Saturday, April 08, 2006

He wouldn't dare

That's what they kept saying about Adolph Hitler during his five-year march to war against Poland; during his years of outrages against Jews, Poles, gypsies; during his planning and execution of war against Stalin. But he just kept on fooling them, doing precisely what they said he wouldn't dare do.

Bush has, consistently during his first term-plus one-fourth, done so many things that we thought he wouldn't dare do: withdrawing from the Kyoto treaty; conducting secret meetings to plan our energy future with fossil-fuel companies; selling out our national forests to the timber companies; trying to privatize social security; appointing reactionaries to the Supreme Court--all on top of his outrageous, he-wouldn't-dare, foreign policy moves and wars.

Now, with his poll numbers in the tank, with Iraq promising to sink him further, with scores of scandals threatening to cause the election of a Democratic House of Representatives (which has the power to conduct hearings, indeed, to pass a resolution of impeachment), "he wouldn't dare" cause an "October surprise" in the form of an attack on Iran--right?


Friday, April 07, 2006

Just think about it for a second...

Three bombs go off in sequence in Baghdad, killing 79 worshippers at a mosque. Baghdad's about the same population as Los Angeles. Can you imagine the horror, the furor, such an attack would cause here in the US? And this is just one day in the life of that sad, wrecked city, one attack among scores a day.

The "O J" word

Recall these interesting historical facts in view of Libby's testimony to the the grand jury that Cheney told him that Bush had authorized the leaking of selective (and, by the way, misleading) information about the state of intelligence showing that Saddam Hussein intended to build a nuclear bomb. (What is misleading, of course, is the the National Intelligence Estimate that Bush apparently authorized the disclosure of said that while some intelligence indicated that the aluminum tubes might be used to enrich uranium, other intelligence (from the State Department and the Department of Energy) indicated the tubes were merely for launching conventional rockets--and Bush authorized only the release of the former information.)

Historical fact #1.

Fitzgerald wanted to interview both Bush and Cheney about the leaks of Valerie Plame's identity, but after much resistance (even though Bush had said he wanted to get to the bottom of the leaks) Bush allowed Fitzgerald a one-hour interview, not under oath, and only in the presence of Cheney.

Historical fact #2.

Bush consulted a criminal attorney, who attended the interview, and who insisted that the interview be limited to the leak of Plame's identity.

Historical fact #3.

Bush had personally seen a summary of the National Intelligence Estimate, which included the reservations about the intelligence concerning the aluminum tubes, and so the selective leaking was done by Bush knowing it didn't tell the whole picture about the tubes.

Historical fact #4.

When the fallacy of the Niger-uranium intelligence was coming to light because of Ambassador Wilson's revelations, that left only the aluminum tubes as evidence of Saddam's nuclear plans. Thus it became vital to reveal this information to the public in advance of the upcoming election, and to withhold the qualification of the intelligence--as part of the effort to shore up Bush's standing on the invasion of Iraq, along with the attack on Wilson's status.

So now the question becomes, did Fitzgerald, in his interview with Bush/Cheney ask any questions, and did the latter give any answers, that misled Fitzgerald in his investigation of the Plame leak? If he asked Bush/Cheney something like, "Was there any effort made by you to counter the adverse impression that Wilson was giving about Saddam's potential danger to the US"? and Bush/Cheney said "no," then that would be a lie, a lie that could have the effect of obstructing Fitzgerald's investigation into the source of the Plame leak. And that could be "obstruction of justice"--the same charge that brought Nixon down.

Stay tuned.

More Riverbend

Here she's interviewed by al-Jazeera, telling about the blogging life.

Well, now, things are getting interesting

Up to now, Bush's defenses--to his lies that led to war, to his torture and endless imprisonment of enemies, to his illegal wiretapping of Americans--have been based on his claim that whatever was done was (1) not his fault, and/or (2) done in furtherance of the public's safety. But now, with Scooter Libby laying at his feet, through Cheney, the personal responsibility for authorizing the selective leaking national security information to NYT reporter Judith Miller, both defenses are down. This action is Bush's own--not Tenet's, not Gonzales'--and the leaks were authorized not even colorably to defend Americans but to defend Bush from claims that he lied about prewar intelligence, a purely political breach of national security done for personal reasons.

Bush has become Nixon, and Plamegate has now officially become Watergate II.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Chop wood, carry water

Check out Riverbend's reaction to learning of her recent awards, especially her tending to the parakeet's cage.

There's a lesson there folks.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Sometimes ya gotta lighten up

So--here's a great cartoon.

Did you know

that ten soldiers (5 Army, 5 Marines) were killed in Iraq yesterday? I thought not. You sure wouldn't know it from the MSM.

Make that eleven.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Knight-Ridder rocks

This kind of reporting--a detailed, fact-filled exposition of the administration's refusal to face the facts about the Iraqi insurgency--is what Knight-Ridder has, throughout this Iraq debacle, presented to the American people. Repeatedly, its stories have gone no farther than the wireservices that carry it. I predict that no mention of this astoundingly revealing story will make it to the MSM. Let's track it, okay?

Permanent bases in Iraq

Here's a worthwhile survey of the state of permanent bases in Iraq. Astounding figures, included, such as that of 20,000 servicepersons at one base, only 1000 ever leave its confines during a tour of duty.

Among the reasons permanent bases are likely, says one source, is that the peace movement in the US is "completely pathetic." The source has that right, for sure.

The long haul

Check out this article, an AP dispatch in, that candidly describes the present status of US air support of Iraqi operations. Bottom line: There's no way, not for years, that we'll turn over control of air support to Iraqis because there's no assurance they won't use airstrikes to settle old tribal scores. It'll take years to train them, and training hasn't even been started yet.

Another fact, quite revealing of the massive scope of the US military activity in Iraq. At just one airbase, in Balad, the Air Force launches 27,500 airplanes a month. That's 900 per day, forty per hour, almost one per minute, 24/7. Now for years I lived in Tucson, with the huge airbase, Davis-Monthan, nearby, and it launched perhaps one airplane per hour--and that noise was oppressive. Imagine, with scores of additional bases in and around Iraq, the enormity of the military might we're expending in that sad, ugly war.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Fasten your seat belts

Here comes the attack on Iran.

The latest

Okay, I was way late catching on to "Snakes on a plane," but two days ago I stumbled onto the acronym ITMFA. It's gonna catch on, bigtime, right?