Congressman Claims Saddam Linked To 911
When polls show that this administration is losing swing voters who previously supported it in droves it’s due to Pinocchio-like whoppers like this that totally destroy it’s credibility:
A Republican congressman from North Carolina told CNN on Wednesday that the “evidence is clear” that Iraq was involved in the terrorist attacks against the United States on September 11, 2001.
“Saddam Hussein and people like him were very much involved in 9/11,” Rep. Robin Hayes said.
Told no investigation had ever found evidence to link Saddam and 9/11, Hayes responded, “I’m sorry, but you must have looked in the wrong places.”
Hayes, the vice chairman of the House subcommittee on terrorism, said legislators have access to evidence others do not.
Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, said that Saddam was a dangerous man, but when asked about Hayes’ statement, would not link the deposed Iraqi ruler to the terrorist attacks on New York, the Pentagon and Pennsylvania.
“I haven’t seen compelling evidence of that,” McCain, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, told CNN.
On Tuesday night, President Bush mentioned the September 11 attacks five times during his address on the war in Iraq, prompting criticism from congressional Democrats. (Full story)
The 9/11 commission, appointed by Bush, presented its final report a year ago, saying that Osama bin Laden had been “willing to explore possibilities for cooperation with Iraq” at one time in the 1990s but that the al Qaeda leader “had in fact been sponsoring anti-Saddam Islamists in Iraqi Kurdistan, and sought to attract them into his Islamic army.”
And it gets even more damning:
The 520-page report said investigators found no evidence that any “contacts ever developed into a collaborative operational relationship.”
“Nor have we seen evidence indicating that Iraq cooperated with al Qaeda in developing or carrying out any attacks against the United States,” it said.
President Bush said in September 2003 that “We’ve had no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved with the September 11 [attacks].”
Hayes’ statement sounds like classic CYI:
- The President is under fire because he can’t prove an assertion not just mentioned in passing, but one that was mentioned several times.
- The President is jumped on by Democrats, some talk show hosts, and some newspaper writers who ask: Where is the proof?
- So a GOP Congressman says there is a link and you must not have seen it. So there…
It’s unlikely the Congressman helped his side. If he was urged to make the statement by a political strategist the strategist must have gone to the Bob Shrum School of Political Consulting. All he did was to prolong this issue — to increase press and opposition demands that proof be produced. It will NOT make the White House look good.
NOTE: This writer has supported the war and will flatly say: to date there has been no solid evidence he has read or that has been presented in an official report that Saddam Huseein was involved in 911. Yes, Saddam was a very bad man. But the tie-in with 911 has not been proven. And it wouldn’t take a California jury to reach that conclusion. Simply saying “it exists” isn’t proof.