Dick predicts: Cheney on Iraq
Today's WashPost poll says that only 22 percent of the public agrees with Dick Cheney's now-infamous suggestion that we've finally got the Iraqis almost where we want them. ("I think the level of activity that we see today, from a military standpoint, I think will clearly decline. I think they're in the last throes, if you will, of the insurgency.") But one dismisses Cheney at one's own peril, for his powers of clairvoyance are formidable:
Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction.
--August 26, 2002
I think things have gotten so bad inside Iraq, from the standpoint of the Iraqi people, my belief is we will, in fact, be greeted as liberators.
--March 16, 2003
Let's talk about the nuclear proposition for a minute. We know that based on intelligence, that [Saddam] has been very, very good at hiding these kinds of efforts.... We believe he has, in fact, reconstituted nuclear weapons.
--March 16, 2003
I think that the proposition of going to Baghdad is also fallacious. I think if we were going to remove Saddam Hussein we would have had to go all the way to Baghdad, we would have to commit a lot of force because I do not believe he would wait in the Presidential Palace for us to arrive. I think we'd have had to hunt him down. And once we'd done that and we'd gotten rid of Saddam Hussein and his government, then we'd have had to put another government in its place. What kind of government? Should it be a Sunni government or Shi'i government or a Kurdish government or Ba'athist regime? Or maybe we want to bring in some of the Islamic fundamentalists? How long would we have had to stay in Baghdad to keep that government in place? What would happen to the government once U.S. forces withdrew? How many casualties should the United States accept in that effort to try to create clarity and stability in a situation that is inherently unstable? I think it is vitally important for a President to know when to use military force. I think it is also very important for him to know when not to commit U.S. military force. And it's my view that the President got it right both times, that it would have been a mistake for us to get bogged down in the quagmire inside Iraq.
--April 29, 1991