As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Monday, September 28, 2009

Another Cheney, Another Kagan

Liz Cheney's father basically presided over the biggest mess of a Presidency in American history. So of course, she's lionized as a real up-and-comer in Republican politics. That's because she tells the crowd what they want to hear - for example, the glories of torture:

“Mr. President, in a ticking time-bomb scenario, with American lives at stake,” she said, “are you really unwilling to subject a terrorist to enhanced interrogation to get information that would prevent an attack?”

By speech’s end, the crowd was standing, and the former vice president’s daughter was being mobbed for photos and hounded to run for office.

For this, she's called "one of the fresh faces of our movement" by one sycophant. It's somewhat appalling to see torture used as an applause line.

But that's the party out of power. I'm not really concerned how unmoored from reality they have become. It's far more disturbing that another neocon scion, in this case Fred Kagan, is personally advising the top general in Afghanistan during the Obama Administration.

It had been reported that Kagan and his wife, military historian Kimberly Kagan, were part of the group that advised McChrystal on the high-profile assessment that warns of "mission failure" if more troops are not sent. But it wasn't previously known that Kagan's work with McChrystal extended beyond the review.

It's striking that Kagan, who writes for the Weekly Standard, guest blogs at National Review, and advised the Bush Administration on Iraq, is now advising President Obama's top commander in Afghanistan.

A McChrystal spokesman said that the commander gets a lot of information, but his troop request for Afghanistan lines up PERFECTLY with Kagan's escalation numbers in a recent WaPo op-ed. And the truth is that the foreign policy establishment is littered with groupthink, and whether it's Brookings or AEI or CNAS or whatever other think tank, all of official Washington wants to send 40,000 or so more American men and women halfway around the world to fight.

As much as we get angry that a Liz Cheney can rise through the ranks in Washington, it's more the norm than anything out of the ordinary.

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