(Daily Caller) — During his first visit to Iraq as defense secretary, Leon Panetta seemed to link America’s presence in the country to the 9/11 attacks.
“The reason you guys are here is because on 9/11 the United States got attacked,” Panetta said to American troops at Camp Victory in Baghdad Monday, as reported by the Washington Post. “And 3,000 Americans — 3,000 not just Americans, 3,000 human beings, innocent human beings — got killed because of al-Qaeda. And we’ve been fighting as a result of that.”
Democrats allege the Bush administration tried to connect Iraq to the 9/11 attacks in order to build a case for war. While there were pieces of intelligence that suggested that the Iraqi regime had contacts with al-Qaeda, no evidence ultimately emerged tying Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein to the 9/11 attacks.