Monday, December 11, 2006

Jay Garner talks to Darth Vader in Iraq

So it's early Monday Morning and I am trying to get enough coffee drank to wake me up. I've C-SPAN turned on a few minutes before the Washington Journal program begins, and Brian Lamb is interviewing former Iraq administrator Jay Garner. The transcript of this interview can be found here
I hear Brian ask Jay

LAMB: What’s the Darth Vader story?

My eyebrows are raised as I turn to listen to this. I am not sure if I just heard Brian speaking about our Vice President or what.

GARNER: Darth Vader?

Malcolm MacPherson, who you may or may not know, Malcolm writes for ”Time,” and he’s written several books. He was over there, and I asked him one day, I said, ”Hey, you want to go with me?” And he said, ”Sure.”

So, we went down to Al Hillah. And in Al Hillah, I had a team down there under a retired brigadier general named Buck Walters, a great guy.

And so, we were down there looking at things, and Buck says, ”Hey, Jay. Before you go back, I need to take you to talk to Darth Vader, because he wants to talk to you.”

And I said, ”Who’s that?” And he said, ”Well, he’s a pretty powerful player we got here. He runs things, and I need you to talk to him.” I said, ”OK.”

I said, ”Why do you call him Darth Vader?” He said, ”You’ll understand that when you see him.”

So, we go to the mosque and walk in, and the lesser clerics bring us, and they bring us in the room to sit down. And then Darth Vader comes in.

Now, this guy’s about the size of Shaquille O’Neal. I mean, he’s a huge man. He’s got his big, black turban on.

And he shakes my hand and just - a big old hand just wraps up around my hand. And he says, ”Please sit down.”

And so, I sat down, and he said, ”I’m glad you came to see me.” He said, ”Do you have any questions?” I said, ”Yes, sir, I do.”

I'm not going to put any more of the transcript out on this diary. I highly recommend that you read it for yourself. I am not going to call Jay a liar. Time magazine could call him out on it if he lied. What I really think though is that this Darth Vader said some of the best stuff that I have heard from anyone with respect to rebuilding Iraq. I wish that Jay had told President Bush about this meeting. The Darth Vader dude went off the deep end a little at the end. Still it is one awesome story.

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