Below, the hot clip in blogland this past weekend. I'd seen quotes from early 1990s-era Dick Cheney along similar lines, but to see the real-thing video is pretty striking. 1994 Dick Cheney assuredly and confidently dismantles the talking points 2003-2007 Dick Cheney's been delivering for several years now—and he does so, well, assuredly and confidently. In fact, in a debate, 1994 Dick Cheney would handily kick 2007 Dick Cheney's ass.
I know, like many things, the answer here is that "September 11 changed everything." It changed some things, sure. But I find it unlikely that September 11 made Iraq's Sunni, Shia, and Kurd factions chummier. Or that it made Iraq more governable, and less prone to quagmire-ishness. On the contrary. If anything, it made 1994 Dick Cheney's warnings more relevant, not less.
Dick Cheney, version 1994 reminds me of the veep pick that put my mind at ease about George W. Bush back in those salad days of 2000. You know, back when the federal government didn't pay for everyone's medicine, nation building was a bad idea, and campaign finance reform was unconstitutional.