BOB WOODWARD TELLS MIKE WALLACE THAT THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION HAS NOT BEEN HONEST ABOUT THE LEVEL
OF VIOLENCE IN IRAQ -- "60 MINUTES" SUNDAY ON CBS
Woodward Also Reveals that Henry Kissinger Advises the President and Vice President
Veteran Washington reporter Bob Woodward tells Mike Wallace that the Bush administration has not told the truth regarding the level of violence, especially against U.S. troops, in Iraq. He also reveals key intelligence that predicts the insurgency will grow worse next year. Wallace's interview with Woodward will be broadcast on 60 MINUTES, Sunday, Oct. 1 (7:00-8:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.
According to Woodward, insurgent attacks against coalition troops occur, on average, every 15 minutes, a shocking fact the administration has kept secret. "It's getting to the point now where there are eight, 900 attacks a week. That's more than a hundred a day. That is four an hour attacking our forces," says Woodward.
The situation is getting much worse, says Woodward, despite what the White House and the Pentagon are saying in public. "The truth is that the assessment by intelligence experts is that next year, 2007, is going to get worse and, in public, you have the president and you have the Pentagon [saying], 'Oh, no, things are going to get better,'" he tells Wallace. "Now there's public, and then there's private. But what did they do with the private? They stamp it secret. No one is supposed to know," says Woodward.
"The insurgents know what they are doing. They know the level of violence and how effective they are. Who doesn't know? The American public," Woodward tells Wallace.
Woodward also reports that the president and vice president often meet with Henry Kissinger, who was President Richard Nixon's secretary of state, as an advisor. Says Woodward, "Now what's Kissinger's advice? In Iraq, he declared very simply, 'Victory is the only meaningful exit strategy.'" Woodward adds. "This is so fascinating. Kissinger's fighting the Vietnam War again because, in his view, the problem in Vietnam was we lost our will."
Bush is absolutely certain that he has the U.S. and Iraq on the right course, says Woodward. So certain is the president on this matter, he says, that when Bush had key Republicans to the White House to discuss Iraq, Woodward says Bush told them, " 'I will not withdraw even if Laura and Barney are the only ones supporting me.'"
Woodward reported for two years and interviewed over 200 people, including top officials in the Bush administration, to learn these and other revelations that he makes in his latest book, State of Denial, published by Simon & Schuster, part of the CBS Corp.