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Saturday, November 12, 2005


Irony, indeed, drips from each syllable of Bush's Veteran's Day Speech from Tobyhanna, Pennsylvania.


Bush argues that independent commissions have determined that the Administration did not misrepresent the Intelligence...NSA Stephen Hadley, briefing reporters on 11/10/05, commented specifically that the "Silberman-Robb Commission have concluded that [manipulation of Intelligence] did not happen" Washington Post 11/12/2005, Bush Defense Of Iraq War Decisions, Milbank & Pincus.

TAURUS EXCRETA: In fact, Judge Laurence Silberman said, in releasing his report March 31, 2005, that:
"Our executive order did not directus to deal with the use of intellegence by policymakers, and all of us were agreed that that was not part of the inquiry" Post, ibid.

Bush argues that Congress saw the same pre-war intelligence the White House did and "...voted to support removing Saddam from power."

TAURUS EXCRETA: Bush does not share his most sensitive intelligence such as the President's Daily Brief, with lawmakers. Also the National Intelligence Estimate (NIE), given to congress only a couple of days before the vote, did not contain the doubts within the intelligence community, that we now know were circulated among Bush's inner circle and the neo-Cons promoting the war.

Bush, in his speech Friday, said, " is deeply irresponsible to rewrite history of how the war began." and then proceeds to do exactly that. He states: "When I made the decision to remove Saddam Hussein from power, Congress approved it with strong bi-partisan support"

TAURUS EXCRETA: In fact, the October 2002 Joint Resolution authorized use of force but didn't directly mention removing Saddam from power. And the Resolution also called for exhausting diplomatic efforts to enforce the Resolutions and use armed forces as a last resort to "defend against the continuing threat posed by Iraq".

We now know, for example, that Saddam had offered to let the inspectors in and negotiate terms with Washington.

From: Failed Iraqi Peace Initiatives,

“...Later that month, Hage met with Gen. Habbush in addition to Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz. He was offered top priority to US firms in oil and mining rights, UN-supervised elections, US inspections (with up to 5,000 inspectors), to have al-Qaeda agent Abdul Rahman Yassin (in Iraqi custody since 1994) handed over as a sign of good faith, and to give "full support for any US plan" in the Arab-Israeli peace process. They also wished to meet with high-ranking US officials. On February 19th, Hage faxed Maloof his report of the trip. Maloof reports having brought the proposal to Jamie Duran. The Pentagon denies that either Wolfowitz or Rumsfeld, Duran's bosses, were aware of the plan.

On February 21st, Maloof informed Duran in an email that Perle wished to meet with Hage and the Iraqis if the Pentagon would clear it. Duran responded "Mike, working this. Keep this close hold.". On March 7th, Perle met with Hage in Knightsbridge, and stated that he wanted to pursue the matter further with people in Washington (both have acknowleged the meeting). A few days later, he informed Hage that Washington refused to let him meet with [head of Iraqi Intelligence, Gen. Tahir Jalil Habbush al Takriti] to discuss the offer (Hage stated that Perle's response was "that the consensus in Washington was it was a no-go"). Perle told the Times, "The message was 'Tell them that we will see them in Baghdad."
(Emphasis Added)


When it appeared that the Iraqi back-channels for negotiations were going nowhere and it was evident that the Weapons Inspectors were going to be forced out of the country by the United States in advance of its immanent invasion, an unusual and not well-publicized effort was made by the Carnegie Endowment for the Peace to advance an alternative to war. Needless to say, the Bushniks and the Neo-Cons who were itching to invade laughed at this. Nevertheless, it is interesting to review it and, in light of what has transpired since, looks especially inspired.

The following is a transcript from an All Things Considered story on the Carnegie Plan.

Carnegie Endowment Proposal to Back Weapons Inspectors in Iraq With a U.N. Military Troop of 50,000

All Things Considered: September 5, 2002

Iraq: Inspections


From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.


And I'm Jacki Lyden.

President Bush is considering whether to seek a UN Security Council resolution that would set a deadline for Iraq to allow inspectors to search for weapons of mass destruction. But Bush administration officials have made clear these inspections must be far more effective than earlier efforts, which were thwarted by Iraq. A group of policy analysts has come up with a new proposal for a UN military force to back any weapons inspections. That idea has sparked some interest in Washington, as NPR's Michele Kelemen reports.


If you listen to some of the hawks in Washington, the choice seems stark. Either the Bush administration goes it alone, mounting an all-out war to topple Saddam Hussein's regime, or it sits by as Iraq continues to develop weapons of mass destruction. Retired General Charles Boyd argues there is a way to force Saddam Hussein to make the choice, by sending in troops to back up weapons inspections.

General CHARLES BOYD (Retired): He can submit to effective, comprehensive inspections backed by military force or he can accept an inevitable invasion for the purpose of a regime change.

KELEMEN: Boyd and other analysts, ex-officials and former inspectors outlined their proposal in a report just released by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. That organization's president, Jessica Mathews, says this third way or middle ground should appeal to those who want to focus on disarming Saddam Hussein but don't support unilateral US action to topple him.

Ms. JESSICA MATHEWS (Carnegie Endowment for International Peace): This says, `Sorry, we're not negotiating. There are no off-limit sites. The inspectors will go where they want, when they want. They will have operational security, which they did not have before. The Iraqis bugged them all the time and knew where they were going. And they will have force to back them up.'

KELEMEN: A force of about 50,000 troops and airpower, according to authors of the Carnegie proposal. That would be smaller than an invasion force, but large enough to establish no-fly and no-drive zones in areas that are under inspection. Mathews see is as a largely American force.

Ms. MATHEWS: We would have air cavalry forces, which is armored helicopter mobile troops that could accompany the inspectors that would be strong enough to do whatever they chose to do--that is, whether they chose to simply protect the inspectors, to protect themselves, to engage if there were direct opposition or to disengage.

KELEMEN: When White House spokesman Ari Fleischer was asked about the possibility of such coercive inspections, he would only say the president is considering various options.

Mr. ARI FLEISCHER (White House Spokesman): The bottom line, though, is that Iraq needs to live up to its commitments to disarm, not simply allow inspectors in, not to resume a cat-and-mouse game, not to put people in there in harm's way where Saddam Hussein would again use the powers of the state police to rough up inspectors and make their job impossible to do.

KELEMEN: And Fleischer has repeatedly insisted that regime change is still the US policy. Mathews of the Carnegie Endowment says her proposal would only work and Saddam Hussein would only be persuaded to accept inspectors if that goal were pushed aside.

Ms. MATHEWS: The crucial part of this proposal is to recognize that the US has to make a give, and that give is to say for as long as inspections are working we forgo action on a regime change. We may still believe regime change is the best preferable outcome. We have felt that way about Cuba, for example, for 40 years without doing anything about it. But we would have to make that explicit commitment for this to work.

KELEMEN: That may be difficult for some in the Bush administration to accept. The UN Security Council would also have to approve a military operation to back weapons inspectors. Mathews believes that council members will be interested in this new proposal, if only to stop the US from acting alone. Michele Kelemen, NPR News, Washington.

Copyright ©2002 National Public Radio®.


The selective use of Intelligence by the NeoCons in DoD and the White House is, in the opinion of many, criminal and impeachable. But that doesn't let Congress off the hook. While Congress was not spoon-fed the information by the Administration, it had resources to get at the Truth.
But, in the post 9-11 political environment and the near total domination of the media by the Administration, the Congressional opposition was demoralized and weakened. With very few exceptions Congress seemed to be willing to go along with the White House on the WMD.

Dana Milbank and Walter Pincus, in today's (11-12-05) edition of the Washington Post write:

“Lawmakers are partly to blame for their ignorance. Congress was entitled to view the 92-page NIE about Iraq before the October, 2002 vote. But, as the Washington Post reported last year, no more than six senators and a handful of House members read beyond the five-page executive summary." (Emphasis Added)

We get a sense of the divided opposition during that time in a story reported by the AP on October 4, 2002.

After a meeting with CIA Chief George Tenant, Sen. Richard Durbin, D-Ill., said some information that could weaken the Bush administration's case against Iraq remains classified. He and others felt that the whole story wasn't being told. "It is troubling to have classified information which contradicts statements made by the administration," he said. "It is maddening to have classified information which contradicts classified information leaked by the administration."

But Sen. Evan Bayh, D-Ind., said he believed intelligence officials were "giving us the vast majority of what they know." Senator “Sponge” Bayh (my name for him) goes on to say: "They're giving us their best judgment, the facts that they have," he said. "But one of the difficulties in addressing this whole issue is that there is just a lot that is unknown and unknowable."

Ugh. I bet the late Senator Birch Bayh is spinning like an dervish in his grave!


We now know that the Bush administration dismissed peace overtures and buried them in the rush to go to war. Bush never entertained any alternatives to war, like the one proposed by the Carnegie Endowment for the Peace. And we know that Congress didn't do its job.

Bush’s ex-post facto spinning of the situation only adds to the layers of deception and lies that have become the hallmark of this Administration. And it makes some of the current criticism from the likes of John Kerry, who voted for extending war powers to Bush, turn to ashes in the mouth.

All of this makes Bush's use of Veteran's Day to dissemble before America and the world even more vile. He chose to go to war NOT because it was necessary, but because he wanted to and, thanks to a spineless Congress, he could!

The Bush administration continues to post now-discredited WMD analysis on the State Department Web Site. Are you nostalgic for a taste of the pre-war lies? Go back in time.


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