Saturday, October 29, 2005


Another Rat Deserts the Sinking Ship

Berlusconi Claims He Sought to Dissuade Bush on Iraq

Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi, one of President Bush's strongest supporters over Iraq, says he tried repeatedly to dissuade the American leader from going to war and was never convinced military force was the best way to bring democracy. Berlusconi is facing a tough re-election battle next year, and his popularity has fallen in part because of Italians' continued opposition to the war. [...] Berlusconi was one of Bush's strongest supporters in the run-up to the Iraq war. On the eve of the conflict in March 2003, he told Italian lawmakers that using force against Iraq was legitimate and that Italy couldn't abandon the Americans "in their fight against terrorism."

I'm betting this has a lot to do with deflecting the revelations in La Repubblica (a Berlusconi-owned paper, shockingly enough) about how Berlusconi was involved in the Niger yellowcake document forgeries.

Blogger and Eschaton habitué Nur al-Cubicle has provided English translations of the three La Repubblica articles in question:

Berlusconi behind fake yellowcake dossier (Berlusconi, hoping to please his buddy Bush, demanded the Italian intelligence services give him something he could give to Bush)

Yellowcake dossier not the work of the CIA (in fact, the CIA wanted nothing to do with it)

The Centrifuge Scam (The Italians knew that Saddam's centrifuges were intended for innocuous uses. But they knew better than to try to tell that to Bush)

There you go.
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