America

Cheney: I Urged Bush To Bomb Syria

Former Vice President Dick Cheney. (Feb. 10, 2011, file photo.) i i

Former Vice President Dick Cheney. (Feb. 10, 2011, file photo.) Alex Brandon/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Alex Brandon/AP
Former Vice President Dick Cheney. (Feb. 10, 2011, file photo.)

Former Vice President Dick Cheney. (Feb. 10, 2011, file photo.)

Alex Brandon/AP

"Former Vice President Dick Cheney says in a new memoir that he urged President George W. Bush to bomb a suspected Syrian nuclear reactor site in June 2007," The New York Times reports this morning.

But Bush didn't follow the vice president's advice — and none of the president's other top advisers thought bombing Syria was a good idea, Cheney adds. The Bush administration had gone to war with Iraq in part because of faulty intelligence about weapons of mass destruction that were never found. Top aides did not want to make a similar mistake. In September 2007, Israel bombed the site.

As Eyder said Wednesday, Cheney is likely to be in the news a lot in coming weeks as more details from his book — which goes on sale Monday — are revealed. Yesterday, we heard that Cheney says he kept a signed resignation letter in a safe, in part because he feared he might become incapacitated by a heart attack or stroke. We also learned that he makes another strong defense of the use of waterboarding in the memoir.

Today, the Times adds that in the book Cheney "divulges a number of conflicts with others in the inner circle," including then-CIA Director George Tenet and Bush's two secretaries of state, Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice.

Also this morning, NBC's The Today Show airs an interview with Cheney. According to NBC correspondent Jamie Gangel, Cheney believes "heads are going to be exploding all over Washington" as more is learned about what's in his book.

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