But Tony Blair talked him out of it. So says the Washington Post, also known affectionately as the “Bandar Beacon”:
LONDON — President Bush expressed interest in bombing the headquarters of the Arabic television network al-Jazeera during a White House conversation with Prime Minister Tony Blair in April 2004, a British newspaper reported Tuesday.
The Daily Mirror report was attributed to two anonymous sources describing a classified document they said contained a transcript of the two leaders’ talk. One source is quoted as saying Bush’s alleged remark concerning the network’s headquarters in Qatar was “humorous, not serious,” while the other said, “Bush was deadly serious.”
In Washington, a senior diplomat said the Bush remark as recounted in the newspaper “sounds like one of the president’s one-liners that is meant as a joke.” But, the diplomat said, “it was foolish for someone to write it down, and now it will be a story for days.”
“We are not interested in dignifying something so outlandish and inconceivable with a response,” White House spokesman Scott McClellan told the Associated Press in an e-mail.
Al-Jazeera has frequently aired recorded statements from al Qaeda figures. Bush administration officials have contended that through that type of broadcasting the network often serves as a conduit for terrorist propaganda…