A reader's guide to Bob Woodward's State of Denial.

A reader's guide to Bob Woodward's State of Denial.

A reader's guide to Bob Woodward's State of Denial.

How to read juicy books.
Oct. 4 2006 11:59 PM

Woodward and You

A reader's guide to State of Denial.

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Page 106: The footnote suggests why Garner may get such favorable treatment. He seems to have cooperated fully with Woodward. "This is the most complete, documented account of his experience yet available," it reads.

Jay Garner, Goat

Page 224: After complaining to colleagues and Rumsfeld about the grave mistakes in Iraq postwar reconstruction (de-Baathification, disbanding the army, and dumping local leaders), Garner missed his moment to tell President Bush. When he got to the Oval Office, he just gave Bush happy talk.

More Troops Were Necessary in Iraq

Page 190: James Dobbins, the post-conflict expert and former State Department official who worked for the Rand Corporation, brought Paul Bremer a draft of a study estimating that 500,000 troops were needed in postwar Iraq, three times as many as were deployed.


Page 256: In September 2003, Blackwill argued for sending 40,000 more troops.

Trouble Finding WMD

Pages 92-96, 101, 115: Army Maj. Gen. James "Spider" Marks was given the assignment of helping guide U.S. forces to WMD stockpiles once the invasion started. Reading his travails is like rewatching a Hitchcock movie. You know how it's going to end and yet when Marks says, "Sir, I can't confirm what's inside any of these sites," the horror sounds brand new.

Page 192: Col. Steve Rotkoff haiku:

Where is WMD?
What a kick if he has none
Sorry about that

Page 272: Upon returning from Iraq, U.S. weapons inspector David Kay was told of a highly covert operation to gather intelligence about WMD. Launched eight months before the war, it relied on human intelligence, including Iraqis in Europe convinced to return to their country to talk to their relatives involved in WMD. After some 120 contacts, no evindence was found. The program was scrubbed. "The CIA was so convinced that Iraq had the weapons that absence of evidence was taken as proof that the … program wasn't working."