5,213. 7/11/2003

On July 11, 2003, President Bush and National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice commented on Bush’s mentioning of Iraq buying yellowcake from Niger in his January 28, 2003, State of the Union Address. Rice said: ” ‘I can tell you, if the CIA, the director of central intelligence [George Tenet], had said, *Take this out of the speech,* it would have been gone without question,’ she said. ‘If there was a concern about the underlying intelligence there, the president was unaware of the concern, as was I.’ She later laid it out more starkly, putting the blame four-square on Tenet’s CIA. ‘The agency cleared the speech and cleared it in its entirety,’ she said. Bush adopted Rice’s line. ‘I gave a speech to the nation that was cleared by the intelligence services,’ he said.”

 – Bob Woodward, State of Denial, Page 232

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