Prior Post from July 11, 2003: Bush: "I Just Work Here"
Read the article about Tenet’s statement, but here’s the shorthand:
Bush: "I just read what they gimme. That's what makes me a strong leader."
They asked Tenet to sign-off on a technically accurate (update: okay, it wasn't even technically accurate, and Tenet didn't actually see it) deception and he agreed. That is all his mea culpa says. The CIA didn't want to sign-off on the claim at all. They reached a compromise. But remember where Truman said the buck stopped.
Tenet said, “These 16 words should never have been included in the text written for the president.” Of course, Tenet did not write the speech. And he never should have been asked to be a party to the deception.
Prediction: After reading the tea leaves, Rove will have Dubya provide a rather empty, lame, too-little-too-late, "buck stops here" type statement.
Update: Finally! But it was even emptier, lamer and later than I thought it would be.
The president's taking of "personal responsibility" for the charge in his State of the Union address that Iraq sought nuclear material in Africa followed three weeks in which he allowed others on his staff and at the CIA to take the blame for including the charge, which was doubted by U.S. intelligence and was later learned to be based in part on forged documents.
…Bush since then had deflected questions about whether he took responsibility for the claim, which administration officials have alternately described as wrong and unsubstantiated.
The president amended his answer yesterday. "I take personal responsibility for everything I say, of course," Bush said.
Well, of course!