On Sunday morning’s edition of ABC News’ This Week, former Vice President Dick Cheney formed into a solid long enough to rehash the criticisms that we already didn’t want to hear from him. Since Jay Carney already destroyed Cheney with a single line at his final briefing, there’s no reason to rehash the whole thing, so here are the main takeaways from Jon Karl’s Dick Cheney interview.
The first is that Cheney really has no freaking idea what to do in Iraq. When Karl first asks him what he’d do in Iraq, Cheney literally danced around the question, telling Karl what he’d do everywhere but Iraq. After a few minutes of that, Karl re-focused Cheney.
“What would you do in Iraq?” Karl asked, and as Cheney tried to rewind to “what we should have done in Iraq,” Karl interrupted. “No, no, what would you do now?”
Cheney did what a lot of the President’s critics do, act like they’d send in troops without saying they’d send in troops, but concluding that ” there are no good, easy answers in Iraq.”
Embedded in that exchange, though, is the second, telling takeaway, as he told Karl that he’d “be helping the resistance up in Syria, in ISIS’ backyard, with training and weapons and so forth, in order to be able to do a more effective job on that end of the party.“
Set aside the fact that he just suggested helping a Syrian resistance that includes ISIS, Cheney revealed something that many of us already know; namely, the attitude with which he regards the lives at stake in the Middle East conflicts we’ve been embroiled in for a dozen years. Ain’t no party like a Cheney party, to be sure, but not in a good way.
Finally, Karl demonstrated the mainstream media’s incredible lack of self-awareness when, after a week of people asking why the eff anyone would book Cheney and company as experts on Iraq, he asked Cheney why anyone should listen to him about Iraq, after booking him to find out what he thinks about Iraq. Cheney’s short answer: he wasn’t wrong about Iraq.
“With all due respect, Jon, I was a strong supporter then of going into Iraq, I’m a strong supporter now. Everybody knows what my position is. There’s nothing to be argued about there.”
Karl’s followup? This.
Here are the relevant portions of Cheney’s interview with Karl, and if you have the stomach for it, you can read the whole thing here.