Ann Arbor (Informed Comment) – NPR reports that on Wednesday, President Biden called Russian dictator Vladimir Putin a “war criminal” for the first time. The report notes that this outburst is unusual for Biden, who prizes personal diplomacy and must know that such a charge would make it more difficult to negotiate with Putin down the road. When reporters pressed Biden on the matter, the president said, “I think he is a war criminal.”
But George Bush was fighting a war for oil and empire, and victory would pose a huge tactical difficulty: with no enemy to fight he would have to demobilize his forces in the Mideast and bring them hom
Let’s never forget that what we are watching happen right now in Afghanistan is the final act of George W. Bush‘s 2004 reelection strategy. After 9/11 the Taliban offered to arrest Bin Laden, but Bush turned them down because he wanted to be a “wartime president” to have a “successful presidency.” The Washington Post headline weeks after 9/11 put it succinctly: “Bush Rejects Taliban Offer On Bin Laden.” With that decision not to arrest and try Bin Laden for his crime but instead to go to war George W. Bush set the US and Afghanistan on a direct path to today.