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Jan 30th, 2004 03:28 PM
W wants to know truth, but not if it takes looking for it.

Bush Declines to Back Call for Intel Probe

By TERENCE HUNT, AP White House Correspondent

WASHINGTON - President Bush said Friday "I want to know the facts" about any intelligence failures concerning Saddam Hussein 's alleged cache of forbidden weapons but he declined to endorse calls for an independent investigation.

The issue of an independent commission has blossomed into an election-year problem for the president, with Democrats and Republicans alike supporting the idea. Former chief weapons inspector David Kay has concluded that Iraq (news - web sites) did not possess weapons of mass destruction, which Bush had cited as a rationale for going to war against Iraq.

Bush said he wants to be able to compare the administration's prewar intelligence with what will be learned by inspectors who are now searching for weapons in Iraq. There is no deadline for those inspectors, the Iraq Survey Group, to complete their work.

"One thing is for certain, one thing we do know ... that Saddam Hussein was a danger, he was growing danger," the president told reporters during a brief question and answer session after a meeting with economists.

Parting company with many of his fellow Republicans, Sen. John McCain said Thursday he wants an independent commission to take a sweeping look at recent intelligence failures.

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