Bush Continues to Beat the War Drum of 9/11 Despite its Changing Sound
Last night President Bush gave a speech explaining why he vetoed the Iraq Accountability Act - not surprisingly he pulled out his old war drum - 9/11:
In Washington last week, General Petraeus explained it this way, "Iraq is, in fact, the central front of all al Qaeda's global campaign." Al Qaeda -- al Qaeda's role makes it -- the conflict in Iraq far more complex than a simple fight between Iraqis. It's true that not everyone taking innocent life in Iraq wants to attack America here at home, but many do. Many also belong to the same terrorist network that attacked us on September the 11th, 2001 and wants to attack us here at home again. We saw the death and destruction al Qaeda inflicted on our people when they were permitted a safe haven in Afghanistan. For the security of the American people, we must not allow al Qaeda to establish a new safe haven in Iraq.
While it has been common practice for this president and his administration to invoke 9/11 when it suits their political needs, the usage of 9/11 as a drum to garner support for the war had seemed to be on the decline - but apparently it is still in play when they are so far backed into a corner. Perhaps the main difference in using 9/11 as a war drum in the past and doing so today is that this same drum now makes an increasingly different noise.
For many Americans admitting the Iraq war was a failure of this administration has been too taboo, much in the way that admitting 9/11 was a failure of this administration has been. But as the American people gradually come to the realization that the Iraq war is indeed a failure, the 9/11 drum itself rings with this same sound. While in the past the banging of the 9/11 drum might spark patriotism and pride gained through surviving adversity, its new sound rings true - the Bush administration failed at the Iraq war, and failed us on 9/11 - but that is just what the drum is starting to sound like at the moment.
The next step in this progression will come as the American public comes to see the Iraq war not as a failure, but instead as a treasonous war for the benefit of the largest players in the military industrial complex. Once this perception is more commonly held the 9/11 war drum will take that form as well. Perhaps Bush's frequent association of 9/11 with Iraq will come back to haunt him when the public ties the realities of Iraq in with the realities of 9/11? People will begin looking at 9/11 and wondering if perhaps it too was not a failure as they had once so innocently thought of the Iraq war.
So George, keep banging your 9/11 drum for the Iraq war - the American public is finally starting to hear what song you've really been playing.