President Bush is leading his Republican party into congressional elections in November with foreign policy and Iraq in particular, weighing heavily against them. Now Bush has been obliged to declassify intelligence reports on Iraq that are highly critical of the conduct of the campaign against terrorists. He has also counter-attacked over the leaking of the documents to the press, and has angrily accused his Democratic opponents of being unpatriotic.
Among Bush’s critics is one Democrat presidential front-runner, Hillary Clinton, who wants debate to replace the uproar over the report. The American government now faces a struggle. If its own intelligence services think Iraq is actually fuelling Islamic terrorism worldwide, voters may be entitled to think just what is the Iraq war for?