Vice President Dick Cheney (search) said Friday the invasion of Iraq will go down in history, along with the war in Afghanistan, for its "brilliance."
The vice president's comment came as he portrayed the controversy over hundreds of tons of missing explosives in Iraq as a battle pitting Sen. John Kerry (search) against U.S. troops, with Cheney siding with the military.
At an airport rally at a hangar in Montoursville, Pa., Cheney said the U.S. invasions of "Afghanistan and Iraq will be studied for years for their brilliance."
At an earlier rally in Dimondale, Mich., Cheney spoke on the issue of explosives that have disappeared from stockpiles in Iraq. He cited Pentagon statements about the seizure and destruction by U.S. troops on April 13, 2003, of 250 tons of ammunition, including some of the same type as the missing explosives.
"Our troops were doing their job," Cheney said as he called Kerry an "armchair general," a characterization the vice president has been using for several days.
"This is not a battle between us and anyone," said Kerry campaign spokesman Phil Singer. "This is about George Bush (search) and Dick Cheney taking responsibility for their failure in Iraq."
Three peace activists briefly interrupted Cheney's remarks in Michigan.