2009 Rand Paul Speech: Cheney Manipulated US Into Iraq War for Profit

Monday, 07 Apr 2014 03:23 PM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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Sen. Rand Paul claimed in 2009 that former Vice President Dick Cheney exploited the 9/11 attacks in order to lead the United States into war in Iraq to benefit military contractor Halliburton, where Cheney had been CEO before heading to Washington, a video unveiled by blog Mother Jones' writer David Corn shows.

In the video unearthed of a speech given at Western Kentucky University, Paul argues that Cheney opposed the first Bush administration's plans but changed his mind over Halliburton, Corn reports.

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"He's being interviewed (in 1995), I think, by the American Enterprise Institute, and he says it would be a disaster, it would be vastly expensive, it would be civil war, we'd have no exit strategy. He goes on and on for five minutes — Dick Cheney saying it would be a bad idea," Paul says in the video.

"And that's why the first Bush didn’t go into Baghdad. Dick Cheney then goes to work for Halliburton. Makes hundreds of millions of dollars — their CEO. Next thing you know, he's back in government, it's a good idea to go into Iraq."

Paul, a presumptive Republican presidential candidate in 2016, also said in the speech that 9/11 "became an excuse for a war they already wanted in Iraq."

Story continues below video.



The unearthed video was shot shortly before Paul announced his Senate candidacy plans.

Paul's 2009 theory wasn't unique, as Iraq war opponents used the same claims about the beginnings of the war, Corn noted.

Corn notes that Cheney blasted isolationists in his own party March 29 at the Republican Jewish Coalition's spring leadership meeting at casino magnate Sheldon Adelson's hotel.

"One of the things that concerns me first about the [2016] campaign, that I'm worried about," Cheney said, "is what I sense to be an increasing strain of isolationism, if I can put it in those terms, in our own party," Cheney told the various Republican leaders at the private event.

While he did not name names, Corn contends that he was talking about Paul.

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