Wonky Muse
Wonky Muse

March 13, 2007

Cheney's Last Throes

The man with the popularity rating and credibility of a nail shoots off his mouth again. As I've said before, no one should believe anything he says but just because I feel like it, let's take apart his lies, shall we?

"When members of Congress speak not of victory, but of time limits -- when members speak not of victory but of time limits, deadlines or other arbitrary measures, they're telling the enemy simply to watch the clock and wait us out."

So he's all for a perpetual war in Iraq now. This, however, is what Cheney said in 1991:

Well, just as it’s important, I think, for a president to know when to commit U.S. forces to combat, it’s also important to know when not to commit U.S. forces to combat. I think for us to get American military personnel involved in a civil war inside Iraq would literally be a quagmire. Once we got to Baghdad, what would we do? Who would we put in power? What kind of government would we have? Would it be a Sunni government, a Shi’a government, a Kurdish government? Would it be secular, along the lines of the Ba’ath Party? Would be fundamentalist Islamic? I do not think the United States wants to have U.S. military forces accept casualties and accept the responsibility of trying to govern Iraq. I think it makes no sense at all.
"Anyone can say they support the troops and we should take them at their word. But the proof will come when it's time to provide the money. We expect the House and Senate to meet the needs of our military and the generals leading the troops in battle on time and in full measure."

To Cheney, it's all about the money to feed the insatiable monster that is the Iraq war, not about supporting the troops, because here is how he and Bush support the troops:

As the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan drag on, America’s National Guard and Reserve are being called up and deployed on an unprecedented scale. A commission of independent experts set up by Congress in late 2005 to examine the state of the Guard and Reserve submitted its latest report on March 1. The report, which focuses on the Guard, warns of a looming crisis and calls for wholesale changes in the way the force is managed. Commission Chairman Arnold Punaro, a retired Marine major general, says that the practice of 'cross-leveling'—filling out some depleted units by cannibalizing others—is especially dangerous. "Pickup teams belong on a sandlot," he says. "They don’t belong on a battlefield."
And this: The Army is ordering injured troops to go to Iraq.

"This is not right," said Master Sgt. Ronald Jenkins, who has been ordered to Iraq even though he has a spine problem that doctors say would be damaged further by heavy Army protective gear. "This whole thing is about taking care of soldiers," he said angrily. "If you are fit to fight you are fit to fight. If you are not fit to fight, then you are not fit to fight."

As the military scrambles to pour more soldiers into Iraq, a unit of the Army's 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Benning, Ga., is deploying troops with serious injuries and other medical problems, including GIs who doctors have said are medically unfit for battle. Some are too injured to wear their body armor, according to medical records.
Let's not even talk about the veterans abhorrently neglected at Walter Reed and veterans' hospitals, whose welfare if you noticed was not mentioned by Cheney in his speech even once. In Cheney's narrow mind, there is only one equation that matters, as Michael J.W. Stickings, said: Supporting Bush = Supporting the troops.

"Some apparently believe that getting out of Iraq before the job is done will actually strengthen America's hand in the fight against terrorists. This myth is dangerous because it represents a full validation of the al-Qaeda strategy. The terrorists don't expect to beat us in a standup fight. They never have. They're not likely to try. The only way we can win is if we lose our nerve and abandon our mission and the terrorists do believe that they can force that outcome."

I'll let Max Cleland respond to this one:

"Where the hell were you in the Vietnam War? If you had gone to Vietnam like the rest of us, maybe you would have learned something about war. You can't keep troops on the ground forever. You gotta have a mission. You gotta have a purpose.

"You can't keep sending 'em back and back and back with no mission and no purpose. As a matter of fact, the real enemy is Al Qaeda, it's Al Qaeda stupid, it's not in Iraq."
Video of Max Cleland's response here.

Also, this response from Nancy Pelosi:

It is a disservice to our military personnel for President Bush and Vice President Cheney to continue to advocate for an open-ended commitment in Iraq, while brushing aside the advice of military leaders and the bipartisan Iraq Study Group, all of whom argue that the war in Iraq cannot be resolved militarily but only through diplomatic, economic and political means. As the Vice President’s remarks today prove again, the Administration’s answer to continuing violence in Iraq is more troops and more treasure from the American people.
"My friends, it is simply not consistent for anyone to demand aggressive action against the menace posed by the Iranian regime while, at the same time acquiescing in a retreat from Iraq that would leave our worst enemies dramatically emboldened and Israel's best friend, the United States, dangerously weakened."

Here's a study by foreign policy think tank Chatham House:

Military action against Iran would backfire against Israel, which in turn would face "dire and far-reaching" consequences, a leading British foreign policy think-tank believes.

Chatham House says in a report that it is "widely assumed" that preparations are "well under way" in both America and Israel for military action against targets related to Iran's nuclear program. The report by Yossi Mekelberg examines the possible responses by Iran, which may retaliate with massive ballistic missile attacks on Israeli cities such as Tel Aviv or Haifa, resulting in "substantial loss of life".

Israel's relations with moderate Arab states would also be harmed, as any military attack would be seen as an offensive against the Muslim world and would fuel Islamic extremism.
It would've been more believable if Cheney delivered this speech instead.

posted at 3:03 AM by Wonky Muse

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"Sapere Aude."
(Dare to Know)
-- Epistularum Liber Primus, Horace

Wonk (noun): def. A political nerd. Know spelled backwards.

Wonky Muse is the other Filipino American female political blogger. The sane, liberal one.


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