It seems as if blog hearts are all a flutter these days, debating the administration's rationales for war in Iraq, and about how despite all the stuff about WMD's and mushroom clouds the whole thing was all really just a loving desire to bring Haliburton style democracy to the Middle East.
Well, it's amazing what you can still find on the Internets. It turns out that the neo-conservative government in exile in Clinton years ran a little operation called the Project for a New American Century (PNAC), and back in 1998, they wrote a letter to President Clinton stating the urgent need to invade Iraq. If you don't believe me, you can read the thing here.
Now, the first thing I'd like to do is review this letter and identify some of its main words, just to get an idea as to what the fine folks at PNAC were up to. Specifically, let's identify a couple of words and see how many times this letter references them. Ready? Here we go.
Liberty, liberate or variations thereof: 0
Freedom or freedom fries: 0
Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) or variations thereof: 3
Vital National Interests or variations thereof: 3
Next, let's take note of the many good Americans that signed this letter and play "where are they now", which so happens to be one of my most very favorite games. Ready, here we go.
Donald Rumsfeld: Current Position: Secretary of War/Defense. Claim to Fame: Directed Invasion and Occupation of Iraq in 2003; In response to soldier's question about supply of armor remarked that you go to war with the army that you have.
Paul "Wolfy" Wolfowitz: Current Position: Deputy Secretary of War/Defense. Claim to Fame: Said we had to make up that stuff about liberation and democracy and all that to get public's approval. Next gig: World Bank.
William Kristol: Current Position: Editor and Chief, Weakly Standard; Regular special guest policy political consultant for Fox News, conservative scold extraordinaire. Clame to fame: Counceled Republicans to oppose any and all efforts by President Clinton to pass health care reform in 1994.
Richard Perle: Current Position: wondering around the AEI or PNAC. Former position: Chairman, Defense Policy Board until 2004, a Pentagon group that urged war on Iraq after 9-11. Claim to Fame: Nickname, Prince of Darkness.
John Bolton: Current Position: Undersecretary of State for arms proliferation. Claim to fame: bullied peon analysts that disagreed with his goal of manipulating intelligence data. Next gig: United Nations.
Elliot Abrams: Current Position: Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy National Security Advisor for Global Democratic Strategy. Claims to fame: too numerous to mention but was instrumental in helping to lead failed coup against democratically elected government in Venezuela in 2002.
Robert Z0ellick: Current Position: Deputy Secretary of State. Former position in W administrationL U.S. Trade Rep from 2001-2004. Claim to Fame: Served on Advisory Council for Enron.
Paula Dobriansky: Current Position: Under Secretary State, Global Affairs. Claim to Fame: Kinda cute. Marital status unknown.
Richard L. Armitage: Current Position: Unknown. Former Position: Deputy Secretary of State under Colin Powell.
Well, I'm afraid that's all the time we have today, folks. But I hope you can see that the organization that helped push for the war in Iraq, and which is now widely represented in the administration, didn't seem to care much for democracy or freedom fries or any of that mushy-gooshy stuff back in 1998. I'll leave you to draw your own conclusions. I report, you decide.