Declassified document contradicts Cheney’s claim of Iraqi connection to 9/11

Well, what we now have that’s developed since you and I last talked, Tim, of course, was that report that’s been pretty well confirmed, that he did go to Prague and he did meet with a senior official of the Iraqi intelligence service in Czechoslovakia last April, several months before the Page 1 of 8
Declassified document contradicts Cheney’s claim of Iraqi connection to 9/11 | The Raw Story 6/21/12 7:31 AM
Cheney’s claim was one of the strongest rhetorical links between the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 and Iraq in the administration’s arguments for war, even though it was refuted by the CIA more than once. The initial allegation reportedly came from misinformed Czech intelligence agents, and almost became part of a 2003 speech by the president — a plan that was scrapped after the CIA station in Prague issued a still-classified cable insisting that it was not
Even after the CIA had again refuted the link between Iraq and the 9/11 hijacker, Cheney still repeated it during a Sept. 2003 appearance on Meet the Press. Shortly after Russert confronted him with polling that showed as much as 69 percent of Americans believed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein was involved in the Sept. 11 attacks, Cheney Ads by Google responded:
The problem with that now appears to be that the vice president did know the intelligence was bogus, but continued repeating it to support his argument for war. No link was ever established between the Iraqi regime and the attacks of Sept. 11.
Despite insisting publicly that no deal had been made to invade Iraq in the run-up to war, notes from aides to then-Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, which were subsequently handed to reporters, showed that he directed the Pentagon to draw up invasion plans on the evening of Sept. 11, 2001.
A survey conducted in Sept. of last year (PDF) by the University of Maryland found that at least 38 percent of Americans still believe the U.S. “found clear evidence in Iraq that Saddam Hussein was working closely with Al Qaeda.” An additional 15 percent still believe Iraq was “directly involved in carrying out” the Sept. 11 attacks.
Photo: AFP

Stephen C. Webster
SStephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.