A former member of the George W. Bush Administration who was involved in taking the US into war in Iraq in 2003 has been speaking out, long and loud against those who created the disaster – and he’s not going to stop talking anytime soon.

Lawrence Wilkerson is a retired US Army officer and former Chief of Staff to Secretary of State General Colin Powell. Currently, he is a visiting professor at the College of William and Mary, where he teaches classes on national security issues. In 2009, Wilkerson was given the Sam Adams Award for Integrity in Intelligence. Politically, he has been a Republican. For the past several years, he has also been a harsh and outspoken critic of the Bush Administration’s handling of the Iraq War. Specifically, Wilkerson has condemned former Vice-President Dick Cheney and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld for their roles in planning and executing the war – and is even calling for Cheney to be jailed.

Wilkerson also played a role in taking the US into an illegal and disastrous conflict, preparing the presentation that Colin Powell made before the UN Security Council, laying out the Bush Administration’s case for going to war. Two-and-a-half years later, Wilkerson had this to say about it:

My participation in that presentation at the UN constitutes the lowest point in my professional life. I participated in a hoax on the American people, the  international community and the United Nations Security Council.

In 2011, Wilkerson added that preparing Powell’s UN statement was “probably the biggest mistake of my life.” Calling for Bush and Cheney to be put on trial for their crimes, he said, “I’d be willing to testify, and I’ll be willing to take any punishment I’m due.”

Four years later, Lawrence Wilkerson is still calling for Cheney to be held to account for starting a war based on falsehoods and obfuscation. Like Marine Major General Smedley D. Butler, Wilkerson is a true patriot who is not afraid to speak the truth – and in the spirit of Dwight D. Eisenhower, he is prepared to own up to his own mistakes.

Cheney remains unrepentant. Last week, during an interview with CNN, he asked if he had any regrets about the Iraq War. The war criminal’s response: “No, it was the right thing to do then. I believed it then and I believe it now.”

Recently, Lawrence Wilkerson appeared on The Big Picture with Thom Hartmann. Watch the interview:

Watch Amy Goodman with Democracy Now talking with Col. Wilkerson about the same issue.

For an additional viewpoint regarding Cheney being tried for war crimes, click International Court Judge Says Dick Cheney Will Eventually Be Tried as a War Criminal.

K.J. McElrath is a former history and social studies teacher who has long maintained a keen interest in legal and social issues. In addition to writing for The Ring of Fire, he is the author of two published novels: Tamanous Cooley, a darkly comic environmental twist on Dante's Inferno, and The Missionary's Wife, a story of the conflict between human nature and fundamentalist religious dogma. When not engaged in journalistic or literary pursuits, K.J. works as an entertainer and film composer.