It isn't very logical to assume that President George W. Bush
timed the February 16, 2001 air strike against Iraq to coincide
with his visit to President Vincente Fox at the latter's ranch
in Mexico. Members of the Mexican press inquired about the
timing of the air strikes on Iraq in a manner that insinuated
the timing was deliberate, but they were probably stunned and
President Bush would not have made a deliberate effort to
undermine what he considered a very important meeting ... his
first official presidential visit to a foreign nation ... with
major issues like energy, migration and NAFTA on the agenda.
Lt. General Gregory Newbold, the Pentagon spokesman who took
the brunt of the questioning from the Washington press corps,
hummed and hawed a lot under reporters' fire. He sounded
exactly like a man who couldn't find enough good reasons to
adequately disguise the real reason, whatever it is.
In Mexico, President Bush made haste to say as little as
possible about the Iraq bombing to the reporters who questioned
him. His answers were brief and he promptly re-directed
the issues to those regarding his visit to Mexico.
Both presidents met with the Mexican press after the Pentagon
briefing had been aired on the U.S. media. It is safe to
assume that at some point, President Vincente Fox was told what
(but not why) was going on relative to the air strikes.
I do not believe that the air strike was simply due to
growing irritation over incidents in the southern no-fly zone.
Growing irritation could have waited.
Something made this strike necessary, and made it necessary
on a day that President Bush had something else in mind, and
that was his visit with the President of Mexico. Whatever
news the Pentagon gave him in order to secure our President's
approval had to merit such a strike.
Was it something concerning Israel? Was there an
incident or information leak that's classified and we aren't
being told? We may never know.
One thing we do know now: our President will not allow
the more peaceful issues of this hemisphere, however urgent and
demanding they are, to stop our vigilance against foreign
aggression or terrorism. Saddam Hussein just found that
Hopefully, Osama bin Laden and the leaders of Iran, Lebanon,
Russia and China got the message also.
The more ready we are for war, the less likely we will have
to get involved in a major conflict.
Saddam's Bombmaker: The
Terrifying Inside Story of the Iraqi Nuclear and Biological
by Khidr Hamzah, Jeff Stein
The Greatest Threat: Iraq,
Weapons of Mass Destruction and the Growing Crisis in Global
by Richard Butler
Secrets--The Hunt for Iraq's Hidden Weapons
by Tim Trevan
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