Monday, December 15, 2008

Bush And Cheney Shrug At The Disasters They've Wrought In Iraq



George Bush and Dick Cheney have repeatedly referred to the war in Iraq as "the central front in the war on terror" and pointed to al Qaeda in Iraq's presence there as proof. There is one flaw, though, with this analysis–and it is a monumental one. It was our presence that brought the terrorist group there in the first place, following our 2003 invasion. That point was brought out in the interview shown above with Martha Raddatz (h/t Think Progress):

BUSH: One of the major theaters against al Qaeda turns out to have been Iraq. This is where al Qaeda said they were going to take their stand. This is where al Qaeda was hoping to take–

RADDATZ: But not until after the U.S. invaded.

BUSH: Yeah, that’s right. So what? The point is that al Qaeda said they’re going to take a stand. Well, first of all in the post-9/11 environment Saddam Hussein posed a threat. And then upon removal, al Qaeda decides to take a stand.

On the one hand, this exchange is amazing. Bush is actually acknowledging a major argument posed by critics of the war–and then stating he doesn't care. Yet Bush's statement is also to be expected from an administration that has remained indifferent to the opinions of the country and the world–and, as a result, has pursued disastrous policies that have alienated both.

There's a precedent for Bush's "So What?" It's in the form of Cheney's "So?" He also spoke to Martha Raddatz about the war:

RADDATZ: Two-third of Americans say it’s not worth fighting.

CHENEY: So?

RADDATZ: So? You don’t care what the American people think?

CHENEY: No. I think you cannot be blown off course by the fluctuations in the public opinion polls.

Watch how Cheney compliments Bush in arrogance and indifference:


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