Brotherly love: Jeb Bush says he would’ve invaded Iraq too

Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush (Reuters / Brian Snyder)

Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush (Reuters / Brian Snyder)

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush said that he would have authorized the 2003 invasion of Iraq even if he knew then what he knows now, the potential presidential contender said in an interview with Fox News.

The comment was made
after Fox News host Megyn Kelly asked Bush if he would have still
authorized the war “knowing what we know now.”

“I would have, and so would have Hillary Clinton, just to
remind everybody. And so would almost everybody that was
confronted with the intelligence they got,”
Bush responded.

“You don’t think it was a mistake?” Kelly asked

At this point, Bush acknowledged that the invasion was based on
“faulty” intelligence but did not back down from his initial

“In retrospect, the intelligence that everybody saw – that
the world saw, not just the United States – was faulty,”
said. “In retrospect, once we invaded and took out Saddam
Hussein, we didn’t focus on security first. The Iraqis, in this
incredibly insecure environment, turned on the United States
military because there was no security for themselves and their

“By the way, guess who thinks that those mistakes took place
as well? George W. Bush. So just for the news flash to the world,
if they’re trying to find places where there’s big space between
me and my brother, this might not be one of those.”

READ MORE: George W. Bush is one of Jeb Bush’s
top advisers on Israel

The fact that Bush claimed little daylight between him and the
43rd president, however, triggered all sorts of criticism online,
from liberals and conservatives alike. The remarks were also seen
as damaging to any presidential campaign for Jeb Bush, who has
not officially entered the race, because many believe the former
governor needs to distance himself from George W. Bush in order
to gain traction with the general population.

Notably, George W. Bush himself has called the intelligence he
received “false,” not just faulty, reported Byron York
of the Washington Examiner.

“The reality was that I had sent American troops into combat
based in large part on intelligence that proved false,”

George W. Bush wrote in his memoir, titled “Decision Points.”
Bush added that the fact that there were no weapons of mass
destruction found in Iraq dealt a “massive blow” to his

York also criticized Jeb Bush for arguing that Clinton and others
would have authorized the war regardless of whether or not they
knew Iraq had WMDs.

Meanwhile, Democrats were quick to jump on Bush’s comments, with
the Democratic National Committee posting a critical
advertisement comparing the Florida governor to his brother.

Bush’s Iraq comment was the second time in less than a week that
he made a controversial comment regarding the Middle East. Last
week, he called George W. Bush one of his top advisers on
US-Israel relations.

Earlier this year, Bush seemed to put some distance between
himself and his brother and father, both of whom were elected

“I recognize that as a result, my views will often be held up
in comparison to theirs – sometimes in contrast to theirs,”

he said in February. “I love my father and my brother. I
admire their service to the nation and the difficult decisions
they had to make. But I am my own man – and my views are shaped
by my own thinking and own experiences.”

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