The ultimate expression of the One Percent Doctrine was the invasion of Iraq, though in the run-up to the war, Cheney insisted that the probability of an existential threat to America was about 100 times that great. “There is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction” and planned to use them to corner the world oil market and blackmail the United States, he said at the time.
And though the supposed Iraqi WMDs were infamously never found, Cheney says in The World that he still counts the war as a win: “We didn’t find stockpiles. We did find that he had the capability. And we believed he had the intent.”
The World has plenty of dissenting interviews with journalists and lefty policy wonks who say that the measures Cheney employed were neither necessary nor productive. Cheney shrugs off their arguments — “you don’t get do-overs, so I don’t spent a lot of time thinking about it” — and even trashes some of his old allies, from Bush’s secretary of state Condoleezza Rice (soft on North Korea’s nuclear ambitions) to the president himself (for refusing a pardon to Cheney’s chief of staff Scooter Libby, convicted of perjury in a leak investigation).
“I felt that we were leaving a good man on the battlefield,” Cheney says of the failure to pardon Libby. The metaphor is anything but casual: Cheney regards his vice-presidency as a war on two fronts, one against Islamic jihadists in the Middle East, the other against fifth columnists in Washington. And watching The World, it’s clear that he hasn’t left his foxhole.