For the past five years, CBS’s “60 Minutes” has been a safe haven for any Republican to voice his or her displeasure with the Bush administration. In fact, the program has been a walking billboard for such sentiments.
With that in mind, given former Sen. Bob Kerrey’s rather eye-opening op-ed in today’s Wall Street Journal (h/t Allah at Hot Air), it seems safe to assume the outspoken Democrat will be on an upcoming installment of “60 Minutes” to share his disagreements with the foreign policy positions of many members of his Party.
I for one am looking forward to seeing the look on the face of whichever “60 Minutes” host gets the assignment when Kerrey says the following (emphasis added throughout):
Let me restate the case for this Iraq war from the U.S. point of view. The U.S. led an invasion to overthrow Saddam Hussein because Iraq was rightly seen as a threat following Sept. 11, 2001. For two decades we had suffered attacks by radical Islamic groups but were lulled into a false sense of complacency because all previous attacks were "over there." It was our nation and our people who had been identified by Osama bin Laden as the "head of the snake." But suddenly Middle Eastern radicals had demonstrated extraordinary capacity to reach our shores.
As for Saddam, he had refused to comply with numerous U.N. Security Council resolutions outlining specific requirements related to disclosure of his weapons programs. He could have complied with the Security Council resolutions with the greatest of ease. He chose not to because he was stealing and extorting billions of dollars from the U.N. Oil for Food program.
No matter how incompetent the Bush administration and no matter how poorly they chose their words to describe themselves and their political opponents, Iraq was a larger national security risk after Sept. 11 than it was before. And no matter how much we might want to turn the clock back and either avoid the invasion itself or the blunders that followed, we cannot. The war to overthrow Saddam Hussein is over. What remains is a war to overthrow the government of Iraq.
That’ll make for fun on a Sunday evening, don’t you think? And how will this go over with a “60 Minutes” interviewer:
The [war] critics who bother me the most are those who ordinarily would not be on the side of supporting dictatorships, who are arguing today that only military intervention can prevent the genocide of Darfur, or who argued yesterday for military intervention in Bosnia, Somalia and Rwanda to ease the sectarian violence that was tearing those places apart.
Suppose we had not invaded Iraq and Hussein had been overthrown by Shiite and Kurdish insurgents. Suppose al Qaeda then undermined their new democracy and inflamed sectarian tensions to the same level of violence we are seeing today. Wouldn't you expect the same people who are urging a unilateral and immediate withdrawal to be urging military intervention to end this carnage? I would.
Exactly. And, these are the same folks that will be asking America to go back once the real civil war in the area breaks out, assuming we leave capriciously as today’s Democrats are demanding.
Of course, whoever interviews Kerrey won’t agree with such principles, and will be quite shocked to hear a Democrat utter them, and these:
Al Qaeda in particular has targeted for abduction and murder those who are essential to a functioning democracy: school teachers, aid workers, private contractors working to rebuild Iraq's infrastructure, police officers and anyone who cooperates with the Iraqi government. Much of Iraq's middle class has fled the country in fear.
With these facts on the scales, what does your conscience tell you to do? If the answer is nothing, that it is not our responsibility or that this is all about oil, then no wonder today we Democrats are not trusted with the reins of power. American lawmakers who are watching public opinion tell them to move away from Iraq as quickly as possible should remember this: Concessions will not work with either al Qaeda or other foreign fighters who will not rest until they have killed or driven into exile the last remaining Iraqi who favors democracy.
Darned right, Bob. I can’t wait to see you say this to Leslie, Morley, Steve, Scott, Lara, or my personal choice, Mike.
Of course, I’m not holding my breath that this will happen. But, a media analyst has to have his dreams.