To Jon Stewart and many fellow liberals, the Iraq War was all about the United States’ zest for oil, not to improve global security, free a country from tyranny or punish Saddam Hussein for treating UN mandates like so much toilet paper.
Remember all those placards saying, “No Blood for Oil?”
Now, Stewart is aghast that China is reaping the benefits of Iraq’s resurgent oil business.
The Daily Show host spent a long segment of his Tuesday night telecast wondering why China was in the Iraqi oil business ahead of his own country.
“We still haven’t figured out for sure who won the Iraq war,” he said to kick off the segment, which then cherry-picked audio soundbites to say both China, and later Iran, “won.”
The usual Stewart merriment follows, including a slanted look at the war’s consequences that ignored the removal of Hussein, the dawn of free elections in Iraq and the end to the country’s torture chambers.
He then plays a clip of President George W. Bush touting Iraq’s “emerging free market … and the thousands of small business operating across the country” after most of the violence ebbed.
“Those are our values, and we got into Iraq spread our values … ” Stewart quietly says, as if embarrassed to say it aloud. He quickly retreats to the oil sales headlines before summing up a war with one tidy quip.
“I’m starting to think this whole Iraq war thing might have been a mistake,” he says.
Good reasons exist now, as they did then, for not fighting the Iraq War. Stewart has every right to think the war was a mistake. What he does during the segment, however, is dishonest. He doesn’t even consider that the U.S. went to war for something other than greed even when the proof confirming just that is staring directly at him.