The panel on the Chris Matthews show seems to forget the media’s part in selling the Iraq invasion during this discussion on KKKarl Rove’s new book. They’re more than happy to tell us now that it was some sort of common knowledge that the Bush administration and Cheney wanted to go in there no matter what, but that sure as hell isn’t what they were peddling before we invaded. Someone needs to ask all of them to watch Buying the War from Bill Moyers Journal and see if that helps them to remember the part they played in fear mongering and how the media is just as responsible as the Bush administration for scaring the hell out of the public and that the Congress would not have voted the way they did without the media's help scaring the hell out of them just before they were up for reelection.
It doesn't excuse the Congress for going along, but this bunch has got a bad case of selective memory about what actually happened in the lead up to the invasion and their part selling it. If the public had known what they're saying here was some sort of common knowledge, the fear mongering by the Bush administration might not have worked.
Matthews: Welcome back. Former Bush political mastermind Karl Rove is out with his book; the first of a line of memoirs coming to the Bush team, including Bush and Cheney themselves. They’ve got books coming. Rove writes that he regrets not making a stronger defense of Bush when WMD’s were not found in Iraq. But at the same time Rove seemed to confirm the suspicions of many Iraq war critiques. Here’s what he wrote.
“Would the Iraq War have occurred without WMD? I doubt it. Congress was very unlikely to have supported the use-of-force resolution without the WMD threat. The Bush administration itself would probably have sought other ways to constrain Saddam.”
Matthews: Dan what I read into that, perhaps too tightly was a sort of veiled admission that WMD was merely the sales case in the war with Iraq, to get into that war and they had other reasons for going; they wanted to go anyway whether they found weapons or not.
Rather: Well, based on that quote that would be a proper assessment. We know that Dick Cheney, the Vice President and others came in saying “What do we do about Iraq?” So this all fits with what we knew before. I would see it as confirmation of what we pretty much knew before.
Matthews: Andrea that question, I remember, I think you alluded to what I’ve always heard and have confirmed recently from Bill Cohen, Secretary of Defense under Clinton. First question Cheney said to him when he met him was “What you doing on Iraq?” That was his obsession. He said I don’t want no (?) zone of what’s going on in the world. I want Iraq news.
Mitchell: Well, the bottom line is that you know Rove said in that same quote, he said that we did not lie about WMD. But the bottom line is that months, months before they ever went with the war resolution they, the Brits were told that the President made up his mind. Condi Rice told Richard Haas that the President made up his mind in July of 2002.
Mitchell: They were down—they were headed down that track.
Matthews: Yeah, Katy the question is about—I mean this is always going to be part of our history of everybody of this generation is watching is watching this. It’s always going to be a debate. Why’d they go to war and what was it. Was it ideological? Was it getting even for the father, the attempted assassination; was it just Cheney’s brain soup? What was it that made them go to war?
Katy Kay goes on to say that we’ve never had a satisfactory answer. No Katy, we've had a satisfactory answer. The press just didn’t report on it and you’re all still having these phony conversations like all of you don’t realize you helped the Bush administration sell the lies. At least Dan Rather bothered to call this book by Rove and upcoming from Bush and Cheney what they are, revisionist history. But no Dan, future history is not needed to sort this out. If the media did their jobs it would be sorted out already now and it would have been sorted out before we invaded in the public's mind. Instead all of you are still pretending there are questions about why we invaded that country. Shameless.