In Your Guts, You Know He's Nuts
by Jeffrey Steinberg
The word is circulating in high-level Republican Party circles that former President George H.W. Bush is profoundly worried about the mental state of his son, the current President. According to the sources, Bush 41 has been communicating with his own intimate circle, including former National Security Advisor Brent Scowcroft, and former Secretary of State James Baker III, along with former President Bill Clinton, about G.W.'s over-the-top support for Israel's current self-destructive assault on Lebanon. The ex-President has reportedly conveyed to his close associates that he fears that G.W. is in a messianic state and is "unreachable," even by such close advisors as Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. Insight magazine, the online publication of the Washington Times, buttressed this account, reporting in early August that, for the first time, a rift has developed between Rice and President Bush, over the President's one-sided support for Israel, in the ongoing Israeli Defense Forces invasion of Lebanon.
The former Presidents—Bush and Clinton—who have worked together on post-Katrina humanitarian relief efforts and other projects, are reportedly attempting to encourage President Bush to take the diplomatic high ground, and avoid further bloodshed in Lebanon, which could spill over into an out-of-control "clash of civilizations" conflict, engulfing much of the planet.
Unfortunately for the Bush Family legacy, and for the fate of the United States and the world at large, there is scant evidence that the President is in the least interested in returning from the Far Side. If anything, his performance during an Aug. 7 press conference with Rice at Crawford, Texas, convinced many previously hopeful observers that George W. Bush is suffering from what some would dare to call "absolute insanity."
To be sure, the notorious sociopath, Vice President Dick Cheney, has been one of the principal Bush Administration architects of Israel's no-holds-barred invasion of Lebanon, and has been waging a behind-the-scenes war with an ever-more inept and frustrated Condi Rice, over the issue. And, as even the New York Times noted on Aug. 10, National Security Council Near East chief Elliott Abrams, one of the leading "Clean Break" neo-cons remaining in the Bush White House inner circle, has been Cheney's mole, shadowing Rice to Israel and Lebanon, and reporting back to the Vice President's office, to make sure that the Israeli hardliners prevail, even if it means they steer the Jewish State into a suicidal Thirty Years' War misadventure across their northern border.
Sources close to the White House have been reporting for several months that Cheney has been waiting in the wings for Rice's diplomacy to hit a brick wall. At that point, the sources report, Cheney intends to step back into the limelight, and press President Bush to order military action against Iran. Plans have been on the drawing board at the Strategic Command for a year or more, for vigorous air strikes against as many as 40 sites inside Iran, said by the Cheney faction to be part of an underground nuclear weapons program.
Furthermore, the administration has been in talks with European NATO allies and Israel over the need to "take out" Iran's alleged asymmetric warfare asset, Hezbollah, prior to any direct confrontation with Tehran. From Cheney's point of view, the now ongoing Israeli incursion into Lebanon, which is moving as of this writing, into a fullscale ground invasion, is a critical first step towards a military confrontation with Iran, that, he hopes, will result in regime-change in Tehran. David Frum, the former Bush speechwriter who authored the now infamous "Axis of Evil" State of the Union address in January 2002, told the McClatchy newspapers that, "The reason he's [President Bush] been giving the green light to Israel in southern Lebanon is he's heading toward a confrontation with Iran. Hezbollah is Iran's strongest weapon. That's what this is about—the United States benefits from taking away Iran's weapon."
Bush Eyes Armageddon
But for all of their imperial fantasies, Cheney—and, perhaps, even Abrams—are driven by real-world considerations like oil geopolitics, and the larger Synarchist drive to foment perpetual asymmetric warfare all across Eurasia, to shatter the Westphalian nation-state system. They are sickos to be sure, but not religious zealots, caught up in End Times fantasies and God complexes. Bush, on the other hand, is believed by some close observers to be in a paranoid, megalomaniacal state, in which he harbors Armageddonist delusions that God personally intervened to place him in the Presidency, to support Israel in the present bloody fiasco in Lebanon. If these reports have even a shred of truth behind them, the U.S.A., Israel, and the extended Southwest Asian region are in even more grave danger.
Dr. Justin Frank, the noted George Washington University Medical School psychiatrist and author of the book-length diagnosis of the President, Bush on the Couch—Inside the Mind of the President (see book review, in this section), detailed George W. Bush's 24-year bout with alcoholism, which only ended when the Rev. Billy Graham converted the future President to born-again Christianity. Dr. Frank warned, in his frightening clinical evaluation of the President, that Bush never recovered from his alcoholism, never received any kind of treatment for the disease, and merely adopted another mechanism to escape reality—a form of religious zealotry, associated with the Christian Zionism of such latter-day Elmer Gantry types as Graham, Jerry Falwell, and Pat Robertson.
A look inside President Bush's "special relationship" to Israel appeared in an Aug. 3, 2006 McClatchy wire story by Ron Hutcheson. Hutcheson interviewed Matthew Brooks, a Max Fisher protégé, who was the executive director of the Republican Jewish Coalition in 1998, when he escorted then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush and three other GOP governors on a tour of the Middle East. It was on this trip that Bush had his first encounter with Ariel Sharon, then the Israeli Foreign Minister, who took him on a helicopter tour of the Israeli Occupied Territories.
"If there's a starting point for George W. Bush's attachment to Israel," Brooks told Hutcheson, "it's the day in late 1998, when he stood on a hilltop where Jesus delivered the Sermon on the Mount, and, eyes brimming with tears, read aloud from his favorite hymn, 'Amazing Grace.' He was very emotional. It was a tear-filled experience. He brought Israel back home with him in his heart. I think he came away profoundly moved."
In a 2005 speech, President Bush reflected on his helicopter tour with Sharon: "It's interesting how history works, isn't it? The future President of the United States and the future Prime Minister of Israel were flying across that country, with him describing to me how to keep Israel secure."
Increasingly, American voters are waking up to the fact that the President of the United States gives all the clinical appearances of being mad as a hatter. The Aug. 8 Democratic Primary vote in Connecticut, in which incumbent Sen. Joseph Lieberman was defeated by insurgent candidate Ned Lamont, was as much a vote of no-confidence in Bush and Cheney, as it was a repudiation of Iraq warhawk Lieberman. Stephen Colbert, the television humorist, had captured the essence of the Bush-Lieberman love affair in a recent TV spot, which featured news footage of the President's smooch on the Connecticut Senator's lips, during a Presidential speech before a joint session of Congress.
The day after Lieberman's stunning defeat, Vice President Cheney made a rare phone call to a group of reporters, in which he ranted that Lieberman's defeat represented a major victory for "al-Qaeda types." The very next day, Aug. 10, British police carried out arrests of 24 Muslims, declared a state of terrorist red alert, and announced that a plot to blow up trans-Atlantic commercial airliners headed from Heathrow Airport to the United States, had been foiled. The Bush Administration instantaneously went into full wartime propaganda mode, declaring a similar terror red alert, staging a series of news conferences and briefings, and attempting to parlay the Cheney comments about the Lieberman defeat and al-Qaeda into a political assault on the Democratic Party. At the time he spoke to reporters, Cheney knew of the pending British raids, according to news reports.
Lyndon LaRouche added a further strategic dimension to the mass-distraction efforts of the Bush-Cheney White House. LaRouche highlighted the overtime work of the "Plunge Protection Team"—centered out of the Treasury Department, the Federal Reserve, and other leading central banks around the globe—to cover up and carry out damage control for a major hedge-fund collapse, which threatens the entire world financial system. News of this hedge-fund meltdown had barely made it into the back pages of the financial press in Europe, but LaRouche had been warning for months about a major financial chain-reaction crisis before September, and the reports echoed precisely such an already ongoing event.
Security sources in the United States and Europe quickly confirmed that the timing of the crackdown on the purported British-Pakistani-based terror cell had been politically engineered to distract attention away from the accelerating collapse of public support for both President Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair. While the cell had been under investigation for a year, and did represent a potential threat, the public hype was completely disproportionate to the reality of the threat, and the timing was unmistakably aimed at diverting world attention away from the financial crisis and the shrinking support for the Anglo-American leaders, the sources confirmed.
Indeed, Bush and Blair, according to news accounts, had had telephone discussions for months about the probe of the terror cell, and had spoken by phone on Sunday, Aug. 6, and again on Monday, Aug. 7. Both heads of state were on vacation as of Aug. 7. Two days later, Cheney was ranting about Democrats being in bed with al-Qaeda "types," and the very next day, the sensational headlines in the Anglo-American press invoked the images of another 9/11.
Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.), during an Aug. 11 campaign stop in New York City, lambasted Vice President Cheney for his over-the-top tirade, declaring, "I don't take anything he says seriously anymore. I think that he has been a very counterproductive—even destructive—force in our country, and I am very disheartened by the failure of leadership from the President and Vice President."
A majority of Americans appear to agree with Senator Clinton's appraisal. Sources close to White House political svengali Karl Rove reported on Aug. 11 that, to their horror, the terror hype had already backfired, with polls showing that support for Bush had fallen since the terror plot was revealed.