US Vice President Richard Cheney can let down George Bush and not allow him to win the elections, Bush’s supporters believe.
US media express much more criticism to Cheney than to Bush. They condemn the Vice president for misleading Americans. Cheney spent much time on persuading the public that al-Qaida was directly linked to Saddam Hussein. Meanwhile, the US press is more interested in the ties between Mr. Cheney and Halliburton company, and the connection between the company interests and starting the war in Iraq.
Republicans are discussing the issue if US Vice President will become a burden for the current US administration in its aspiration to be re-elected. Even if George Bush wins the current elections, the question will arise on the elections of 2008. Any political party is interested in preserving its power. The best way for the Republicans to do this is preparing the Vice President for winning the next elections. However, many Republicans doubt if Mr. Cheney is the right person for this mission.
The USA Today published the letter of James Ganon, the former reporter of the Wall Street Journal and editor of Des Moines Register. Ganon called Cheney to resign “for the sake of Bush and the party”. Mr. Ganon calls himself Cheney’s supporter, but says that Dick Cheney should do this sacrifice. He recognizes that Cheney’s experience and self-confidence helped George Bush much, and Cheney’s resignation would become the biggest service he could provide to George Bush.
Mr. Ganon asked the Vice President to think if he would improve or weaken the position of the Republican party at the November elections and after them. There is only one answer to this question as the Vice-President undergoes the bulk of the criticism directed to the White House administration. The political opponents are right when they call Mr. Cheney the tool of oil industry. On the other hand, Cheney trusted much to Akhmad Chalabi who suddenly “betrayed the interests of Americans in Iraq”. Chalabi supplied false information on Iraq to Bush administration, and Cheney based his propagandist campaign on this information. Ganon write that Halliburton company where Cheney was CEO, is bringing down not only Cheney, but Bush as well.
However, many people think that Bush is loyal to his aides and for this reason will never ask Cheney to resign. Some Republicans believe that Cheney himself should persuade Bush to dismiss him.
Ganon believes that Bush needs a deputy who will be ready to bear the burden of fighting terrorism, like Cheney does, but will not have political problems.
One of the biggest problems for Cheney are his conflicts with the US press. Currently he is preoccupied with the argument with the New York Times. As the Editor and Publisher magazine wrote, “forget who is winning the war in Iraq. The most important thing for now is whether the New York Times or Cheney will win”. The new York Times was misled by Dick Cheney before and wrote many stories to persuade Americans that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. After seeing the outcome of the military operation in Iraq – no weapons of mass destruction – the New York Times reporters started attacking Cheney. Meanwhile, the Vice President still says that Saddam had ties with the 9/11 attacks on the USA.
Cheney told about the meeting of the head of the terrorist of 9/11 Mohammed Atta with the Iraqi intelligence officers in Prague in 2001. The members of the commission investigating 9/11 attacks, came to the conclusion that Atta could not meet anybody in Prague as he was in Florida during the alleged meeting.
”Produce the evidence to us”, the New York Times called Cheney in the editorial. The newspaper wrote that there had been only one meeting of Iraqi intelligence officers with al-Qaida, and after this meeting Iraqi government decided not to support al-Qaida. New York Times says that Cheney’s allegations are as ridiculous as allegations of the US ties with North Korea could be.
Cheney joined the dispute and replies to the New York Times’ criticism on TV. Now he probably reads the press more, and can see what the newspapers write about him. For example, the USA Today which called Cheney to resign.
Rescuers found the pilot of one of the two Su-34 fighters that had collided in midair in the Far East on January 18