Posted by Ilan Goldenberg
And again we hear that George Bush was an awesome President, because outside of the worst terrorist attack in American history he managed to keep us safe. Writing in the Washington Post, Marc Thiessen, President Bush's former speech writer, goes back to the same old tired mantra that progressives and Obama can't keep us safe. Of course, he makes some pretty outrageous and unsubstantiated claims in the process - claims that would have more credibility from an administration who hadn't spent years over hyping threats and sharing partial intelligence in an attempt to scare the American public and push their ideological policy agenda. But let's take a closer look.
Well, apparently a lot of the folks at the CIA don't really seem to agree. Some reporting from David Rose last month in Vanity Fair.
Then there is this about Iraq:
This is exactly the kind of deceptive argument the Bush administration was feeding the public in 2002 and 2003. The surge prevented a terrorist attack on American soil. Really? Even though there was no operational relationship between Al Qaeda and Iraq before the invasion? Even though it's not clear that the increase in troops was the primary driver for the reduction in violence and the Anbar Awakening actually played the most significant role in specifically setting back AQI? Even though the public hasn't seen any real substantive proof that AQI was planning attacks against the American homeland?
The problem with this op-ed is that it comes straight out of 2002-2003, when Bush was popular and the country was still traumatized by 9/11. Even the basic political argument is circa a bygone Bush era.
Sadly for Thiessen that time has passed. The politics of fear seems to have lost its luster and in 2009 it is George Bush whose disastrous presidency may make Republican unelectable for years to come.