In a new article in Vanity Fair, prominent neoconservative Richard Perle — one of the principle advocates of invading Iraq — blasts the Bush administration’s policy in Iraq. Here’s some key excerpts:
[Bush] did not make decisions, in part because the machinery of government that he nominally ran was actually running him…Huge mistakes were made, and I want to be very clear on this: They were not made by neoconservatives, who had almost no voice in what happened, and certainly almost no voice in what happened after the downfall of the regime in Baghdad. I’m getting damn tired of being described as an architect of the war. I was in favor of bringing down Saddam. Nobody said, ‘Go design the campaign to do that.’ I had no responsibility for that.
Now, Perle is calling foul, saying he only agreed to tell the truth if it was published after the election. Here’s Perle in the National Review:
Vanity Fair has rushed to publish a few sound bites from a lengthy discussion with David Rose…I had been promised that my remarks would not be published before the election.
Another prominent conservative quoted in the article Eliot Cohen, has a different view. Cohen said, “thinking the government’s conduct of the Iraq war an entirely appropriate subject of political debate I do not think anyone should have kept mum in an interview of this kind until an election had passed.”