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Cheney Book: Bush Personally Authorized a Leak About Iraq Strategy


POLITICO has reported this afternoon that in Dick Cheney's upcoming book "In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir,” the former vice president reveals that he was surprised to learn that President George W. Bush had personally authorized a leak about Iraq strategy to a Washington Post columnist:

"I was very concerned when I read the piece, and I raised it with the president in the Oval Office. ‘Whoever is leaking information like this to the press is doing a real disservice, Mr. President,’ I said, ‘both to you and to our forces on the ground in Baghdad.’ … ‘We have to correct this, particularly with our generals in the field.’ …

A short time later [national security adviser] Steve Hadley came into my office and closed the door. He told me that he was the source for Ignatius and that he’d talked to him at the instruction of the president.”

The leak was used in Washington Post Columnist David Ignatius' May 22, 2007 article "After the Surge: The Administration Floats Ideas for a New Approach in Iraq." The column quoted administration officials on the need to revamp policy in order to attract bipartisan support and to take into account the fact that the surge might not have the stabilizing effect that the administration had hoped.

Other interesting revelations in Cheney's book include the telling of a tearful apology from Condoleezza Rice in Cheney's office in 2003, Cheney choosing to go against the White House communications team in 2006 by encouraging the president to not fear speaking of "victory" in Iraq, and a November 2008 meeting with past White House chiefs of staff where Cheney made an offhand comment to Rahm Emanuel.

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