"The salient characteristic of this purported "doctrine" is that it concentrates entirely on the response, and not on "analysis" or "evidence," both things Suskind shows over and over Cheney and Bush, for different reasons, utterly disdain. Consequently, when it comes to the case for war, it was never about the evidence. In fact, according to Suskind Bush went to the UN as a favor to Tony Blair. Cheney and Rumsfeld did not want to bother. That is why there was such a haphazard, thrown together quality about the presentation--they never expected to have to be making such a case. Scooter Libby explained to Powell that, Suskind says, "his presentation was not meant to be an explanation, a balanced disquisition, so much as 'an argument a lawyer might give in a courtroom.' Of course, without the benefit of opposing counsel.""* Digby:
"We will never know for sure all the reasons we found ourselves in this mess. There are many moving parts in the Bush administration. But you have to admit, if you step back and look, the neocon faction, of all the others, have had their way almost unimpeded. And no amount of failure in real terms has slowed their pace.
They are very adept at taking advantage of circumstances to advance their goals. prior to 9/11 Islamic fundamentalism was a footnote in their plans. They had arranged their "threat matrix" around China and "Rogue States" (hence the fully formed plan for Iraq before the smoke had even cleared.) But they had always known that they needed a galvanizing crisis to put the nation on the war footing needed to carry out their vision. They were agile enough to adopt the GWOT when it presented itself and they have been agile enough to take advantage of new circumstances to advance their goals ever since."
* billmon on the bliar/bush chat:
"Still, it's hard not to be impressed with the level of delusion picked up by that treacherous microphone. I hate to violate Godwin's Law (and you all know how much I hate it) but this conversation reads, psychologically at least, like table talk between Hitler and one of his remaining puppet allies, circa the winter of 1945."