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April 10, 2006

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kim

The hand-waving is that the White House shouldn't have been interested in Wilson before his July op-ed.

What hogwash. And people read this? And believe it?
==================================

Patton

While we remain lost in the minutia of yellowcake and tubes, we have forgotten what the President said about why Saddam had to go. Lets review the Presidents words:

“””””And so we had to act and act now.
Let me explain why.
First, without a strong inspection system, Iraq would be free to retain and begin to rebuild its chemical, biological and nuclear weapons programs in months, not years.
Second, if Saddam can crippled the weapons inspection system and get away with it, he would conclude that the international community -- led by the United States -- has simply lost its will. He will surmise that he has free rein to rebuild his arsenal of destruction, and someday -- make no mistake -- he will use it again as he has in the past.
Third, if we turn our backs on his defiance, the credibility of U.S. power as a check against Saddam will be destroyed. We will not only have allowed Saddam to shatter the inspection system that controls his weapons of mass destruction program; we also will have fatally undercut the fear of force that stops Saddam from acting to gain domination in the region.
Finally, our allies, including Prime Minister Tony Blair of Great Britain, concurred that now is the time. I hope Saddam will comply with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions. But we have to be prepared that he will not, and we must deal with the very real danger he poses.

The credible threat to use force, and when necessary, the actual use of force, is the surest way to contain Saddam's weapons of mass destruction program, and curtail his aggression.
…………………..
The hard fact is that so long as Saddam remains in power, he threatens the well-being of his people, the peace of his region, the security of the world.
The best way to end that threat once and for all is with a new Iraqi government -- a government ready to live in peace with its neighbors, a government that respects the rights of its people. Bringing change in Baghdad will take time and effort.
The decision to use force is never cost-free. Whenever American forces are placed in harm's way, we risk the loss of life. And while our strikes are focused on Iraq's military capabilities, there will be unintended Iraqi casualties.
Heavy as they are, the costs of action must be weighed against the price of inaction. If Saddam defies the world and we fail to respond, we will face a far greater threat in the future. Saddam will strike again at his neighbors. He will make war on his own people.
And mark my words, he will make weapons of mass destruction. He will deploy them, and he will use them.
Because we're acting today, it is less likely that we will face these dangers in the future. “”””

THANKS MR. PRESIDENT

MayBee

Patton- you are right. I always believe Saddam had to go. I can't help being fascinated by the minutia, though.

Kim- you are so right about the Times wanting us to pay no attention to the Kristof behind the curtain. Ignore the fact they'd been writing about this since May 6, Bush was mysteriously curious even in June. Funny.

Bob in Pacifica

Woodward has been an intelligence asset ever since he was discharged from the Navy. ONI, anyone?

He helped to sink Nixon. He's shown to be allied to the Bush wing of the power structure, but who knows?

Likewise, anyone who thinks that information doesn't pass through Sy Hersh without someone contemplating the results is stuck in their high school civics class.

Dubya's messianic complex is getting out of hand. Expect changes shortly.

kim

Give me one more clue, Bob.
================

topsecretk9

Oh for goodness sakes

Wooward is a republican-ish spy again? Hello scary Larry?

And Bob wonders what kind of world we have to live in.

clarice

TM, great catch. I'm certain you're right.

Dwilkers

Well, I admit I am a bit surprised that the media haven't gone solid on the theme that there was something terribly unusual about the NIE leak.

On second reflection though, I remembered this Washington Post article from almost 2 years ago. In it by my count they effectively call His Excellency the Ambassador Joeseph C. Wilson IV a liar 6 or 7 times in the upper 2/3 of the report.

I remember being a bit taken aback at the time, it is pretty rough stuff. My sense though was that something happened between the WaPo and Munchausen Joe that pissed the WaPo off, and that it was probably because they caught him lying to them.

So I dunno if it is entirely fair to say they are schizo on the subject - maybe the reporters are new or just forgetful. Certainly the editorial page guys do not seem to have forgotten good old Joe, and are apparently still carrying a torch for him...so to speak.

ed in texas

There really isn't any schizophrenia in the editorial; WaPo's editors can see that they're gonna take a hit over this, and want Joe Wilson to understand that there's plenty to go around. Look for the DNC candidates presumtive to start putting room between themselves and Wilson.

MayBee

Dwilkers- I think you are right. I think Jeff was right. I think among the pissed was Pincus.

topsecretk9

So I dunno if it is entirely fair to say they are schizo on the subject -

Well since it came from the lead editorial, I don't think Cybil needs her meds....I think it's called a giant WAPO staff meeting.

Dwilkers

Just a quick additional point, because I see this come up from time to time here. Sometimes when people are talking about Munchausen Joe they refer to Kristof as if he was the only guy Little Joey lied to about the forged yellowcake documents on Niger.

Please note this passage from the linked article:

The report also said Wilson provided misleading information to The Washington Post last June. He said then that he concluded the Niger intelligence was based on documents that had clearly been forged because "the dates were wrong and the names were wrong."

And that, I suspect, is one of the lies they caught him telling and part of the root of how they feel about him.

Sue

Dwilkers,

If it was just one reporter, maybe even 2, that either got what Wilson said wrong, you might could pass it off as...something...though I can't think of what at the moment. It was more than 2. It was at least 4, and possibly 5, reporters that all misunderstood Wilson. Kind of a freak accident? Or something done on purpose?

kim

I tell you the shock and awe in the sinestrosphere is something to behold. The dissonance shrieks.
=========================

topsecretk9

Dwilk

That is an excellent point.

I don't think Pincus even came this close, but that is the first citation I've seen the WAPO admit that Wilson DID LIE to them.

That is that, Pincus authored a report in which his source provided FALSE information and so therefore the report was unequivocally wrong.

In my mind, that is the most remarkable passage in the Editorial.

Thanks.

Cecil Turner

Ignore the fact they'd been writing about this since May 6, Bush was mysteriously curious even in June.

No kidding. The Times piece is priceless, espeically this bit:

It has been known that Mr. Cheney and Mr. Libby were focused on the uranium issue in June 2003, well before Joseph C. Wilson IV, a former ambassador, wrote an Op-Ed article in The New York Times on July 6, 2003, saying that nothing he had seen on a mission to Niger for the C.I.A. confirmed that Mr. Hussein was seeking uranium.

If Mr. Bush acted that early, it would suggest that the administration was growing concerned as evidence emerged that the intelligence was flawed.

[Snort.] Yeah, nothing going on in June. Except maybe Condi Rice's talk show appearances on the 8th, and the flak she caught starting on the 9th:
The key judgments of the intelligence community, Rice said on ABC's "This Week," were contained in an October 2002 National Intelligence Estimate that said flatly that "Iraq had weapons of mass destruction" and that Hussein "was continuing to improve his weapons of mass destruction capabilities, that he was hiding these from the world, [and] that there were large, unaccounted-for stockpiles."
The call for an investigation, and production of the intel information, was immediate:
The chairman of the Senate intelligence panel, Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), said that Tenet had agreed to provide "full documentation" of the intelligence material "in regards to Secretary Powell's comments, the president's comments and anybody else's comments."
Sen Waxman chimed in the next day, citing the Times:
Moreover, New York Times columnist Nicholas D. Kristof has reported that the Vice President's office was aware of the fraudulent nature of the evidence as early as February 2002 -- nearly a year before the President gave his State of the Union address.
Followed shortly by Kristof himself:
Immediately upon his return, in early March 2002, this senior envoy briefed the C.I.A. and State Department and reported that the documents were bogus, for two main reasons.
Nope, no connection here . . . moove along.

danking70

Dwilkers,

It will be interesting to see what the WaPo's reporter's notes have to say about the "forged documents" info.

Would something that specific be left to a reporter's memory or the notepad?

kim

The paragraph you quote, CT "If Mr Bush acted that early, it would suggest the the administration was growing concerned as the evidence emerged that the intelligence was flawed." is a particularly damning instance of the intellectual laziness and deliberate bias of the New York Times. That is "News Fit to Print"?
============================

Tom Bowler

My cynical side tells me Joe was an astute judge of reporters. No matter how many he lied to they were all of a mindset to go along with his story because it fit their ideal scenario. Uppermost in their minds has always been, "Get Bush."

But subpoena's for reporters are back on the horizon, and "Get Bush" is now less important. I wonder if we're seeing the first signs that the press is turning away from Joe Wilson's story and preparing to join the Libby defense team. Somebody over here made the comment several days ago that with subpoena's hanging over their heads, the press would soon join in the defense argument that Fitzgerald's appointment was unconstitutional. Maybe it's old news by now but it makes sense to me.

topsecretk9

Cecil

--Sen Waxman chimed in the next day, citing the Times:
Moreover, New York Times columnist Nicholas D. Kristof has reported that the Vice President's office was aware of the fraudulent nature of the evidence as early as February 2002 -- nearly a year before the President gave his State of the Union address.

Followed shortly by Kristof himself:
Immediately upon his return, in early March 2002, this senior envoy briefed the C.I.A. and State Department and reported that the documents were bogus, for two main reasons.--


Gee, isn't that interesting Cecil?

Waxman somehow knew Cheney was informed as early as Feb 2002 BEFORE Kristof reported March. Hmmm.

Cecil Turner

. . . the intellectual laziness and deliberate bias . . .

Maybe they just forgot? (And are learning it again, as if new?)

Waxman somehow knew Cheney was informed as early as Feb 2002 BEFORE Kristof reported March. Hmmm.

No, sorry, should have mentioned that was Kristof's second article. Waxman is referring to Kristof's first one:

In February 2002, according to someone present at the meetings, that envoy reported to the C.I.A. and State Department that the information was unequivocally wrong and that the documents had been forged.

Sue

Top,

If you read Waxman's letter, it says public and 'private' (I believe that was the term used) sources. Someone was talking to Waxman early on.

larwyn

Kerry sticks his head up - Vanderleun swings mallet:
The Hamlet Men..Vanderlen strikes again!"

... Kerry was all of Sharpton's bleached Iago and Dean's muddled Malvolio. He incorporated the treachery of Wesley Clarke's stupified Macbeth. He contained that whisp of untrustworthiness sensed in Moseley Braun's botched Goneril, and mirrored, without merit, the vanity of John Edwards' shrewish Katerina. From his recently discovered campaign demands we now learn that Kerry's "requirements" echo the performance by Kucinich of a puckish Oberon in drag and in mime. Kerry even had his own quadrophrenic Ophelia, Teresa, who entertained by inviting her multiple personalities of Empress Tamora, Queen Gertrude and Lady Macbeth to join her in regular noonish wine and cheese parties on their private jet, "The Flying Squirrel""......Vanderleun 4/10/06

Gotta read

sad

Is it possible that the WH knows the buerocratic factions warring against it would go to any length to sink this administration including placing our nation in extreme jeopardy? And as a result the WH decides to take the negative press, the lying and subversive leaks eagerly lapped up by a liberal MSM and suck it up in the interest of the greater good. Perhaps we are all in far more danger than we realize.

clarice

I think the only sound explanation for the left's cognitive dissonance (you can lead a dope to water but you can't make him drink) is that Wilson and his story are stand ins for Bush lied to take us into war. No matter how obvious those lies now are, no matter that even the WaPo says he is a liar, they will not, can not, accept the truth of that.

Gary Maxwell

I guess its if Joe lied then maybe Bush didnt, and we cant admit that. I assume today that the WAPO is being raked over the coals and consigned to the dustbin where Joe Lieberman and Judith Miller have been cast. Even TT on the other thread, who is normally pretty rational is twisting himself into a pretzel to avoid the conclusion the Joe Wilson = liar extradinaire.

kim

Clarice, underlying the whole mishigas is that Bush was justified. Not only did he not lie, but he was right. I think for the left, clinging to Joe is clinging to the idea that we shouldn't have toppled Saddam.

I'm beginning to think just let them have their delusions, It's a big country, and a free one. Maybe WaPo has decided to come along for the ride with the rest of us. If not, we're outa here, anyway.
=================================

clarice

Now I see why all that animus when I started defending Libby and attacking Joe. There's a whole world view riding on Libby's guilt.

kim

I'm starting to get a little pissed that the nation has been deprived of Libby's services for the last 6 months, probably longer since he's been distracted for awhile. There are consequences to baloney like Fitz's and they are difficult to measure.
======================================

TexasToast

Clarice

I would say to that that Wilson's credibility is of very little import in the broad scheme of things - but that the President's is "the coin of the realm".

The President has lost his honest man persona - lost it with a thousand cuts of his own making. This leak business is just the latest cut. No matter how Tom wishes to parce it, what people heard was Bush promising to fire anyone involved in "leaking" - and now we find out that the President himself was part of the effort. And you actually wonder where "Bush lied!" came from?

Perhaps its the tipping point. Who knows? - but it should be interesting to watch.

Gary Maxwell

Add to it the whole idea that Joe is an ambassador, a striped pantser and a fancy who loves all things French. It tangentally ropes in the UN and the State Dept types, and if you generally believe all wars are unjust, these are your soldiers. Its just too uncomfortable to bear, I think.

clarice

I think that there is not a single credible bit of evidence that the Administration lied in the run up to the war. It relied, as it must, on the collective wisdom of our intelligence agencies on the threat assessment.

If the meme that Bush lied has traction it is not because it is true but rather because the disinformation campaign by Wilson, aided by the partisan or incurious press, was so successful.

Rick Ballard

It's the core of the zombie meme, without a doubt. I don't think that there are enough wooden stakes and silver bullets in the world to keep it in the grave. The WaPo may now see it as the dangerous tool for dangerous fools that it has always been but I doubt that the NYT will abandon its investment.

AS Kim notes, it's a big country and the lefty's only control some dying cities. The crowing from the dung heaps is annoying but meaningless.

kim

TT, you've missed the point, but you've gotten the one the MSM wanted you to get. Bush talking about 'leaking' was about unauthorized disclosure of classified information. What the papers are reporting now is him declassifying stuff. The papers are putting apples and oranges in front of you, calling them all apples, and you are wolfing Waldorf.
===============================

boris

No matter how TT wishes to parce it, what people heard was Cheney behested Joe Wilson to Niger.

Patton

Let’s look at the Wilson trip in another way.

Cheney asked the CIA to look into the issue and give him more info.
He did not ask for someone to travel there or anything else.

The only FACTUAL information Wilson brought back was that a
Businessman had approach a Nigerian offIcial about meeting with the Iraqi
about trade. The Nigerian believed this meant Uranium trade.
Based on these facts the mamestream media says that there is nothing to the
the report that Saddam was attempting to acquire uranium


Now let’s say the facts are different.

Bush is accused of pursuing illegal campaign contributions in the last election
by the Democrats. They claim he was attempting to get Indian casino contributions.
The New York Times puts there best reporter on the trail and he reports back
three weeks later he reports:

‘’’’’’’I have talked to A former official who worked on the Bush campaign who says he was approached
by Jack Abramoff about possible dealings between his lobbyists and the Bush campaign.
The official said that he when he heard it was Abramoff he suspected it dealt with illegal
Campaign funds and he was non-comittal during the meeting.’’’’’

Now according to the NYT, this should be reported as a NONE STORY, that there was NOTHING to the
Idea that Abramoff wanted to pay bribes for favors. In fact, it wouldn’t be reported at all that Abramhoff had approached the Bush campaign.

NOW DOES ANYONE BELIEVE THE NYT WOULD TREAT THIS AS A NON-STORY. WOULD THEY TREAT THIS AS EVIDENCE THAT ABRAMHOFF WAS NOT PURSUING
ILLEGAL CONTRIBUTIONS.


TexasToast

Kim

If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, swims like a duck ......

I get your "point" - but it sounds like a bad duck call. It wasnt a "leak" - it was a "declassification" - on background, from an unnamed source, to a select few reporters.

Uh huh.

PS

I'll bet you don't call it Waldorf if we use Granny Smiths instead of Delicious (or, horror of horrors, Miracle Whip). My former mother in law had a neighbor who used crumbled hard boiled egg instead of Ricotta cheese in lasagna. Now who's to say that she isnt making lasagna? MMMMMM, MMMMMM, good!

kim

An egg a day keeps the doctor away.

And I, too, am amused by the leaky use of language.
===================================

Ralph Tacoma

I THINK that the real reason for this Media BS Blitz about the "leaks" of the NIE is a pre-emptive strike to so confusion as to the signficance of the NSA, and other, leak investigations currently underway.

To me it suggests that some people in the media are starting to get seriously scared about what may happen as a result of those investigations and they are trying to discredit the concept in advance. The requirement to confiscate ALL assets used in violating the Espionage Act has got to be giving some Media lawyers and financial people serious indigestion.

Knowing my inability to predict the future, I'm probably wrong, but should I have gotten lucky with the forecast, "you heard it hear first."

Great ongoing discussions, thanks.

Sue

Texas,

I know I'm sounding like a broken record, but if you have a source that says Cheney requested someone head on over to Niger and check out the story, please link it. This is the 1st time I've heard that and I'm mighty curious.

kim

Ya' know, Ralph, for all of Pinch's relatives it'll be "Easy come, easy go".
=================================

TexasToast

Sue

I thought I answered you - I never said Cheney requested that Wilson take a trip - just that he asked the CIA to "run down" the Niger yellowcake story. As I said, I doubt Cheney cared unless the answer was not what he wanted.

Reread the posts - are you reading what you think an opponent would say or what I actually said?

Wilson is an annoying blowhard - but that doesn't mean that Iraq was pursuing yellowcake in Niger or that Wilson “lied” in saying that he found no evidence of same in his time in Iraq. Wilson is the issue because ad hom is easier than the merits.

boris

TT: he asked the CIA to "run down" the Niger yellowcake story


Sue: Cheney requested someone head on over

Not different enough to quibble over TT.

TT: I never said Cheney requested that Wilson take a trip

Off point TT. "run down" is a lot closer to "send someone" than "requested Wilson".

larwyn

sad wrote "And as a result the WH decides to take the negative press, the lying and subversive leaks eagerly lapped up by a liberal MSM and suck it up in the interest of the greater good."

Vanderleun provides the word pictures:

It has no new answers , nor even any new questions, but it does act with an ever increasing intensity as if, through the power of honed spite, it can shave the good sense of the electorate enough to regain the only thing it values, power.

It can only -- through an unremitting tsunami of propaganda -- seek power through weapons of mass distraction, hoping to weary the people into grudging agreement, and to reverse the times to their Happy World of Yesteryear.

....they seek to craft a victory via tendentiousness that employs, day in and day out, the long co-opted media and academe where voices that might contend against the decadent liberalism of the Party are either silenced or excluded.
The Hamlet Men..Vanderlen strikes again!

Ralph Sorry lad, I posted comment first day hearing "BUSH LEAKED". Per MacsMind - end of May may be end of the Rocky,Durbin show.

Admin is in quandry:
Does one get down and stupid and bicker with 2 year olds?
(problem is that even good parents give in {Bush Voters} at times for peace and quiet).

Do they wait knowing what they hold "bunker busters"?
(problem is if no one gets to hear or see the "bunker buster" is it then as the proverbial tree in forest?)

I expect that Chris Matthews head will actually explode some time this summer. Sunday's Chris Matthews' Show didn't even do a pretend balance. All Libs/all Left
- like watching 5 drunks.

maryrose

Larwyn:
So true about Chris Matthews and his Friday show had the timelines and spooky music. Thet NBC have an agenda and want to protect Russert and Andrea Mitchell. They've been given their talking points already. WAPO seems to sense that Joe's is a sinking ship and are now piloting rescue boats.They've been played too many times in this kerfuffle.
Ralph Tacoma: I enjoyed your comments.

larwyn

TT'S "The President has lost his honest man persona - lost it with a thousand cuts of his own making. This leak business is just the latest cut."

Does TT think that if all the commenters here and at many blogs began each of their comments with:

"Have you heard that Texas Toast is a child molester?"

And continued just asking th questions - not actually putting it into definetive headlines and statements BUSH LIED/ BUSH LEAKED/ BUSH LIED but continued it for years now.

Everyday Texas "did you hear Texas Toast is a into kiddy porn?" "I heard someone saw him DELETING LOTS OF STUFF ON HIS COMPUTER."
"He did want to take my boys to the park last month."

Everyday Texas.

"a thousand cuts by his own making"

Maybe you're spending too much time on the WRONG SITES TEXAS.

See how easy it is.

EVERDAY!

MJW

There are two aspects to the "Leaker-in-Chief" coverage: First, that Bush selectively declassifies favorable information, while not declassifying unfavorable information. Second, that Bush is "leaking" classified information, and is therefore a hypocrite to decry leaks about, say, the NSA wiretap program.

Whether I agree or disagree with the first point, it's a reasonable subject for debate. The second point is, in my opinion, just plain stupid. Does anyone actually maintain there was something declassified from the NIE that shouldn't have been?

SteveMG

I would say to that that Wilson's credibility is of very little import in the broad scheme of things - but that the President's is "the coin of the realm".

Toast is almost right here.

Wilson's credibility isn't of very little importance, it's of zero importance to the larger issues.

Not saying that is fair or not or warranted or not or important or not. It's just a fact.

Let's face it, whether Wilson intended all of this at the start or not, it was a brilliant sting.

First, go to favorable reporters (Kristoff, Judis/Ackerman) or news organizations and make anonymous and serious charges about classified information and intelligence.

Accuse the president and his staff of falsifying intelligence in order to send the country to war. Or of ignoring evidence that was at odds to what the W.H. was claiming.

With a hostile press eagerly disseminating that, the White House has to counter attack and respond to the accusations.

But how to do it? It involves very technical issues based on classified material. Classified material, moreover, that in many areas conflicts or includes contrary information (as all intelligence does).

If the White House tries to respond to Wilson et al., they are accused of going after war critics.

If they produce classified information, they are accused of leaking important material that threatens our national security in order to silence critics.

If they produced de-classified data, they are accused of producing only that material that supports their contentions.

If they produce all the material, critics can point to contradictory material that they can use to argue that the White House lied or ignored material in order to send the nation to war.

And with most Americans too busy to keep up on these matter as they go about their days, all the majority of the public hears is the most trumped up accusations and not any of the exculpatory details.

It worked. Wilson's credibility may be in tatters; but so is Bush's (unfortunately).

And by any measure, that's a lopsided trade.

Although I am reluctant to say it, I hope our side is taking notes here. This little sting may come in handy when our liberal friends are running things.

SMG

larwyn

WILSON ON CNN NOW!

spinning his heart out with
WOOOOOOOOF!

CNN isn't worried about supeonas
just yet.

larwyn

Wilson"we now know he leaked classified (Rove)."

"I would forgo the Handcuffs ....
should be frogmarched"

"no decisions yet on civil suits"

CNN MUST BE VERY PROUD

WONDER IF WILSON WILL BE KING TONIGHT?

Sue

Larwyn,

Are you serious? He is back on frogs marching out of the WH?

Kate

Little Joe is very selective now on where he appears on TV. Disappointed with Wolf, thought he'd call the liar on his lies. There was a time several years ago when you could not turn on your TV without Wilson being on. He was a male, slightly more attractive version of Cindy Sheehan.

larwyn

WILSON ON OLBERMAN TONIGHT!

DUKE RAPE CASE

First photos now

NO DNA PROOF

Another Tawanny Brawley tale - go go Cynthia and all the rest of the racist blacks.

No hate crime in Harlem either!

ODD?
Only Fox is covering the presser by the Duke team lawyers. MSNBC WOULD RATHER TALK ABOUT BUSH'S LEAKS and CNN BEING CNN!

have to figure how to spin - Sharpton must be in line-up on immigration discussion. You think?

SteveMG

FYI,
Here's the declassified NIE report that the White House released on 7/18/2003.

NIE Report

Read it and then read the current news accounts as to what it claimed.

Try not to put your head through the computer monitor over the blatantly misleading news accounts of the document.

SMG

fletcher hudson

Here is my prediction:
Russert will eventually admit that he commented to Libby,"You know Wilson's wife works at the CIA". This may not happen until trial but could be revealed in the document production. NBC and Russert have spent too much effort limiting Russert's denial to the disclaimer that he mentioned Plame. I would bet that in response to at least some of the confusing grand jury questions Libby stated exactly what Russert will admit. Too many people are involved on this issue for Russert to fabricate on this central point. One-half of the case goes away and the rest is garbage.

Thomas Esmond Knox

Clarice, I read somewhere that Wilson's trip was paid for by the CIA but not approved by Tenet; that JW was suggested/approved by someone who was familiar with JW's preconceptions but whose name cannot be mentioned publicly because of asserted prior undercover status.

So Wilson's trip was legally authorised?

maryrose

fletcher hudson:
I like your summation.

kim

There has got to be some explanation for all the cuteness at NBC, and the sophistry of Ms Plame/Mrs Wilson fits.
===================================

larwyn

Wilson on at 8pm and Jack Bauer on at 9PM.

Imagination gone wild.

Certainly must see TV tonight.

And can't wait for likes of Jessie, Al et al to 'splain what happened at Duke.

Unless they go on Fox - no one will ask about it.

Uncle BigBad

If you can stand it, Joe Wilson is going to be on Keith Olberman in a few minutes (8 EDT MSNBC)

Beto Ochoa

GEORGE TENANT

clarice

TE Knox, I don't know if I've ever known who okayed the trip. What I do know is that making it expenses only, not requiring a non-disclosure agreement, and allowing Wilson to make his report orally could not have been better designed to make sure there was no paper trail at all.

JM Hanes

SteveMG

"If they produce classified information, they are accused of leaking important material that threatens our national security in order to silence critics."

It still amazes me that what gets lost in the scuffle over whether the White House only provided "exculpatory" info from the NIE is that laying out the whole story could, in fact, have posed a significant security risk at the time. The President's detractors have proved absolutely unwilling to factor that possibility into their "analysis" of what the White House was trying to do when. Yet I'd be surprised if such concerns didn't play into the White House's long -- and some might say disastrously -- delayed response to its critics.

Indeed, in this context, Libby's reference to the unique circumstances surrounding NIE declassification discussions doesn't necessarily even qualify as the circumstantial evidence of nefarious intentions that so many automatically impute it to be. I am not making any claims on the Administration's behalf one way or the other here; but to the contrary, I'm suggesting that most of the folks making assertions about what was/wasn't and has/has not been disclosed don't really know what they're talking about even now.

Ralph

Larwyn,

I yield to your prior claim! and will just endorse your position (I'd say second, but I'm probably too late for that as well.)

Macsmind is not the only site providing suggestions that the investigation is quite serious, though he's certainly been the most "in your face" about it.

Now, all we need, is time to find out if we're right.

All the Best,

topsecretk9

Since there are like 14 threads going, check out the Cecil "gem"MJW found.

topsecretk9

---Wilson"we now know he leaked classified (Rove)."

"I would forgo the Handcuffs ....
should be frogmarched"

"no decisions yet on civil suits"---

So basically they could have aired a re-run of his last Blitzer appearance, the man hangs on to same old tired cliches.

Wonder why Wilson needed to do cable this week? Is the floor getting weak under his feet?

topsecretk9

Larwyn

Did Wolf ask about the parasites that need stakes driven threw their hearts or that drunk Bill Kristol or those gays?

Or did Wilson sidetrack him with his GHWB Medals or a letter perhaps to prove to the american people he is a Republican, just not a cult member?

SteveMG

JMH:
I'm suggesting that most of the folks making assertions about what was/wasn't and has/has not been disclosed don't really know what they're talking about even now

The devil (or is it God?) is in the details.

And so, apparently, is the president's approval and credibility ratings.

To be sure, I think we'd both admit that, whether consciously or not, we are selecting those details that buttress our own view on what (probably) happened here. With such a wealth of information - studies and reports and commissions and stories - one can grab a group of facts and assemble pretty much whatever picture one wants.

But there are some pretty basic details of this story that cannot be so easily ignore or misstated. And this, I think, is what angers both of us and our friends here (well, some of them).

Anyway, my own guess is that if Iraq were stable, our troops were being withdrawn, and a relatively coherent government established there, much of this would have zero effect on Bush's ratings.

Success has a thousand fathers; failure's the president's fault.

SMG

willem

OT

Back at the feedlot..

Dear PeterUK. There is indeed a house of bovine divinity.

http://www.churchofmoo.com/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MOOism

Lordy. Wilson might soon need an uppity new career he could do anywhere. I suspect he'd make a fine Rev. Moo.

Sue

Steve,

This paragraph...

Iraq probably would attempt clandestine attacks against the U.S. Homeland if Baghdad feared an attack that threatened the survival of the regime were imminent or unavoidable, or possibly for revenge. Such attacks--more likely with biological than chemical agents--probably would be carried out by special forces or intelligence operatives.

...caught my attention. It sounds very similar to what Joe Wilson was saying pre-invasion. A sample, but there are lots more out there...

against his use of weapons of mass destruction and I think that it is worth considering because at the end of the day one of the things we want to avoid either in the region or in the United States is a counterattack against our interests, our troops or our homeland involving the chemical weapons, biological weapons that he clearly has in his power.

http://www.mepc.org/forums_chcs/30.asp>MEPC

...Did Joe see, or hear about, the still classified NIE?

JM Hanes

Larwyn

LOL! I'm reminded of Vanderleun's previous Shakespearian excursion in which (now permanent) candidate Kerry was cast as Omlet, Prince of Massachusetts. The new improved AD doesn't let you link to directly to comments any more, but If you scroll down to the third from last, you'll find my own contribution to the play -- in which I reworked Rosencrantz & Guildenstern's appearance in Act III, Scene I.

Wouldn't you know that I've only just now noticed a couple of missing words & commas here and there! The peculiar little � icon, however, has rather more charmingly replaced both elegant é and apostrophe.

Jeff

Read it and then read the current news accounts as to what it claimed.

Try not to put your head through the computer monitor over the blatantly misleading news accounts of the document.

I'm not quite sure what exactly what you have in mind here, SMG, and it is worth keeping in mind that that's just a relatively tiny portion of a much longer document. But I will say this: it has always baffled me that the July 18 2003 release of the NIE included all that stuff essentially undercutting the White House position - and you can sort of see the problems for the White House unfold as you go from the long, unusual background press conference Bartlett did on July 18 to the shamefaced on-the-record one he and Hadley did just four days later where Hadley had to admit that he had been warned repeatedly, and personally, by the CIA and Tenet not to include the uranium claim in Bush's important October 7 2002 Cincinnati. My guess is that the official declassification process was driven by lots of forces with different agendas, not all of which jibed with the overarching aim of the White House. Even Tenet's July 11 statement, when you look at it, is a very complex performance that at once slams Wilson but also points the finger back at the White House, specifying clearly that the African uranium claim was not one of the NIE's Key Judgments.

Libby said otherwise. Libby did represent the uranium claim as one of the Key Judgments from the NIE. In this regard, it's worth noting, Libby went beyond just selectively leaking to Miller. He said something false which he must have known was false. The business about Iraq vigorously trying to procure uranium was not a key judgment; it was buried on p. 24 or 25. And that is a difference that makes a difference, and Libby knew it. In other words, Libby lied to a reporter. No crime in that per se, of course. But he lied about a matter of some importance. Does that mean that we're not supposed to trust anything else he's said?

My own suspicion is that the July 18 2003 result of the official declassification process may help to explain why Bush-Cheney-Libby did it their way: they could control the message much better, and given the intra-government and even intra-administration struggles going on (which Libby has alluded to in his filings), BLC (which just sounds much better than BCL) had good reason to be apprehensive about the result of any official declassification process. And, from their perspective, they were right to be apprehensive, in the event.

OT: Larwyn, man, that is some hateful stuff. I'm surprised TM lets you hang around here.

sad

Take a look at Truthout and the latest from Jason Leopold.

U Can't B Joe Wilson I'm Joe Wilson

Jeff,

Do you ever wonder why the August 2001 PDB that discussed AQ determined to strike in US was/is used as a perfect example of Bush ignoring intelligence and was/is pounded for not taking aggressive action to deter the attack and in the converse using the NIE that had much stronger and more detailed information than the PDB to whack him up the side of the head for taking aggressive action? I know I do...

Things that make me go hmmm...which time do I ignore non-specific warnings and which time to do I act on pretty damn specific warnings? Because either way, I'm going to get whacked up side the head. The musings of a president...

Sue

Oops...sorry about that...I was messing around with the Joe Wilson posting here and forgot to change back into me. ::grin::

Jeff

No, Sue, I don't wonder that, because I dispute the way you've characterized the two alternative situations. Bush was not serious enough in appreciating the threat from al Queda. Bush was determined to dislodge Saddam Hussein, and made a poorly supported case for war in the context of the all-important democratic debate over justification. Was the intelligence community partly to blame in both cases? Yes. Was the Bush administration, and Bush? Yes, particularly in the case of Iraq. And remember, the NIE didn't sway Bush one bit - he didn't even want to do an NIE, it was an unusually (i.e. ridiculously) short-time response to demands from Democrats like Bob Graham.

cathyf

Ok, I know there are about 11 active threads going and I'm no way keeping up, but I haven't seen any discussion of this rather simple point...

The mandate of the criminal referral was to investigate whether classified information was released during the debunking of Joe Wilson's charges, and if so, to find out who released it. Two things might have qualified as classified info and needed some research. Valerie Plame's CIA employment was "classified" according to CIA records, but it was not classifyable, which anyone could ascertain by reading Executive Order 13292 section 1.7 (a) (1), (2), and (4).

So that left the NIE. This is what the FBI was supposed to be investigating: did somebody release the classified-at-the-time NIE while debunking Wilson's claims? So the FBI asked questions, and dozens of WH staff, up to and including the vice president and president, answered the questions. This all is quite exculpatory to the actual charges which Libby is actually charged with. In the midst of being grilled about the exact quite unusual circumstances of the declassification and attempted publicizing of the NIE information, Libby answered a couple of Plame questions that he probably figured the FBI guys were asking just to make sure all of the i's were dotted and t's were crossed. After all, he was explaining his way out of what at first glance appeared to be a very serious crime (disclosing the NIE to Miller). All the while knowing that the president and vice president were the only ones who could confirm that the info was really declassified and if they claimed executive privilege then he was going to be twisting in the wind.

So a jury is really supposed to believe that Libby had motive to lie about the Plame triviality when he was in the midst of the extraordinary high-stakes (for him personally) process of convincing the FBI that he had not disclosed classified information when he told Miller about the NIE? If Libby had said that he talked about the NIE over eggs at breakfast, and Fitzgerald subpeonaed the breakfast check and found out he ordered pancakes, would there be perjury and obstruction charges over "lying" about the eggs?

cathy :-)

SteveMG

Jeff:
I'm not quite sure what exactly what you have in mind here, SMG

This is a good example where we just see things differently. A honest difference, to be sure.

Instead of getting in the tall grass, let me just make one point.

You and your friends will take the NIE (or any other document) and try to find any evidence that undermines a White House claim. That's fair; were the situation reversed, I would engage in the same exercise.

Allow me to continue painting with a large brush here with this simplistic example.

If five intelligence agencies or departments said "A" but one said "not A", you will say that the W.H. was wrong to claim "A".

I look at the same evidence and argue that the White House was legitimate in claiming "A" even though there was some evidence of "not A".

Neither of us is wrong.

Because of the nature of the Iraqi regime, my view is that it was perfectly acceptable for the general consensus to come down against Saddam Hussein and in favor of a harsher view of his actions or the intelligence about his actions.

And because of your harsher view of the nature of the Bush Administration, you come down in favor of a more critical view of what the White House did with contradictory or inconclusive evidence.

We could go back and forth on this in a substantive and detailed way. But for every piece of evidence supporting the Bush Administration's claims, you can find at least some material to undermine it.

(And by the way, I am in no way suggesting that you are defending or are a apologist for Saddam Hussein; I'm sure you loathed him and what he did as much as anyone)

Because as we know, the intelligence on Iraqi WMDs was murky at best. Our resources and assets were minimal and after the removal of the inspectors, almost non-existent in terms of human intelligence.

And so there was much fog in what our agencies knew or thought they knew. Fog that you can use to undermine the fog that I use.

One peroration:

From Kenneth Pollack, Iraqi expert and intelligence analyst in the Clinton Administration:

The U.S. intelligence community's belief that Saddam was aggressively pursuing weapons of mass destruction pre-dated Bush's inauguration, and therefore cannot be attributed to political pressure. It was first advanced at the end of the 1990s, at a time when President Bill Clinton was trying to facilitate a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians and was hardly seeking assessments that the threat from Iraq was growing.

Pollack re WMD and Iraq

SMG

danking70

Steve,

When I hear the charges that Bush lied or maniuplated intellience, especially from Democratic officials, I often come back to Kenneth Pollack and his book "The Threatening Storm".

Some details:

From 1995 to 1996 and from 1999 to 2001, he served as director for Gulf affairs at the National Security Council, where he was the principal working-level official responsible for implementation of U.S. policy toward Iraq.

In 2002 I wrote a book called Threatening Storm: The Case for Invading Iraq, in which I argued that because all our other options had failed, the United States would ultimately have to go to war to remove Saddam before he acquired a functioning nuclear weapon.

MayBee

Excellent, SMG.

I always think the people that hate Bush so much they can't trust anything he says, look with a jaundiced eye at everything he does, and continually question and doubt his motives, are the people that should most understand Bush's inclinations toward Saddam. Surely they should be able to relate.

SteveMG

Danking:
I often come back to Kenneth Pollack and his book "The Threatening Storm".

Thanks, yes that's another excellent source that shows, at least to the both of us, that the concerns about Iraqi WMD programs pre-dated the Bush Administration.

The link I gave above to the Atlantic Monthly summarizes what he said in that book and also explains in his view what went wrong.

But the critical point again is that Pollack pretty much demolishes any argument that the Bush W.H. made the WMD claims up.

The problem still remains though. Critics will point to individual pieces of contradictory evidence - no matter how small or insignificant - and claim that the W.H ignored that material in order to go to war.

It's a honest claim though since as far as I know there's always disputes about what intelligence says or doesn't say.

And so we go round-and-round pointing to this paragraph from this report and the other side points to another paragraph from the same report.

SMG

larwyn

Jeff
If you are calling my answer to the "thousand cuts, self inflicted"
comment by Texas Toast, "hateful".
I was only trying to illustrate exactly what the LSM has been doing to Pres. Bush for years now.
Innuendo and spin on top of innuendo and spin. EVERDAY, EVERDAY, EVERDAY. That is what is hateful and apparently Texas Toast has swallowed a lot of that inuendo and spin whole - to have made the "self inflicted" comment.

JMH
Thanks for the link to another great Vanderleun - saving to enjoy late tonight. Like to end evening with some brilliant humor. Why I love the JOMers - always a bit of humor inserted, even when our circumstance seem dire.

Ralph
Happy to share. But no need to be rocket scientist or complete paranoid after the DEMS ASAP labeled GW a LIAR. He's no better than our wonderful Bill.
They are so obvious. If they pray they are praying for a blue dress or a cowgirl shirt.

Hoping someone puts up the Wilson transcripts - hard for me to control fingers and consentrate on exact words - wish I had a TIVo or DVR to be of real use.

MayBee

SMG-" It's a honest claim though since as far as I know there's always disputes about what intelligence says or doesn't say."

It is honest until it become a cry of lying us into war or cherry-picking intelligence. Which is kind of where we are now, unfortunately.

larwyn

Just on Tucker Carlson:
new book coming out tomorrow:

I've always been a Yankee's Fan

has compilation of Hillary/Bill quotes.

Hill was in full melodic voice today at the rally - why they are not playing audio with the video clip of her appearance. Only using Kerry's and Ted's vocals today.

jerry

kim, I prefer the sound of one hand waving.

danking70

MB

"It is honest until it become a cry of lying us into war or cherry-picking intelligence. Which is kind of where we are now, unfortunately."

I'd say we have been there for quite a while already.

Kying us into war or cherry-picking intelligence kind of reminds me of Joe Wilson's charges. lol!

kim

You're a shriek, jerry.
=============

holycow

In 2002 I wrote a book called Threatening Storm: The Case for Invading Iraq, in which I argued that because all our other options had failed, the United States would ultimately have to go to war to remove Saddam before he acquired a functioning nuclear weapon.

Posted by: danking70 | April 10, 2006 at 08:23 PM

And how close was Saddam to a functioning nuclear weapon? There were no WMD, no functioning nuclear programs, and Iraq was a hell of a lot further away from a nuke than either Iran or North Korea. So why, WHY did we invade? Because of some foolish, unrealistic, neo-con pipe dream. We can democratize the Middle East from the barrel of a gun. And we took our eyes off Al Queda to do it. Zinni says Saddam was contained. He wasn't an immediate threat. Yet the WH kept saying he was. Pollack was wrong. And so is Bush.

Now you will argue and attack me. Fine. But the biggest tragedy is I don't have to convince you. The results of the war will. In a year. In two. The tragedy of Bush's folly will become even clearer. And I WISH I was wrong. I HOPE against hope that I am wrong. But, I fear, that I am not. And America will pay, not Bush. In three years Bush will be retired in Crawford, making excuses. Just like McNamara - a sad ghost of a man. It is America that will pay.

So yeah, lawryn - you are right. If things turn out like I think they are going to? Then I will never, ever find anything good to say about the Bush administration.

kim

Colicky How: Go read Christopher Hitchens on Slate, today: Yowie Zawahowie.
===================================

jerry

"Clarice, underlying the whole mishigas is that Bush was justified. Not only did he not lie, but he was right. I think for the left, clinging to Joe..."

And the meaning of "classified" is...?

As a certified lefty I'm not clinging to Wilson, however I am devoted to discussing all the ways that people in the W WH screwup, I celebrate every small step foreward... let's take the next step (learn every leak by someone in the WH, or opposed to the Administration, that tells more truth about how we were lied into the Iraq war).

I'd prefer to celebrate some very good things about the US (things that used to be good?) but the sacrifices we have made to this war take priority -- the W Administration has chosen great burdens for the US.

There, a nice sermon.

larwyn

So yeah, lawryn - you are right. If things turn out like I think they are going to? Then I will never, ever find anything good to say about the Bush administration.

Posted by: holycow

holycow
Is someone having an identity problem - I have posted comments today directed to Texas Toast and Jeff in disputes.

JMH & Ralph were playful and friendly.

so who are you?

kim

Well, jerry, Saddam was a dedicated enemy of us, and we're better off without him around. So are the Iraqis.
========================

clarice

Jerry--no one lied to you about the war. And Bush had the same intel the COngress did when they authorized it. It's just that they knew they had to vote that way or lose even bigger at the polls and from the moment they voted for it, many of the oppo party schemed, lied and tried to undervut the Preisdent.

It is their history since McGovern .

We've read the book, however, and this time it will not end up the same way.

kim

If only the nationalists in Vietnam had not been Stalinists. The perversion of Hegel persists.
=============================

Jeff

SMG - I appreciate the civility, or whatever you want to call it. Substantively, though, I disagree somewhat with how you characterize things. It's not just a matter of which theoretical framework you choose that determines how you read the evidence. I'm talking about the public justification for the war, and the use of evidence as part of that. If the Bush administration had really acknowledged and accurately described for us, the American public, the murkiness of the evidence and then gone on to make the case for war, so be it. But that's not what they did -- not even Colin Powell, in his disgraceful performance at the UN, where I bet you'd be hard pressed to find one outright falsehood, by the most technical standards, even though we can all (including Powell) can see that performance for what it was, hugely deceptive. So my problem goes to the public justification of war in a democracy. As part of that justification, Bush and his administration did not proportion their claims to the evidence. That's not a matter of whether you can find one piece of evidence on the other side from your opponent's evidence. Yes, we can look at the same intelligence and arrive, reasonably enough, at different judgments about what should be done. But that's not all there was to it. The Bush administration misrepresented the evidence that was part of the basis for the public justification of the war.

And they continued to do so. Witness Libby's lies to reporters about the place of the the uranium claim in the NIE.

Jeff

Yeah, larwyn, i was talking about that disgraceful response to Texas Toast, and also the weird racist crap. I mean, what on earth do the alleged victim the Duke case, Tawana Brawley, and Cynthia McKinney have to do with each other? Maybe you're getting lucky that TM is out of electronic access.

clarice

Please reread the SOTU address. The uranium claim was small..the main point was Saddam was dangerous, could not be contained and we had the choice of acting now when he was weaker than he would be as soon as the already enfeebled sanctions program ended.

There has never to my knowledge been a single issue on which every intelligence agency had an identical view. Again, the NIE reflects the consensus view, and that is the view the President and Powell advanced. And COngress ratified in authorizing the war.

Larry

TT: From Powerline today:

"...on July 20, 2003, the AP headlined Tom Raum's story: "Declassified CIA documents on Iraq show divided intelligence community."

"...a shorter story on the same subject by Ron Hutcheson on July 19, 2003: "Bush releases excerpts of top-secret Iraq report."

The "leaks" aren't even news.

topsecretk9

Larry

ssshhhhh. you'll disturb something.

clarice

what on earth do the alleged victim the Duke case, Tawana Brawley, and Cynthia McKinney have to do with each other All three appear to involve fake charges of racist attacks on Black women, Jeff.

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Wilson/Plame