Every so often, something emerges from D.C. that is SO outrageous; it gives you the intellectual equivalent of freezer burn. Such was the case, this week, when “The Washington Post” ran a guest editorial by Liz Cheney entitled “Retreat Isn’t An Option.”
It wasn’t so much an opinion piece as a pouty, barely post-pubescent exercise in petulance. (Not particularly well written, either.)
To any of you unfamiliar with Ms. Cheney, up until recently, she was known, in some circles, as “Dick’s Draft Deferment Daughter.”
Back in ’04, “Slate” unearthed a timeline put together by “The Washington Post’s” Phil McCombs in 1991. It went something like this:
Known and very popular cialis coupon which gives all the chance to receive a discount for a preparation which has to be available and exactly cialis coupons has been found in the distant room of this big house about which wood-grouses in the houses tell.
Aug. 29, 1964: Dick and Lynne Cheney marry.
May 19, 1965: The Selective Service classifies Dick Cheney 1-A, “available immediately for military service.”
July 28, 1965: President Lyndon Johnson says draft calls will be doubled.
Oct. 26, 1965: The Selective Service declares that married men without children, who were previously exempted from the draft, will now be called up. Married men with children remain exempt.
Jan. 19, 1966: The Selective Service reclassifies Dick Cheney 3-A, “deferred from military service because service would cause hardship upon his family,” because his wife is pregnant with their first child.
July 28, 1966: Elizabeth Cheney is born, nine months and two days after the married with children draft exemption was announced.
Jan. 30, 1967: Dick Cheney turns 26 and therefore becomes ineligible for the draft.
Wow! Talk about coincidences!
These days Liz is better known as Daddy’s little political appointee, dabbling in State Department duties and feeling free to bring her pugnacious point of view wherever she likes, including the “The Post.”
It is beyond ironic that the daughter of one of the Nation’s best known Chickenhawks, a woman who wouldn’t know Sun Tzu from Doctor Who, can barf up a screed condemning all those opposed to BushCo.’s nation-building fiasco in Iraq.
After starting a rant seemingly targeting only Hillary Clinton Lizzie expands her enraged range: “Sen. Joseph Lieberman is the only national Democrat showing any courage on this issue. We Republicans — with help from senators such as Chuck Hagel — seem ready to race the Democrats to the bottom.”
She never quite explains “the bottom” of what? And, as we all know, war heroes like Hagel can be sooo whiny.
Oh, fiddle-dee-dee! Let’s see her shift into full-tilt harridan mode.
“I’d like to ask the politicians in both parties who are heading for the hills to stop and reflect on these basic facts:
“We are at war. America faces an existential threat.” (‘Cause Daddy said so on Fox two weeks ago! And dat’s a fact, Jack!)
“…It would be nice if we could wake up tomorrow and say, as Sen. Barack Obama suggested at a Jan. 11 hearing, ‘Enough is enough.’ Wishing doesn’t make it so. We will have to fight these terrorists to the death somewhere, sometime. We can’t negotiate with them or ‘solve’ their jihad. If we quit in Iraq now, we must get ready for a harder, longer, more deadly struggle later.” (This philosophy is based on the State Department’s new pamphlet: “Diplomacy Shlipomacy: Kill Them All!”)
On a roll, Liz revs it up: “Quitting helps the terrorists… The terrorists are counting on us to lose our will and retreat under pressure. We’re in danger of proving them right.”
Switching to a Cassandra font, she writes: “Beware the polls.” (A phrase heard often, these days, in the White House.)
“In November the American people expressed serious concerns about Iraq - and about Republican corruption and scandals. They did not say that they want us to lose this war. They did not say that they want us to allow Iraq to become a base for al-Qaeda to conduct global terrorist operations. They did not say that they would rather we fight the terrorists here at home. Until you see a poll that asks those questions, don’t use election results as an excuse to retreat.”
This amazing brand of batshit logic is coming from a lawyer, no less.
She then praises our compadres in the “broader war.” “Brave activists are also standing with us, fighting for freedom of speech, freedom of religion, the empowerment of women. They risk their lives every day to defeat the forces of terrorism. They can’t win without us, and many of them won’t continue to fight if they believe we’re abandoning them. Politicians urging America to quit in Iraq should explain how we win the war on terrorism once we’ve scared all of our allies away.”
Give me a minute, here, to uncross my eyes. Okay, the brave activists won’t be brave anymore if we’re not there urging them to swagger. And, if we pull out of Iraq, it will scare our allies away. Wait! We still have allies?
Launching into “God Bless America” mode, she opines: “No force on Earth — especially not an army of terrorists and insurgents — can defeat our soldiers militarily. American troops will win if we show even one-tenth the courage here at home that they show every day on the battlefield. And by the way, you cannot wish failure on our soldiers’ mission and claim, at the same time, to be supporting the troops. It just doesn’t compute.”
Liz? Ask your Dad and Dubya about showing courage at home during a war. Once you’re done computing that, get back to me.
Then, lighting up her sparklers, she finishes big with: “It’s time for everyone — Republicans and Democrats — to stop trying to find ways for America to quit. Victory is the only option. We must have the fortitude and the courage to do what it takes. In the words of Winston Churchill, we must deserve victory.
“We must be in it to win.”
To call this “propaganda” is an insult to the word itself. Besides, it makes the word “drivel” feel left out.
Now, the interesting thing about Liz is that she’s a cornucopia of vacuousness. Early in 2005, her Dad got her appointed as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs and Coordinator for Broader Middle East and North Africa Initiatives. She also headed up the Iran-Syria Operations Group (ISOG), a unit with the State Department’s Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs. The latter outfit’s goal, to put it bluntly, was to topple the governments of Iran and Syria. (Or bring them democracy or fish sticks or something.)
In an article by Robert Dreyfuss of “The American Prospect,” last year, there was this telling quote. “She came in knowing very little about the Middle East,” says Marina S. Ottaway, senior associate and co-director of the Democracy and Rule of Law Project at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, who has worked with Liz Cheney on democratic reform issues. “She had a mandate to do democracy promotion, but she had very little familiarity with the subject. … They deliberately picked a person who was not a Middle East specialist, so that the conventional wisdom, well, let me rephrase, so that real, actual knowledge of the issues in the region wouldn’t interfere with policy.”
In other words, Liz was a shill for the NeoCon’s plan to re-shape the world in America’s image.
The article also revealed that, being Dick Cheney’s daughter, Liz didn’t feel the need to play by the rules. She would insist on seeing heads of state without inviting the American ambassador along, a protocol no-no. Sometimes she caused a scene.
From Dreyfuss’ piece: “Liz Cheney comes out to this country, and she tells the ambassador — and she doesn’t outrank him — she tells the ambassador, ‘You’re not going in the meeting with me,’” recalls Larry Wilkerson, who served as Colin Powell’s assistant during his tenure as secretary of state. “And he says, ‘I’m sorry, I’m going in the meeting with you. You’re not going into a meeting with the head of state without me.’ And she says, ‘Nope — would you like a telephone call?’” In this case, says Wilkerson, the department’s bosses backed up their ambassador, who accompanied a chastened Cheney into the meeting.
“It’s not just that she is imperious in dealing with our ambassadors,” notes a corporate lobbyist who is deeply involved in Middle East policy. “She’s got her own foreign policy, her own agenda, and so of course she wouldn’t want the ambassador to know what she is talking about when she meets a head of state.”
At present, Liz is in the private sector, having left the State Department last year to have her fifth child. Judging from her op-ed piece, she has a lot of time on her hands.
In today’s Bushzarro world, it makes sense that “The Washington Post” would allow Liz, who has no knowledge of the cultural underpinnings of the Middle East, no knowledge of the art of war, no knowledge of working class America but for re-runs of “Dharma and Greg” and no ideas but for regurgitated Republican talking points to write an op-ed piece about Iraq, our illegal invasion, the military and the mood of the country.
Since being ignorant of the subject you’re writing about seems to get you a berth at “The Post,” here are a few possibilities “Post” editors might want to consider for future guest columnists.
“The Art of Public Speaking” by George W. Bush.
“How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dick Cheney.
“Living A Life of Moderation” by the Bush Twins.
“Non-violence as a Way of Life” by Donald Rumsfeld.
“Aging Naturally” by Elizabeth Dole.
“Being Humble” by Bill O’Reilly.
“Where Have All the Real Men Gone?” by Mary Cheney.
“Honesty is the Best Policy” by Karl Rove.
“James Brown: An Appreciation” by Condi Rice.
“Can’t We All Just Get Along?” by Ann Coulter.
“The Plight of the Middle Class” by Barbara Bush.
And, of course, “Why George W. Bush Is My Favorite President” by Ed Naha.
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