In terms of strategic blunders by the Bush administration, the invasion of Iraq would seem to be in a league of its own. Even so, it is quite possible that the administration's biggest error in judgment came soon after the invasion when under the stranglehold of neoconservative ideology, the White House passed up an opportunity to make a "grand bargain" with Iran.
In light of the Bush administration's current bellicose rhetoric directed at Iran, it's worth looking carefully at the golden opportunity that in 2003 Bush and Cheney tossed out.
At that time, the neocons seemed convinced that having secured an "easy victory" in Iraq, they would soon be able march on and topple the Islamic regime in Tehran. The Cheney gang was in no mood for reconciliation. Yet had they not become delirious with power, they might have recognized a diplomatic prize of unparalleled proportions. Indeed, it's conceivable that had a bargain then been struck, what has since unfolded as an Iraqi disaster might have turned out in a very different way. Not only that, but another war -- between Israel and Hezbollah -- would likely have been avoided.
Stories about what never happened are easy to ignore, but at a time when tensions between the United States and Iran are mounting dangerously, it is critically important that more Americans learn about what an Iranian government was capable of offering and what a priceless opportunity the White House foolishly squandered.
I understand the language, but Cheney never wanted what this "priceless opportunity" offered. He wanted, and still wants, to "conquer" Iran or bring it to its knees, albeit under the guise of "regime change", and hang the expense in lives lost and money thrown to his big biz bros.
Just one more reason to lock these bastards up.