:: Friday, September 19, 2003 ::
The Star Tribune has a little editorial piece up entitled, " Truth / Too little of it on Iraq", and it has all of the usual blather about the Bush administrations' "mendacity". Follwing the quote below is the standard left-wing laundry list of alleged administration lies and distortions. Go ahead and read it if you think that you might have forgotten any of them.
Dick Cheney is not a public relations man for the Bush administration, not a spinmeister nor a political operative. He's the vice president of the United States, and when he speaks in public, which he rarely does, he owes the American public the truth.
In his appearance on 'Meet the Press' Sunday, Cheney fell woefully short of truth. On the subject of Iraq, the same can be said for President Bush, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and his deputy, Paul Wolfowitz. But Cheney is the latest example of administration mendacity, and therefore a good place to start in holding the administration accountable.
James Lileks did and had alot to say about it. This is just an excerpt. You should go read the whole thing in spite of Lileks' warning, "Okay. Now comes the gnarly stuff. Bail if you choose; see you tomorrow."
Every day I read a piece like the Strib edit. They all have an inescapable conclusion: Saddam should have been left in power. No, they don’t say that. Yes, the writers would surely insist that Saddam was a wretched tyrant, and the world is better off without him in power, BUT, Baghdad’s electricity service is now undependable. No, but. Yes, but. Perhaps, however. Perfection has not been achieved; the depredations of a three-decade nightmare have not been banished in six months, and that really is the issue, isn’t it. Sorry, what was your question again?
I can’t help but come back to the central theme these edits imply: we should have left Iraq alone. We should have left this charnel house stand. We should have bought a wad of nice French cotton to shove in our ears so the buzz of the flies over the graves didn’t distract us from the important business of deciding whether Syria or China should have the rotating observer-status seat in the Oil-for-Palaces program. Afghanistan, well, that’s understandable, in a way; we were mad. We lashed out. But we should have stopped there, and let the UN deploy its extra-strong Frown Beams against the Iraqi ambassador in the hopes that Saddam would reduce the money he gave to Palestinian suicide bombers down to five grand. Five grand! Hell, that hardly covers the parking tickets your average ambassador owes to the city of New York; who’d blow themselves up for that.
Would the editorialists of the nation be happier if Saddam was still cutting checks to people who blew up not just our allies, but our own citizens? I’d like an answer. Please. Essay question: “Families of terrorists who blow up men, women and children, some of whom are Americans, no longer receive money from Saddam, because Saddam no longer rules Iraq. Is this a good thing, or a bad thing? Explain.”
In short: the same people who chide America for its short-attention span think we should have stopped military operations after the Taliban was routed. (And they quite probably opposed that, for the usual reasons.) The people who think it’s all about oil like to snark that we should go after Saudi Arabia. The people who complain that the current administration is unable to act with nuance and diplomacy cannot admit that we have completely different approaches for Iraq, for Iran, for North Korea. The same people who insist we need the UN deride the Administration when it gives the UN a chance to do something other than throw rotten fruit.
The same people who accuse America of coddling dictators are sputtering with bilious fury because we actually deposed one.
You really should go read the whole thing...and follow all of the embedded links to background stories and corroborating sources. And don't fault James for his attitude. It's not really his. He is actually sharing it with about 69% of the American people.
:: Mark 8:26 AM [+] ::