Tuesday, June 21, 2005

White House Responds to Downing Street Memo

Spokesperson says US did not fabricate evidence about WMDs

22 June +3:58 GMT

CNN -- After six weeks of stonewalling, the White House has issued an official response to the documents known as the Downing Street Memo. This series of communiques, leaked from the British Foreign Office, suggest that the Bush Administration falsified evidence of WMDs as a pretext for the war in Iraq.

At a press conference in the White House briefing room, press secretary Scott McClellan issued the following statement:

“Contrary to what has been stated in the so-called ‘Downing Street Memos,’ the Bush Adminstration did not fabricate evidence of Weapons of Mass Destruction prior to waging war on Iraq. We truly believed, and some in the adminstration continue to believe, that Saddam possessed chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons that posed a grave danger to our country.

“But there is a perfectly logical explanation for the discrepancy. Our intelligence was lacking. And when I say ‘intelligence,’ I mean our collective, personal intelligence. We based our entire rationale for war on information from a guy code-named ‘Curveball.’ How stupid is that?”

McClellan noted that despite the fact the UN, France, Germany, Russia, and Britain—our lone ally in the war—did not believe Iraq possessed WMDs, the US continued to insist it knew the exact location of the nonexistent weapons.

“We’re just really, really thick,” he said. “It’s as simple as that.”

McClellan was asked about the infamous “yellow cake” memo, which allegedly proved Iraq was seeking to buy nuclear materials from Niger. Though the CIA quickly determined the document was a forgery in October 2002, the information still made its way into the President’s 2003 State of the Union address.

“Dumb as fenceposts,” said McClellan. “Really.”

Contrary to claims made in the memos, McClellan says the Bush Administration did indeed have a plan for postwar Iraq. It consisted of a single 3-by-5-inch index card containing the following bullet points:

  • Accept the undying gratitude of the Iraqi people
  • Take all the oil
  • Win reelection in 2004

“Still, we got two out of three,” he said. “If this were baseball we’d be all stars.”

McClellan concluded the press conference by urging the public to leave the memos behind and move onto more pressing issues, such as the President’s sinking popularity ratings.

“Let me be clear: There is no need for a Congressional investigation into these memos,” he said. “The war in Iraq has been won... even if the fighting continues. Anyone who thought we could capture Saddam, liberate Iraq, and bring freedom and democracy to an entire region over the course of a long weekend had to be unbelievably dim. That would be us.”


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