LONG BEFORE 9/11, "Project for the New American Century, in Section 5, "Creating Tomorrow's Dominant Force" wrote:
<<"Further, the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event––like a new Pearl Harbor">>
March 3, 1999: New Pearl Harbor Needed to Change US Military Policies, Says Expert
Andrew Krepinevich, Executive Director of the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, testifies before the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities: “There appears to be general agreement concerning the need to transform the US military into a significantly different kind of force from that which emerged victorious from the Cold and Gulf Wars. Yet this verbal support has not been translated into a defense program supporting transformation… the ‘critical mass’ needed to effect it has not yet been achieved. One may conclude that, in the absence of a strong external shock to the United States—a latter-day ‘Pearl Harbor’ of sorts—surmounting the barriers to transformation will likely prove a long, arduous process.” [US Congress, 3/5/1999]
This is very similar, almost a verbatim quote, to what strategists at PNAC said (see June 3, 1997).
A NEW PEARL HARBOR???
IS THAT WHAT 9/11 WAS?
WAS THAT ALL IT WAS?
WE MAY NEVER KNOW.
BUT WE DO KNOW ABOUT THE DOWNING STREET MEMO.Downing Street Memo (Year: 2002)
The Downing Street "Memo" is actually the minutes of a meeting, transcribed during a gathering of many of the British Prime Minister's senior ministers on July 23, 2002.
Published by The Sunday Times on May 1, 2005 this document was the first hard evidence from within the UK or US governments that exposed the truth about how the Iraq war began.
Since that time, much more information has come to light through leaks of secret government documents and the accounts of an increasing number of people who have witnessed the administration’s wrongdoing firsthand.
There is now in the public record a large body of evidence that vividly illustrates:
Published by The Sunday Times on May 1, 2005 this document was the first hard evidence from within the UK or US governments that exposed the truth about how the Iraq war began.
Since that time, much more information has come to light through leaks of secret government documents and the accounts of an increasing number of people who have witnessed the administration’s wrongdoing firsthand.
There is now in the public record a large body of evidence that vividly illustrates:
- Bush’s long-standing intent to invade Iraq
- Bush’s willingness to provoke Saddam (in a variety of ways) into providing a pretext for war
- The fact that the war effectively began with an air campaign nearly a year before the March 2003 invasion and months before Congressional approval for the use of force
- The administration’s widespread effort to crush dissent and manipulate information that would counter its justification for war
- The lack of planning for the war’s aftermath and a fundamental lack of understanding of the Iraqi society
THIS IS VERY LONG, BUT PLEASE TRY TO READ IT ALL. OUR CONTINUED SILENCE, OUR CONTINUED DENIAL OF WHAT REALLY HAPPENED CHEAPENS US ALL, MAKES US JUST AS GUILTY AS THOSE WHO PULLED THIS OFF..
YOU WILL FIND IT HARD TO BELIEVE SOME THINGS, BUT IN THEIR OWN WORDS, IN THE SURVIVING FEDERAL DOCUMENTS, PERHAPS YOU WILL SEE A TRUTH, AND THE BEGINNING OF HOPE ON SETTLING THIS MATTER, ONCE AND FOR ALL.
In his "A Vision for America" Bush discussed Iraq and oil.
"As U.S. influence in the Gulf has waned, Iraq's relative influence as an oil supplier to U.S. and world markets has increased... and Iraq is now the fastest growing oil supplier to the United States... as spare production capacity becomes tighter, Iraq is moving into a position to become an important "swing producer," with an ability to single-handedly impact and manipulate global markets... Perhaps most ominously, Saddam Hussein is threatening to cut back production."
Within ten days of taking office, Bush set up a presidential task force under the direction of Vice President Dick Cheney to "look into the energy situation". The exact details of who participated in the meetings and what was discussed have been shrouded in mystery.
The White House fought a protracted legal battle to keep the information secret, but we know that representatives of major energy and oil interests participated, and we know that Iraq was a chief topic of conversation. Cheney's Energy Task Force authored a variety of documents, many relating to the oil industries of Iraq, United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia.
In documents acquired through the FOIA, it is obvious that a post-Saddam Iraq was considered a forgone conclusion by the Cheney Task Force.
One entitled "Foreign Suitors for Iraqi Oilfield Contracts," dated March 5, 2001, includes a table listing 30 countries which have interests in Iraq's oil industry, including the names of companies, the oil fields with which they are associated, as well as the status of those interests. Another titled "Map of Iraq's oil fields" shows markings for "supergiant" oil fields of 5 billion barrels or more, other smaller oilfields, fields "earmarked for production sharing," oil pipelines, operational refineries, and tanker terminals.
Due to the secrecy surrounding the Cheney Task Force, perhaps a more revealing view of the group's work can be found in a report written by an independent task force cosponsored by the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy of Rice University and the Council on Foreign Relations entitled; Strategic Energy Policy Challenges for the 21st Century.
Members of this task force included:
Ken Lay, CEO Enron
John Manzoni, Regional President BP
Steven Miller, CEO Shell Oil
David Reilly, CEO Chevron/Texaco
Chuck Watson, CEO Dynegy
Edward Morse, Exec. Advisor Hess
Eric Melby, Scowcroft Group
Thomas McLarty, Kissinger McLarty Associates
The group included numerous other Energy and foreign policy experts, and their findings were forwarded to Cheney's Energy Task Force. Many found their way into its list of "recommendations".
ONLY THEY WERE NOT RECOMMENDATIONS.
THEY WERE OMINOUS WARNINGS OF WHAT WAS ALREADY BEING PLANNED, HAD BEEN PLANNED BEFORE BUSH2 WAS ELECTED.
BEFORE HE WAS ELECTED.
THIS SET THE STAGE FOR THE PUSH TO GO BACK INTO IRAQ, FROM WHERE DADDY BUSH, IN 1991, HAD LEFT WITH EGG ALL OVER HIS FACE.
WAS IT THAT?
WAS IT THE MISERABLE FAILINGS OF THE FATHER THAT DROVE BUSH2?
OR DID DAD PUSH HIM INTO IT THROUGH CHENEY?
CHENEY DID SET THE STAGE WITH HIS "FINDINGS", REMEMBER?
JUST READ CAREFULLY.
THIS WAS WRITTEN SIX MONTHS, 6 MONTHS, BEFORE 9/11.
THERE CAN BE NO DOUBT IT HAD BEGUN.
<<It is vital for the United States to assure stable and transparent international energy markets that provide prices which foster economic growth. It is also in the strategic interest of the United States to assure that appropriate national and international mechanisms are in place to prevent disruptions in energy supplies &. Iraq remains a destabilizing influence to U.S. allies in the Middle East, as well as to regional and global order, and to the flow of oil to international markets from the Middle East.
Saddam Hussein has also demonstrated a willingness to threaten to use the oil weapon and to use his own export program to manipulate oil markets. This would display his personal power, enhance his image as a "Pan Arab" leader supporting the Palestinians against Israel, and pressure others for a lifting of economic sanctions against his regime.
The United States should conduct an immediate policy review toward Iraq, including military, energy, economic, and political/diplomatic assessments.>>
THIS WAS AFTER SADDAM HAD BEGUN TO DEMAND FIRST EUROS, THEN BEGAN TO PUSH FOR GOLD FOR OIL, GOLD, NOT DOLLARS NOR EUROS! THAT'S WHERE GADDAFI GOT HIS IDEA FROM, FROM SADDAM!
[SEE MY BLOG: http://havacuppahemlock1.blogspot.com/2013/02/libyas-gold-dinar-oil-for-gold-killed.html ]
THE MILITARY BRASS WERE CALLED INTO THE ACT, AND WENT WILLINGLY BEFORE CONGRESS FIVE MONTHS BEFORE 9/11 TO "CRANK THINGS UP A NOTCH".
<<Tommy Franks, testifying before the House Armed Services Committee in April 2001, said the military stood ready to protect America's vital interests throughout the Central Command area of responsibility.
"The key to the Central Command area is to maintain uninterrupted access to energy resources. The Persian Gulf region contains roughly 68 percent of the world's known oil and natural gas reserves -more than 40 percent of which pass through the Strait of Hormuz," Franks said.
"And so, one of our responsibilities - in fact, one of our objectives - is to maintain access to these energy resources at the same time that we maintain access to markets in the region," he remarked. "Iraq, of course, is the main disturber of the peace in the region.">>
["DISTURBER OF THE PEACE"??? SOUNDS LIKE A "BUSHISM", DOESN'T IT?]
According to the Times of London, "oil shipments into America's strategic reserve... reached record levels (by July of 2002), adding some 150,000 barrels a day. The White House aim[ed] to add more than 100 million barrels to the reserve, which would bring it close to its 700 million barrels capacity."
BECAUSE BUSH KNEW HE WAS GOING TO TAKE AMERICA INTO IRAQ ON A TRIP THAT WOULD WIPE US OUT FINANCIALLY AND HE 'MADE HAY WHILE THE SUN WAS STILL SHINING'?
WAR WAS ON HIS AGENDA, NO TURNING BACK .
ALSO IN 2002, IN SEPTEMBER:
<<Ariel Cohen of the Heritage Foundation published, "The Road to Economic Prosperity for a Post-Saddam Iraq" in which he proposed that Iraq's oil industry be split up into three large, privately owned companies along the lines of ethnic separation, with one company in the largely Shia south, another in the Sunni region, and the last in the Kurdish north. He also recommended that a post Saddam Iraq should shun membership in OPEC and not abide by their price controls.
A new Iraq, with a privatized oil industry and the power to break OPEC's stranglehold on worldwide oil markets was seen by many to be a major benefit of military action in Iraq. Larry Lindsey, President Bush's economic adviser, claimed in September 2002 that "when there is a regime change in Iraq, you could add three to five million barrels [per day] of production to world supply. The successful prosecution of the war would be good for the economy.">>
Twenty months into the "NEW" Bush administration, PART 1, it became obvious that the recommendations made in BUSH2's first months in office WERE going to be implemented, COME HELL OR HIGH WATER.
HE AND CHENEY BEGAN TO GOAD AND PUSH VARIOUS AGENCIES TO AS BUSH SAID "BY GOD, FIND LINKS TO AL QAEDA!" TO FIND LINKS TO "WMDs", TO FIND ANYTHING TO JUSTIFY A WAR IN IRAQ, AN UNDECLARED WAR.
Over time, the administration's claims about the reasons we went to war have varied.
There was of course 9/11, though Cheney, Powell, Rice, Rumsfeld, and even Bush had said there was NEVER ANY CONNECTION between what happened on 9/11 and Iraq....
NONE OF THE 9/11 'TERRORISTS' HAD AN IRAQI PASSPORT.
THE 'terrorists' ALL HAD SAUDI PASSPORTS...SAUDI ARABIA, NOT IRAQ, SEEMED TO BE A PART OF 9/11, BUT WE NEVER INVADED OUR PALS FROM THE HOUSE OF SAUD, EVEN THOUGH IT WAS PROVEN OSAMA BIN LADEN, A SAUDI CITIZEN, WHOSE FAMILY ARE STILL SAUDI CITIZENS, WAS FUNDED COVERTLY BY SAUDI CONTRIBUTIONS.
Maybe because the BUSH family has a long history of being in the same financial circles as the BIN LADENS OF SAUDI ARABIA, had even been on vacation in the same places with them years back, AND they were, until AFTER 9/11, all a part of the Carlyle Group...
MAYBE THAT'S WHY SAUDI ARABIA ESCAPED THE WRATH OF THE MEDIA AND THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION?
Almost every major news media by now has reported the simple fact that some of the Bin Ladens WERE flown out of America on the very day that we closed all airports and shut down flights...
The "record" shows they flew out 8 days later, but they left immediately.
Bush, even Bush, knew the 9/11 connection would never hold up, NEVER, so he invented that fantasy, THE "WMDs", weapons of mass destruction, and when THAT fell through, he swore it had all been to "fight the terrorists there, and not here", "to spread democracy", "to free an oppressed people"...the list goes on and on and on, but NOT ONE WAS VALID ON ANY LIST, NOT EVEN ONE.
Behind all the excuses and fabrications made during the run-up and execution of the war, there was always OIL.
Time may eventually reveal the relationship between the Bush administration's energy and foreign policies, but no matter what the ultimate rationale for war turns out to be, it is fair to say that the wheels of the 2nd Iraq war were greased by oil, JUST LIKE THEY WERE WHEN DADDY BUSH WENT IN IN 1991, AND CAME OUT LOOKING LIKE AN IMBECILE, AND ABANDONED TO MASS MURDER APEOPLE WHOM WASHINGTON HAD USED TO HOLD IRAN AT BAY, A PEOPLE SADDAM KILLED BY THE THOUSANDS AFTER THE BUSH1 FIASCO....THE KURDS.
[NOTE: MUCH OF THE QUOTED TEXT ABOVE COMES FROM "War for Oil: The connections between policy and practice"
by Charlie Christensen http://downingstreetmemo.com/warforoil.html ]
ALL OF THIS HAS BEEN EXPOSED IN 8 DOCUMENTS THAT LED TO A CONGRESSIONAL INVESTIGATION, TO INTERNATIONAL CRIES THAT BUSH/CHENEY BE TRIED BY AN INTERNATIONAL COURT, AND A SCANDAL IN THE UNITED KINGDOM THAT COST TONY BLAIR HIS JOB.
BUT WHO CAME OUT UNSCATHED?
BUSH, CHENEY, RICE, RUMSFELD.
COLIN POWELL QUIT AS DID OTHERS, TOO ASHAMED OF BEING DUPED.
MANY IN THE CIA/FBI WHOM BUSH/CHENEY TRIED TO PASS THE BUCK TO, PUT THE BLAME ON FOR "BAD INTELLIGENCE" , STOOD UP FOR THEMSELVES, BUT STILL TOOK THE WRAP, SORT OF LIKE OLLIE NORTH TOOK THE WRAP FOR REAGAN ON IRAN/CONTRA.
LOYALTY IS A STRANGE THING IN POLITICS.
BUT THIS IS HOW IT FINALLY "LEAKED OUT"... THE DOWNING STREET MEMO.
In a strange case, the ‘Downing Street Memo’ scandal was exposed by the UK press.
The London Times released details of a memo which showed that President George W. Bush had plans to CREATE and then give out false information about Saddam Hussein’s alleged weapons of mass destruction.
The supposed aim of this exercise was to project a just cause for initiating a war on Iraq.
The memo which had this damning information found its way to British PM Tony Blair’s office through the British intelligence channels and made headline news in the UK.
But the story was handled with extreme caution by the US press and a lot was hush-hushed.
The first to come out was this one, and yes, there are PDF files of all, and yes, each came on "official paper", and NO, NO ONE in high places, no big name Bush pal has DENIED these are REAL, NO ONE!
Here's part of the first one:
SECRET AND STRICTLY PERSONAL - UK EYES ONLY
From: Matthew Rycroft
Date: 23 July 2002
S 195 /02
cc: Defence Secretary, Foreign Secretary, Attorney-General, Sir Richard Wilson, John Scarlett, Francis Richards, CDS, C, Jonathan Powell, Sally Morgan, Alastair Campbell
IRAQ: PRIME MINISTER'S MEETING, 23 JULY
Copy addressees and you met the Prime Minister on 23 July to discuss Iraq.
This record is extremely sensitive. No further copies should be made. It should be shown only to those with a genuine need to know its contents.
John Scarlett summarised the intelligence and latest JIC assessment. Saddam's regime was tough and based on extreme fear. The only way to overthrow it was likely to be by massive military action. Saddam was worried and expected an attack, probably by air and land, but he was not convinced that it would be immediate or overwhelming. His regime expected their neighbours to line up with the US. Saddam knew that regular army morale was poor. Real support for Saddam among the public was probably narrowly based.
C reported on his recent talks in Washington. There was a perceptible shift in attitude. Military action was now seen as inevitable. Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy. The NSC had no patience with the UN route, and no enthusiasm for publishing material on the Iraqi regime's record. There was little discussion in Washington of the aftermath after military action.
CDS said that military planners would brief CENTCOM on 1-2 August, Rumsfeld on 3 August and Bush on 4 August.
The two broad US options were:
(a) Generated Start. A slow build-up of 250,000 US troops, a short (72 hour) air campaign, then a move up to Baghdad from the south. Lead time of 90 days (30 days preparation plus 60 days deployment to Kuwait).
(b) Running Start. Use forces already in theatre (3 x 6,000), continuous air campaign, initiated by an Iraqi casus belli. Total lead time of 60 days with the air campaign beginning even earlier. A hazardous option.
The US saw the UK (and Kuwait) as essential, with basing in Diego Garcia and Cyprus critical for either option. Turkey and other Gulf states were also important, but less vital. The three main options for UK involvement were:
(i) Basing in Diego Garcia and Cyprus, plus three SF squadrons.
(ii) As above, with maritime and air assets in addition.
(iii) As above, plus a land contribution of up to 40,000, perhaps with a discrete role in Northern Iraq entering from Turkey, tying down two Iraqi divisions.
The Defence Secretary said that the US had already begun "spikes of activity" to put pressure on the regime. No decisions had been taken, but he thought the most likely timing in US minds for military action to begin was January, with the timeline beginning 30 days before the US Congressional elections.
The Foreign Secretary said he would discuss this with Colin Powell this week. It seemed clear that Bush had made up his mind to take military action, even if the timing was not yet decided. But the case was thin. Saddam was not threatening his neighbours, and his WMD capability was less than that of Libya, North Korea or Iran. We should work up a plan for an ultimatum to Saddam to allow back in the UN weapons inspectors. This would also help with the legal justification for the use of force.
The Attorney-General said that the desire for regime change was not a legal base for military action. There were three possible legal bases: self-defence, humanitarian intervention, or UNSC authorisation. The first and second could not be the base in this case. Relying on UNSCR 1205 of three years ago would be difficult. The situation might of course change.
The Prime Minister said that it would make a big difference politically and legally if Saddam refused to allow in the UN inspectors. Regime change and WMD were linked in the sense that it was the regime that was producing the WMD. There were different strategies for dealing with Libya and Iran. If the political context were right, people would support regime change. The two key issues were whether the military plan worked and whether we had the political strategy to give the military plan the space to work.
On the first, CDS said that we did not know yet if the US battle plan was workable. The military were continuing to ask lots of questions.
For instance, what were the consequences, if Saddam used WMD on day one, or if Baghdad did not collapse and urban war fighting began?
You said that Saddam could also use his WMD on Kuwait. Or on Israel, added the Defence Secretary.
The Foreign Secretary thought the US would not go ahead with a military plan unless convinced that it was a winning strategy. On this, US and UK interests converged. But on the political strategy, there could be US/UK differences. Despite US resistance, we should explore discreetly the ultimatum. Saddam would continue to play hard-ball with the UN.
John Scarlett assessed that Saddam would allow the inspectors back in only when he thought the threat of military action was real.
The Defence Secretary said that if the Prime Minister wanted UK military involvement, he would need to decide this early. He cautioned that many in the US did not think it worth going down the ultimatum route. It would be important for the Prime Minister to set out the political context to Bush.
(a) We should work on the assumption that the UK would take part in any military action. But we needed a fuller picture of US planning before we could take any firm decisions. CDS should tell the US military that we were considering a range of options.
(b) The Prime Minister would revert on the question of whether funds could be spent in preparation for this operation.
(c) CDS would send the Prime Minister full details of the proposed military campaign and possible UK contributions by the end of the week.
(d) The Foreign Secretary would send the Prime Minister the background on the UN inspectors, and discreetly work up the ultimatum to Saddam.
He would also send the Prime Minister advice on the positions of countries in the region especially Turkey, and of the key EU member states.
(e) John Scarlett would send the Prime Minister a full intelligence update.
(f) We must not ignore the legal issues: the Attorney-General would consider legal advice with FCO/MOD legal advisers.
(I have written separately to commission this follow-up work.)
ON TO THE NEXT DOCUMENT:
Text of the Iraq Options paper - March 8, 2002 memo from Overseas and Defence Secretariat Cabinet Office outlining military options for implementing regime change.
SECRET UK EYES ONLY
Since 1991, our objective has been to re-integrate a law-abiding Iraq which does not possess WMD or threaten its neighbors, into the international community. Implicitly, this cannot occur with Saddam Hussein in power. As at least worst opinion, we have supported a policy of containment which has been partially successful. However:
* Despite sanctions, Iraq continues to develop WMD,. although our intelligence is poor. Saddam has used WMD in the past and could do so again if his regime were threatened, though there is no greater threat now than in recent years that Saddam will use WMD
Since 1991, the policy of containment has been partially successful;
* Sanctions have effectively frozen Iraq’s nuclear programme;
* Iraq has been prevented from rebuilding its conventional arsenal to pre-Gulf War levels;
* ballistic missile programmes have been severely restricted;
Biological weapons (BW) and Chemical Weapons (CW) programmes have been hindered;
* No Fly Zones established over northern and southern Iraq have given some protection to the Kurds and the Shia. Although subject to continuing political pressure, the Kurds remain autonomous; and
* Saddam has not succeeded in seriously threatening his neighbours.
* despite UN controls over Iraq’s oil revenue under Oil for Food, there is considerable oil and other smuggling.
* regime change by military means: a new departure which would require the construction of a coalition and a legal justification.
10 The US has lost confidence in containment. Some in government want Saddam removed. The success of Operation Enduring Freedom, distrust of UN sanctions and inspection regimes, and unfinished business from 1991 are all factors. Washington believes the legal basis for an attack on Iraq already exists. Nor will it necessarily be governed by wider political factors. The US may be willing to work with a much smaller coalition than we think desirable.
11 In considering the options for regime change below, we need to first consider what sort of Iraq we want? There are two possibilities:
* A Sunni military strongman. He would be likely to maintain Iraqi territorial integrity. Assistance with reconstruction and political rehabilitation could be traded for assurances on abandoning WMD programmes and respecting human rights, particularly of ethnic minorities. The US and other militaries could withdraw quickly. However, there would then be a strong risk of the Iraqi system reverting to type. Military coup could succeed coup until an autocratic, Sunni dictator emerged who protected Sunni interests. With time he could acquire WMD; or
* a representative broadly democratic government. This would be Sunni-led but within a federal structure, the Kurds would be guaranteed autonomy and the Shia fair access to government. Such a regime would be less likely to develop WMD and threaten its neighbours. However, to survive it would require the US and others to commit to nation building for many years. This wold entail a substantial international security force and help with reconstruction
15 The Kurds do not co-operate with the Shia Arabs who form 60 per cent of the population. The main Shia opposition group is the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI), with 3-5,000 fighters, but it is tainted by Iranian support. Most Shia would like to have a greater say in Iraqi government, but not necessarily control: they do no want secession, Islamic autonomy or Iranian influence.
17 We have looked at three options for achieving regime change (we dismissed assassination of Saddam Hussein as an option because it would be illegal):
19 This option also has a very low prospect of success on its own. The external opposition is no strong enough to overthrow Saddam and would be rejected by most Iraqis as a replacement government. The Kurds could only mount a very limited offensive in the north. Mass uprisings in the south would be unlikely. The US failure to support the 1991 uprising remains vivid. The Republican Guard would move against any opposition and any wavering regular Army units. There would also be a high risk of US/coalition forces being captured. The remaining elements of opposition could be eliminated, buttressing Saddam and his reputation as Arab folk hero.
OPTION 3: A GROUND CAMPAIGN
23 US contingency planning prior to 11 September indicated that such a ground campaign would require 200-400,000 troops.
25 The risks include US and others military casualties. Saddam could also target Israel as he did during the Gulf War. Restraining Israel will be difficult. it would try to pre-empt a WMD attack and has certainly made clear that it would retaliate. Direct Israeli military involvement in Iraq would great complicate coalition management and risk spreading conflict more widely.
28 Of itself, REGIME CHANGE has no basis in international law. A separate note by FCO Legal Advisors setting out the general legal background and the obligations in the relevant UN Resolutions is attached.
29 In the judgement of the JIC there is no recent evidence of Iraq complicity with international terrorism. There is therefore no justification for action against Iraq based on action in self-defence (Article 51) to combat imminent threats of terrorism as in Afghanistan. However, Article 51 would come into play if Iraq were about to attack a neighbour.
32 For the P5 and the majority of the Council to take the view that Iraq was in breach of 687:
* they would need to be convinced that Iraq was in breach of its obligations regarding WMD, and ballistic missiles. Such proof would need to be incontrovertible and of large-scale activity. Current intelligence is insufficiently robus [sic] to meet this criterion.
Even with overriding proof China, France and Russia, in particular, would need considerable lobbying to approve or acquiesce ina new resolution authorising military action against Iraq. Concessions in other policy areas might be needed. However, many Western states, at least, would not wish to oppose the US on such a major issue; or
* if P5 unity could be obtained, Iraq refused to readmit UN inspectors after a clear ultimatum by the UN Security Council; or
* the UN inspectors were re-admitted to Iraq and found sufficient evidence of WMD activity or were again expelled trying to do so.
AND THAT IS THE ROUTE THEY TOOK...ALL BEFORE WE SUPECTED WE MIGHT EVER AGAIN INVADE IRAQ.
THOSE WERE SAUDI NATIONALS, NOT IRAQIS...AND USAMA BIN LADEN WAS A SAUDI CITIZEN, NOT IRAQI.
Text of the Jack Straw Memo -
March 25, 2002 memo from Jack Straw (UK Foreign Secretary) to Tony Blair in preparation for Blair’s visit to Bush’s Crawford ranch, covering Iraq-al Qaida linkage, legality of invasion, weapons inspectors and post-war considerations.
SECRET AND PERSONAL
1 The rewards from your visit to Crawford will be few. The risks are high, both for you and for the Government. I judge that there is at present no majority inside the PLP for any military action against Iraq, (alongside a greater readiness in the PLP to surface their concerns). Colleagues know that Saddam and the Iraqi regime are bad. Making that case is easy. But we have a long way to go to convince them as to:
(a) the scale of the threat from Iraq and why this has got worse recently:
(b) what distinguishes the Iraqi threat from that of eg Iran and North Korea so as to justify military action;
(c) the justification for any military action in terms of international law: and
(d) whether the consequence of military action really would be a compliant, law abiding replacement government.
2 The whole exercise is made much more difficult to handle as long as conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is so acute.
THE SCALE OF THE THREAT
3 The Iraqi regime plainly poses a most serious threat to its neighbours, and therefore to international security. However, in the documents so far presented it has been hard to glean whether the threat from Iraq is so significantly differently from that of Iran and North Korea as to justify military action (see below).
4 If 11 September had not happened, it is doubtful that the US would now be considering military action against Iraq.
In addition, there has been no credible evidence to link Iraq with UBL (USAMA BIN LADEN)and Al Qaida.
Objectively, the threat from Iraq has not worsened as a result of 11 September.
5 By linking these countries together in this "axis of evil" speech, President Bush implied an identity between them not only in terms of their threat, but also in terms of the action necessary to deal with the threat, but also in terms of the action necessary to deal with the threat. A lot of work will now need to be to delink the three, and to show why military action against Iraq is so much more justified than against Iran and North Korea.
9 Legally there are two potential elephant traps:
(i) regime change per se is no justification for military action; it could form part of the method of any strategy, but not a goal. Of course, we may want credibly to assert that regime change is an essential part of the strategy by which we have to achieve our ends - that of the elimination of Iraq's WMD capacity; but the latter has to be the goal;
(ii) on whether any military action would require a fresh UNSC mandate (Desert Fox did not). The US are likely to oppose any idea of a fresh mandate. On the other side, the weight of legal advice here is that a fresh mandate may well be required. There is no doubt that a new UNSCR would transform the climate in the PLP. Whilst that (a new mandate) is very unlikely, given the US's position, a draft resolution against military action with 13 in favour (or handsitting) and two vetoes against could play very badly here.
THE CONSEQUENCES OF ANY MILITARY ACTION
10 A legal justification is a necessary but far from sufficient pre"condition for military action. We have also to answer the big question - what will this action achieve? There seems to be a larger hole in this than on anything. Most of the assessments from the US have assumed regime change as a means of eliminating Iraq's WMD threat. But none has satisfactorily answered how that regime change is to be secured, and how there can be any certainty that the replacement regime will be better.
LET US PAUSE HERE AND LOOK BACK AT HOW AMERICA USED SADDAM HUSSEIN AGAINST IRAN FOR SO MANY YEARS, AT HOW AMERICA FINANCED HIM DESPITE CONGRESSIONAL DISAPPROVAL, HOW THE CDC AND AMERICAN PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANIES SENT HIM STRAINS OF 'BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS' IN THE NAME OF 'AGRICULTURE', AND HOW RUMSFELD, ON MORE THAN ONE OCCASION, PERSONALLY FLEW TO IRAQ, EMBRACED SADDAM, AND WOOED HIM FOR REAGAN AND FOR DADDY BUSH.
FROM THE UK's DAILY MAIL:
"As an envoy from President Reagan in 1983 , he (RUMSFELD) had a secret meeting with the Iraqi dictator and arranged enormous military assistance for his war with Iran.
The CIA had already warned that Iraq was using chemical weapons almost daily. But Mr. Rumsfeld, at the time a successful executive in the pharmaceutical industry, still made it possible for Saddam to buy supplies from American firms.
They included viruses such as anthrax and bubonic plague, according to the Washington Post.
The extraordinary details have come to light because thousands of State Department documents dealing with the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war have just been declassified and released under the Freedom of Information Act."
VIDEO OF THAT MEETING <HERE>.
"According to a 1994 Senate report, private American suppliers, licensed by the U.S. Department of Commerce, exported a witch's brew of biological and chemical materials to Iraq from 1985 through 1989. Among the biological materials were:
• Bacillus Anthracis, cause of anthrax.
• Clostridium Botulinum, a source of botulinum toxin.
• Histoplasma Capsulatam, cause of a disease attacking lungs, brain, spinal cord, and heart.
• Brucella Melitensis, a bacteria that can damage major organs.
• Clostridium Perfringens, a highly toxic bacteria causing systemic illness.
• Clostridium tetani, a highly toxigenic substance.
Also on the list: Escherichia coli (E. coli), genetic materials, human and bacterial DNA, and dozens of other pathogenic biological agents. "These biological materials were not attenuated or weakened and were capable of reproduction," the Senate report stated. "It was later learned that these microorganisms exported by the United States were identical to those the United Nations inspectors found and removed from the Iraqi biological warfare program."
The report noted further that U.S. exports to Iraq included the precursors to chemical-warfare agents, plans for chemical and biological warfare production facilities, and chemical-warhead filling equipment.
The exports continued to at least November 28, 1989, despite evidence that Iraq was engaging in chemical and biological warfare against Iranians and Kurds since as early as 1984.
Documents obtained by Congress show that in the 1980s, during the height of the Iran-Iraq War, the United States knew that a $1.7 billion “agricultural aid” package to Iraq was actually being used by Saddam Hussein to purchase helicopters, trucks, pesticides, and even anthrax. "
SO YOU SEE, AFTER THE U.S. PUT SADDAM IN POWER, USED HIM, FUNDED HIM, ARMED HIM, SUDDENLY HE WAS TARGETED BY THE U.S.
Text of the David Manning Memo -
March 14, 2002 memo from David Manning (UK Foreign Policy Advisor) to Tony Blair recounting Manning’s meetings with his US counterpart Condoleeza Rice (National Security Advisor), and advising Blair for his upcoming visit to Bush’s Crawford ranch.
I had dinner with Condi on Tuesday; and talks and lunch with her an NSC team on Wednesday (to which Christopher Meyer also came). These were good exchanges, and particularly frank when we were one-on-one at dinner. I attach the records in case you want to glance.
Condi’s enthusiasm for regime change is undimmed. But there were some signs, since we last spoke, of greater awareness of the practical difficulties and political risks. (See the attached piece by Seymour Hersh which Christopher Meyer says gives a pretty accurate picture of the uncertain state of the debate in Washington.)
From what she said, Bush has yet to find the answers to the big questions:
- how to persuade international opinion that military action against Iraq is necessary and justified;
- what value to put on the exiled Iraqi opposition;
- how to coordinate a US/allied military campaign with internal opposition (assuming there is any);
- what happens on the morning after?
Bush will want to pick your brains. He will also want to hear whether he can expect coalition support. I told Condi that we realiised that the Administration could go it alone if it chose. But if it wanted company, it would have to take account of the concerns of its potential coalition partners. In particular:
- the Un [sic] dimension. The issue of the weapons inspectors must be handled in a way that would persuade European and wider opinion that the US was conscious of the international framework, and the insistence of many countries on the need for a legal base. Renwed refused [sic] by Saddam to accept unfettered inspections would be a powerful argument’
- the paramount importance of tackling Israel/Palestine. Unless we did, we could find ourselves bombing Iraq and losing the Gulf.
YOUR VISIT TO THE RANCH
No doubt we need to keep a sense of perspective. But my talks with Condi convinced me that Bush wants to hear you [sic] views on Iraq before taking decisions. He also wants your support. He is still smarting from the comments by other European leaders on his Iraq policy.
Will the Sunni majority really respond to an uprising led by Kurds and Shias? Will Americans really put in enough ground troops to do the job if the Kurdish/Shi’ite stratagem fails? Even if they do will they be willing to take the sort of casualties that the Republican Guard may inflict on them if it turns out to be an urban war, and Iraqi troops don’t conveniently collapse in a heap as Richard Perle and others confidently predict? They need to answer there and other tough questions, in a more convincing way than they have so far before concluding that they can do the business.
The talks at the ranch will also give you the chance to push Bush on the Middle East. The Iraq factor means that there may never be a better opportunity to get this Administration to give sustained attention to reviving the MEPP.[Middle East Peace Process]
“Bush had made up his mind to take military action, even if the timing was not yet decided. But the case was thin. Saddam was not threatening his neighbours, and his WMD capability was less than that of Libya, North Korea or Iran.”
BEFORE 9/11, BEFORE 9/11 AS AN EXCUSE TO INVADE A NATION THAT WAS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR 9/11, KNOWING IRAQ PLAYED NO PART IN 9/11, KNOWING THE SAUDIS HAD A HAND IN IT INSTEAD, BEFORE 9/11, THE MAIN "PLAYERS" OF THE "BOMB IRAQ GAME" SAID THIS, IN THEIR OWN WORDS!
"I think we ought to declare [the containment policy] a success. We have kept him contained, kept him in his box." He added [Saddam] "is unable to project conventional power against his neighbors" and that "he threatens not the United States."
Colin Powell, Secretary of State
Enroute to Egypt
Enroute to Egypt
"We had a good discussion, the Foreign Minister and I and the President and I, had a good discussion about the nature of the sanctions—the fact that the sanctions exist—not for the purpose of hurting the Iraqi people, but for the purpose of keeping in check Saddam Hussein's ambitions toward developing weapons of mass destruction. We should constantly be reviewing our policies, constantly be looking at those sanctions to make sure that they are directed toward that purpose. That purpose is every bit as important now as it was ten years ago when we began it. And frankly they have worked. He has not developed any significant capability with respect to weapons of mass destruction. He is unable to project conventional power against his neighbors. So in effect, our policies have strengthened the security of the neighbors of Iraq..."
Colin Powell, Secretary of State
Feb. 24, 2001
Press conference, Cairo Egypt
"VICE PRES. CHENEY: There is--in the past, there have been some activities related to terrorism by Saddam Hussein. But at this stage, you know, the focus is over here on al-Qaida and the most recent events in New York. Saddam Hussein's bottled up [contained], at this point, but clearly, we continue to have a fairly tough policy where the Iraqis are concerned.
MR. RUSSERT: Do we have any evidence linking Saddam Hussein or Iraqis to this operation [9/11]?
VICE PRES. CHENEY: No."Dick Cheney, Vice President
Interview with Tim Russert on Meet the Press
THEY KNEW IRAQ WAS NEVER A THREAT TO THE USA, THEY KNEW ALL OF ARABIA CONSIDERED SADDAM A BAD JOKE, CONSIDERED IRAQ "THE ARMPIT OF THE MIDDLE EAST", BUT SADDAM WAS SAYING HE WANTED GOLD FOR OIL, AND WOULD NATIONALIZE ALL THE OIL FIELDS AS HIS PREDECESSOR HAD DONE WHEN THE U.S. TOOK HIM OUT FOR THAT.
AND DADDY BUSH JUST COULDN'T FORGET HOW HE'D BEEN DUPED IN 1991, WHAT A MISTAKE HE MADE BY ABANDONING THOUSANDS TO BE KILLED BY SADDAM AFTER BUSH1 GAVE AN OKAY FOR HIM TO FLY CHOPPERS INTO KURDISH TERRITORY AND DROP CHEMICAL WEAPONS ALL OVER THEM.
HE WAS MADE THE FOOL, AND "JUNIOR" WOULD FAIR THE SAME.
THEY LIED AND THOUSANDS OF OUR TROOPS DIED, ARE STILL DYING, WILL DIE SOME MORE.
THEY LIED, AND AMERICA WENT BANKRUPT, OUR ECONOMY FAILING FOR THE PAST 11 YEARS SINCE THEY ALL LIED.
BUT FINALLY THE MEDIA, A FEW, TOOK UP THE CRY.
IT WAS ALL A PREFABRICATED LIE THAT WAS IN THE WORKS EVEN BEFORE BUSH WON ELECTION !
April 23, 2006
A Spy Speaks Out
Tyler Drumheller — a 26-year veteran of the Central Intelligence Agency — has decided to do something CIA officials at his level almost never do: Speak out. He says the real failure was not in the intelligence community but in the White House, and that the Bush administration... "The policy was set," Drumheller says. "The war in Iraq was coming. And they were looking for intelligence to fit into the policy, to justify the policy."
CBS News page with partial video and transcript
November 4, 2005
Investigating Prewar Intelligence
An excellent installment of the NewsHour mostly dedicated to discussion and debate about the plans to go to war in Iraq.
Go here to see all video available from Nov. 4, but especially recommended is the segment called Wilkerson's Case where Colin Powell's former chief of staff discusses the run up to the war in Iraq and Debating the Charges, where two experts discuss the charges made about Iraq war planning by Colin Powell's former chief of staff with Margaret Warner doing a stellar job of moderating.
August 21, 2005
'Dead Wrong:' Inside an Intelligence Meltdown
CNN Presents focuses on the intelligence mistakes surrounding administration claims about Iraq's WMD in this factual and unsparing report. The chronology of events is rolled out with a straightforward approach and in convincing detail.
The program also represents the only comprehensive look to date by an American news organization into the credibility of the administration's case for war.
[Highly recommended to watch this twice to catch all the nuances.]
DID THE MAINSTREAM AMERICAN NEWS MEDIA IGNORE THE DOWNING STREET MEMO?
YES, IT CERTAINLY DID ITS BEST TO COVER UP THAT HUGE PILE OF OFFAL LAID DOWN BY BUSH2 AND HIS TEAM.
A FEW DID REPORT ON IT, SO THE BUSH2 WAR TEAM HAS THAT TO BE AFRAID OF...FOREVER.
Radio broadcast of the WHYY series Radio Times–A debate with Michael Clark, an assistant professor at Muhlenberg College [and member of the DowningStreetMemo.com team], and Chris Satullo, editorial page editor of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
July 6, 2005
Michael Smith Disucsses the Downing Street Memos
NPR/Fresh Air–Terry Gross interviews Sunday Times reporter Michael Smith about the Downing Street memos, including how he acquired them.
JUNE 27, 2005
DowningStreetMemo.com interview with Michael Smith of the London Tlmes, the reporter who started this all.
June 12, 2005
Video clip by DowningStreetMemo.com.
It's tempting in the flurry of minutes and memos and articles to get so wrapped up in the story that you forget exactly who the story is about.
It's not about impeaching the President.
It's not about Republicans and Democrats.
It has, and always will be, about those heroes who sacrificed and trusted their government.
About those with brave hearts who cannot speak now from the grave. It is up to us to speak for them. It is up to the media to ask the questions that would have flowed from their lips, were those heroes alive today.==
June 16, 2005
House Judiciary Committee Democrats Meeting on Downing Street Memo and Iraq War
Rep. John Conyers, House Judiciary Cmte. Ranking Member, chairs a meeting on the Downing Street Memo and pre-Iraq War intelligence. Witnesses include: former ambassador Joe Wilson, CIA analyst Ray McGovern, Cindy Sheehan, mother of fallen American soldier, and constitutional lawyer John Bonifaz
PDF transcript document (168 pages)
Plain text transcript document
The Power of Nightmares-
The Rise of the Politics of Fear
The powerful BBC series looking at how fears over an organised Al-Qaeda terror network have come to dominate US and UK politics was shown on the BBC last year. "In the past our politicians offered us dreams of a better world. Now they promise to protect us from nightmares."
February 10, 2006: Senator Harry Reid released a statement on the eve of the two-year anniversary of the start of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence’s investigation into prewar intelligence.
Go here to read the statement http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/11/02/AR2005110203165.html , and here to read about the CIA official's account of being misled into war that the senator refers to in his statement. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/02/09/AR2006020902418.html
November 1, 2005: Senator Harry Reid–using a seldom used parliamentary maneuver– forced the Senate to commit to resuming the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence hearings (the Phase II portion of the hearings on how intelligence was used in the runup to war in Iraq). After the closed session, a bipartisan task force was appointed to report on the intelligence committee's progress on the long-awaited inquiry.
Michael Smith and the Sunday Times have published The leaked Iraq war documents—a great overview of their coverage of the three highly classified documents on the Iraq war that were leaked to the Sunday Times ahead of the British General Election on 5 May 2005, complete with links and analysis.
• Report on Prewar Intelligence Lagging
Information Democrats Want Most Might Not Come Out Until After Election
Washington Post, July 30, 2006
...The Republican-led committee, which agreed in February 2004 to write the report, has yet to complete its work. Just two of five planned sections of the committee's findings are fully drafted and ready to be voted on by members, according to Democratic and Republican staffers. Committee sources involved with the report, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said they are working hard to complete it. But disputing Roberts, they said they had started almost from scratch in November after Democrats staged their protest. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/07/29/AR2006072900608_pf.html
May 17, 2005
<<QUESTION: Scott [McClellan], last week you said that claims in the leaked Downing Street memo that intelligence was being fixed to support the Iraq War as early as July 2002 are flat-out wrong. According to the memo which was dated July 23, 2002, and whose authenticity has not been disputed by the British Government, both Foreign Minister Jack Straw and British Intelligence Chief Sir Richard Dearlove said that the President had already made up his mind to invade Iraq.
Dearlove added that intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.
Do you think these two very senior officials of our closest ally were flat-out wrong? And if so, how could they have been so misinformed after their conversations with George Tenet and Condoleezza Rice?
MR. McCLELLAN: Let me correct you on the -- let me correct you on the characterization of the quote you attributed to me. I'm referring to some of the allegations that were made referring to a report. In terms of the intelligence, the -- if anyone wants to know how the intelligence was used by the administration, all they have to do is go back and look at all the public comments over the course of the lead-up to the war in Iraq, and that's all very public information. Everybody who was there could see how we used that intelligence.
And in terms of the intelligence, it was wrong, and we are taking steps to correct that and make sure that in the future we have the best possible intelligence, because it's critical in this post-September 11th age, that the executive branch has the best intelligence possible.>>
• Doing the President's Dirty Work
New York Times, February 17, 2006
<<Is there any aspect of President Bush's miserable record on intelligence that Senator Pat Roberts, chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, is not willing to excuse and help to cover up?
For more than a year, Mr. Roberts has been dragging out an investigation into why Mr. Bush presented old, dubious and just plain wrong intelligence on Iraq as solid new proof that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and was in league with Al Qaeda. [...]
Now Mr. Roberts is trying to stop an investigation into Mr. Bush's decision to allow the National Security Agency to eavesdrop on Americans without getting the warrants required by a 27-year-old federal law enacted to stop that sort of abuse.
Mr. Roberts had promised to hold a committee vote yesterday on whether to investigate. But he canceled the vote, and then made two astonishing announcements. He said he was working with the White House on amending the 1978 law, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, to permit warrantless spying. And then he suggested that such a change would eliminate the need for an inquiry.
Stifling his own committee without even bothering to get the facts is outrageous.>>
SEVERAL MEDIA RESPONSES TO THE DOWNING STREET MEMO SCANDAL.
THESE ARE MOST REVEALING ABOUT THE PLAME OUTING, THE SCANDAL THAT INVOLVED KARL ROVE
<<Were officials fooled by bad intelligence, or knowingly hyping it? Certainly, the administration erased caveats, dissents and doubts from the intelligence reports before showing them to the public. And there was never credible intelligence about a working relationship between Iraq and Al Qaeda.
Ignoring the White House press corps is one thing, but it seems that he showed an enormous disrespect for 123 members of Congress who signed two letters to the White House May 5 and June 15 asking for certain documents on the lead-up to the invasion of Iraq.
The last letter -- personally delivered to the White House gate by Reps. John Conyers, D-Mich., and Barbara Lee, D-Calif. -- also sought an explanation of the Downing Street Memo, a British document which indicated that the U.S. and Britain agreed by the summer of 2002 to attack Iraq. That was months before Bush sought congressional authority to take military action.
The memo, written by a high-ranking British official after returning from a visit to Washington, also said that U.S. officials were deliberately manipulating intelligence to justify the war.
The lawmakers did not receive even the courtesy of a reply from the president.
Here is the motivation for the outing of Ms. Plame, a CIA agent.
It appears that the White House was not intent so much on punishing Mr. Wilson as on discrediting him, by suggesting that his trip had been some sort of junket arranged by his wife.
Mr. Wilson's revelation, if true, exposed the dishonesty at the core of the administration's maneuverings over Iraq. And of course it was true.
his is the context in which the continuing investigation by the special prosecutor, Patrick J. Fitzgerald, must be viewed. This is not simply about the Karl Rove brand of politics taken too far, but about the fabrication that launched a war.
[T]here are now few, if any, limits to what conservative politicians can get away with: the faithful will follow the twists and turns of the party line with a loyalty that would have pleased the Comintern...
I don't know whether Mr. Rove can be convicted of a crime, but there's no question that he damaged national security for partisan advantage.
If a Democrat had done that, Republicans would call it treason.
Let me remind you that the underlying issue in the Karl Rove controversy is not a leak, but a war and how America was misled into that war.
Enough is known to surmise that the leaks of Rove, or others deputized by him, amounted to retaliation against someone who had the temerity to challenge the president of the United States when he was striving to find some plausible reason for invading Iraq.
The role of Rove and associates added up to a small incident in a very large scandal - the effort to delude America into thinking it faced a threat dire enough to justify a war.
“In the scheme of things, whether Rove revealed Plame's identity, deliberately or not, matters less than actions by Rove, Bolton, Cheney and others to phony up a case for war that has gone badly, has cost thousands of lives plus hundreds of billions of dollars, and has, a majority of Americans now believe, left the United States less safe from terrorism rather than more."
Feeling any safer now?
I didn't think so.
The Centre Daily Times, July 10, 2005
Just last month, in a speech designed to counter growing doubts about the misadventure in Iraq, Bush was at it again, implying a link between his invasion of that nation and the Sept. 11 attacks.
As if repeating an untruth loudly and forcefully will make it any less untrue. Or grind down the growing mountain of evidence that Bush was planning to invade Iraq even as he took the oath of office, eight months before that awful day in September...
Hopping mad and led by a president spoiling for a fight, we attacked the wrong guy. And many of us didn't care because it gave us the sense that we were doing something. It gave us false comfort.
It is past time we faced that fact.
Pliant American press behaving like Pravda in coverage of the U.S. president
Toronto Star, July 3, 2005
The Senate committee promised last summer to probe what role the White House may have played in concocting the faulty intelligence — but only after the presidential election.
Once the president was re-elected last fall, the Senate committee chairman, Republican Pat Roberts, simply cancelled the promised investigation of the White House's role, insisting it would be "a monumental waste of time to replow this ground any further."
Replow it further?
How about plowing it once?
Roberts's decision to let the administration off the hook on Iraq was barely covered in the media.
I saw no mention in the TV coverage of what the British memos reveal: that those with inside knowledge knew Saddam's arsenal posed no danger, that the intelligence was being "fixed" and that the U.S. dropped bombs to try to provoke a war—while insisting it was doing everything it could to avoid one.
Paul Krugman: And it's time to think about getting out
International Herald Tribune, July 2, 2005
Before the war, opponents warned that it would strengthen, not weaken, terrorism. And so it has.
A recent Central Intelligence Agency report warns that since the U.S. invasion, Iraq has become what Afghanistan was under Soviet occupation, only more so: a magnet and training ground for Islamic extremists, who will eventually threaten other countries...
Helping Iraqis rebuild their country could help win hearts and minds. But for all the talk of newly painted schools, the fact is that reconstruction, originally stalled by incompetence and corruption, is now stalled by the lack of security.
When Ibrahim al-Jaafari, the Iraqi prime minister, visited Washington, he was accompanied by Iraqi journalists.
One of them asked Bush, "When will you begin the reconstruction in Iraq?"
The architect of the war is its weakest defender,New Jersey Star Ledger, July 1, 2005
[Vincent] Cannistraro, citing current CIA analysts, maintains that the Bush White House pressed the agency to produce evidence linking Saddam to al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden -- a clear misuse of the 9/11 tragedy.
Cheney and Libby visited midlevel analysts at CIA headquarters, seeking support for a war in Iraq, according to Cannistraro.
Cheney, in particular, he has written, "insisted that desk officers were not looking hard enough for the evidence."
Cheney, for all his shrewdness, has become a liability as a spokesman on Iraq, not only because of suspicions about his relations with the CIA and its analysts but because of his long list of lousy judgments.>>
THERE IT IS, IN OUR FACES, IN THE FACES OF THE ENTIRE WORLD, AND YET WE SIT HERE AND STILL DO NOTHING, STILL DO NOT DEMAND THOSE GUILTY BE TRIED, STILL ALLOW THEM THEIR FREEDOM, STILL MAKE EXCUSES, STAND BY THAT MISERABLE OLD "PARTY LOYALTY", STILL PAY SALARIES/RETIREMENT TO THOSE WHO BROUGHT AMERICA TO FINANCIAL RUIN WITH A WAR BASED ON LIES, A WAR PLANNED FOR LONG BEFORE 9/11.
WHILE THOUSANDS OF OUR TROOPS HAVE DIED, WHILE IRAQI CITIZENS HAVE PERISHED, WHILE THE EVER-SPREADING MIDDLE EAST UNDELARED, UNNJUSTIFIED "WAR" IS NOW AND ALWAYS WILL BE SOMETHING WE HAVE TO PAY FOR EVERY YEAR, THE LIARS AND TREASONOUS CONSPIRATORS ENJOY LIFE, ALL GOT OFF SCOT-FREE.
THE DOWNING STREET MEMO ALONE SHOULD BE ENOUGH TO TRY AN ENTIRE ADMINISTRATION FOR CRIMES ANYONE CAN SEE THEY COMMITTED.THEIR LIES, DECEPTIONS, CREATING FEAR, FANNING THE FLAMES OF HYSTERIA TO ROB US OF OUR FREEDOMS AND PRIVACY TO MAKE THIS NATION THE REALITY OF ORWELL'S "1984" SHOULD CAUSE US TO DEMAND THEY ALL BE TRIED FOR TREASON.
THAT THE CURRENT ADMINISTRATION PERPETUATES THEIR CRIMES SHOULD QUALIFY THIS REGIME FOR TRIAL AS WELL.
IT WON'T HAPPEN.
IT SEEMS THE VAST MAJORITY OF CITIZENS NO LONGER HAVE THE INTESTINAL FORTITUDE TO DEFEND THIS NATION AGAINST THE LIKES OF THESE POLITICAL CRIMINALS.
WE JUST ELECT A NEW SET OF THEM EVERY 4 YEARS AND PRETEND ALL IS WELL.
TRUTH IS TRUTH, NO MATTER WHOM IT OFFENDS, NO MATTER WHOM IT HURTS.