Guess Who Went On A Saddam Hussein Financed Trip?

And guess when it was (AP thru SF Gate)

Saddam Hussein’s intelligence agency secretly financed a trip to Iraq for three U.S. lawmakers during the run-up to the U.S.-led invasion, federal prosecutors said Wednesday.

The three anti-war Democrats made the trip in October 2002, while the Bush administration was trying to persuade Congress to authorize military action against Iraq. While traveling, they called for a diplomatic solution.

Sorry, slight interlude. The Bush Admin was not try to persuade Congress to authorize military action. That is entirely to simplistic, and not quite correct. The Bush admin was asking for authorization IF Saddam would not comply with the United Nations resolutions that had previously been passed. There had to be a stick to go with the carrot for when Resolution 1441 was passed by the UN on November 8, 2002.

Prosecutors say that trip was arranged by Muthanna Al-Hanooti, a Michigan charity official, who was charged Wednesday with setting up the junket at the behest of Saddam’s regime. Iraqi intelligence officials allegedly paid for the trip through an intermediary and rewarded Al-Hanooti with 2 million barrels of Iraqi oil.

The lawmakers are not named in the indictment but the dates correspond to a trip by Democratic Reps. Jim McDermott of Washington, David Bonior of Michigan and Mike Thompson of California. None was charged and Justice Department spokesman Dean Boyd said investigators “have no information whatsoever” any of them knew the trip was underwritten by Saddam.

OK, we are not saying here that any of the three knew that Saddam was sponsoring the trip. I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt (which the Left would not extend were it Republicans involved.) But, was it really necessary to make the trip? They came back, especially Baghdad Jim McDermott, sounding like a Saddam/Iraq spokesman. Which is not entirely surprising when it comes to Democrats.

Oh, and let’s not forget the $5,000 donation McDermott recieved from Shakir al Khafaji, who was allegedly involved in teh Oil For Food Scandal, which was later returned.

Bluto at The Jawa Report: They say they wouldn’t have gone if they’d known who was footing the bill. They don’t say why they didn’t bother to find out who was footing the bill.

See more at Memeorandum.

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