Thursday, October 24, 2002
Life Inside the Cocoon... From Richard Cohen, attacking President Bush:
In speaking about Hussein last week, Bush said, "This is a man who we know has had connections with al Qaeda. This is a man who, in my judgment, would like to use al Qaeda as a forward army."
Maybe in his judgment -- but not really in anyone else's.
UPDATE: ViaInsta, the Brothers Judd take on Cohen:
Mr. Cohen is, oddly enough, lying even as he decries lying. There may not in fact be close ties and co-operation between Saddam Hussein and al Qaeda, but no objective observer can deny that there are many credible reports that Saddam has made repeated efforts to turn al Qaeda into his forward army. The report that one sees most often, and which is detailed enough to make one believe there's some fire below the smoke, is that after Bill Clinton's desultory cruise missile attack on al Qaeda's Afghan encampments in 1998, Saddam sent Faruq al-Hijazi to Kandahar to renew an offer of asylum and assistance to Osama, specifically including the option for al Qaeda to relocate to Iraq. (It may be argued that such stories are manufactured, but why make up a series of stories that show there are no ties between Saddam and al Qaeda?) That Osama may have resisted these blandishments, because Saddam is not sufficiently an Islamicist, does not in any way diminish Saddam's desire to use al Qaeda for his own purposes.
One dislikes imputing motives to another, but it is certainly noteworthy that Mr. Cohen's column meshes nicely with Dana Millbank's story earlier this week that portrayed Mr. Bush as nearly a pathological liar...
That, plus the GOP-Campaigns-For-Republicans scoop, plus a couple other things; I'm beginning to sense a pattern....