To: The President
From: Senior Advisers
Date: Early 2002
Mr. President, on the basis of the following considerations, we recommend commencement of the war with Iraq as soon as possible.
1. The war will make you popular again. Americans always support a war president. We must not allow the time between active wars to last long. It's been over a year since Afghanistan. We must keep presidential wars on the front page. 2004 is coming soon.
2. You will, of course, keep saying you don't care about popularity but only Doing What is Right. And Who Knows What is Right better than the Commander in Chief? Piddle on those religious leaders. You have a compliant Congress to back you up and, if necessary, you can use the USA PATRIOT Act to get what you want.
3. The war will also divert public attention from the economy.
4. Besides, American oil companies will make more money once the Iraqi resources are under their control. And of course that money will trickle down, like the once mighty Colorado River trickles down... it used to go as far as the sea.
5. The best-case scenario for the cost of the war, $100 billion, is small change. The worst case, which would involve an occupation of ten years or more and a cost of $1.5 trillion, can be funded by the $1.5 trillion tax cut.
6. The fact that no money is left over for other public needs is good, because the only purpose of government is "national defense." See point #1.
7. In the best case scenario, American casualties will number only in the hundreds or thousands. Casualties from allied nations, if any actually join us, don't count. Naturally, we will try to maximize enemy casualties. This includes everybody over there, since it's hard to tell civilians from soldiers, especially from 30,000 feet.
8. If there are repercussions in the Mideast, such as the fall of the governments of Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Turkey and Egypt, we will deal with that as it happens. Maybe we can undermine the new governments by diverting the opium traffic from Afghanistan to the people of those countries. Hey, it worked in China in the nineteenth century. Softened 'em up good. One reason why China was so weak in the twentieth century. It goes without saying that the immediate solution for such a development would be to bomb them back to the stone age.
9. Some say our combination of heavy-handed interventionism and passivity in the Mideast is a cause of terrorism, and that unilateral war on Iraq will cause tens of thousands of young men and women, inflamed by religion and with no other alternative, to rise up as terrorists against us. Nonsense. We will simply track them down to their caves, homes, and offices and kill them, and do the same to anyone who supports them or protests in any way what we are doing.
10. Remember, we have the USA Patriot Act and we are accountable to no one.
In addition, George, keep relating everything to "terrorism." This was the lucky gust that made possible your pop fly into a home run after September 11. Remember that people believe stubborn = strong. Also, moral clarity means seeing things in simple black and white terms.
You're doing great, Sir. Poppy is proud of you and, as father figures, so are we.