Quite Possibly the Stupidest Thing the Bush Administration Has Ever Said


I know: The bar is set high here. Before writing that headline, I asked myself, “Is this dumb thing so dumb that to call the administration a bunch of crackheads for saying it would be an insult to crackheads everywhere?” And I concluded, yes, it is that dumb.

This weekend, U.S. forces killed 7 children in Afghanistan and 100 died there in clashes between NATO and the resurgent Taliban. A new jihadist group continued fighting the Lebanese military from a Palestinian refugee camp in Lebanon. The more radical faction of the Palestinian government overthrew the more moderate Fatah in a five-day civil war in Gaza. The Iranian government—which by the way, is holding four American citizens with no charges—is engaged in a massive crackdown on civil liberties.

This morning, when asked if he thought the U.S. invasion of Iraq has helped stabilize the Middle East, White House spokesman Tony Snow said, “Hard to say.…But it is pretty clear that a lot of people are putting their lives on the line for the cause of democracy in Iraq, Lebanon, Afghanistan, and elsewhere. And we support them.”

Saner heads would have said something like this: “The Middle East is in flames.…Everywhere you look, there’s deep trouble — Iraq, Lebanon, the Palestinians, the peace process, Iran.…Are they linked? Of course they’re linked.” Saner heads like Lee Hamilton, who authored the Iraq Study Group report. The report correctly predicted that Bush’s surge was a waste of time, money, and lives.

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