Jeb’s Nonsense Ramblings on Iraq


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Jeb Bush and George W. Bush are separate people. They are brothers though, and members of the same political party. One was President, the other wants to be President. It’s hard to separate them too much, especially when they agree on 90% of issues.

Jeb has, to be fair, been completely lost when discussing the Iraq War, the largest piece of his political legacy. He now thinks it was a mistake, but that we should have stayed longer. It’s nonsense talk. It’s trying to have it both ways- both away from his brother, but also away from President Obama’s position to end the war that Bush calls  “mistake.”

Now though, Jeb’s gone completely off the rails:

Jeb Bush, the former Florida governor seeking the Republican presidential nomination, issued a blistering attack on Tuesday on the Obama administration’s handling of Iraq and terrorism issues, asserting that Hillary Rodham Clinton, the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination, had “stood by” as secretary of state as the situation in Iraq deteriorated.

He said President Obama and Mrs. Clinton had orchestrated an early withdrawal of American troops, setting the stage for the chaos sweeping the region now and the rise of the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL.

Let me remind you, this is revisionist history:

Mrs. Clinton’s aides noted that the Obama administration had inherited the war from President Bush and that it had followed the timetable he signed in withdrawing troops from the region. Mrs. Clinton opposed the surge but advocated within the administration for leaving a residual force in Iraq to maintain order there.

“American boots on the ground cannot fix Iraq,” said Mr. Sullivan, Mrs. Clinton’s policy adviser. “Only Iraqis can fix Iraq, with our support but not with our combat boots on the ground.”

Ultimately, President Bush’s decision to wage an unnecessary war created the spark for Al Qaeda to enter Iraq, and that created the space for ISIS. President Bush’s decision to fire and dismantle the existing Iraqi Army after defeating them put trained soldiers on the market for terrorist organizers, and lead us down the road to today. President Bush’s series of decisions, from starting the war to not planning for the occupation after, lead us to the point of ISIS and a worse outcome.

Jeb Bush’s argument that we should have stayed in Iraq longer, and that not doing so caused ISIS, is hilarious on it’s face. It is not grounded in reality. Jeb’s brother took us into an unnecessary war, and in doing so, created ISIS. To try and deflect that blame he is resorting to silly talk.

Jeb’s bigger problem of course is that Jeb believes in all of the same principles that lead his brother to this mistake. He has no serious differences with the neo-cons in general, and he doesn’t want to admit that. No one should allow him to deflect this way though, not the least of which the media. Jeb should be challenged on this nonsense, and forced to explain not how he deflects blame from his brother for the situation in the Middle East, but how he himself is somehow different than his brother. I doubt he has an answer for that.

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