When it was obvious that he would actually have to veto a defense spending bill in order to protect torture, Bush surrendered to reason.
But reason was unable to survive under a sustained attack, as Bush said, "True, there was no threat to justify the war. But still there was a threat, and the war is justified."
Fafblog explains this koan:
To those bound to the material world, there must be a material cause for a material war: physical weapons held by a physical enemy, actual ties to actual terrorists, a palpable and existing threat. The enlightened mind, however, sees past the facade of the Real to the broader world of Hypotheticality that lies beyond it. Thus, the enlightened man does not inspect the world of matter for physical weapons. He searches, deep within the unscapes of the mind, for Weapons of Mass Possibility, hypothetically ready to be used by imaginary terrorists on the helpless pretend citizens of the world. Bush does not invade Iraq to destroy weapons that aren't there, but to not-destroy the non-weapons that could have been there if things were entirely different.
If the post hoc justification for war makes sense, the terrorists have won.