WASHINGTON (CNN) -- About two weeks before deciding to invade Iraq, President Bush was told by CIA Director George Tenet there was a "slam dunk
case" that dictator Saddam Hussein had unconventional weapons, according to a new book by Washington Post journalist Bob Woodward.
That declaration was "very important" in his decision making, according to "Plan of Attack," which is being excerpted this week in the Post.
Bush also made his decision to go to war without consulting Vice President Dick Cheney, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld or Secretary of State
Colin Powell, Woodward's book says.
Powell was not even told until after the Saudi ambassador was allowed to review top-secret war plans in an effort to enlist his country's support for
the invasion, Woodward reports.
Cheney told Saudi Ambassador Prince Bandar bin Sultan that once the war started, Saddam would be "toast," according to Woodward, who has written or
co-written several best-selling books on Washington politics, including "All the President's Men" with Carl Bernstein.
The book also reports that in the summer of 2002, $700 million was diverted from a congressional appropriation for the war in Afghanistan to develop a
war plan for Iraq.
Woodward suggests the diversion may have been illegal -- and that Congress was deliberately kept in the dark about what had been done.
Woodward's book was also the subject of an interview Sunday on CBS's "60 Minutes."
The book is based on interviews with 75 people involved in planning for the war, including Bush, the only source who spoke for attribution.
Woodward quotes Bush as saying he did not feel the need to ask his principal advisers, including Cheney, Rumsfeld and Powell, whether they thought he
ought to go to war because "I could tell what they thought."