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Bush acknowledges declassifying Iraq intelligence, ducks questions on leak

Published: Monday April 10, 2006

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"President George W. Bush acknowledged on Monday he ordered the declassification of parts of a prewar intelligence report on Iraq to respond to critics," Reuters reported Monday, after a question from a graduate student solicited the President's first response to the charge that his Vice President's top aide leaked the information to reporters. Excerpts:


But Bush said he could not comment on an assertion that he authorized Vice President Dick Cheney's former top aide, Lewis "Scooter" Libby, to release the information to reporters. Libby is accused of obstruction of justice and perjury in an investigation designed to discover who leaked the name of a CIA operative.

"I will say this, that after we liberated Iraq, there was questions in peoples' minds about, you know, the basis upon which I made statements, in other words, going into Iraq," Bush said in his first words on the subject since it flared up last week.

"I wanted people to see what some of those statements were based on. I wanted people to see the truth. I thought it made sense for people to see the truth. That's why I declassified the document," he said.