[OPE-L] Cheney tape '94: the quagmire of Iraq

From: Jurriaan Bendien (adsl675281@TISCALI.NL)
Date: Mon Aug 20 2007 - 17:41:38 EDT

When the C-SPAN producer toiling in obscurity last month reached for the
tape, he had no clue how juicy a nugget he had unearthed. The tape was
labeled simply, "Life and Career of Dick Cheney"; dated April 15, 1994. When
he found it in the archives, the producer was just looking for something
mildly interesting to help fill the 12-hour Cheney marathon planned by
C-SPAN 3. http://blog.washingtonpost.com/sleuth/


Q: Do you think the U.S., or U.N. forces, should have moved into Baghdad?
A: No.
Q: Why not?
A: Because if we'd gone to Baghdad we would have been all alone. There
wouldn't have been anybody else with us. There would have been a U.S.
occupation of Iraq. None of the Arab forces that were willing to fight with
us in Kuwait were willing to invade Iraq. Once you got to Iraq and took it
over, took down Saddam Hussein's government, then what are you going to put
in its place? That's a very volatile part of the world, and if you take down
the central government of Iraq, you could very easily end up seeing pieces
of Iraq fly off: part of it, the Syrians would like to have to the west,
part of it -- eastern Iraq -- the Iranians would like to claim, they fought
over it for eight years. In the north you've got the Kurds, and if the Kurds
spin loose and join with the Kurds in Turkey, then you threaten the
territorial integrity of Turkey. It's a quagmire if you go that far and try
to take over Iraq. The other thing was casualties. Everyone was impressed
with the fact we were able to do our job with as few casualties as we had.
But for the 146 Americans killed in action, and for their families -- it
wasn't a cheap war. And the question for the president, in terms of whether
or not we went on to Baghdad, took additional casualties in an effort to get
Saddam Hussein, was how many additional dead Americans is Saddam worth? Our
judgment was, not very many, and I think we got it right.

For some related Cheney quotes: http://www.slate.com/id/2072609/

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