Man, Joe Klein really thinks George W. Bush is a bad president. I’m actually going to have to defend Bush against this charge: “Iraq comes first, as always. From the start, it has been obvious that personal motives have skewed the President’s judgment about the war. Saddam tried to kill his dad; his dad didn’t try hard enough to kill Saddam. There was payback to be had.” This seems plausible on some level, but the reality is that the Iraq War was pushed by a circle of political, policy, and media elites considerably wider than the Bush family and endorsed by an even larger family. Fred Hiatt and Hillary Clinton and Richard Holbrooke and Joe Biden weren’t backing this policy in a fit of personal pique, it’s of a piece with a certain view — a mistaken one — about how America ought to conduct itself in the world.
Mad as Hell