Denial doesn’t just run through Egypt

by Stephen Tall on September 30, 2006

A couple of years ago, Bob Woodward’s book, Plan of Attack, was listed as recommended reading on the Bush/Cheney04 campaign website. Perhaps not surprisingly, given that Amazon.com observed that it “demonstrates the tremendous conviction and dedication of the people who decided to carry [the invasion of Iraq] out”.

Mr Woodward has now published a follow-up, State of Denial. It’s not merely an unflattering depiction of the neo-cons in power: it’s a searing indictment.

Here’s what John Dickerson has to say about it on Slate.com:

The disclosures so far have been devastating. The book paints the administration as clueless, dishonest, and dysfunctional. … State of Denial is a significant blow to the president both politically and strategically. …[Woodward] charges the president has not been straight with the American people about how bad things are in Iraq and how much worse it’s going to get. But his most damning claim—screaming at you right there in the title—is not that Bush is deceitful; it’s that he’s clueless. People many not care if Bush admits reality to the public, but they hope he’s admitting reality to himself. …

… the problem the Woodward book presents for the Bush administration is not that his anecdotes of mismanagement seem shocking or unexpected, but that they don’t. Woodward isn’t going to change minds, but he’ll do something more dangerous: He will confirm the doubts about Bush that a majority of Americans already have.