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Leading to War (2008)

Not Rated | | Documentary | Video 18 March 2008
16:10 | Featurette

On Disc

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LEADING TO WAR documents how the Bush Administration made its case to the American people for military action in Iraq, despite worldwide opposition.







Credited cast:
Paul Wolfowitz ...


How does a government lead its people to war? Watch the U.S. government's blueprint for war unfold, as told by the architects themselves. LEADING TO WAR links together historic news footage, without commentary, from President Bush's "axis of evil" speech in January, 2002, through the announcement on March 19, 2003 that the U.S. had invaded Iraq. Gain powerful insights as you watch the determined march to war - in interviews, speeches, and press conferences by President Bush and his administration, including Vice President Dick Cheney, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, Secretary of State Colin Powell, National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz, as well as by British Prime Minister Tony Blair and others. A companion website, www.LeadingToWar.com, provides an in-depth exploration of the strategies and rhetorical techniques used by the Bush administration, along with a well-documented examination of their pre-war claims - many of which were ... Written by Dziga7

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Release Date:

18 March 2008 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


George W. Bush: You said we're headed to war in Iraq. I don't know why you say that. I hope we're not headed to war in Iraq. I'm the person that gets to decide, not you.
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User Reviews

For Students of History and Public Relations
13 June 2015 | by See all my reviews

The makers of this film have assembled a collection of statements made by members of the Bush Administration in the months leading up to the invasion of Iraq. The power of the film is in its simplicity. It is dispassionate. No moralizing, no condemnation -- the guilty just hang themselves.

The principal tactic the Bush people used to engineer the invasion of Iraq was to weave together: 1) truths (Saddam Hussein is a bad guy); 2) half-truths (he wants nuclear weapons); and, 3) outright falsehoods (he is a year away from having nuclear weapons). The truths get people nodding in agreement, the half truths sound plausible enough, and the listeners end up buying the falsehoods.

The second tactic was to revert to emotionally laden symbolism. Count the times Bush said he was fighting for "freedom"; Saddam Hussein is "evil"; we are "defending America." There are many people for whom these words and terms resonate. Who can disagree that "freedom" is good and "evil" is bad?

This is a film that should be shown in History classes and Public Relations classes: the first, to show how the disaster happened, the second to teach how to get people to buy into something every fiber in their being should be telling them is wrong.

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