Today Dick Cheney gave the commencement address at West Point to a crowd of 20,000. The image of the Vice President, who actively avoided military service during Vietnam, rallying the Cadets was greeted with raucous laughter by most of the country.
Making matters worse, Cheney quickly slipped the moorings of reality while attempting to explain that Iraq is somehow tied to the increasingly nebulous war on terror because that is where the terrorists “have massed.”
Cheney then broke the sense of rapture displayed among the audience by saying “Nobody can promise us we won’t be hit again.” Somewhere a big dog barked.
"The truth is I have terrible dreams at night," Cheney said. "I dream of towers crumbling to the ground. I dream of soldiers sent into action, ill equipped, fighting with leftover equipment, led by corrupt leaders with delusions of....I'm sorry, where was I? Oh, yes, Iraq!"
Many neoconservatives point to Iraq and Vietnam as an example of weak American will. Cheney, whose military record includes five draft deferments to escape serving in the Vietnam War, happily welcomed 978 cadets into the Army many of whom will spend time in Iraq training Iraqi soldiers.
“You did not give in to other priorities as so many others have done,” Cheney said. “Instead you have offered up your time, your youth, in service to this country. And I pledge to have you all out of Iraq as soon as it is politically expedient to do so. For now just trust me on this one.”