Democrat presidential candidate Joe Biden claimed during Tuesday’s debate that he opposed going to war in Iraq from the start, an assertion not buoyed by facts.
Biden was asked by moderators to flesh out his foreign policy experience with the backdrop of support for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The former vice president said he regrets his vote on the war in Iraq, but thought it would open a pathway for weapons inspectors from the United Nations to enter the country.
“It was a mistake to trust that they weren’t going to go to war,” Biden said, placing the blame for his vote on the shoulders of George W. Bush. “They said they were not going to go to war. They said they were just going to get inspectors in. The world, in fact, voted to get inspectors in, and they still went to war.”
It was then that he claimed he (secretly?) opposed war despite his vote.
“From that point on I was in the position of making the case that it was a big, big mistake,” Biden continued. “And from that point on I voted to — I moved to bring those troops home.”
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) January 15, 2020
Serially Distorting His Record
David Axelrod, a former chief strategist to Barack Obama, tweeted in September that Biden was “in danger” of “serially” distorting his own record.
Which is exactly what we have here.
Ryan Grim at The Intercept previously published an expose into Biden’s push for the war in Iraq, making it remarkable that he continues to fabricate the same story even today.
“Joe Biden this week continued to maintain the fiction that he stood against the war in Iraq ‘the very moment’ it began in 2003,” Grim wrote.
“The claim has been easily taken apart by fact-checkers — Biden publicly supported the war before, during, and after the invasion.”
That must have been a lie as well – unless he wants to suggest he misspoke again at the debate.
In addition to the above, Biden’s support for the Iraq War included:
- Pushed for a controversial plan to partition Iraq that the U.S. embassy in Baghdad said would “produce extraordinary suffering and bloodshed .”
- Before the invasion of Iraq, Biden went to Vladimir Putin to ask him to support the invasion in exchange for oil profits if Russia sided with the United States.
So no, he didn’t think the war in Iraq was a “big, big mistake” from the beginning.