The gall of right wingers who now expect praise for the Iraq war is simply breathtaking. Ari Fleischer appears to think that Obama announcing a withdrawal is somehow a vindication of the war itself.
Paul Begala does well to correct him on this falsehood:
At this moment, Fleischer and other right wingers are trying to skip past the fact that this war was never necessary. There were no WMD. Iraq represented no threat to the United States. It had no links with 9-11 or al Qaeda.
BEGALA: But I'll make a deal with President Bush. We'll give you all the credit for the surge if you take half of the blame for the lies that got us into the war, by which I mean Iraq -- excuse me, Ari, by which I mean...
FLEISCHER: No, Paul, it's not right.
BEGALA: ... by which I mean Ari himself saying Iraq was an imminent threat to America, by which the president of the United States saying it was a mushroom cloud that could become a smoking gun, by which I mean the threat of unmanned aerial drones that Saddam supposedly had that would gas America, the connections that they allege which were false between al Qaeda and -- and Saddam's regime.
So, you know, there was so much they got wrong about this. Some of it just was botched, and some of it was deeply dishonest. And the notion that somehow George Bush is owed any moment of grace here is appalling to the history.
The truth is that the removal of Saddam had long been a right wing wet dream which they were determined to do when 9-11 presented them with the opportunity.
Obama summed it up best in 2002:
What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war. What I am opposed to is the cynical attempt by Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz and other arm-chair, weekend warriors in this Administration to shove their own ideological agendas down our throats, irrespective of the costs in lives lost and in hardships borne.It was both dumb and unnecessary. It should never have been fought. And it undermined international law in a way which makes all of us less safe.
What I am opposed to is the attempt by political hacks like Karl Rove to distract us from a rise in the uninsured, a rise in the poverty rate, a drop in the median income — to distract us from corporate scandals and a stock market that has just gone through the worst month since the Great Depression.
That’s what I’m opposed to. A dumb war. A rash war. A war based not on reason but on passion, not on principle but on politics.
Fliescher is determined to continue to sing the same dumb song he sang from the podium. Begela does well to push back against this idiocy.