234. Petraeus report (hyped by the White House but actually written by it and not presented by Petraeus)
The "Petraeus" report. After vetoing the Democratic version on May 1, 2007, Bush signed the Iraq supplemental into law on May 25, 2007. One of its provisions was for a report to be delivered by September 15 on conditions in Iraq. Bush repeatedly sought to delay and deflect criticism of the lack of progress in Iraq by saying he wanted to wait until General Petraeus (and Ambassador Crocker) delivered their report. The spin on this was that Petraeus as a military man would give an objective and impartial report. This was never in the cards. Petraeus was chosen to lead the surge because he was its biggest supporter and as its leader had an obvious conflict of interest in assessing it.
Nevertheless, the White House sought to limit public access of Petraeus and Crocker. Beginning in early July the White House began floating the idea to members of Congress that Petraeus and Crocker should testify to Congress in closed session out of the public eye. When this came out on August 16, the White House denied that this had ever been their intention. In what the White House calls coincidence, Petraeus is currently scheduled to testify on the anniversary of 9/11.
It gets worse. The Petraeus report will, in fact, be written not by Petraeus but by the White House. So the Petraeus report will not really be the Petraeus report. Nor will Congress have a chance to question Petraeus on what will be the non-Petraeus report (that they and we have been asked to wait for for months) since the general will testify 4 days before its release. This whole situation is made all the more incomprehensible because the actual content of the report from whomever it emanates in this Administration has been known from the beginning: The situation is complicated, some progress is being made, we should keep the surge going as long as we can, bad things will happen if we leave.