Review: Woodward’s Plan of Attack

Plan of Attack
Bob Woodward

No one can get the skinny like Woodward can get the skinny. There are few reporters who get to spend hours interviewing the president, but Woodward did for this book.

Woodward gets this kind of access because he is the most important investigative reporter in America. If you don’t tell him, someone else will. But like any good reporter, Woodward is concerned about keeping his sources, and while this book is informative about what was going on in the White House around the time of the start of the war in Iraq, it fails to take the White House to task for the mistakes made in those early days of the war. Its still an important book, because of the access Woodward received, but in the future no one will remember Plan of Attack like they remember All the Presidents Men.
Not recommended.

Review: Mann’s Rise of the Vulcans

Rise Of The Vulcans: The History of Bush’s War Cabinet
James Mann

The best book on the personalities that made up the first Bush term, and believe me, I have read a bunch of them. All the Woodward books and other beltway books of the season come and go, but Mann’s book I think will be seen as the best contemporary accounting of the personalities from the first terms( Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, Ashcroft, Powell, Armitage, Wolfowitz, etc, etc) that you’re going to find. This is obvious a book that is highly critical of all the figures in that presidency, but not the propagandistic way other books are. Mann is harsh, but fair and does an especially good job of explaining what the hell neoconservatives actually is and the really nasty hatred between the Cheney people and the Powell people. Even after however many years, this is still essential reading for political junkies.

Recommended for the enthusiast.