Blogs > Liberty and Power > War, Health, State

May 11, 2006 12:51 pm

War, Health, State

Bleg: I recall reading a few years ago an interview from Bill Clinton in the waning days of his presidency where he complained that he never really got the chance to be great because he didn't have a major war. I found that perverse. Can any of the fine historians and scholars at L&P/HNN point me to that quote? The closest I've come is the following:

“I envy Kennedy having an enemy,” Clinton said, thinking it must have been a good deal easier to sell programs and ideas negatively, just by shouting that the Russians were coming. “The question now is how to persuade people they could do things when they are not immediately threatened.”

--Richard Reeves, “Why Clinton Wishes He Were JFK,” Washington Monthly September 1995

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Gene Healy - 5/12/2006

Thanks, Matt. Good stuff.

Matt Barganier - 5/11/2006

As far as I can tell, Dick Morris is the source of the greatness = war quote that many people later attributed to Clinton: