Would you trust Christopher Columbus on geography? Kanye West on financially responsible wedding planning? Batman on summer fashion?
Then why the hell would you take Dick Cheney's advice on military action in Iraq?
The former vice president, along with his daughter Liz, penned an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal this week criticizing President Obama for abandoning Iraq: "Rarely has a U.S. president been so wrong about so much at the expense of so many," they write in what may be the greatest irony ever conceived, spoken or recorded.
Even Fox News is having none of it. Host Megyn Kelly interviewed the pair on her show Wednesday night, and tore into some of the op-ed's claims. "Time and time again, history has proven that you got it wrong as well, sir," she said.
"Wrong and shamelessly dishonest": Kelly, of course, was only one of many reporters and pundits to dismantle the Cheneys' apparent alternate dimension, in which the Iraq War was basically won until Obama screwed everything up and then went golfing.
Paul Waldman at the Washington Post writes, "There is not a single person in America — not Bill Kristol, not Paul Wolfowitz, not Don Rumsfeld, no pundit, not even President Bush himself — who has been more wrong and more shamelessly dishonest on the topic of Iraq than Dick Cheney." Ezra Klein's Vox story on the matter is simply titled, "The totality of the Bush administration's failure in Iraq is stunning."
(In case your memory needs jogging: Cheney said the 9/11 attacks were connected to the Iraqi government, Cheney said Saddam Hussein was harboring weapons of mass destruction, Cheney said the insurgency was "in its last throes" in 2005. But let's trust him this time!)
Iraq in trouble: If there's one thing the Cheneys get right in their op-ed — and there may literally only be one thing they get right — it's that Iraq is in dire straits. The Sunni insurgency group ISIL, or Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, is taking entire cities by force and seemingly splitting the country apart.
Image Credit: BBC
Iraq has asked for U.S. help in the form of targeted air strikes against ISIL. Democrats in Congress are willing to support executive action on Obama's part; Republicans criticized him for removing troops in the first place, though sending many more back seems to be out of the question. (Obama did deploy up to 275 military personnel to Iraq to "provide support and security for U.S. personnel and the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.")
Things are so rough, the U.S. and Iran are talking about cooperating to end the crisis. No matter how bad a situation seems, though, there's one golden rule America and all its current and future leaders can hold onto in times of need: Don't listen to Dick Cheney. I mean, come on.