Former President George W. Bush is in the midst of a publicity tour for his new book, 41: A Portrait of My Father, which unabashedly aims to burnish the reputation of a president who, among other accomplishments, oversaw the end of the Cold War and successfully routed Saddam Hussein's army from Kuwait. However, the younger Bush appears to be trying to massage his own legacy at the same time. In an interview this week with NPR, he defended the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 for ousting a dictator who "had the capacity to make chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons."
As The Washington Post's Glenn Kessler points out in awarding Bush's remarks three Pinocchios, this was not the case. "Hussein may not have given up his dream of one day again having weapons of mass destruction — but he did not have such weapons when the United States invaded," Kessler writes. "Neither did he have much capacity either." He also dings Bush for claiming that the invasion was backed by "large coalitions of nations" and for suggesting that the U.S. invasion would have been justified if it had merely found a "dirty bomb," as opposed to the full-fledged weapons of mass destruction that Bush claimed Hussein possessed.