Bush's White House Spying on Iraqi Prime Minister
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Excerpts from investigative journalist Bob Woodwardâ€™s new book, â€œThe War Within: A Secret White House History, 2006-2008,â€ reveal that the White House has conducted an â€œ extensive spying operationâ€ on Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, supposedly one of the Bush administrationâ€™s strongest allies.
Today in the press briefing, reporters gave White House Press Secretary Dana Perino a chance to deny the allegations. Perino refused to do so, however, adding that she wouldnâ€™t even comment on the book:
Q To follow up on that Dana, why are you not simply denying the allegations in Woodwardâ€™s book?
MS. PERINO: Why am I not denying what allegations?
Q Denying that there is â€” that spying â€“
MS. PERINO: I didnâ€™t deny it. I said I declined to comment on it. And I will decline to comment on it.
The Iraq government reacted sharply to the allegations today. Spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh said that Baghdad plans to press the Bush administration for an explanation. â€œIt reflects also that the institutions in the United States are used to spy on their friends and their enemies in the same way,â€ al-Dabbagh said in a statement.
Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist Ron Suskind also recently revealed that U.S. intelligence agencies had tapped the phones of former Pakistani prime minister Benazir Bhutto, who was assassinated last year.