Archive Opinion The Orion

Four more years bad for U.S.

August 1, 2004

What do you call someone responsible for the deaths of more than 1,000 Americans and hundreds of thousands of civilians?

Ready for impeachment.

If we can nail a president for lying about having his pickle tickled, then this should be a cinch.

Former Texas Rangers owner George W. Bush has at least three strikes against him from The Blunder on Terror, The Great Hype and The Early Call.

More than a month before Sept. 11, 2001, Bush received a very specific memo entitled “Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States,” detailing Osama’s desire to attack with airplanes. What was Bush waiting for, Bin Laden to slap him in the face?

After he was informed of the attack, former Arbusto Energy founder Bush took seven minutes for “My Pet Goat.” Since he doesn’t read newspapers, this might have been his only chance to prove his literacy.

Republicans praised him for not scaring the children. Bin Laden praised him for the extra time to launch the rest of his attacks.

There was only one thing that could catch little George’s attention: a shiny war. We went after the government harboring al-Qaida in Afghanistan and we pinned Bin Laden down to a few locations and we took him out.

Wait–no we didn’t. We let the most feared mastermind in the world slip away. How did we pull that one off?

We outsourced the job. We left it to a few warlords from the area, and they failed.

When you blow it that badly, you can either face facts and accept your punishment, or you can make people look the other way.

While Bin Laden was going through Tora Bora and bouncing around the Pakistan border, Bush was putting the finishing touches on the plans he had before 9-11 to invade Iraq (according to former terrorism czar Richard Clarke and former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill). Now he had excuses: terrorism and the magic of WMDs.

Saddam Hussein was an easy target for former Harken Energy Corporation consultant Bush. His daddy was targeted for assassination by Saddam. There could only be one daddy running a country with his sons governing over their own pieces of the world. Now he had documents stating that Iraq tried to purchase uranium from Niger.

These documents were later found to be forgeries. The Duelfer Report, released last month, also concluded Iraq had dismantled its WMD programs after the 1991 Gulf War.

But Bush had what he wanted. He was able to pressure Congress into giving him the power to declare war on Iraq. After all, if you slide down the slippery slope of uranium enrichment lies, there’s the fear of a nuclear missile headed your way in seconds.

If that fear wasn’t enough, how about those weapons or funding slipping into the pockets of terrorists?

In September 2003, six months into the war, Bush was forced to concede, “We have no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved with the Sept. 11 attacks.”

Even with these facts, the war progressed for almost two months, at least according to the Bush administration. A flight suit and “Mission Accomplished” ended up being a mistake in May 2003, quickly leading the administration to say they weren’t done in Iraq, but not saying the war was not over.

Oh, what a tangled web we weave.

After the mission was “accomplished,” Halliburton, a company once run by Vice President Dick Cheney and from which he still receives $1 million a year, was handed a no-bid contract for reconstruction efforts in Iraq.

This is a textbook example of a conflict of interest, yet no investigation until last month.

More than 380 tons of explosives have recently disappeared from an al-Qaqaa facility. Either somebody fell asleep securing it, or our troops have been spread too thin.

Even with our National Guard reservists being called up for 18 months of emergency duty with only a day’s notice and the backdoor draft catching them when they come back, we still do not have enough soldiers.

Poland and Hungary have announced they are withdrawing. This leaves the bulk of the casualties in Iraq to America.

If we had gone through the United Nations, perhaps we could have gained more support and not bear the burden by ourselves. Since Bush decided that waiting is for wusses, we didn’t.

The Texas Rangers never made the playoffs in his term as owner.

Arbusto was run into the ground and merged into another company.

Harken’s stock plummeted one week after their consultant sold two-thirds of his stock. America’s image has been tarnished by the actions in the last four years.

The only check to balance these lies in the next four years is the media. After watching the four years of the White House Press Corp, I’ve come to one conclusion:We have to do this ourselves.