Yesterday, former top President George W. Bush adviser Karl Rove published an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal lamenting that the U.S. raid that killed Osama bin Laden was regarded as an “epic achievement,” and stating that “Obama did what virtually any commander in chief would have done in the same situation.” “Even President Bill Clinton says in the film ‘that’s the call I would have made.’” Only, as ThinkProgress noted yesterday, Bush explicitly did not do what Obama did: take the decision to strike at bin Laden.
As for the selective and misleading Clinton quote, the Wall Street Journal was forced to acknowledge it, updating the online version of the article and appending this note:
Editor’s note: An earlier version of this column included an incomplete quote from Bill Clinton in the last paragraph.
Indeed, Clinton actually said, “I hope that’s the call I would have made.” But Rove’s politically-motivated deceitfulness went even farther than that. Among the various and gracious laudatory statements by former Bush officials about the raid that killed bin Laden were several from Karl Rove himself.
Speaking to Politico for an article published just the day after the raid, Rove said his first reaction was “elation.” The Politico article goes on:
“President Obama did a remarkable job of leadership. It was a very tough decision” to opt for a special operations assault rather than dropping a precision bomb, Rove said.
In his first email exchange with the former president, Rove said Bush wrote: “Great day for justice.”
Furthermore, Media Matters points out that Rove, also the day after the raid, tweeted, “Justice has been done to Osama bin Laden: all Americans are proud of our military, intel & Presidents Bush, Obama. USA! USA!” Here’s the tweet:
To recap: Rove experienced “elation” and thought Obama did a “remarkable job” in making a “tough decision” in ordering the raid to get bin Laden. But now it seems for Rove, politics trumps conviction.