Our war in Iraq was fundamentally a war of choice, and it was the wrong choice -- a war fought on false pretenses and for false purposes. But this "cake-walk" became an occupation, with years of vicious and deadly street warfare, sectarian violence, constant terrorist bombings, and finally no real political solutions to unite the country.
Republicans have once again amped up their voters with angry messages. Here are three actions that progressives, Democrats, and anyone who opposes the politics of hate can take between now and November 4th.
In 2005, while Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz and Bill Kristol were sitting at desks in Washington, my unit was fighting their war in Iraq. They were playing armchair general. We were kicking in doors, getting shot at and driving on IED-planted roads in unarmored vehicles designed for amphibious assaults.
I doubt there are many levelheaded individuals who would take seriously anything Cheney offers about Iraq, given his dubious contribution to what can only be considered as an unmitigated disaster.
We ignored our moral imperative to intervene in Syria before it was too late. We cannot abandon Iraq, too.
Have we learned nothing during our adventures in the Middle East and Central Asia?
Unbelievably, former Vice President Dick Cheney, after being wrong on every foreign policy issue for more than a decade, has again crawled out of his Wyoming cave and begun outrageously sniping at Barack Obama's performance in foreign policy.
By invading Iraq in 2003, George W. Bush made the single worst foreign policy decision in our country's history. Today, when Barack Obama looks in the mirror, he'll see the man who understood just how dumb a decision that was.
Shrum and Matalin agree it's the definition of insanity for the president to reinsert U.S. into centuries-long religious war when likeliest conclusion a tripartitioned Iraq back to pre-1919.
I would like that same kind of trust and credibility from our president and his administration and his advisers. They have every right to take credit for their successes, but they also have every responsibility to accept the blame for their mistakes, misjudgments and failures.
This was a week that saw the return of former leaders with less than successful results. In the World Cup, Spain fell 2-0 to Chile, knocking the defending champions out even before the upcoming knockout rounds. In an even worse reappearance, former Vice President Dick Cheney appeared on Fox News to defend his assertion that President Obama has "been so wrong about so much." But host Megyn Kelly scored a surprise knockout herself when she said, "History has proven that you got it wrong as well in Iraq, sir." As they say: 'Goooooooal!' Meanwhile, on Wednesday, the Patent Office canceled several trademarks on the name "Washington Redskins." Though D.C.'s football team hasn't changed its mascot yet, if they do, I'm partial to renaming them the Washington Drones. Other suggestions that came my way on Twitter include the Watergators, the Lobbyists, the Super PACers, the Gerrymanders, the Filibusters and the Weasels. Tough to choose when they all seem so apt.
Some form of military intervention to stop ISIS from overrunning the country and to protect American assets may be inevitable, but the near singular focus on military intervention ignores what should be an obvious lesson of the past dozen years: the U.S. can't bomb its way to victory.
The news media showed without a shadow of a doubt that they have not learned from their coverage in the run-up to the Iraq war, as pretty much everyone who got Iraq fundamentally wrong before we invaded was invited to share their views.
Of course, in Washington, following the money is always a sound principle for explaining repetition of failed policy.
Republicans have a regrettable history of using key political moments for ridiculous publicity. However, for Dick Cheney to take an international crisis and turn it into a self-centered publicity campaign is a new low entirely.