5 Years, 5 Lies: Cole in Salon

My fortnightly column for Salon.com is now up, commemorating the 5th anniversary of Bush’s invasion of Iraq:

“Five years of Iraq lies:” How President Bush and his advisors have spent each year of the war peddling mendacious tales about a mission accomplished.

I posit that each year of the war has been characterized by a central lie by the Bush propaganda machine.

Year 1: “There is no guerrilla war.”
Year 2: “Iraq is a model democracy.”
Year 3: “Zarqawi is causing all the trouble.”
Year 4: “There is no Civil War.”
Year 5: “Everything is calm now.”

I also suggest that John McCain is pushing for:

Year 6: “Total victory is around the corner.”

Also, at Tomdispatch.com Greg Mitchell, editor of Editor and Publisher magazine and author of So Wrong for So Long: How the Press, The Pundits — and the President — Failed on Iraq, writes on the brave journalists like Chris Hedges who got it right.

As for John McCain’s bizarre assertion on Tuesday that Iran was actively training “al-Qaeda,” the senator was just parroting the Pentagon line of a few years ago, which gradually was muted because even the gullible US press wouldn’t swallow it.

Bottom line, if you are so ignorant or confused that you think Shiite ayatollahs in Tehran are training and arming radical Salafi Sunnis to blow up Shiites in Iraq, you really should not be president.

P.S. Glenn Greenwald demonstrates that McCain has repeatedly made this looney assertion and that it wasn’t just a momentary slip. You wonder whether, if he had been corrected by anyone but Lieberman, he would even have backed off momentarily.