WASHINGTON — President Bush marked the fourth anniversary of the start of the Iraq war today by asking the American people to show patience. "You see, I didn't know there was a problem [in Iraq]," the President explained in a brief White House speech. "Since we did that big 'Mission Accomplished' thing, everybody's been telling me things were just fine. You know, democracy, voting, purple fingers and all that. But now I'm told there's some sort of problem over there, and believe me, I'm going to look into it."

White House press secretary Tony Snow clarified the president's position to the stunned press corps. "The president isn't saying that he was not aware of problems in Iraq. What he's saying is that there may be some problems that perhaps escaped his omniscient and benevolent review of the action there . . . ." Snow trailed off, then mumbled, "I sound like the spokesman for Kim Jong Il." A staffer quickly reminded Snow that his mike was still on.
Snow also denied that the president was only informed last week of deteriorating conditions in Iraq by a visiting 6th grader from Marshall Township, PA. "Absolutely not," said Snow, adding that the boy would verify this, after he is released by the CIA following his de-briefing.