IRONY: Dick Cheney, Liz Cheney Blast President Obama on Iraq Crisis

dick cheney1 350x203 IRONY:  Dick Cheney, Liz Cheney Blast President Obama on Iraq Crisis

IRONY: Dick Cheney, Liz Cheney Blast President Obama on Iraq Crisis (Credit: Donkey Hotey)

(OPINION) — Former vice president Dick Cheney and his daughter, failed Senate candidate Liz Cheney, took to the Wall Street Journal to sharply criticize President Barack Obama on Iraq. Oh, the irony — this is coming from one of the chief engineers of the U.S. invasion of Iraq.

The Cheneys painted a picture of gloom and doom from the start of their op-ed:  “Rarely has a U.S. president been so wrong about so much at the expense of so many.””Too many times to count, Mr. Obama has told us he is ‘ending’ the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan—as though wishing made it so. His rhetoric has now come crashing into reality.”

Cheney, who gained a lot from the war via Halliburton, said al Qaeda had already been “largely defeated” when Obama took office, thanks to the “heroic efforts” of our soldiers during the Bush administration. Um, just like the ‘Mission Accomplished’ stunt George W. Bush pulled on the air craft carrier only to watch all hell break loose shortly thereafter.

According to Dick Cheney and his daughter (who suddenly became a foreign policy expert) believe President Obama had one job in Iraq and that was to “negotiate an agreement to leave behind some residual American forces, training and intelligence capabilities to help secure the peace.” But “instead, he abandoned Iraq and we are watching American defeat snatched from the jaws of victory.” Wow, you would think he and George W. Bush had prevailed in Iraq and captured Osama bin Laden too. Talk about hubris.

The Cheneys slammed Obama for talking about climate change and golfing as Islamic militants were making gains on the way to Baghdad in recent days. They went deep — beyond accusing Obama of having his priorities twisted — adding he’s “willfully blind to the impact of his policies.”

They added, “despite clear evidence of the dire need for American leadership around the world, the desperation of our allies and the glee of our enemies, President Obama seems determined to leave office ensuring he has taken America down a notch.  Indeed, the speed of the terrorists’ takeover of territory in Iraq has been matched only by the speed of American decline on his watch.”

I should also note that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton threw Obama under a bus during her town hall interview in CNN over his handling of the Syrian crisis. This comes as the president’s approval ratings for foreign policy have taken a hit. Still, it’s just incredulous that Dick Cheney, of all people could attack Obama on the handling of the Iraq war which he helped to engineer. According to one study, top Bush administration officials told 935 lies bout Iraq, with 48 of those attributed to Dick Cheney. Enough said.

In case you have forgotten, here’s a list of Dick Cheney’s greatest hits thanks to the Daily Kos:

  • “And he [Saddam Hussein] is actively pursuing nuclear weapons at this time.” (March, 2002)
  • “I think it will go relatively quickly. Weeks rather than months.” (March, 2003)
  • “My belief is we will, in fact, be greeted as liberators.” (March, 2003)
  • I think they’re in the last throes, if you will, of the insurgency.” (July, 2005)

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid tore into Dick Cheney and all the neo-cons beating their war drums:

But instead of addressing issues at home, we’re stuck listening to the very same neocons who pushed us into the Iraq War in the first place, as they try to plunge our military into another foreign misadventure. And what is truly absurd is the fact that after all these years, their suggestions haven’t changed one bit. And who are these so-called experts, so eager to commit American service members to another war? Why is their advice so valuable?

How about former Bush Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, who has accused President Obama of not taking a ‘strong position’ in Iraq? In 2003, Wolfowitz took a strong position on Iraqi sectarian violence, when he absurdly stated: “There’s been none of the record in Iraq of ethnic militias fighting one another.”

There’s also conservative pundit Bill Kristol, who infamously predicted that American soldiers would be welcomed as liberators, and that the Iraq war would last two months. He also claimed that there’s no evidence of discord among Sunnis and Shiites in Iraq. Yet, even in light of his incorrect assertions about Iraq, Kristol is beating the war drum alongside all of his neo-conservative friends.

This morning, an op-ed by former Vice President Dick Cheney appeared in the Wall Street Journal. If there is one thing we can all agree on here, it’s that we should not be taking advice on Iraq from Dick Cheney. To be on the wrong side of Dick Cheney is to be on the right side of history.
To the architects of the Iraq War who are now so eager to offer their expert analysis, I say: “Thanks, but no thanks.” Unfortunately, we already tried it your way and it was the biggest foreign policy blunder in United States history. President Obama and his military advisors are considering their options to address ISIS – but putting combat troops back into Iraq is not and should not be one of them.

George W. Bush and Dick Cheney Helped Iraqis Lose Their Country to Militants

george bush and dick cheney 350x222 George W. Bush and Dick Cheney Helped Iraqis Lose Their Country to Militants

Thanks to George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, Iraqis Lost Their Country to Insurgents (Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

(OPINION) — Iraq is becoming a thorn in the side of America and we have no-one to blame but ourselves. Um, well, let’s just say, we can blame former president George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Condoleezza Rice and others, for this mess. We made a horrible mistake when we invaded Iraq on a lie — that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, but like former secretary of state Colin Powell said, “if you break it, you own it.” We are seeing the results of George Bush’s handiwork day by day as the country sinks into a civil war.

Slate writer Reihan Salam makes some ridiculous assertions in his latest article that we should re-intervene with good intentions. Really? That’s impossible, since they see us as the enemy. Then he pushes the notion that somehow, the U.S. has some magical power that can help it stave off catastrophe in the world. You know, President Obama can just wave a magical wand and all the problems will be fixed and averted. We can’t continue to send our young men and women in harm’s way, considering the price they pay when they get back — VA hospital, no jobs, etc.  Salam writes that a U.S. military presence could have mollified the Sunnis and prevented a civil war. So, our soldiers are babysitters now? What about the families of these soldiers?

The notion that we were wrong to go in but that we were also wrong to get out is hard to comprehend for many people. Once Americans collectively settled on the idea that the Iraq War was a disaster, it was perhaps inevitable that we’d want to wash our hands of the whole ordeal. President Obama appeared to do just that when he declared in December of 2011 that “we’re leaving behind a sovereign, stable, and self-reliant Iraq,” knowing full well that we were doing no such thing. The disaster that is the Iraq War did not end when the last convoy of U.S. combat troops left the country more than three years ago, as many of us are now learning as the fragile Iraqi state loses ground to Sunni extremists.

There are precious few people who’ve been right about Iraq from the start. One of them is Brent Scowcroft, who had served as national security adviser in the first Bush administration. Americans had two big opportunities to listen to Scowcroft on Iraq. We blew both of them.

[...]

There are no easy answers as to what the United States should do next in Iraq. The U.S. has so far refused to launch drone strikes in support of the Iraqi government, though the Obama administration might still have a change of heart. Sunni militants are still on the march, and I have to assume that Iraqi Shias are not going to be in a compromising mood in the weeks and months to come. Kenneth Pollack, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution best known for having offered a very hedged, very cautious case for invading Iraq, has recommended that the U.S. government use Maliki’s desperation to its advantage by promising Iraq the military support it needs in exchange for sweeping political reform designed to create a more inclusive Iraqi government. But one wonders what might have happened had we listened to Scowcroft—had we kept a residual U.S. military force in Iraq to prevent this nightmare from having occurred in the first place.

The fact is, Iraq is a tragedy, but the U.S. must refrain from putting boots on the ground. Cooperation via an international coalition would be appropriate and not taking unilateral military involvement as George W. Bush engaged in. The horrors we are seeing today are the result of a failed Bush strategy, but the Republicans would have you think President Obama is the author and finisher of this mess. There are no easy answers, but another military intervention isn’t the answer.

Swapping Five Thugs for American POW Bowe Bergdahl Sets Dangerous Precedent

bowe bergdahl 350x270 Swapping Five Thugs for American POW Bowe Bergdahl Sets Dangerous Precedent

Swapping Five Thugs for American POW Bowe Bergdahl Sets Dangerous Precedent

(OPINION) — Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl needed to come home from captivity in Afghanistan, but it shouldn’t be at the cost of swapping some brutal thugs at Guantanamo Bay. It sets a dangerous precedent and it’s a page from the George W. Bush playbook — act now, worry later.  Still, as a mother, I can’t help but feel some sympathy to his parents for the five years of anguish they have had to live through. In short, I am very conflicted about the prisoner swap deal

I have had some time to think about the turn of events that led to Bergdahl’s release from captivity in Afghanistan where he was held as a prisoner of war for five years. After learning that several soldiers died trying to find him, my heart breaks for the families of those fallen soldiers. To make it worse, Bergdahl is being called a deserter by many because he walked off the base. In their minds, Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl is no hero. Still, that’s no reason to leave one of our own behind. One of our own — how about bringing home the thousands President Obama intends to leave behind to help stabilize a country led by an ungrateful leader such as President Hamid Karzai?

The soldiers we lost in the hunt for Bowe Bergdahl have been identified as  Staff Sergeant Clayton Bowen, 29, and Private First Class Morris Walker, 23, who were killed in an IED explosion on August 18, 2009. Staff Sergeant Kurt Curtiss, 27, on August 26, 2009. Second Lieutenant Darryn Andrews, 34, and Private First Class Matthew Michael Martinek, 20, died after a rocket-propelled grenade ambush on September 4, 2009. Lastly,  Staff Sergeant Michael Murphrey, 25, was killed in an IED blast on September 5, 2009.

President Obama’s intentions may have been honorable, but you can’t deny, it’s a game changer in rules of engagement, when dealing with extremist groups like the Taliban. The idea that we don’t negotiate with terrorists was just stomped on, particularly since Bergdahl deliberately wandered away from his base in Paktika province five years ago.

The Taliban is celebrating the release of five of its senior members while we are left in the throes of confusion and anger at the White House. How could the president swap a murderous thug named Mohammad Fazl, who is closely associated with Mullah Mohammed Omar, the Taliban’s commander? He is wanted by the United Nations as a potential war criminal for the murders of thousands of Shiites. His Gitmo case file says it all….”detainee is likely to pose a threat to the U.S., its interests and its allies.” There are no guarantees that the five prisoners won’t revert to their old ways and engage in terroristic behavior.

The Republicans are losing no time in their “outrage,” oblivious to George W. Bush and Dick Cheney releasing 500 Gitmo inmates and Ronald Reagan selling missiles to Iran in exchange for the hostages being freed. It’s laughable that Fox News should trot out Dick Cheney of all people to give his two cents about Obama failing, saying those terrorists will come back and attack America. He should know since one of the prisoners’ released on his watch, Abu Sufian bin Qumu, is suspected of playing a role in the Benghazi consulate attack.

Again, I am not justifying what President Obama did. I am very concerned about the precedent this will set. CNN’s legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin said President Obama broke the law. Um, isn’t he the Commander-in-Chief, or is it that he’s being a bit too uppity for his critics? The fact is, this is not the time for partisan posturing, but a time to reassess American policy where this matter is concerned. We have been down this road before and Americans shouldn’t be used as bargaining chips. That goes for when Ronald Reagan did it and now with Obama.

 Swapping Five Thugs for American POW Bowe Bergdahl Sets Dangerous Precedent

Democrats Upset President Obama M.I.A. in Midterm Election Campaigns

obama donkey hotey 1 350x225 Democrats Upset President Obama M.I.A. in Midterm Election Campaigns

Democrats Upset President Obama M.I.A. in Midterm Election Campaigns (Credit: Donkey Hotey)

President Obama has become toxic to the Democratic candidates running in the midterm elections as his predecessor George W. Bush had become to Republicans. Even though President Obama has said that the November elections mean a lot to him, many Democrats are worried that he has become a liability. They are griping that he doesn’t have a strategy nor has he given them the attention they need. What troubles me is that he ran two stellar presidential campaigns, making full use of social media, engaging young people, and rallying other demographics. That’s not happening in the midterm elections.

The problem, according to the nearly two dozen top Democratic operatives and outside allies who shared their frustration with POLITICO, is Obama’s investment — or lack thereof — in the midterms. The White House, they complain, has yet to broaden its economic message. The president has no set meetings with his political staff, and does little to help beyond headlining events to activate big donors. There’s no strategic direction.

Former President Bill Clinton and his staff have been getting regular midterm briefings from Democratic campaign staffers — including updates by Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Executive Director Guy Cecil, who’s flown up to New York to deliver them in person. Obama’s only conversations about races or dynamics with anyone connected with the main campaign committees, they said, have been limited to short chats en route to or at fundraisers.

[...]

 

Throughout his presidency, Democrats have griped that Obama has never focused on anyone’s races but his own. This time — with the last two years of his term in the balance — White House aides repeat that he’s all in, insisting to operatives in the face of questions about the president’s engagement that he really is focused strategically on how he and his political operation can help.

 

They just can’t seem to get people to believe them.

 

“He cares about these elections, not just politically,” senior adviser Dan Pfeiffer told POLITICO. “It’s personal to him. These folks are not just candidates, they are the president’s friends, and have had his back for years, and he has theirs in these elections.” Source: Politico

I would venture to say, if the Democrats take another shellacking in the midterm elections as they previously did, which resulted in the loss of the House majority, the squabbling about Obama will hit a fever-pitch. It will embolden more Republican wingnuts to throw their hats in the ring for the presidential election. Come on Mr. President, get off the golf course and plan a strategy to keep embarrassment at bay come November. Bill Clinton is upstaging you once again….

 Democrats Upset President Obama M.I.A. in Midterm Election Campaigns

Karl Rove Slammed for Suggesting Hillary Clinton Suffered Brain Damage

karl rove 350x262 Karl Rove Slammed for Suggesting Hillary Clinton Suffered Brain Damage

Karl Rove Slammed for Suggesting Hillary Clinton Suffered Brain Damage (Credit: Fox News Video Screengrab)

Karl Rove, former president George W. Bush’s right hand man, is taking a lot of heat for suggesting that Hillary Clinton suffered brain damage. Um, judging from his freak-out on national television as the 2012 presidential election was called for Barack Obama, he has a lot of nerve. So, not only did Hillary Clinton play a role in murdering Vince Foster during the travelgate scandal, now he’s saying she may have suffered a traumatic brain injury.

The official diagnosis was a blood clot. Rove told the conference near LA Thursday, “Thirty days in the hospital? And when she reappears, she’s wearing glasses that are only for people who have traumatic brain injury? We need to know what’s up with that.”

Let’s just say, considering Karl Rove’s history, it’s worth taking the time to fact-check everything that he says. Like I said, fact-check is the key with Karl Rove and it turns out that this was yet another lie being spewed by the man who engineered George W. Bush’s dubious election wins.

Rove’s claims are false, without evidence, and contrary to medical experts’ opinion. Clinton spent four days, not 30 days, in the hospital after a blood clot was discovered in her brain several days after her fall. Furthermore, according to experts and the State Department, glasses worn by Clinton during her January 2013 testimony on the attacks in Benghazi were a corrective instrument meant to treat “double vision” as a result of her fall — not brain damage.

Of course, Karl Rove tried to walk it back. Sort of:

“I never used that phrase, I never used that phrase. But look, she had a serious health episode. And I don’t know about you, but if you go through a serious health episode, it causes you to look at life a little bit differently. This was a serious deal,” he said.

America’s Newsroom host Bill Hemmer challenged Rove on his timeline, saying his research showed that Clinton was in the hospital only for three days. Rove conceded the point about her hospital stay, but largely stuck by his month-long timeline. “She goes in on a Sunday, she comes out on a Wednesday. But this is a 30-day period where she’s fighting something.”

 Karl Rove Slammed for Suggesting Hillary Clinton Suffered Brain Damage

Condoleezza Rice Backs Out of Rutgers Commencement Speech After Students Protest

condoleezza rice 350x233 Condoleezza Rice Backs Out of Rutgers Commencement Speech After Students Protest

Condoleezza Rice Backs Out of Rutgers Commencement Speech After Students Protest

Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice canceled her commencement address at Rutgers University after students and some faculty members protested her appearance.

Rice said in a statement Saturday that she informed Rutgers President Robert Barchi that she was declining the invitation.

“Commencement should be a time of joyous celebration for the graduates and their families,” Rice said. “Rutgers’ invitation to me to speak has become a distraction for the university community at this very special time.”

The school’s board of governors had voted to pay the former secretary of state under President George W. Bush and national security adviser $35,000 for her appearance at the May 18 ceremony.

But some students and faculty had protested, staging sit-ins and saying Rice bore some responsibility for the Iraq War as a member of the Bush administration. Barchi and other school leaders had resisted the calls to disinvite Rice, saying the university welcomes open discourse on controversial topics.

While the GOP freak-out over Benghazi hits a fever pitch, glad to see that the thousands of lives lost as a result of invading Iraq on a lie, have not been lost due to a short memory span.

 Condoleezza Rice Backs Out of Rutgers Commencement Speech After Students Protest

Mitt Romney’s Top Donors Back Ex-FL Gov. Jeb Bush for 2016 Presidential Election

jeb bush 350x231 Mitt Romneys Top Donors Back Ex FL Gov. Jeb Bush for 2016 Presidential Election

Mitt Romney’s Top Donors Back Ex-FL Gov. Jeb Bush for 2016 Presidential Election (Credit: White House Archives)

Opinion:  It’s beginning to look like we could have another Bush running for the White House in the 2016 presidential elections. The ghost of George W. Bush will rear its ugly head and to the Democrats’ benefit. Let’s not forget that Jeb Bush was the one who signed Florida’s controversial Stand Your Ground legislation into law.

The Washington Post reports, “Many of the Republican Party’s most powerful insiders and financiers have begun a behind-the-scenes campaign to draft former Florida governor Jeb Bush to run in the 2016 presidential race, courting him and his intimates and starting talks on fundraising strategy.”

“Concerned that the George Washington Bridge traffic scandal has damaged New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s (R) political standing and alarmed by the steady rise of Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), prominent donors, conservative leaders and longtime operatives say they consider Bush the GOP’s brightest hope to win back the White House.”

It’s interesting to note:  “Many if not most of Mitt Romney’s major donors are reaching out to Bush and his confidants with phone calls, e-mails and invitations to meet, according to interviews with 30 senior Republicans. One bundler estimated that the ‘vast majority’ of Romney’s top 100 donors would back Bush in a competitive nomination fight.”

All I can say to a Jeb Bush presidential candidacy is no….just no!

 Mitt Romneys Top Donors Back Ex FL Gov. Jeb Bush for 2016 Presidential Election

Alex Robinson, Kansas School Distrit Safety Officer, Arrested for Molesting 3 Boys

alex robinson 300x168 Alex Robinson, Kansas School Distrit Safety Officer, Arrested for Molesting 3 Boys

Alex Robinson, Kansas School Distrit Safety Officer, Arrested for Molesting 3 Boys

Alex Robinson, a Wichita school district safety supervisor was  arrested on Wednesday and charged with multiple counts of unlawful sexual contact with minors, who were in his care.

The former Kansas police officer, who was honored by George W. Bush with a President’s Volunteer Service Award for his work with the Boys and Girls Club, is accused of molesting three boys between the ages of 11 and 14.

Alex Robinson has been charged with two counts of criminal sodomy, three counts of aggravated indecent liberties, two counts of indecent liberties with a child and one count of aggravated indecent liberties with a child.

Robinson has been placed on paid administrative leave from his $75,790 job, pending the outcome of the case. He was also asked to resign from the board of Real Men, Real Heroes, which is a not-for-profit organization that works with at-risk youths.

Bush Defense Secretary Robert Gates Defends Obama’s Handling of Crimean Invasion

robert gates1 300x219 Bush Defense Secretary Robert Gates Defends Obamas Handling of Crimean Invasion

Bush Defense Secretary Robert Gates Defends Obama Handling of Crimean Invasion

Former president George W. Bush Defense Secretary Robert Gates defended President Obama’s handling of the Crimean invasion and his weekend golf outing on “Fox News Sunday.” Gates pushed back at conservatives who blamed President Obama’s “weak” foreign policy for Russian President Vladimir Putin being emboldened to invade Ukraine’s Crimean region.

Robert Gates also dismissed arguments that President Obama’s handling of the Syrian conflict or his efforts to reduce the defense budget gave Putin impetus to invade Crimea. He argued that Putin also invaded Georgia during the George W. Bush administration.

Gates said, My own view is, after all, Putin invaded Georgia when George W. Bush was president. Nobody ever accused George W. Bush of being weak or unwilling to use military force.” He added, “So, I think Putin is very opportunistic in these areas. I think that even if, even if we had launched attacks in Syria, even if we weren’t cutting our defense budget, I think Putin saw an opportunity here in Crimea and he has seized it.” #BOOM

You will recall Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said President Obama is “weak” and “invites aggression.” Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI) said, “Putin is playing chess and I think we’re playing marbles” and that Russia is “running circle around us.” Sen. John McCain also called President Obama weak.

Robert Gates also dismissed criticism of President Obama being on vacation as the Crimean crisis intensifies. He told Chris Wallace, “I’ve seen this happen year after year, president after president. President takes a day or two off and plays golf. Doesn’t matter whether it’s a President Obama or the first President Bush going fishing. I think you’ve got to give these guys a little time off, you know, mostly they are working 20 hours a day.”

Robert Gates also predicted that Russia will continue to control Crimea for the foreseeable future.

Robert Gates Blames Controversy Over Book on Washington’s Partisan Culture

robert gates1 204x300 Robert Gates Blames Controversy Over Book on Washingtons Partisan Culture

Robert Gates Blames Controversy Over Book on Washington’s Partisan Culture

Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates defended his book on Sunday during an appearance on  CBS’s “Sunday Morning,” blaming the controversy over criticizing a sitting president on the ‘partisan culture in Washington’ that was quick to focus on the negative statements. He said they are less interested in the positive marks he gave President Barack Obama. I would venture to say the first person who made it partisan was ROBERT GATES. #robertgates, #ijs

Robert Gates said he stands by everything he wrote in his book, entitled “Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War.” He said, “The way people are looking at the book reflects the polarization of our political process at this point. A lot of people – not everybody — (are) going to look at this book in terms of how does it advance (their) particular political agenda, or how does it damage (their) political agenda.”

Robert Gates, who is a Republican, was appointed secretary of state by former President George W. Bush in 2006 and was asked to stay on by President Obama. He left the position in 2011. Looking back, I would say that was a big mistake. You see, Gates was on the front lines of pushing this country into an unnecessary war in Iraq, on a lie, no less.

Gates wrote that President Obama lost faith in his own Afghanistan policy and detailed a conversation in which then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told Obama that she opposed the 2007 Iraq surge as a senator because she was facing Obama in the Democratic presidential primary.