When Propagandists Believe Their Own Propaganda

"Perhaps even more disturbing than the administration's indifference to the truth or falsity of the various claims it made before the war is the fact that it seemed to believe its own propaganda," the Washington Post's E.J. Dionne, Jr. writes. "President Bush and Vice President Cheney really thought that if they wished it, it would come -- 'it' in this case being not only a quick victory in the war but also a rapid rallying of Iraqis to the American standard afterward. Last March on 'Meet the Press,' moderator Tim Russert asked Cheney: 'If your analysis is not correct and we're not treated as liberators but as conquerors, and the Iraqis begin to resist, particularly in Baghdad, do you think the American people are prepared for a long, costly, bloody battle with significant American casualties?' Cheney replied: 'Well, I don't think it's likely to unfold that way, Tim, because I really do believe that we will be greeted as liberators.'"