Richard Perle Doesn't Understand What Regret Is:
The Rude Pundit was not going to write another "Boy, that Iraq War sure sucked" anniversary piece today. But then this morning, his alarm radio went off and there, through the whiskey haze, was a voice from the past: the soft, reasonable, firm tones of Richard Perle on NPR. He feared he had awakened in 2003 and he was going to have to suffer the Bush presidency in an awful, endless Groundhog's Day loop. But, no. Renee Montagne was talking to the former chair of George W. Bush's Defense Policy Board, and that cocksucker was lying as if Death was beating on his door and he had five minutes to make everyone believe that his sins were acts of grace.
Oh, dear, sweet children, you who have known war for most of your lives, listen: there was a time, not long ago, when truly evil men were running the country. Yes, yes, your worries about the current administration's use of drones are justified, but, no, no, sorry, dear children, it is not the same as the President of the United States lying and sending others to lie in order to go to a completely unnecessary war. And one of the chief liars was Richard Perle, who was a policy adviser who burned with a desire to go to war with Iraq, whispering in the ears of the powerful that it could be done with little cost in terms of troops and time for the United States, appearing on TV constantly to divide the public into warmongers or traitors.
He believed with the fervent intensity of the most devout cult member that Saddam Hussein had chemical and biological, possibly even nuclear, weapons, and he condemned anyone who would say otherwise, including the chief U.N. weapons inspector, Hans Blix. He called Blix "a fool... Blix doesn't have a clue that he's talking to a bloodthirsty thug as if he were in a Bloomsbury salon. In fact the whole approach of the weapons inspectors has been wrong." So savage was Perle, an official of the U.S. government when he wrote this editorial for the News of the World in January 2003, that he didn't care who was degraded in the lunatic march to war: "[French President] Jacques Chirac is quite happy for Saddam to stay in power. He thinks it serves French purposes. I suspect there is even a personal relationship there."
Richard Perle is a craven, hideous worm-beast whose only role in the world is securing Richard Perle. When the war spiraled out of control, he blamed the Bush administration and absolved himself nearly completely. Like a worm, he should be forced to roll around in mud and shit for the rest of his terrible life.
In his interview this morning, Perle listed all the intelligence agencies he says were "all in agreement that Saddam possessed" WMDs. Except they were actively ignoring evidence that Saddam didn't have any. The lie that "everyone said so" has become so ubiquitous it threatens to become the accepted wisdom on the war.
When Montagne asked Perle about Iraq's connection to al Qaeda and how, you know, there was none, the bastard shifted the reasoning. He now says that after 9/11, "You do the obvious thing" and that the administration made a list of potential threats." Since WMDs were the #1 threat, Perle said that they looked at who might attack and "Iraq was clearly on that list." Of course, in January 2003, Perle said this to PBS's Frontline: "[W]e now have clearly established links between Al Qaeda and Iraqi intelligence, links that are beyond dispute." In other words, Perle is saying, "Yeah, all that shit we said back then? Lies."
For Perle though, now, he dismisses it with a shrug: "It's easy to say a decade later [that we were wrong]. At the time, you have to deal with the information that is available to you." For big fun, check out this quote from Perle on John Gibson's Fox "news" show on April 15, 2005, when Gibson asked him if he ever felt like saying "we were right": "Well, I feel like saying that to the president. He was right." No room for doubt, motherfuckers, no room at all.
Asked if the war was worth it today, Perle said, "I've got to say that I think that is not a reasonable question. What we did was done with a belief in protecting the nation. You can't go back a decade later and say that we shouldn't have done that."
That is the answer of someone who knows, in his heart and mind and balls, not that he caused so much death and despair and destruction for what were ludicrous reasons (to "transform the region," according to some conservative fantasy fiction) that change madness into actual, active evil. No, let us not give Richard Perle that much of a soul. Those words are merely the pitiful whimpers of a man who fears he's been caught doing those things.
Frankly, you'd get more useful insights from the decaying head of Uday Hussein.