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Cheney vs Blitzer

January 26, 2007

I can’t believe that this one slipped by me. I would have thought this scenario unlikely after the whole Lynne episode, but there they were, Wolf and Dick:

Here is the full transcript.

It pretty amazing to watch. Wolf just goes on and on. I’m not quite sure what answers Wolf is expecting out of Cheney. I mean, he’s asking all the obvious questions, but he keeps getting the same triple-back-flip spin in response. I think Cheney’s most belligerent section was this one:

BLITZER: What, that there were no blunders? The President himself says there were blunders —

CHENEY: Remember, remember me — remember with me what happened in Afghanistan. The United States was actively involved in Afghanistan in the ’80s supporting the effort against the Soviets. The Mujahideen prevailed, everybody walked away. And in Afghanistan, within relatively short order, the Taliban came to power, they created a safe haven for al Qaeda, training camps were established where some 20,000 terrorists trained in the late ’90s. And out of that, out of Afghanistan, because we walked away and ignored it, we had the attack on the USS Cole, the attack on the embassies in East Africa, and 9/11, where the people trained and planned in Afghanistan for that attack and killed 3,000 Americans. That is what happens when we walk away from a situation like that in the Middle East.

I’m not sure what argument he’s trying to make.  Perhaps he’s suggesting that if the Soviets had invaded Iraq, we would have supported Saddam?  Or, is he saying that we should have let the Soviets win in Afghanistan?  Supported them even?  When he says “walked away”, what does that mean?  We didn’t have troops there, and Cheney doesn’t suggest what we could have done otherwise.  Cheney thinks he’s making a point here.  Afghanistan was the Soviets’ Iraq, a trap apparently sprung by us.

Now you might have been able to do that before 9/11. But after 9/11, we learned that we have a vested interest in what happens on the ground in the Middle East. Now, if you are going to walk away from Iraq today and say, well, gee, it’s too tough, we can’t complete the task, we just are going to quit, you’ll create exactly that same kind of situation again.

What did we really learn from 9/11?  Lock the cockpit door?  Cheney makes it sound like all the previous presidents and their counter terrorism gurus had their thumbs up their collective asses this whole time because 19 jihadi’s managed to sneak by (on their watch, mind you).  Of course everyone knew we had a vested interest in what happens in the Middle East.  Jesus H.  It was our vested interest that led to 9/11.  He’s kind of admitting that they were completely ignorant.  It makes you wonder how we’re supposed to believe them now.   But, hey, he got to drop “9/11” one more time while discussing Iraq.

Now, the critics have not suggested a policy. They haven’t put anything in place. All they want to do, all they’ve recommended is to redeploy or to withdraw our forces. The fact is, we can complete the task in Iraq. We’re going to do it. We’ve got Petraeus — General Petraeus taking over. It is a good strategy. It will work. But we have to have the stomach to finish the task.

(Trust me)

I’m not sure why it’s even worth analyzing (the rest of it).   For the good of America, impeach these guys before they do any more damage.  Seriously.

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