'The World Trade Center came down': Donald Trump and Jeb Bush unload on each other in explosive debate exchange - AOL
When brash, battling, bulldozing Donald Trump unloaded on George W. Bush over 9/11 and the Iraq War during the debate last week I said to myself 'There he goes again.' I don't agree with Trump on this. He's got it all wrong. From 1996 when al Qaida terror master Khalid Sheikh Muhammad dreamed up the deadly plan of flying hijacked planes into the Twin Towers and Pentagon to its horrific execution in 2001 was approximately 60 months: 53 under Clinton and 7 under Bush. On the day Bush's inaugural the plan was set and there was no stopping it. If Clinton had a third term or Gore were president 3000 Americans would have died all the same.
And to say the least we would have certainly invaded Afghanistan and possibly Iraq. For Bill Clinton, who signed into law the Iraq Liberation Act making regime change in Iraq (the toppling of Saddam) official US policy (by any and every means short of war), and who with Hillary backed the Iraq War Resolution authorizing George Bush to invade Iraq and destroy Saddam, might have done no different had he still been president. Gore is more problematic. He was for invading Iraq and ousting Saddam but only as a multinational UN action like George H W Bush organized to liberate Kuwait from Saddam in 1991. A persuasive case has been made from the left that with neo-con Senator Joe Lieberman as his VP Gore would have likely invaded Iraq UN or no UN (see).
As for me I am persuaded that had Bush not ordered Operation Iraqi Freedom that Saddam who never gave up his nuclear ambitions would likely have built the bomb-with help from "Axis of Evil" ally nuclear North Korea (). But don't waste your time trying to persuade Donald Trump of this. He has made up his mind that the Bush presidency was an unmitigated disaster that set the stage for the catastrophe of Barack Obama. Indeed, Trump holds Bush responsible for 9/11, and faults him for not keeping us safe that day-despite the absence of another al-Qaida mass murder attack till the end of his presidency. And Trump doesn't just simply fault Bush for Iraq-against the evidence he accuses him of using nonexistent WMDs to "lie" us into that war; but the truth is, like Clinton before him, Bush had bad intelligence stealthily provided by Saddam who wanted the world to believe he still had WMDs for strategic reasons-as he told FBI investigators (see).
Indeed, Trump sounding like a leftist with a bad case of Bush Derangement Syndrome was at his anti-Bush worst at the debate. And the audience reflecting the feelings of most Republicans who are pro-Bush booed him, and cheered Jeb who defended his good brother.
Bushwhacked GOP presidential candidates McCain and Romney.
But crazy as he sounded and seemed perhaps Donald Trump is being crazy like a fox and doing what is politically necessary to seize the presidency if he's the GOP nominee. By casting himself as radically and unmistakably anti-Bush the Democratic nominee (Hillary or Bernie) can't use Bush against him and discredit his candidacy. They can't do to Trump what Barack Obama and the Dems did first to John McCain and then to Mitt Romney: turn him into another George Bush.
Indeed, with Bush's job approval rating in the low 30s (where Harry Truman's was in 1952), and the economy a mess, team Obama and the Dems cast John McCain as "John McBush" warning that a vote for him was a vote for a third term of the president who gave us Iraq and the housing/financial crash (which would have happened if either Gore or Kerry were president).
And then in 2012 (with Bush still very unpopular) Obama gave Romney the same treatment saying, "This election presents a choice of two fundamentally different visions of America of how to stimulate growth, pay down the debt and create jobs....If you want to give the policies of the last decade another try, you should vote for Mitt Romney." Of course after seven failed years of Obama's disastrous presidency the economy is flat to failing and verging on another recession, the debt has dangerously doubled and the lousy, poor, low wage jobs being created hasn't reversed the decline of the middle class-as Clinton and Sanders both say.
But because of crazy-like-a fox Donald Trump's hostility to George Bush Democrats can't get away with calling him Donald J. Bush. If the economy crashes again or there's a mass terror attack it is the Dems who will fear Trump calling their nominee either Barack Hussein Clinton, or Bernie Hussein Obama. George W. Bush has kept the Republicans from the White House for eight years. Now maybe that will change.