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Tuesday, August 22, 2006

the "freedom agenda"

Thinkprogress.org has this article, which quotes Bush responding to questions by reporter Ken Herman:
BUSH: The terrorists attacked us and killed 3,000 of our citizens before we started the freedom agenda in the Middle East.

QUESTION: What did Iraq have to do with it?

BUSH: What did Iraq have to do with what?

QUESTION: The attack on the World Trade Center.

BUSH: Nothing. Except it’s part of — and nobody has suggested in this administration that Saddam Hussein ordered the attack. Iraq was a — Iraq — the lesson of September 11th is take threats before they fully materialize, Ken. Nobody’s ever suggested that the attacks of September the 11th were ordered by Iraq.
The site contains a video clip of this exchange.

William Norman Grigg has more to add, commenting on the thinkprogress.org piece over at jbs.org:
The president's comments came just after he reiterated a talking point he has worn down to a blunt stub: "The terrorists attacked us and killed three thousand of our citizens before we started the freedom agenda in the Middle East." In other words: Iraq and 9-11 are intimately connected. Immediately queried by a journalist as to what Iraq had to do with 9-11, Mr. Bush promptly, and with some asperity, said, "Nothing."

This is a museum-quality specimen of that type of politically inspired dishonesty Orwell called "double-think." The president's use of the tin-eared expression "freedom agenda" to describe the metastasizing violence and sectarian fanaticism in Iraq also provides a useful example of the product of a mind thoroughly clotted with ideological cant. Presumably by baptizing this catastrophe with a name involving the word "freedom," it is somehow transformed from a debacle into an unfolding triumph.

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