The gloves start to come off in second Woodward offering

plan of attack cover

The second part of Woodward’s trilogy tells a familiar story – the twists and turns, the musings and deliberations, planning and more planning, in the run up to the Iraq War of 2003. When reviewing Bush at War, I wrote that Woodward seemed to be hedging on whether Dubya and the neocons were just crazy warmongers thinking that regime change would be uncomplicatedly and easily achieved and, what’s more, welcomed.  Though he tries to keep to the same objective tone in Plan of Attack, in his authorial comments and subtle asides there is a growing unease – if not outright criticism – that the case for war was, not quite made all the way through 2002 and up to 19 March 2003. Maybe Woodward feels that going for the jugular would be downright unpatriotic given that Americans are – still – dying to defend “freedom”, but one senses that he can no longer in good conscience keep holding back the punches. Now all that remains is for me to find out whether State of Denial delivers the killer knockout blow.


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