From Foreign Policy Passport:
In an interview with Charlie Gibson excerpted online and set to air on ABC tonight, George W. Bush will discuss his two-term presidency as it comes to an end. Not all his days in office were happy ones, he concedes, but overall the 43rd U.S. president says that “every day has been pretty joyous.”
When Gibson asked him if he felt responsible for what’s happening with the economy, Bush replied that he was “a little upset” about not pushing reform on insurers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in time because “it would have helped a lot.”
His biggest regret? As he told Gibson, it “has to have been the intelligence failure in Iraq. … And, you know, that’s not a do-over, but I wish the intelligence had been different, I guess.”
And while President Bush doesn’t “spend a lot of time really worrying about short-term history,” here are 10 other things he should regret:
1. September 11, 2001
While many rate the image of Bush standing on the rubble of the World Trade Center as a strong point in his presidency, he was not the first to appear in front of television cameras that day to address the nation — New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani was. It’s difficult to watch the footage of Bush as he waited for seven minutes, frozen in that elementary school classroom after hearing the second tower had been hit.
2. Ignoring Al Qaeda
The 9/11 Commission determined that indeed on August 6, 2001, after months of intelligence reports warning of al Qaeda’s growing sophistication, Bush received a Presidential Daily Brief titled, “Bin Laden Determined To Strike in US.”
3. Weapons of Mass Destruction
In 2004, the CIA released a report that found that there were no WMD in Iraq at the time of the U.S. invasion and that Saddam Hussein had relinquished any plans for a nuclear program after the 1991 Gulf War. More disturbing were reports that CIA Director George Tenet had delivered secret intelligence to the president in September 2002 revealing that, in fact, there were no WMD. Bush dismissed the intel and pushed ahead.
Click here for the 7 remaining points.
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