Tuesday, November 22, 2005

"Support our troops!"

Special thanks go to Congresswoman Jean Schmidt (R-Ohio) for really highlighting the Republican perspective on supporting our troops. Mrs. Schmidt, a non-veteran whose own bio fails to metion any combat experience...or military service...or experience doing productive work of any sort... has publicly called a decorated U.S. Marine combat commander who fought in two wars a "coward." His cowardly act? Suggesting that the U.S. get out of the endless Iraq morasse the Bush administration got them into.

Neocon Republican...the new way to spell "despicable idiot."

The Best Laid Plans...

gang aft a-gley, as Robert Burns put it.

And even more so the half-baked plans of power-maddened neocons...

What was the Iraq War to do?

1. Depose Saddam Hussein (success!)
2. Stop French and Russian development of Iraqi oil (success!)
3. Give the U.S. access to Iraqi oil, which would pay for the war and reconstruction (so far, failure)
4. Give the U.S. a new, friendly, permanent base in the Middle East -- to which overseas troops could be redeployed. (um, failure?)
5. Create a bastion of liberal democracy in the Muslim world that will shine as an example for the rest of the Muslim world (yeah, right)
6. Reduce terrorism and make the world safer. (hahahaha...only it isn't funny)

All of this done "on the cheap" with a far smaller invasion & occupation force than military experts knew was necessary.

Now we are bogged down in a mess in which the terrorists grow stronger ("Bring 'em on!"), Iraq teeters on the verge of civil war, and American blood, treasure, and credibility are increasingly drained on a daily basis.

Conservatives used to say nation-building and social engineering were folly. They were right.

Conservatives used to demand (with the military) that any military enterprise have a well-defined objective and timetable for completion. They were right.

Conservatives used to insist that government action be fiscally responsible. They were right.

But conservatives sold their souls to the Bush regime, trading principles for power. And now when conservatives say that opponents of the war are cowards...well, they are wrong.


Vice President Cheney finds Iraq War revisionism "reprehensible." For once, I fully agree with him. It is indeed reprehensible, shameful, and even unforgivable for anyone to try to make political gain today by distorting what the Bush Administration told us about Iraq prior to the U.S. invasion.

What were we told?

1. It was necessary to invade Iraq because Iraq had WMDs.

2. It was necessary to invade Iraq because Iraq had an ongoing program to build nuclear weapons (Dick Cheney, Meet The Press, 16 March 2003)

3. The U.S. had secret evidence proving the above that could not be made public (nor shared with allies).

On points 1 & 2, CIA analysts have repeatedly charged that when they suggested differently they were pressured by the administration to reconsider. On point 3, well, we don't hear anything about this any more.

It is indeed reprehensible to distort the historical record. We know that the Bush adminsitration began developing its invasion plans in its first week in the Whitehouse (see Treasury Secretary O'Neill's account in "The Price of Loyalty"). We know that Bush publicly used to the false claim of Iraqi attempts to obtain uranium in Niger long after it had been discredited. We know from the Downing Street Memo that it was obvious to Blair's government that the Bush administraion had decided on war long before it publicly admitted this. We know that the neocon chickenhawks greatly misjudged the aftermath of the invasion, stating publicly that Americans would be treated as liberators, that Iraq would quickly adopt democracy, and that Iraq itself would pay (us) for reconstruction with oil.

Yes, Mr. VP, it is reprehensible to now attempt rewriting history...the string of lies and deceptions from the Whitehouse in the runup to the war shouldn't be forgotten.

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