Washington: Former US President George W Bush had personally authorized a leak about Iraq strategy to a 'Washington Post' columnist, according to then Vice-President Dick Cheney.

In his forthcoming book, 'In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir', Cheney has claimed that he believed the disclosure to be "a real disservice" to US troops stationed in the war-ravaged country.

"I was very concerned when I read the piece, and I raised it with the President in the Oval Office. 'Whoever is leaking information like this to the press is doing a real disservice, Mr President', I said, 'both to you and to our forces on the ground in Baghdad. We have to correct this, particularly with our Generals in the field'," Cheney said.

The 70-year-old former Vice-President added: "A short time later (National Security Adviser) Steve Hadley came into my office and closed the door. He told me that he was the source for Ignatius (columnist) and that he'd talked to him at the instruction of the President."

The column by David Ignatius, titled 'After the Surge: The Administration Floats Ideas for a New Approach in Iraq', appeared in the 'Washington Post' on May 22, 2007.

It quoted Administration Officials on the need to revamp policy in order to attract bipartisan support and to take into account the fact that the surge might not have the stabilizing effect the then US Administration had hoped.

Cheney's book, written with his daughter Liz Cheney, will be out next week.