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September 25, 2006



Talk about stirring up a hornets nest...Andy McCarthy piles on too, enquiring minds want to know about those stolen classified documents:

Clinton's Counterterrorism Record [Andy McCarthy]
President Clinton is claiming that his counterterrorism efforts have been misrepresented and deflated. One way to help get an accurate version of history — as Mark Levin and I have pointed out repeatedly over the last couple of years — goes back to the curious case of former National Security Adviser Sandy Berger...

..Berger smuggled documents out of the archives, destroyed at least some of them, and apparently made false statements to investigators about what he'd done. For some reason, the Justice Department allowed him to plead guilty to a mere misdemeanor (Scooter Libby, eat your heart out!). Even more astoundingly, the public has never been fully apprised of the documents that were taken so we could evaluate why Berger might have done this. Not at all astoundingly, the mainstream press has been virtually silent and has never demanded disclosure.

It has been publicly reported, by the Washington Post, for example, that what Berger removed were different drafts of the "after action review" written by Richard Clarke (on whom Clinton prominently relied in his diatribe yesterday) which judged how the administration had performed in response various terror plots at the turn of the Millennium....

...President Clinton wants historical accuracy? By all means, let's have it.


pre your last question: The indictment of OBL in 1997(?) included the Somalia business from the testimony of al-Fadl, a 'walk-in' source who had grafted about a quarter mil from OBL. Source defected sometime in late 1995-6. Another source might be court documents for Ali Mohammad, the former SF solider and all-around bad guy that P. Lance is railing on about. I thought he plead guilty and also spilled the beans on the OBL-Somalia connection.

Anyway sorry for no links, will try to get the sources shortly (I did notice that in the transcript, it almost sounded like Wallace asked Clinton why didn't we wack OBL after Somalia)



Glenn Greenwald accuses nonspecific right-wingers of historical revisionism.


Were you alive in 1993? Then you remember the cadre of conservative Republicans, along with conservative southern Democrats like Byrd and Hollings, calling for immediate withdrawal. Or was it "cut and run?"

Why not go to the floor debates instead of selectively quoting a NY Times article? Clinton 1, obscure blogger 0.

Rick Ballard

Uh oh, where'd I put my copy of "When Cabana Boys Attack".

Tom Maguire

Why not go to the floor debates instead of selectively quoting a NY Times article?

As to "selectively quoting" the article, the Times does not cite any Republicans in opposition (or else I need glasses).

Presumably you mean that I was "selective" by relying on a consrvative ragsheet rather than heading off to primary sources. But if the former Dem Majority Leader is leading the "Out Now" movement, and the current Rep Minority leader (and future Presidential nominee) is co-leading the "Support the Pres and the Troops" side, I can't be too impressed by an attempt to characterize that as a movement led by neocons and righties.

Now strictly speaking, Clinton did not describe the leadership of his opponensts on that point, as I noted in the post.

And I bet we will find plenty of non-neocons Reps amongst the "Out Now" crowd - Bush 41, for example, deplored the mission creep in Somalia, and any proper isolationist like Buchanan would want to pull the plug in Somalia.

BONUS: I have to say, I love Glenn Greenwald - he supplies the barrel, the water, the fish, the gun, and the ammo - anyone who wants can pull the trigger.

For example, from his post excerpting Bob Dole:

I think it is clear to say from the meeting we had earlier with--I do not know how many Members were there--45, 50 Senators and half the House of Representatives, that the administration is going to be under great pressure to bring the actions in Somalia to a close. . . .

Gosh, the Times said Dole supported the President! Let's have a longer excerpt:

I think it is clear to say from the meeting we had earlier with--I do not know how many Members were there--45, 50 Senators and half the House of Representatives, that the administration is going to be under great pressure to bring the actions in Somalia to a close. It is up to the administration to give us a plan--a plan--not a U.N. plan, an American plan, that will stress American interests because I do think if we just say, `OK, we are out of there,' and everybody packs up and goes home, we place American hostages in danger, of course. We also, I think, would jeopardize anything else we might be involved in from this time for the next 5 or 10 years.

Hmm, which side was Dole on? Sounds like, contra Greenwald, he was anti-cut/run.

They better update the Townhouse memo.

Rick Ballard

I wonder what in the world Tom Maguire might have meant when he wrote:

Now to be fair, it may be that various conservatives and neocons had abandoned Dole and were hiding behind Byrd's skirts as he led the "Out Now" faction. But the Times evidently overlooked them, and the picture was a bit more nuanced than depicted by Clinton.

One might also wonder what the reaction today would be to expansion of a UN led humanitarian mission into a miltary attempt at nation building. Who among today's Democrats would be willing to put US Forces under the command of the rapists and child molesters of the UN? Let them speak boldy to the issue of whether the Clinton/Aspin method of mission creep and subordination of command and control is part of the Democratic Party's vision of a dystopic future.


Or, an even longer Dole statement. This is the entirety of it:

Mr. DOLE. Madam President, I listened with great interest to the statements by both the Senator from New Jersey and the Senator from New York. I certainly share one view that they have expressed, and that is about our interest as opposed to the United Nations interest. When we commit young men and women to combat, which is essentially what is happening in Somalia, we ought to make the decision, it ought to be under our control and it ought to be very clearly under our control and it ought to be in our interest.

On the other hand, since we told the President of the United States, in a resolution we passed, that he should report to us by October 15, which is a week from Friday, and since the resolution also indicated that Congress had to approve any action or continued action or continued presence by November 15, we should abide by that resolution.

It seems to me the President is in a very difficult position here. We will have a full debate. We should have a full debate. One message that is clear in the phone calls I am receiving is , of course, to protect the American forces that are there and to define a mission. This is not any longer humanitarian aid. The mission changed sometime in June, we were told today at a briefing. It went from humanitarian aid to nation-building. We never committed Americans to nation-building in Somalia or any other country that I am aware of.

I think it is clear to say from the meeting we had earlier with --I do not know how many Members were there--45, 50 Senators and half the House of Representatives, that the administration is going to be under great pressure to bring the actions in Somalia to a close. It is up to the administration to give us a plan--a plan--not a U.N. plan, an American plan, that will stress American interests because I do think if we just say , `OK, we are out of there,' and everybody packs up and goes home, we place American hostages in danger, of course. We also, I think , would jeopardize anything else we might be involved in from this time for the next 5 or 10 years.

It is a big, big decision. It seems to me that if the President will tell us precisely what the plan is , how do we get out, when do we get out, how do we protect American forces, then I think the Congress, in a bipartisan way, will support that effort.

I will be happy to yield to the Senator from Maine.

Subsequent statements from Greenwald here, plus response from Jonah Goldberg here.


What this topic & thread needs now, with the Greenwald comedy disposed of, is yet another eye-rolling/toe-curling OT inanity from Semanticleo.

Let the JOM tradition continue!


Patrick R. Sullivan

As far as no one knowing about Osama bin Laden in 1993; he'd been denouncing the King of Saudi Arabia since 1990-91 for inviting the infidel American troops onto holyland, thus defiling it.

The bombing in Aden in late 1992 that killed 2 Austrian tourists was probably directed at the 100 American military staying there, on their way to Somalia.

bin Laden was stripped of his Saudi citizenship in 1994. He was wanted by Saudi Arabia in 1995 for a car bombing that killed several people there.


Wow. I had assumed it couldn't be true that this was just an unhinged tirade, thinking instead that there must be an underlying political motive (such as a way to gain some Kosistan cred as cover for a pending Hillary rightward tilt), but the sheer number of innacuracies and outright untruths don't really support that. Weird.

Gary Maxwell

It would apear to me that the lefties need to follow there own advice and fall back in a hurry ( cut and run if you would like ) on this. I have a solution for them though but I doubt they will sieze on it. Since we were all quite understanding on memory problems for Lewis Libby is it not understandable that Saint Bill just is having a selective memory problem. See that would get them off the hook fast. Tradesports gives that about 1% chance of happening though.

Tom Maguire

Greenwald's follow-up at Salon whacking Jonah Goldberg documents the non-controversial point that Reps screamed "Wag the dog" when Clinton bombed Iraq during the impeachment hearings in December 2003.

Who doubted it (and why did Jonah get that wrong? Presumably, he was thinking of the Osama debate).


December 2003? Who was being impeached then?

Tom Maguire

December 2003? Who was being impeached then?

Valerie Plame? Troubling... I wonder if I meant "1998"?


You're going to GO DOWN, Tom!!


OT: I have one claim to fame. In december 2003 I was in NO on vacation with Mr. Right. He went for a run, I watched the news. When he arrived back in the room I said: "Cinton is gonna bomb something today." I was an avid impeachment watcher, and it was apparent to me, on that date he had one chance to avoid the democrats marching to the WH and telling him to resign.

That afternoon, we returned to the room, I turned on the news, and Clinton had bombed Iraq. It was absolutely wag the dog. There was nothing going on in Iraq.


I am not going to ever play battleships with Jane. No Way.


Its pretty simple,

Clinton was offered Bin Laden, the papers reported he was offered Bin laden, and he admitted on tape he was offered Bin laden and turned him down.

Now its like semen on the dress, the lefties have to deny its existence.


Yes. The SDNY indicted Bin Laden, Clinton had every right to send troops in to haul him to US Ct and didn't.

Why BTW did he keep saying he was trying to "kill" him one minute and then claiming the CIA and DOD couldn't "certify" that they could kill him without hitting anyone else if OTOH he chose to treat it like a law enforcement matter. Did he suppose if he just served the indictment on OBL he'd show up in court with counsel?


The 9/11 Commission has officially jumped the shark.
Ben Veniste was on CNN this morning, repeating the "fact" that Republicans complained that Clinton was obsessed with Bin Laden, those same Reps that are criticizing him now.

I'll find the transcript. I kept wanting Soledad to ask him to name names. But as I said, CNN has a lot of airtime currently invested in Clinton's wisdom.


Guess Clinton also forgot the Bin Laden was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the 1993 WTC bombing.



Jimmy Carter plans to announce that George W. Bush had actually flown an SR-71 to the Sudan in 1996 and convinced them not to give Osama Bin Laden to Bill Clinton.

This trip was covered up at the time by Bush's Father who had taken a similar trip to Iran to get them to hold the hostages until after the election in 1980.

Bush, as former head of the CIA, could easily have covered up his and his sons use of SR-71s which are hard to track on radar.

Of course these trips were based on Nixons SR-71 trip to Vietnam in 1968 to convince them to hold onto the America POWs and when he ordered John Kerry to cross the border
over Christmas into Cambodia.

I know this is all true, I read in on DailyKos.


Come to think of it, just what are the Democrats complaining about?

Osama attacked the WTC in 1993, Clinton bombed Iraq

Osama declared war on the United States in 1996, Clinton bombed Iraq

Osama told all Muslims it was their duty to kill Americans wherever they find them in 1998, Clinton bombed Iraq.

Osama Bombed two US embassies in 1998, Clinton bombed Iraq.

Osama Bombed the USS Cole in 2000, Clinton bombed Iraq.

I'm sensing a pattern here..

Other Tom

I think Bubba's true legacy will turn out to be that he was the last of the pre-Google liars. Does he really think the world can't just look this stuff up?


It seems that Clinto was using the technique whereby no response means nothing has happened.This is doubly effective in that no decisions have to be made,thus no mistakes can be pointed at.Despite mounting carnage,this was effective until al Qaeda excalated to 9/11.
Clinton can not hold anyone responsible but himself,it was his policies which both emboldened and exasperated AQ until it reached the stage where something utterly outrageous had to be done.
There are parallels with "Zero tolerance" policing,small offences beget bigger offence unless stamped on.
If there had been a security advisor with half a brain he could have told Clinton that.


I am confused by the 2 references to Oct 2003 related to the NY Times article. Oct 1993?


"the last of the pre-Google liars."

That's real good OT. This is the one issue that always bothers me and was a big reason why I switched parties.

There's a really big reason why a majority of polled Americans believed that Saddam was involved shortly after 9-11 and long before GWB mentioned one word about attacking Iraq. And it all lies in the previous administration stance against Iraq and the reporting of it. Specifically the reports that linked Iraq and Al-Qaeda.

I can't believe I'm watching the Democrats turn into Copperheads.

Soylent Red

Sorry this is so long...

Oddly, I just watched "Blackhawk Down" last night. I read the book some time ago. But it prompted me to go back and reexamine the history of the event. Bill Clinton would do well to do the same, since he has completely misportrayed the political climate and events regarding Somalia.

The problem with Somalia that Clinton refers to was one of his own doing. The brouhaha in Congress was intially about putting U.S. troops under U.N. command, and finally about leaving them there after the Battle of Mogadishu. Republicans actually intiated the Somalia mission, and in the end were only keen on getting out from under the U.N., not on getting out altogether. Media coverage during 1991-1993, and U.S. outrage over the starvation made complete withdrawal politically untenable.

Somalia was originally primarily an airlift operation run out of Kenya. It was tranformed in December 1992 into "Operation Restore Hope", a security mission for humanitarian aid. The airlift operation was 100% U.S., and Operation Restore Hope was a U.S. led unified command backed by the U.N (UNITAF).

It was during Clinton's term, in early 1993, that the U.N. Security Council voted to change UNITAF into UNOSOM II (UNOSOM I was a group of U.N. observers in Mogadishu). UNITAF was very efficient in getting the job done and in providing minimum security in areas it controlled, so the U.N. decided to get into the game with UNOSOM II. Only UNOSOM II was under the control of the U.N., not U.S. This was the initial gripe of the opposition Republicans, that Clinton had put U.S. troops in a very hot situation under U.N. command. The U.S. troops in question were composed mostly of U.S. 10th Mountain Division.

UNOSOM II went rapidly from basic security operations to what was then called "nation-building", but commonly refered to in the U.S. military as "MOOTW" (Military Operations Other Than War). It's prime focus was disarming Somali militias and settin gup a new government.

Clinton goldenboy and periodic Bush-basher, Anthony Zinni, was selected to lead a blue ribbon envoy to convince the militias to play ball and to coordinate U.S. involvement with humanitarian orgs. It should be noted that Zinni himself is fond of talking about how he had frequent sit downs with Aidid and found him to be someone who could be worked with. Zinni was previously Director of Operations for UNITAF and oversaw the transition to UNOSOM II. So Zinni was Clinton's guy in Somalia, was well versed in what was going on, and tried to buddy up with Aidid. This was during a period where Aidid was having periodic meetings with OBL on who to get rid of the Americans and get back to full scale civil war.

When Aidid was determined to be intractable by UNOSOM II, the U.N. game plan was to marginalize him and work the other militias into a competitive government. Clinton was, by this time, starting to get a lot of heat for the stringent RoE that UNOSOM had to adhere to, not to mention the fact that U.N. guys were regularly being plinked and were generally disliked in Somalia, thanks in part to Aidid. That heat made Clinton want to find a way to end U.S. involvement quickly by eliminating Aidid as a competitive threat.

To that end, Clinton dispatched a task force of SOCOM guys, Rangers, and support aircraft to work outside the U.N. boundaries to capture Aidid and bring him to trial for crimes against humanity. Not kill him, but capture him.

The problem was that due to the dicey nature of working outside UNOSOM II in Somalia, Clinton felt constrained to restrict the new task force's RoE as well. He was extremely conscious of pissing off the U.N. with independent action, but wanted a quick resolution to the Somalia situation as well. So in essence he wanted it both ways.

The Battle of Mogadishu was an embarrassment to the Clinton Admin both domestically and in the U.N. Clinton was now faced with domestic outcry for doing the right thing half way, and international outcry for not keeping inside the U.N. boundaries.

If you remember late 1993-1994, that was the beginning of the "Contract with America" period, and Republicans were on the warpath. Not about Somalia per se, but that what had orginally been humanitarian relief turned first to security operations, then was tranferred altogether to U.N. command. Task Force Ranger added further fuel to the fire because it was seen by Republicans as evidence that Clinton really had no fundamental strategy for Somalia.

So Clinton's rant on Sunday was technically accurate. Republicans were bitching about Somalia, but not about our being there. They were bitching about our being there as part of a weak sister U.N. force. And even that didn't really start cooking until after the Pakis got smoked because they were mandated not to return fire without approval. It didn't really get hot until after the Battle of Mogadishu.

Republicans, if you will recall, were gung ho when UNITAF got under way (remember the famous live Marine landing?). It was only when the U.N. got involved that they flipped out. Clinton was the guy who got us involved with the U.N. mission.

So to save face with the U.N. and, more importantly, with a mid-term election coming up, Clinton decided to set a firm exit date of March 31, 1994. Prior to that date, from October 1993, Clinton was hammered daily by the press for "mission creep", in regard to the transition to UNOSOM II and then the hunt for Aidid. This became the latest addition to the Republican outcry. Not only were our guys getting killed under a U.N. command, but there seemed to be no rhyme or reason to our involvement.

This negative press coverage, in an election year, was the primary impetus for Clinton's exit date (set an arbitrary six months out, in good John Kerry fashion). Many Congressional Democrats defected to the Republican position of returning the Somalia mission to U.S. command, as had been done under UNITAF.

So yeah, Republicans were bitching. So were a lot of Democrats. And it wasn't about getting out of Somalia, it was about doing Somalia right.

That position, if you will recall, is the exact same position that John Kerry took (before reflopping) and Hillary Clinton takes on Iraq. Not that we shouldn't be there, but that we should be doing it differently.

So if it is a noble argument regarding Iraq, it certainly was a noble argument regarding Somalia. Difference is, in 1993, it was a bipartisan argument.

BTW, noted neo-con Jack Murtha (D-Fantasyland), was screaming for complete withdrawal in September 1993, even before the Battle of Mogadishu:


JM Hanes


"Clinton bombed Iraq." Priceless!


Another Fitz case http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn/A55560-2005Feb1?language=printer

--the Salah one is on the rocks.

Salah was charged with financing Hamas. One count was dropped by the prosecutor. As to the remaining counts, the Court held that since Hamas was a political party the defense could argue that aiding it was not aiding terrorism.

Soylent Red

the defense could argue that aiding it was not aiding terrorism.

The factual contortionism involved in taking that indefensible position should be interesting to watch.


Indeed. And why did the prosecution drop the key charge without explanation?

Tom Maguire

Jimmy Carter plans to announce that George W. Bush had actually flown an SR-71 to the Sudan in 1996 and convinced them not to give Osama Bin Laden to Bill Clinton.

This trip was covered up ...

The trip was covered up because Dems wanted to claim that Bush had lost his flight status due to poor attendance. In fact, he was flying covertly for the CIA from the ealry 70's until he ran for Governor (thank heaven Kerry did not out him).

Re Oct 2003 - I'll check, but I have been mistyping the years consistently.


You're going DOWN, TM.!!


Clarice...the NYSun piece ends with

One additional headache prosecutors are facing is a decision by President Bush and other top officials to use the phrase "the militant wing of Hamas" to describe those responsible for recent attacks on Israeli soldiers.

Mr. Bush used that or similar phrasing on at least five occasions in July. The American ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton, also used the phrase as part of what seemed to be a concerted attempt to split Hamas and to encourage more moderate members of the group to soften their line toward Israel.

However, the rhetoric may also bolster defense attorneys' claims that their clients' actions for Hamas were strictly for the group's charitable and political efforts, and not for terrorism.

"It's very helpful," Mr. Ashqar's lawyer, Mr. Moffitt, said.

"It really reinforces what we've been saying all along," Mr. Deutsch said. "Hamas does a lot of legal stuff and a lot of illegal stuff. … The government's position in our case is that Hamas is a unitary organization and everyone's part of it."

So much for nuance, huh? Also, the last paragraph is incredible. They do some legal stuff to raise money to do the illegal stuff, like kill innocents!


Well, the ruling is preposterous, but the thing that caught by eye is that the case is weakened far more by the fact that Fitz had to drop his key charges just before trial. It reminds me of Cowles..because it looks like he was taken in my a lying informant.


Did Clinton Really Give Bush A “Comprehensive Anti-Terror Strategy?”
The former president says he did. The record says he didn’t.

http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=MjZmOTBmNjA0ZGFmMGY4ZjM5ZGY1M2IzMWQ4MTBmMTY=>By Byron York

Finally, Richard Clarke himself debunked the story in a background briefing with reporters. He said he presented two things to the incoming Bush administration: “One, what the existing strategy had been. And two, a series of issues — like aiding the Northern Alliance, changing Pakistan policy, changing Uzbek policy — that they had been unable to come to any new conclusions from ‘98 on.”

A reporter asked: “Were all of those issues part of an alleged plan that was late December and the Clinton team decided not to pursue because it was too close to — ”

“There was never a plan, Andrea,” Clarke answered. “What there was was these two things: One, a description of the existing strategy, which included a description of the threat. And two, those things which had been looked at over the course of two years, and which were still on the table.”

“So there was nothing that developed, no documents or no new plan of any sort?

“There was no new plan.”

“No new strategy? I mean, I mean, I don’t want to get into a semantics — “

“Plan, strategy — there was no, nothing new.”

“Had those issues evolved at all from October of ‘98 until December of 2000?”

“Had they evolved? Not appreciably.”


ABC news has a story aboutHil{cue the Tammy Wynette mucic} standing by her lying cheating sob of a husband. Fric and Frac-neither ever deserved to hold office!


Two problems with your so called fact checking. First, Clinton does not claim nobody knew of Osama in 1993. Instead, he claims nobody linked Osma to Somalia in 1993. Second, Clinton singles out the Republican neo-cons, not people like Bob Dole. Most Republicans today saying we have to stay the course, were saying exactly the opposite back in the 90's concerning Somalia. The problem is their supporters (e.g. weapons manufacturers) wanted Clinton to be there. In addition, Congress and Clinton were trying to avoid a showdown over Executive authority. Accordingly, they brokered a deal. Clinton, afterall worked under a Congress controlled partially by Rebuplicans.




No longer forced to pander to narrow interests of US voters, Clinton has taken up cudgels on behalf of world citizenry.

And the world's citizenery will pay, eventually.

AND in a damning indictment of George Bush and his quickness to identify enemies, he urged understanding even for someone as vilified as the holocaust-denier, Iranian President Ahmadinejad.

This guy would suck up to anyone.

And the world could not afford another mistake such as that by US Democrats which allowed a dangerous Republican president into the White House.

And that was where Labour's foot-soldiers came into the equation. Clinton explained to the delegates that he needed a Labour Prime Minister in No 10 because only Labour shared his vision.

Bush bad, but Tony Blair's guys are OK.

He did inhale, recently it appears.


Better than that, I understand he was there to surry support for Blair's plan which would harm trade unionists.Couple of song and dance men and an unthinking crowd of carnival goers.


***Better than that, I understand he was there to Curry support for Blair's plan which would harm trade unionists.Couple of song and dance men and an unthinking crowd of carnival goers.

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