from the Post's article on GW Bush's interview with Matt Lauer
Interviewer Matt Lauer of NBC News asked Bush why he believed that waterboarding was legal, a topic of significant dispute.
"Because the lawyer said it was legal," Bush replied. "He said it did not fall within the anti-torture act. I'm not a lawyer. But you gotta trust the judgment of people around you, and I do."
He has been widely criticized for directing the lawyers to reach that conclusion, on which there is no legal consensus.
Pressed on whether U.S. soldiers could be exposed to waterboarding because Americans have deployed it, Bush grew irritated and defensive. "All I ask is that people read the book," he said, adding that he would make the same decision again today.
Asked whether he ever questions whether he could have done more to prevent 9/11, the worst attack on U.S. soil, Bush said no.
"We just didn't have any solid intelligence that gave us a warning on this. We didn't have any clear intelligence that said that, you know, 'Get ready. They're gonna fly airplanes into New York buildings,' " he said.
In fact, on Aug. 6, 2001, Bush received a confidential intelligence briefing titled "Bin Ladin Determined to Strike in US," detailing al-Qaeda's intent to hijack planes. Bush did not mention that.
He said he had no doubts that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction at the time he ordered the invasion, even though skeptics had warned there were none. Still, he described himself as a "dissenting voice," saying he did not want to go to war but had to.
When weapons were never found, he was "sickened," he writes. Yet he told Lauer he never considered apologizing for a war based on faulty assumptions. "I mean, apologizing would basically say the decision was a wrong decision. And I don't believe it was the wrong decision," he said.