Midnight Rantings

Tired rantings in a tired world.

Wednesday, March 24, 2004

Whose Lie?

The whole Richard Clarke debacle is developing a feverish pitch. How you see your political views will determine your take on the matter. However, there are some definite critiques regarding how Clark has handled the whole matter. John Cole at Balloon Juice takes Clarke to task here.

As with most things I am on the fence, when they initially break. My take on it is more pandering by those aligned against Bush. These folks hold up Clarke as the poster-boy for the perfect protagonist and Bush as the perfect antagonist. Upon further study, we see some definite questions regarding Clarke's veracity. I am sure he did try to warn his superiors about the risk of al-Qaida. Unfortunately, the risk tends to be amorphous and hard to define. To say that al-Qaida is planning an attack against America is not enough. Al-Qaida is not the only enemy that the US has. Iraq had to figure prominently also. After all, Saddam did try to assassinate a former President and may have been complicent in the 1993 WTC bombing. Besides if Bush had attacked Afghanistan prior to 9/11, WTC attacks would have still taken place, and the uproar from those on the left would have been deafening.

No. It seems that Clarke is trying to pander to Kerry. Apparently, he works closely with his foreign policy advisor. Also, the timing of the book's release is a little suspect. Clarke in an interview (Good Morning America?) said the Whitehouse delayed the release because of security concerns. That does not matter. The bombing occurred two years before the book was printed. If Clarke had such misgivings, he would have been out banging the gong soon after leaving the government.

The end result is character assassination of Bush. Americans are a little smarter than that. With the choice offered by the other side, Americans know that Bush will relentlessly pursue the War on Terror. This will only inflame the sides of the debate and not settle it. In the coming weeks, months, years, Clarke will be marginalized. Children decades from know will study Bush not Clarke.