13 July 2007

Reversal of America - Pants on Fire Edition (again)

There have been many Menippean satirists throughout history leading up to the most recent great Menippean, Jon Stewart. But what I think we have just witnessed in President Bush's press conference yesterday is the very first example of auto-Menippeanism, in which the powerful and pretentious individual to be satired is satired by himself, by holding himself up in a serious way as an unintentional self-lampoon. Crooks and Liars has all the details.
Q Mr. President, you started this war, a war of your choosing, and you can end it alone, today, at this point — bring in peacekeepers, U.N. peacekeepers. Two million Iraqis have fled their country as refugees. Two million more are displaced. Thousands and thousands are dead. Don’t you understand, you brought the al Qaeda into Iraq.

THE PRESIDENT: Actually, I was hoping to solve the Iraqi issue diplomatically. That’s why I went to the United Nations and worked with the United Nations Security Council, which unanimously passed a resolution that said disclose, disarm or face serious consequences. That was the message, the clear message to Saddam Hussein. He chose the course.

Q (Helen Thomas): Didn’t we go into Iraq –

THE PRESIDENT: It was his decision to make. Obviously, it was a difficult decision for me to make, to send our brave troops, along with coalition troops, into Iraq.
Saddam Husein "chose the course" by not disclosing and disarming weapons that he didn't have. (Read comment 8 for another opinion.) Saddam was apparently trying to choose another course. And now that pretty much everyone in the world - including the President - knows that fact, George the Younger still has the temerity and the gall to make such a statement. It is even more galling that there are now well-researched books that make the claim that the invasion of Iraq was on the agenda prior to Bush taking office. Hello, Michael Moore.

As a Canadian, it is equally galling that our young men and women are dying in Afghanistan because of political policies that emerged from the complex interactions of international realpolitik and the ambitions of such a corrupt group in Washington. Sad. Very sad. (And, speaking about poor leaders and blaming others, Harper's announcement to "let the opposition make the decision" as to whether Canadian troops will end their misbegotten mission in Afghanistan in 2009, is a shameful, cowardly, and cynical statement. For shame.)

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