In a video introducing their new 501(c)4, Dick and Liz provide what will surely be SNL’s opening skit this Saturday:
Update from a reader:
I took a look at the Cheney video on YouTube to read some of the comments. And what did I see? Comments have been disabled. Some things never change.
Their astonishing op-ed – a classic in the annals of non-self-awareness – has even prompted Fox’s Megyn Kelly to balk and Byron York’s jaw to drop. Waldman identifies one of many huge holes in the warmongering op-ed from the father-daughter team:
[T]he Cheneys’ op ed is silent on what they would do differently in Iraq today. The op-ed contains nothing even approaching a specific suggestion for what, other than to say that defeating terrorists “will require a strategy — not a fantasy. It will require sustained difficult military, intelligence and diplomatic efforts — not empty misleading rhetoric. It will require rebuilding America’s military capacity — reversing the Obama policies that have weakened our armed forces and reduced our ability to influence events around the world.”
So to recap: we need a strategy, and though they won’t tell us what that strategy might be, it should involve military, intelligence, and diplomatic efforts, and rebuilding the military. Apart from the absurd claim that the armed forces have been “weakened” (we’re still spending over $600 billion a year on the military even with the war in Iraq behind us and Afghanistan winding down), the Cheneys are about as clear on what we should do now as they were on how invading Iraq was supposed to spread peace and democracy across the Middle East.
They know nothing but the fumes of their own ideology and self-regard. Ed Morrissey comments that the Cheneys “are likely whistling into the wind here”:
There hasn’t been much polling on Iraq, but the PPP poll taken over the weekend shows that the neocon policy is even less popular than Obama’s leadership at the moment. Even with the looming disaster facing Baghdad and by extension American policy, and even with the threat that ISIS represents to the region and eventually to the US directly, only 20% want American troops back in Iraq. The majority want a diplomatic “mobilization” to deal with ISIS, which as I wrote yesterday would look pretty strange, since ISIS is an unapologetic terrorist organization.
Jason Zengerle calls the op-ed an opening for Liz Cheney’s next political campaign:
While Obama is the ostensible target of the Cheneys’ op-ed and new group, their real opponent isn’t Obama but Rand Paul and the school of foreign-policy thinking that Paul represents inside the GOP. Liz finally has the proxy war she’s been waiting for.
Even before Liz abandoned her Senate race, people in Wyoming were speculating that she wouldn’t stay in the state—that, win or lose, her family would move back to the home in the Virginia suburbs that they never bothered to sell. But six months later Liz is still in Wyoming (just witness that gorgeous mountain backdrop on the video she recorded for the Alliance for a Strong America) and it seems likely she’ll make another run for office there at some point. If she does, today will have marked the start of that long campaign.
Maybe she could just get a job at NBC for $600,000 a year. I hear the children of shameless nepotists are doing quite well in this economy. Allahpundit also detects a preemptive strike against the young senator from Kentucky:
Really, why would you even need to attack O on foreign policy at this point? His numbers are already in the toilet; Chuck Todd read his political obituary on the air just this morning. He’s the lamest of lame ducks.
The guy whom hawks are worried about is Paul, who could do a lot of damage to the interventionist cause by succeeding with a more dovish foreign policy agenda in the GOP primary. Remember, too, that the Cheneys have a history with Paul: He eagerly endorsed Enzi after Liz announced her primary challenge and offered to campaign personally for him in Wyoming in the name of squashing a famous hawk with the Cheney name. The Cheneys are going to repay the kindness next year by attacking him as a dangerously irresponsible appeaser who’ll build on Obama’s legacy of failure. That’s where the new group comes in, I think. By rolling it out now against Obama, they’re going to build goodwill among righties. Then they’ll put that goodwill to use next year in hammering Paul.
But Tim Mak points out that Paul has been pretty cagey about where he actually stands on Iraq:
Paul has dropped hints here and there about his Iraq stance. He told the Des Moines Register this month that he didn’t oppose helping arm the Iraqi military and said he “would not rule out air strikes.” In a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing last week, he said he was “not very excited about” the prospect of sending military service members back into Iraq. But he stopped short of endorsing military intervention in Iraq or ruling it out, and his on-the-fence position hasn’t been clarified.
Boarding a senators-only elevator Tuesday morning with fellow Republican Sen. John McCain, a hawk well known for his foreign policy views, Paul joked that he should just tell reporters he believes “whatever McCain says.”
Paul is not turning out to be a profile in courage, is he?