We Are All Pod's Children

The Politico's David Paul Kuhn chats up Norman Podhoretz, who reminisces about getting a private meeting with George W. Bush and urging him to bomb Iran.

“I did say to [the president], that people ask: Why are you spending all this time negotiating sanctions? Time is passing. I said, my friend [Robert] Kagan wrote a column which he said you were giving ‘futility its chance.’ And both he and Karl Rove burst out laughing.

“It struck me,” Podhoretz added, “that if they really believed that there was a chance for these negotiations and sanctions to work, they would not have laughed. They would have got their backs up and said, ‘No, no, it’s not futile, there’s a very good chance.’”

Podhoretz walked out of the meeting neither deterred nor assured the president would attack the Persian state.

Yet he believes, he said prior to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s visit to New York for the United Nations’ General Assembly, that “Bush is going to hit” Iran before the end of his presidency.

The acceptable political center of this debate is apparently between Podhoretz's position and Mitt Romney's call to pre-emptively indict Ahmedinejad.

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  • Fluffy||

    Of course Bush is going to attack Iran before the end of his term.

    He will consider it unfinished business and his "duty" to do so prior to some "appeaser" taking the office away from him.

    He will be enabled in doing this by the overly-broad language that the chumps in the Congress allowed into the Authorization to Use Military Force, and by the parade of Congressional resolutions seeking to do "symbolic" things like declare Iran's armed forces a terrorist organization.

    Come on, there's nothing to stop this guy from doing exactly as he pleases.

  • ||

    Is it not sad that a crazy person can get a private meeting with the President of the United States.

  • JBinMO||

    All the other foreign policy decisions this president has made have been so good that I dont' see what could possibly go wrong with this one.

  • ||

    I for one would like to see Bush attack Iran AFTER the end of his presidency. Wouldn't that be a sight?

  • ed||

    Of course Bush is going to attack Iran before the end of his term.

    No way. Not in a godzillian years.

  • ||

    IRT the headline, can we call neo-cons "Pod People" now?

    I for one would like to see Bush attack Iran AFTER the end of his presidency. Wouldn't that be a sight?

    Sort of a reverse Lincoln brigade. A Fools Crusade perhaps?

  • Fluffy||

    "I for one would like to see Bush attack Iran AFTER the end of his presidency. Wouldn't that be a sight?"

    I would totally pay for a first-class plane ticket for him if he wanted to give it a go.

  • ||

    Well, it would be a solution of sorts to the call to withdraw from Iraq. "Look, we're leaving! Just moving a few miles to the east."

  • thoreau||

    I would be willing to go to Iran and do reconnaissance on their baklava production facilities. That's a strategic resource that we must control.

  • thoreau||

    Of course, I'll need significant discretionary funds for this mission. My cover story shall be that I'm doing a special report for Food Network.

    Can we draft Rachel Ray to help me with this assignment?

    "I've got just $40 to sample Tehran's best baklava!"

  • ||

    thoreau,

    In all seriousness, I'd rather we invaded Iran than see Ms. Ray become yet more overexposed. It's time for her to go away now.

  • ||

    No way. Not in a godzillian years.

    I wish I could share that sentiment. But I've come to accept that George Bush does not view the world the same was as everyone else.

    In his defense, it seems to work. No one seems to know what, exactly, to do with him. A normal President would have slunk back to the White House and just finished out 2006 to 2008 as a caretaker after all this.

    Bush? He's surrounded by the biggest hawks in the US, feeding him a steady diet of destiny, glory, and God's desire for him to smite the evil-doers of the Middle East. And right now, the Finger of Fate is pointing squarely to Iran.

  • thoreau||

    PL-

    Oh my gravy! You did not just say that! Her $40/day show is awesome. Delish!

    :)

  • ||

    thoreau,

    Don't make me go all Alton Brown on your ass. Bother!

  • ||

    In his defense, it seems to work. No one seems to know what, exactly, to do with him.

    Fortune does favor the bold. He's not going to back down voluntarily, and the Congress is too timid to use the only tools they can use against him: impeachment and the power of the purse.

  • ||

    If I may channel gaius marius for a moment, I would note that having the reason and ability to act, but not the willingness, is the very definition of decadence. So those polls that indicate that 70% of Americans want us out of Iraq yesterday, and then 70% don't want to cut off funds, should be setting off red flags in our heads.

  • ||

    What exactly does it mean to "go all Alton Brown on your ass" asside from indicating that you have a very entertaining show that focuses on one food item at a time and how to cook it perfectly?
    Now, going Paula Deen on your ass.. that I understand.

  • thoreau||

    We could send Joshua Adam Garcia to Iran. He always wanted to be a Food Network star.

  • ||

    Reinmoose,

    Fair question.

    Let's begin with what it would not be. An Alton Brown attack would not involve a unitasker. No sirree. It would likely involve a scientific and thorough process, including several weapons produced from components acquired from a hardware store. It's also likely that we'd see some sort of overnight brining of the victim before the attack.

  • thoreau||

    It's also likely that we'd see some sort of overnight brining of the victim before the attack.

    It's called "enhanced interrogation", PL.

  • iih||

    Of course Bush is going to attack Iran before the end of his term.

    No, he'll leave that to Bush III to finish the business of his (her?) dad GWB! That is how they do it in the Bush family. One starts one thing, and the other gets it done. But I guess it won't be the Bush twins finishing the job -- Jeb may be? In a couple of presidencies? How dumb would voters be if that happens.

  • ||

    thoreau,

    Sure. Combine salt, ice, water, and time and get. . .truth. And juicy turkey.

  • ||

    I think the US should attack Iran. For all the death and destruction, and even worse - high oil prices, it would be worth it just to see the expression on Jimmy Carter's face. (and the faces of the people that argued in 2003 "Iran is a greater threat")

  • ||

    bigbigslacker,

    Please don't tell me you're serious.

  • ||

    PL -
    It also would not involve turkey stuffing, although stuffing in general is not out of the question.

    Did someone call for a nutritional anthropologist? I know I didn't.

  • ||

    Brent Snowcroft is betting that Bush isn't stupid enough to bomb Iran. Any takers?

  • ||

    Reinmoose,

    Indeed. America draws the line at stuffing.

    Look for W to offer us a new tool for dealing harshly with physicists like thoreau.

    I love Good Eats. Who else but Alton Brown would provide his viewers with a haggis recipe?

  • ||

    "If I may channel gaius marius for a moment, I would note that having the reason and ability to act, but not the willingness, is the very definition of decadence. So those polls that indicate that 70% of Americans want us out of Iraq yesterday, and then 70% don't want to cut off funds, should be setting off red flags in our heads."

    Crimethink -- you're lumping together decadence with "not thinking things through and developing a cohesive philosophy". Many of the same people who say they want tax cuts and balanced budgets also want spending increases. Many of the people who say they are so ardently pro-choice that they defend abortions right up to delivery would throw up if they saw a full term baby actually being aborted. Many of the people who push hard for public schools and the taxes to support them send their own kids to private schools and practice tax evasion. Virtually everyone favors huge tax burdens, but would be repulsed if they had to go door-to-door to their neighbors collecting those taxes at gunpoint.

  • T\'Mershi Duween||

    I have a nightmare where we bomb some buildings in Iran, and Iran comes unglued and invades Iraq, demanding our troops leave the region. So we chuck a nuke. And then nobody will trade with us and everyone has to walk to work.

  • ||

    Just remember, everybody, I Would Have Been Worse!

  • ||

    John Kerry,

    Nah, you're a doofus, too. I bet you put stuffing in the bird. Jeez.

  • ||

    By the way, Mr. Kerry, how do you spell that tomato-based condiment?

  • ||

    I'd put the odds of Bush starting another war at 60%. He certainly wants to, but the military may prevent it by explaining that unfortunately, it isn't feasible at this time. Congress isn't a factor.

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