November 10th, 2010
08:50 AM ET
3 years ago

Bush lying, says ex-German leader

(CNN) -George Bush's memoir only hit bookshelves Tuesday, but already one prominent ex-world leader says the former president isn't being truthful when it comes to his description of a 2002 conversation about the possible use of force in Iraq.

Former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, who left office in 2005, is disputing a passage in Bush's new book that claims Schroeder privately offered the president full-fledged support in 2002 should he decide to invade Iraq.

"The former American president is not telling the truth," Schroeder said Tuesday according to the German newspaper Der Spiegel.

In his new book "Decision Points," Bush writes that in a January 2002 White House meeting with Schroeder, the German leader said of possible force in Iraq: "What is true of Afghanistan is true of Iraq. Nations that sponsor terror must face consequences. If you make it fast and make it decisive, I will be with you."

"I took that as a statement of support," Bush writes of the conversation. "But when German elections arrived later that year, Schroeder had a different take. He denounced the possibility of using force against Iraq."

Speaking Tuesday, Schroeder said the 2002 meeting was actually focused on the mere possibility former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein had anything to do with the September 11 attacks, and said he made no unequivocal commitments

"Just as I did during my subsequent meetings with the American president, I made it clear that, should Iraq ... prove to have provided protection and hospitality to al Qaeda fighters, Germany would reliably stand beside the US," Schroeder said of his comments to the president. "This connection, however, as it became clear during 2002, was false and constructed."

Bush, whose relationship with Schroeder quickly turned frosty after the chancellor expressed opposition to the war, writes he was "shocked and furious" with the actions of his ally, especially after the German justice minister accused Bush of acting like Adolf Hitler in his efforts to "divert attention from domestic political problems."

"It was hard to have a constructive relationship again," Bush writes of his future relations with Schroeder.


Filed under: President Bush
soundoff (191 Responses)
  1. Jack

    Bush lying?!?! No, it can't be...

    November 10, 2010 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  2. John

    I'm shocked I tell you. Shocked!

    November 10, 2010 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  3. Anonymous

    Why is it that this thief is still getting press coverage? go hide in a bush already or even better go in die .

    November 10, 2010 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  4. Todd the Mod

    Get in line. He lied to all of America too.

    November 10, 2010 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  5. Carol

    George Bush is a lying war criminal.

    November 10, 2010 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  6. Angus McDugan

    Chancellor Schroeder is a wuss for trying to deny this.

    November 10, 2010 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  7. Kate

    If anyone can recognize similarities to Adolf Hitler, it is the Germans. For the Germans to recognize that GW Bush was acting like Adolf Hitler as early as 2002, the rest of the world should have taken heed. Instead, the Liberal and Conservative media vilified anyone who contradicted Bush and his war of terror. Like McCarthy-ism's "red scare," the media is just as guilty

    America is now known all over the world as a country of intolerance, torture, assasinations, and poor human rights. American's no longer support it's own Constitutional values. America, once a proud democratic republic, is now leaning toward becoming a communistic society lead by autocrats. President Obama, who promised changes to return America to its former values, has adopted GW Bush's "scorched America" philosophy and run with it. With each new day, Americans have fewer and fewer rights. And, rather than force real change, Americans are complacent in their ignorance.

    November 10, 2010 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  8. Rick McDaniel

    Maybe......maybe not. Given the unpopularity of the Iraq war, he could just be distancing himself from that revelation.

    November 10, 2010 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  9. Liberal4Obama

    Conservative = Liar.

    Republicans also promised to "BAN" earmarks... but now according to Rand Paul earmarks are OK.

    November 10, 2010 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  10. C Smith

    Well, he lied about WMD to the American public. Not a huge leap here.

    November 10, 2010 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  11. RICKFROMPA

    Most of the "quotes" in his book are probably fabricated. "W" is attempting to rewrite History. Eventually all of the "Truthes" will come out about 911, Afghanistan and Iraq. He wants to be remembered as a great President but he is far fom it!

    November 10, 2010 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  12. EddyL

    LIES? BUSH? Why would anyone be surprised. He's been a liar all his life and he sure didn't stop after the Supreme Court handed him the presidency in 2000. I wouldn't use his "book" as toilet paper.

    November 10, 2010 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  13. Fed Up

    At least Bush admitted he has faults, even when he was in office. Obama would never admit to anything. God (as proclaimed by the media) doesn't make mistakes.

    November 10, 2010 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  14. jules sand-perkins

    How can we tell whether Bush or Schroeder is lying?
    Bush is a favorite target of liberal Democrats. Why don't they assume that Bush lies and write comments about it.
    Who wants to assume that Schroeder is the liar and talk about him, Germans, and Hitler?
    It's all good! Selling books helps our economy.

    November 10, 2010 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  15. Chas in Iowa

    Bush's philosophy has always been if you say it often enough and loud enough it becomes the truth.
    Sometime the rich and entitled have issues with reality.

    November 10, 2010 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  16. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    Maybe Bush wasn't clear as to when he stopped drinking because he was still drinking. The former German leader's statement makes sense with what was stated in the past; the Europeans weren't interested in Iraq because it was unclear about the terrorist connections. We wasted money and lost too many service member lives going into Iraq. They were a counter-balance to Iran which we have to deal with now.

    November 10, 2010 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  17. TheTraveler

    Bush? Lying? Look, the guy was a liar when he was president. What makes anyone think he wouldn't be a liar as an author?

    November 10, 2010 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  18. stannardg

    Probable that Bush remembers things as they are in his mind.. like Nixon et al they simply refuse to hear the truth or understand how history is writtn an recorded. Not in the moment rather in the decade, good luck Mr we don't need another US Grant dying in the gutters of a large american city, just move the book to the fiction rack, where it appears it belongs.

    November 10, 2010 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  19. Indy

    Expecting Bush to tell the truth is like expecting Palin or Cheney to tell the truth, not going to happen.Once a professional liar, always a liar.

    November 10, 2010 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  20. JimDandy

    Why would anyone expect Bush to start telling the truth now?

    November 10, 2010 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  21. Tony FL

    Bush writing a book? This is as funny as Sarah Stalin getting a Nobel prize. Bush lied, book sales died.

    November 10, 2010 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  22. ch

    Hmmm..."I made it clear that, should Iraq ... prove to have provided protection and hospitality to al Qaeda fighters, Germany would reliably stand beside the US" that sure does sound a whole lot like "Nations that sponsor terror must face consequences. If you make it fast and make it decisive, I will be with you." Sounds like Mr. Schroeder just doesn't like the fact that he is being painted as someone who went back on the initial support he promised. No surprise there, typical European would rather be swept up with the current trend of political correctness than actually having steadfast principles. As for the Hitler accusation, yes diverting attention from universally important topics such as gay marriage in order to protect the nation from terrorism is very Hitleresque (sarcasm). You know what sounds Hitlery to me...a socialist leader of Germany that goes back on political promises and then tries to scapegoat others for his failures.

    November 10, 2010 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  23. George Guadiane - Austerlitz, NY

    Former President Bush (R) lied???
    WOW, STOP THE PRESSES!

    OK, never mind... The sun rose on that day too. Each had about the same amount of chance to happen, so the same news value.

    Don't forget, in the end, it's not President Bush's fault, the guilt lies with President Clinton.

    November 10, 2010 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  24. The reality is...

    Bush will eventually be recognized as one of the last great patriots as we tumble into the abyss of Socialism and one world totalitarian rule.

    November 10, 2010 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  25. carolyn

    Suprise! Suprise! Bush perpetrated one of the most dastardly fictions in American history; people died because of his lies; he should have been impeached. If you want a real assessment of the costs of the war read the list of American soldiers and about the innocnet Iraqi's, Brits and other countries who lost people because of him. And if that doesn't bother you; Bush sank the economy and left a mess for somebody else to clean up. I wouldn't waste a plug nickle on that stupid book; in fact the proceeds shoud go to the families of American soldiers who died on that idiot's behalf.

    November 10, 2010 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
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