Friday, January 23, 2004

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The Bush Administration's Little Green Men

Via Crooked Timber, this piece by John Laughland from the Spectator. I don't know whether the stuff here about Kosovo and Georgia....and God help us...can this possibly be true?????:

" is established as fact that in 1962 the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Lyman L. Lemnitzer, tried to convince President Kennedy to authorise an attack on John Glenn’s rocket, or on a US navy vessel, to provide a pretext for invading Cuba."

But be those things as they may, the thesis that Bush and company are basically a bunch of conspiracy theorists is...well, I wish I'd thought of that. Look, this is NOT (on my part, anyway) some piece of Bush-bashing. When I read this piece I certainly didn't think "Ha! Here's a great diss of Bush! Think I'll propagate it!" Rather I thought "Oh, sheeeeeet....that IS the way those guys are acting..." Especially with regard to their fabrication and distortion of data, and their insistence on sticking to the theory even in the face of disconfirming evidence. I think that this is an important way of thinking about the way the Administration is thinking about these things...

Laughland's other point, which we've all thought about but which I, at least, have to work to keep in mind: history tells us that there is nothing outlandish or kooky about suspecting the government of making things up to take us into war. Gulf of Tonkin anyone? Bush '41 and the non-existent satelite photos of Iraqi troops massing on the Kuwaiti border? And now: WMDs and the Iraq-al Qaeda connection...

God, we humans are a dim-witted lot...


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