SATIRE ON THE BUSH WAR IN IRAQ, by Burt
Saddam had not bothered the outside world since
Bush 1 put him in a box. Most of his weapons
had been destroyed under UN inspections. In
2001, Iraq was not an issue; both Powell and
Rice said publicly that Iraq posed no threat.
Many have wondered how and why such an imminent
threat suddenly appeared on our radar screen.
The following events are real; you can decide
whether Bush's reactions to them are real or
I made up my mind early on that I wasn't going
to suffer my dad's fate --- a one-term presidency.
Things didn't go smoothly, though. I'll tell
you what happened; then tell me what you would
all started when Clinton and his top aides told
us that Osama bin Laden would be our number
one problem and gave us a plan of attack. Well,
we certainly weren't going to let the democrats
set our priorities. Besides, we already had
a full plate. I had to get those big tax cuts
through to save the economy. And, for our big
contributors, we needed to reverse some of Clinton's
policies, particularly those in the environmental
missile shield was important too. Congress tried
to shift some of my missile shield money to
anti-terrorism but Rummy told them to go jump
in the lake. He even threatened a veto --- and
I would have done it too! I like playing hardball
with those goons in Congress.
during a briefing received by Cheney, Osama
was confirmed as the guy behind the USS Cole
attack. But, there was no hurry --- we would eventually
deal with him. Next, some folks from a counterterrorism
commission came over to the White House to warn
us of a national catastrophe. They actually
tried to tell us how to reorganize the government
--- something about a Homeland Security Department!
Well, we listened and then politely excused
summer approached, our intelligence people were
picking up all sorts of alarms of impending
attacks on our country, but as you know by now
our intelligence is, at best, questionable.
Besides, the economy was shaky. I didn't want
to scare the American people and make things
the FBI asked for $50 million for their anti-terrorism
program. We rejected that, of course; these
guys will say anything to get more money.
early August, the warnings of impending attacks
had become more intense. So, while on vacation
at the ranch, some CIA people came down to give
me the latest scoop. They mentioned the possibility
of airplane hijackings and gave me some history
on Osama. I love my ranch and had a lot of brush
to clear. So, I figured these problems could
wait a few more weeks until September.
to our shock and amazement, 9-11 happened. We
didn't believe they'd really do it. Well I handled
the aftermath like a pro. After my aggressive
response to the tragedy, I was "lookin' good"
--- until some do-gooders in Congress tried
to create a commission to find out why we were
caught so flatfooted. What would you have done?
Just what I did, of course --- oppose the commission
on the grounds of national security.
that worked for almost a year. But, it was just
my luck that those 9-11 families and do-gooders
in Congress persisted with this commission idea.
I don't mind telling Congress where to get off
(which I sometimes do in private) but no president
in his right mind would oppose those 9-11 families.
I'm sure you would have caved in, too.
me some credit though; I modified the commission
as best I could. In the final deal we got a
Republican to chair the commission and more
limited subpoena power. Cheney pulled the strings
behind the scenes with Congress. He and others
on my staff feared the commission might send
us what amounts to a "pink slip", just when
the presidential campaign heats up. So, here
comes the tough part --- how could we neutralize
the commission's work?
we had to set up some obstacles for the Commission.
First, we insisted that Ashcroft screen all
the Commission's requests for information and
that agency monitors be present at Commission
interviews (like Saddam did when we tried to
interview his scientists). I'm just as tough
as Saddam and we simply can't have our people
talking out of turn with no retribution. As
far as full access to all my CIA briefings and
minutes of our national security meetings ---
well, over my cold, dead body!
A WARRIOR PRESIDENT
Karl told me "It's the terror, not the economy,
Stupid!" You'll never know how happy I was to
hear that --- except I didn't like the way he
used the word "Stupid." Anyway, we decided it
would be a good idea to promote my image as
a warrior president against terrorism.
we couldn't find my old friend Osama "dead or
alive," we had to figure a way to create a new
threat. Clever, huh? And, my far-right advisors,
Cheney and Rummy, insisted on our old buddy
Saddam. They had long wished for his overthrow.
Saddam was already in trouble with the UN and
had little international standing. They argued
that we couldn't wait --- we had to get him
before he got us.
had kicked the UN inspectors out several years
ago, so by now we figured he must have amassed
quite a few illegal weapons. To make this situation
even more explosive, we decided to connect Saddam
to al-Qaeda and 9-11. Also, he probably had
a nuclear capability in the works. Wow! All
I have to do is mention "mushroom cloud" and
the public will insist we preempt the evil one.
I got this idea --- why not build a strong case,
surface it just before mid-term elections and
back Congress into a corner? Few would dare
oppose me and risk their chances for reelection?
A congressional ok would also eliminate any
danger of impeachment. After all, my potential
impeachers had agreed with me. How do you like
my idea, so far? Not bad, huh?
for the war itself, that should be a slam dunk.
Several of our states are larger than pathetic,
defenseless little Iraq. It doesn't have air
or sea power or smart bombs like us. Should
be a piece of cake! This idea was really beginning
to appeal to me. Of all my presidential duties,
I sure enjoy being Commander-in Chief most of
icing on the Saddam cake, of course, would be
the distraction from our domestic problems.
The wartime situation will silence critics of
our domestic problems and, in the upcoming elections,
we might even regain full control of Congress.
you mull this over, you'll have to admit that
your President is a lot smarter than most people
think. This "simple plan" will distract the
public from my pre-9-11 responsibility and domestic
problems, and perhaps get us back in the driver's
seat in Congress. Talk about "wagging the dog!"
I'm sure Robert DeNiro and Dustin Hoffman would
be proud of me. Before reading any further,
tell me what you think of my plan --- you would
have done the same thing, right?
WEAPONS: WHAT DO I DO NOW?
was just one hitch. The war went really well,
except that Saddam fooled me; he didn't use
a single unlawful weapon against us and we've
found no visible signs of any weaponized chemical
or biological agents. Bummer! To make things
worse, we've not been able to find a nuclear
program or a link to al-Qaeda.
wonder what happened to all those dangerous
chemical and biological agents and the 30,000
munitions to deliver them that I so confidently
spoke about in my State of Union speech. Darn,
I was banking so much on those weapons to justify
the war. I thought we were being guided by God's
hand; how could we have been so wrong?
I guess I'll have to throw thousands of people
into the hunt for those outlawed weapons. If
we don't find them, we'll settle for some WMD
scientists, buried remnants of earlier programs
and bad intentions of the evil one.
course, it's possible that Iraq destroyed its
banned weapons before the war but that would
mean the UN inspections, backed with the threat
of military power, were actually working. Say
it ain't so! I guess (just between you and me)
it's also possible that my daddy's war and many
long years of UN sanctions and inspections had
transformed Iraq into a minor threat.
American people do have a short attention span,
so I'm just not going to worry about it. We've
changed justifications for this war before;
now that it's over, we can change them again.
Of course, (again, just between you and me)
had we used these other justifications before
the war, we probably would not have gotten a
congressional authorization and support of the
can't you see --- we really did have to do something
spectacular to rebuild my image after the 9-11
disaster and neutralize the Commission's findings?
And, wasn't the effort worth sparing me my daddy's
fate --- the agony of defeat at reelection time?
Sure, Kennedy accepted responsibility for the
Bay of Pigs disaster, but 9-11 was much worse.
If things really get bad, we can always blame
Clinton for 9-11 --- just like we did for other
things that went wrong in my Administration.
STILL IN THE BAG
think I'll push back the Republican National
Convention in NY City and my acceptance speech
so that I can commemorate the third anniversary
of 9-11 there. That would mean a campaign built
around national security and combating terrorism.
This should really work to our advantage. We
can have a big celebration right there in Madison
Square Garden, near ground zero. Then, with
a couple of hundred million dollars in my campaign
coffers, the election is mine --- all mine.
greed, aggression is good. Aggression has marked
the upward surge of mankind. Aggression breeds
patriotism, and patriotism curbs dissent. Aggression
has made Democrats cower, the press purr and
the world quake. Aggression -- you mark my words
-- will not only save humanity, but it will
soon color all the states Republican red.
Dowd, NY Times, May 4, 2003