Wednesday, May 28, 2008

No Salvation For Darth Vader

From Sully:

"It would be easy to think of Scott McClellan's new book as a piece of dish, designed for sales, pitched for controversy, packed with juicy detail. And it is that, of course. But it is also something more. It is an argument by a man very, very close to the president, and deputed to be his spokesman for many years, that the president deliberately deceived the country about the reasons for going to war. We're not talking mistakes here; we're talking about a deliberate shading of the truth to hide the real motivation for risking the lives of thousands of soldiers and hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians:

"In Iraq, McClellan added, Bush saw "his opportunity to create a legacy of greatness," something McClellan said Bush has said he believes is only available to wartime presidents.
The president's real motivation for the war, he said, was to transform the Middle East to ensure an enduring peace in the region. But the White House effort to sell the war as necessary due to the stated threat posed by Saddam Hussein was needed because "Bush and his advisers knew that the American people would almost certainly not support a war launched primarily for the ambitions purpose of transforming the Middle East," McClellan wrote.

"Rather than open this Pandora's Box, the administration chose a different path — not employing out-and-out deception, but shading the truth," he wrote of the effort to convince the world that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction, an effort he said used "innuendo and implication" and "intentional ignoring of intelligence to the contrary."

"President Bush managed the crisis in a way that almost guaranteed that the use of force would become the only feasible option," McClellan concluded, noting, "The lack of candor underlying the campaign for war would severely undermine the president's entire second term in office."

"If this is true, if the president intentionally ignored data refuting the existence of Saddam's WMDs, he should be impeached."

Well duh. If you haven't woken up to this fact by now, if you haven't seen the Downing Street Memo, Bob Woodward's books, Richard Clarke's warnings, Fahrenheit 911, and the rest of the evidence of incompetency and maleficence, then you deserve George W. Bush as your President. But beyond the obvious guilt of George W. Bush, I am also pretty sick of guys like McClellan and George Tenet who think their deathbed confessions will lead them to some type of salvation. Both of them in various ways have admitted that they consciously and unconsciously, willingly and unwillingly, have aided and abetted GWB's various war crimes. In the Star Wars saga we see a native and gullible Anakin Skywalker get seduced and corrupted by the dark side of the Force and the charismatic Emperor Palpatine. Even before Ani turns into Darth Vader he, just like McClellan and Tenet, helps his "master" break both legal and natural law to consolidate power for various ends. He gets his salvation through sacrifice, killing his boss to save his son. This is great in a Sci-fi movie, and perhaps does make a great metaphorical and spiritual conclusion, but in the real world justice for war crimes, mass murder, and theft on a grand level isn't made with symbolic shows of rebellion and sacrifice--it's made with trials, investigations and finally the submission of the law breakers to face the punishments that the people that they have oppressed and maligned find fair and just. If these men really want to atone for their actions they should submit themselves to the Hague to await trial. Anything less than that, like writing confessional novels who's goal is self-absolution, is meaningless and insulting.

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