (issue).
- Faiz, "Debunking the Right: The World Did Not See the Iraqi Threat as Bush Did," Think Progress, November 13, 2005.
- Robert Scheer, "The Big Lie Technique," The Nation, November 16, 2005.
- Stephen Crockett, "When Talking Points Become Lies," BuzzFlash, November 16, 2005.
- Phyllis Bennis, "Bush Administration on the Skids in Iraq, Palestine, at Home," Institute for Policy Studies, November 17, 2005.
- James Bamford, "The Man Who Sold the War. Meet John Rendon, Bush's general in the propaganda war," Rolling Stone, November 17, 2005. re John Rendon and the Rendon Group
- "Myth vs. Reality: Debunking the Administration's Spin About Pre-War Intelligence on Iraq," Democratic Policy Committee, November 18, 2005.
- "Talking Points Are Not a Strategy in Iraq," Democrats.org, November 18, 2005.
- "Cheney: Iraq Withdrawal 'Invites Further Violence'," NewsMax, November 21, 2005.
- Murray Waas, "Key Bush Intelligence Briefing Kept From Hill Panel," National Journal, November 22, 2005.
- "Lieberman: U.S. to Finish Iraq Mission," Associated Press (Yahoo! News), November 23, 2005.
- Dan Froomkin, "The Trust is Gone," Washington Post, November 23, 2005.
- "This Week, Face the Nation, and Late Edition hosts let Rumsfeld peddle Iraq misinformation," Media Matters for America, November 23, 2005.
- Daniel Benjamin, "Jihadist Iraq Just Won't Happen," Los Angeles Times (Common Dreams), November 24, 2005.
- Dan Balz, "Bush Faces Dual Challenges on Iraq," Washington Post, November 25, 2005.
- Lolita C. Baldor, "Officials More Hopeful on Iraq Draw Down," Associated Press (Yahoo! News), November 25, 2005.
- Don Van Natta, Jr., "Bush Was Set on Path to War, British Memo Says," New York Times, March 27, 2006.
- Steve Gilliard, "The last, desperate gasp," The News Blog, September 1, 2006.
Related SourceWatch Resources
The following relate directly or indirectly to Bush administration talking points on the war in Iraq:
- adapting to win
- Agreement on Political Process
- Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002
- Axis of Evil
- Coalition Information Center
- Department of State "rapid response office"
- echo chamber
- Exit Strategy from Iraq
- forward strategy of freedom
- George W. Bush's news conferences
- Karen P. Hughes
- National Strategy for Victory in Iraq
- Operation Enduring Freedom
- Operation Iraqi Freedom / Operation Iraqi Freedom: Year Three: Quagmire
- outposts of tyranny
- preemptive war
- spreading the seeds of democracy
- stay the course
- The Cheney-Rumsfeld Cabal Deception
- using fear as a political tool
- war propaganda
- weapons of mass deception
- White House Iraq Group