I started rereading Maureen Dowd’s Bushworld: Enter at Your Own Risk a couple of days back and came across this jaw-dropper (pp. 18f):
Back in 1991, as Bush I defense secretary, Dick Cheney defended the decision not to go into Baghdad, saying that America would simply have installed a “puppet regime.” “How effective would it be if it were perceived as the puppet regime of the United States military? It gets to be a very difficult, a very nebulous, a very long, drawn-out kind of commitment, what I would describe as a quagmire. We have absolutely no interest in getting U.S. military forces involved inside Iraq.”
[No, Dowd doesn’t cite a source. Cuss her, not me.]
sigh I think Bush’s Spleen should have stuck with his first impulse.