Scooter On The Stand
While I’m still waiting for the hearings to begin on Capitol Hill, into corruption, the lies told by this administration in the lead up to the invasion of Iraq and, hopefully, a full airing of the Bush administration’s blossoming distortions and lies that seem to be leading us into Iran in much the same way, it is the trial of Lewis “Scooter” Libby, or Cheney’s Cheney as he was dubbed inside the White House, that may be the source for headlines that will reignite the debate over why we went to war in the first place as well as highlight the Bush administration tactics and how they “get things done”.
As jury selection gets underway today, the defense will likely be hard pressed to find sympathetic peers in a city that is almost entirely Democratic and that sits in the shadow of power while having little access to it. Now that the country is overwhelmingly against continuing the occupation in Iraq at the precise moment that President Bush proposes an escalation and possible expansion of the conflict, a trial that highlights the flimsy case for war as well as the Bush administration’s hard-on for war and hardball tactics, could be just what this country needs right now. Congressional hearings are great for egghead political junkies, but criminal trials have a way of hijacking the public’s attention and television news can’t seem to get enough. I can only hope that Scooter Libby’s name is soon as recognizable as Scott Peterson’s.
There are many people, Democratic leaders included, who feel it is unnecessary or at least counterproductive to rehash how we got into Iraq when we are faced with the crisis that has resulted. I could see the value in “moving on” and focusing exclusively on fixing the problem instead of assessing blame IF this was a one shot deal. But with the President rattling his saber again, sending a second aircraft carrier to the region as well as a message through his new Defense Secretary that the troop “surge” is proof we can take on Tehran as well as Baghdad, it’s clear that a pre-emptive strike on Iraq was not a one shot deal, but rather the standard practice of the Bush administration. If the press, that seem at the moment, at least, to be in the process of climbing off the lap of President Bush, can hone in on the Libby trial and highlight the lies, distortions, scare tactics and emotional manipulation that was used to sell the Iraq War, perhaps the American people will recognize that they are being duped the second time around.