The White House Iraq Group (WHIG) is a high powered and controversial group comprised of some of the most powerful and influential people in the White House in the time leading up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq. WHIG originates from a White House task force set up in August 2002 by White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card. It was WHIG who was in charge of creating a favorable media environment to inform the public about the reasons the White House wanted to go to war in Iraq. Essentially, as many opponents have charged, WHIG was formed to "sell" the war in Iraq.
[...] The think tank Think Progress has released a list of 23 people in the White House who have been questioned by Fitzgerald. Among those 23 people are all eight (or all nine if you count Andrew Card, who organized the group), members of WHIG. One member of WHIG, Scooter Libby, who was Chief of Staff for Vice-President Dick Cheney, has been indicted on five counts, among them: perjury, obstruction of justice, and making false statements. Immediately after his criminal indictment, Libby resigned from his office. [...]
[...] On July Wilson revealed himself as that retired diplomat and also made several other remarks that were critical of the war and the administration in general. Previous to July Wilson did not seem to have any strong opinions regarding the war, “viewing weapons of mass destruction as a danger, but considering military action as a last resort.” On July Wilson changed his tone, saying Bush “misrepresented the facts”, and asking “what else are they lying about?” On July 14, eight days after Wilson's remarks, his wife was outed as a CIA officer in Robert Novak's Townhall.com article. [...]
[...] The future of the proceedings concerning the White House Iraq Group is up in the air at this time. We do know that documents concerning the meetings of the group have been subpoenaed and also that Fitzgerald has questioned every member of the group in regards to Plamegate. One WHIG member, Scooter Libby, has already been indicted and then resigned from his post. But will there be others indicted when the investigation is over? Is it possible that Rove, Cheney, or even President Bush himself might be implicated in the ordeal? [...]
[...] House Resolution 505 and a few very brief mentions by politicians either supporting or not supporting the bill are the only mentions of the White House Iraq Group in the Congressional Record at the current time. The largest issue in regards to WHIG has to do with the outing of Valerie Plame as a covert CIA agent. The scandal and resulting fall out have come to be referred to as the Plame Affair, or Plamegate. Here is a little background. [...]
[...] WHIG is not the first White House organization to go by the name of WHIG. A group by the same name under President Lyndon Johnson had roughly the same mission in 1967 to promote the war in Vietnam. The most recent group is totally separate from the 1967 WHIG group, although they are similar in function and purpose. WHIG operated behind closed doors, as is often the case in such matters, especially in President Bush's administration. Since the meetings were conducted in secret, the public does not know what went occurred, what was discussed, and exactly what information the group was acting on. [...]
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