Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) gets results! The director of the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery, Martin Sullivan, has just written back to Sanders' plea for a little logical cohesion in the caption hanging beneath the museum's new portrait of George W. Bush.This stuff matters, as Orwell illustrated in 1984 and as the Bush administration has proven and reproven over the last eight years. Who controls the narrative controls history, and who controls the history can shape the present. The Bush administration would love to continue to link the 9/11 attacks with the Iraq War as a justification, and it's important that we continue to fight that attempt. Thanks to Senator Sanders for recognizing that and taking this step--even small ones matter.
The portrait's caption, describing the Bush era, originally said that the 9/11 attacks "led to" the war in Iraq. After Sanders pointed out the obvious flaw in that causal correlation -- Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11 -- Sullivan replied: "Our intention was to remind viewers of the portrait that the listed events were defining moments in the Bush presidency, within the limited space of an object label. I appreciate your concern, however, about the words 'led to.' We will revise the label and delete the words 'led to.'"