A lot has happened in the ten years that have transpired since George W. Bush and Dick Cheney orchestrated an unlawful assault, based on lies, on the nation and people of Iraq. More than four thousand American soldiers have died. Tens of thousands more have been disabled physically and psychologically. And hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqi civilians were killed. All of this was accomplished for a mere two trillion dollars courtesy of the American people.
So how does Fox News commemorate the solemn anniversary of the day that Bush commenced a campaign of mass murder against a nation that had done us no harm? By sending reporter James Rosen to the White House to beg for “credit” to be given to the Bush administration for their unfounded aggression and incompetence.
[For more examples of Fox Nation deceit, get the ebook Fox Nation vs. Reality.]
Rosen: Just to follow up on the discussion of the Iraq War, none of us wants to plunge ourselves into counterfactual histories about “what if” and so all we have is the record of what did occur and when you stand here and tell us that Iraq today now has the option for a chance for a much better future than the past, that is only a matter of factual history only possible because President Bush decided to launch this war and send all these heroic service men and women into this mission. And so if credit is due to the service men and women, it seems to me that — a matter of logic that some credit must also be due to President Bush and his advisers and that on this occasion, do you not see it that way?
Rosen is regarded by Fox defenders as one of the network’s legitimate journalists, in contrast to the right-wing mouthpieces (O’Reilly, Hannity, Cavuto, Doocy, etc.) who host the network’s more overtly biased programs. However, this question illustrates how Fox infects their allegedly “straight reporting” with partisanship even as they pretend to be fair and balanced. Beseeching the White House press secretary to lay praise on a former political foe is not an appropriate role for a professional journalist. It is closer to the services provided by a public relations rep.
What’s more, Rosen’s assertion that it’s a “matter of logic” that Bush be given credit is not remotely logical. Rosen is soliciting credit for Bush’s decision to go to war based on the outcome produced by the military. But those are two different things. Bush’s decision making was flawed and dishonest, and it is not redeemed simply because our side won. That only means that we have an effective military, not that the decision to use them in this matter was wise or praiseworthy. Press Secretary Jay Carney touches on these distinctions in his response, but later appears to humor Rosen in an attempt to move the briefing along.
Carney: James I would simply take up your first proposition that engaging in counterfactuals about what might have happened had we not gone to war in search of Weapons of Mass Destruction that didn’t exist, what would’ve happened? [...] It is impossible to know obviously what course would’ve occurred in Iraq had the inspections regime continued had different choices been made.
Rosen: But it sounds to me listening to you that for what you call the “welcome development” of Saddam Hussein being gone, you are unwilling to accord President George W. Bush even a single iota of credit for that development.
Carney: I’m happy to do that, James. I think the focus on doing that is unique here, in this briefing. There is no question that Saddam Hussein was removed from power thanks to the military efforts of U.S. armed forced and they were sent Iraq by President Bush. So, obviously, there is a causal relationship and to the extent that credit is due, credit is due to him for that. That does not change I think assessments made by this President as a candidate or by many others on this day – 10 years after – about the judgments made to go to war on Iraq, to invade the country.
I am also happy to give Bush credit. He is entitled to every bit of credit for having committed atrocities and war crimes. He deserves credit for the slaughter of the innocent and the brave and for the grief of the survivors. The credit is all his for brazenly lying to the American people and the world about weapons of mass destruction that didn’t exist. He has earned the credit for bankrupting our nation with drastic tax cuts for the rich during a time of war, the first time in history that has occurred. And all he has to show for it is a hollow sense of pride in having rid the world of Saddam Hussein, which makes this a two trillion dollar assassination contract on an aging, third-rate dictator.
Just as Rosen said, the tragic consequences of this regrettable misadventure were “only possible because President Bush decided to launch this war.” So congratulations Mr. Bush. The credit is all yours. And wasn’t it thoughtful of Fox News to ensure that the honor for all the turmoil and death you produced was rightfully placed at your feet?