By David Corn, http://www.davidcorn.com
In a Veterans Day speech on Friday, delivered to troops and others at the Tobyhanna Army Depot in Pennsylvania, George W. Bush veered from the usual commemoration of sacrifice to strike at critics who have questioned whether he steered the country into war by using false information. This has become a tough and troubling issue for his presidency. A poll taken before his speech found that 57 percent of the respondents now believe that Bush "deliberately misled" the nation into war. That is astounding and, I assume, without precedent in history. Has there been another wartime period during which a majority of Americans believed the president had purposefully bamboozled them about the reasons for that war? Addressing this charge is tough for Bush because it calls more attention to it, and the on-ground-realities in Iraq only cause more popular unease with the war. But Bush and his aides calculated that it was better to punch back than ignore the criticism, and that's a sign that they're worried that Bush is coming to be defined as a president who conned the nation into an ugly war. So Bush tried. Let's break down his effort:
By Russ Baker, TomPaine.com
The Wicked Witch of the Eastern Media Establishment is gone! Long live The New York Times!
Well, hooray, I suppose. Though if that refrain is the final word on the Judith Miller saga, we’re in deeper trouble than I thought. To be sure, I’ve been as outspoken as anyone about the "Miller problem"—her credulous, duplicitous hyping of non-existent WMDs; her enthusiastic prejudging and exaggeration of complicated "oil-for-food" allegations involving Kofi Annan and the United Nations. But now that she has finally "resigned," let it be said that getting rid of Judy Miller is only the beginning of the reforms necessary at The New York Times and in journalism generally.
Contact: Marcy Winograd 310. 795-2322; Karen Pomer 310.463.7025
To Protest Controversial Firing of Popular Columnist Robert Scheer
"I've been a punching bag for Bill O'Reilly and Rush Limbaugh for years and I think the paper finally collapsed" -- Robert Scheer, Friday, Nov. 11th
WHAT: Readers to Picket LA Times to Protest Firing of Columnist
Robert Scheer and Limited Coverage of Local Anti-War Movement
WHO: LA Times Readers and Grassroots Peace Activists from Across Los Angeles
WHEN: Tuesday, Nov. 15, Noon
WHERE: Outside LA Times Building
First Street Entrance
202 W. 1st St. (at Spring St.)
By georgia10, dailykos
Bush calls me, a war critic, "irresponsible" and says I'm helping the terrorists and emboldening the enemy and doing everything short of strapping explosives to my chest. It may be the Johnnie Walker talking, but that still hurts.
I was sans computer for about five days, and come back to reality only to see that the punk ass president has resurfaced with the tired talking points and, on a side note, some of the tightest spandex I've seen in a while.
Pre-emptive striking didn't work in Iraq War, and it sure as hell won't work in the war of public opinion.
See, Bush is kicking up all this dust against the peace-lovin'-pinko-commie-koolaid-resistant masses in an effort to cloud the fact that it's just about deadline time, and the shit is about to hit the fan.
By Jimmy Carter, LA Times
JIMMY CARTER was the 39th president of the United States. His newest book is "Our Endangered Values: America's Moral Crisis," published this month by Simon & Schuster.
November 14, 2005
IN RECENT YEARS, I have become increasingly concerned by a host of radical government policies that now threaten many basic principles espoused by all previous administrations, Democratic and Republican.
These include the rudimentary American commitment to peace, economic and social justice, civil liberties, our environment and human rights.
Also endangered are our historic commitments to providing citizens with truthful information, treating dissenting voices and beliefs with respect, state and local autonomy and fiscal responsibility.
By Senator Russ Feingold, dailykos
On Veteran's Day, the President gave yet another speech trying to defend his Iraq policy. He uttered over 5800 words, but not once did he provide the American people any timeframe for our military mission in Iraq or any sense that he has a plan for bringing that mission to a successful end. Instead, he used the same platitudes and empty rhetoric that the American people have already made clear they don't buy. Rather than putting his efforts into a major media spin operation, the President should concentrate on getting our Iraq policy straight, and putting our nation's national security on track.
Reid Outlines Way Forward in Iraq, Previews Democrats Iraq Amendment
Washington, D.C. - Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid delivered the following remarks at a press conference today with Assistant Democratic Leader Dick Durbin and Senator Carl Levin.
"Our troops deserve a strategy in Iraq that is worthy of their sacrifice. That is why, for three years, Democrats have pushed the White House to lay out a plan for success.
"Unfortunately, the President has rejected our call, and instead, insisted America needs to "stay the course." With more than 2,050 Americans killed... more than $250 billion spent... and no end in sight after three years of war -- "staying the course" is no longer an option.
By IIMCR, http://blog.iimcr.org
Washington---Within the past several weeks, President Bush has come within hours of ordering U.S. military forces to conduct aerial bombing raids against insurgent training camps inside Syrian territory that are being used by foreign fighters as a staging ground in which to enter Iraq and kill American soldiers. But Secretary of State, Condeleeza Rice and representatives from the Central Intelligence Agency have until now prevailed in convincing President Bush that Syrian President Bashar Assad can be reasoned with, according to high ranking officials within the Bush administration.
C-Span's Washington Journal this morning featured our friend Ray McGovern:
By John Isaacs, Council for a Livable World
On Monday, the Senate will debate two amendments related to troop withdrawal from Iraq, (analysis and text below), and vote on those amendments Tuesday:
Warner (R-VA) - Frist (R-TN) amendment No. 2518 on Iraq, which is based on the Levin amendment No. 2519 with some differences
Levin (D-MI) amendment No. 2519 on Iraq
The Senate votes on Iraq are significant:
They will be the first Senate votes on troop withdrawal (see texts below).
This is the first time Senate Democrats have been willing to offer an Iraq amendment for a vote, and Republicans are to a considerable degree saying “me too.
The Houston Chronicle claims: "The belief Saddam had WMD might have been an honest mistake; nevertheless, it was dead wrong."
Of course, the Houston Chronicle is dead wrong, as documented by the evidence on this website.
Feel free to share your opinion politely and concisely with Reader Representative James T. Campbell, firstname.lastname@example.org
By Tom Blanton of Richmond, Virginia
Project for a New American Revolution, http://www.pnar.org
It is by this tribunal, that statesmen, who abuse
their power, are accused by statesmen, and tried
by statesmen, not upon the niceties of a narrow
jurisprudence, but upon the enlarged and solid
principles of state morality - Edmund Burke
President Bush must be impeached and removed from office. He has lied to Congress and the American people about the 9/11 attacks, the invasion of Afghanistan, and the invasion of Iraq. The lies, or misstatements, are so numerous that it would require a book to document all of them.
LAWMAKERS PROBING WHETHER WHITE HOUSE MISUSED INTELLIGENCE
By Walter Pincus, Washington Post
WASHINGTON - The Republican chair of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence said Sunday that one lesson of the faulty prewar intelligence on Iraq is that senators would take a hard look at intelligence before voting to go to war.
``I think a lot of us would really stop and think a moment before we would ever vote for war or to go and take military action,'' Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas said on ``Fox News Sunday.''
``We don't accept this intelligence at face value anymore,'' he said. ``We get into pre-emptive oversight and do digging in regards to our hard targets.''
VIDEO SPECIAL | Arlington West: Veterans Speak Out
The Peace Movement continues to grow. Interviews with Ron Kovic (Vietnam veteran and author of "Born on the 4th of July") and others on Veterans Day weekend, 2005.
TODAY'S DEMOCRACY NOW!:
* Students Arrested at Powell Speech Protest Accuse Police of Racial
Police arrested eight people Friday night at the San Francisco Bay Area's De
Anza College while protesting against a visit by Colin Powell. Six of the
eight arrested were Muslims. Students are accusing police of using racial
profiling and excessive force while arresting activists during the
* LA Times Fires Longtime Progressive Columnist Robert Scheer *
The Los Angeles Times newspaper last week announced that it was firing
Tonight, Monday, Nov 14, Todd Chretien, organizer of the successful Proposition 1 campaign in San Francisco where voters declared their opposition to military recruiting in schools, debates Jeff Katz from Talk 910 KNEW AM radio in SF and Bill O'Reilly. It will air 8 pm and 11 pm EST (5 pm and 8 pm PST) on Fox News.
O'Reilly shocked the nation on November 8th when he reacted to the Proposition 1 vote:
"Fine. You want to be your own country? Go right ahead." O'Reilly went on: "And if al Qaeda comes in here and blows you up, we're not going to do anything about it. We're going to say, look, every other place in America is off limits to you except San Francisco. You want to blow up the Coit Tower? Go ahead." - Bill O'Reilly on the Thursday, Nov 8 broadcast of The Radio Factor with Bill O'Reilly on Fox News. See more of O'Reilly's comments below.
By Philippe Sands, San Francisco Chronicle
Before embarking on international travels, David Addington and others who are said to be closely associated with the crafting of the Bush administration's policy on the interrogation of detainees would do well to reflect on the fate of Augusto Pinochet.
The Chilean senator and former head of state was unexpectedly arrested during a visit to London on Oct. 16, 1998, at the request of a Spanish judge who sought his extradition on various charges of international criminality, including torture.
The House of Lords -- Britain's upper house -- ruled that the 1984 convention prohibiting torture removed any right he might have to claim immunity from the English courts and gave a green light to the continuation of extradition proceedings.
By Eli Stephens, Left I on the News
I've written on multiple occasions on the sham nature of the so-called "exit
strategy" in Iraq, which suggests that Iraqi troops will gradually replace
American troops. Even if that were to happen, the chances that an Iraqi air
force will replace the American air force is nil, and it is American air
power that is responsible for most of the "successes" (i.e., the killing) in
Today's news is not only a case in point, but an object lesson in how the
American press tries to hide this fact from the American public. Here's one
Because every bill to investigate war lies or end the war is killed in committee, leaders of the Out of Iraq Caucus are seeking to collect the signatures of a majority of Congress Members on a discharge petition, which would force a real and open debate of the war onto the floor of the House. The discharge petition is using H.J.Res. 55 as a vehicle, but once the debate begins, the content of any other bill can be offered as an amendment.
By Marjorie Cohn
t r u t h o u t | Perspective
The "accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands ... may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny."
--James Madison, Federalist Paper No. 47
In blatant defiance of the Constitution's guarantees of Habeas Corpus and separation of powers, the Senate on Thursday approved the Graham Amendment to the Department of Defense Authorization Act by a vote of 49 to 42. Five Democrats joined all but 4 Republican Senators in giving the President unfettered power to hold prisoners at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, for the rest of their lives, with no criminal charges, and no right to challenge their confinement by Habeas Corpus.
By David Swanson
According to Reuters:
"National security adviser Stephen Hadley told CNN's 'Late Edition' that Bush relied on the same intelligence that his predecessor Bill Clinton saw and that 77 of 100 senators used in 2002 to back Bush on the use of force in Iraq."
Why didn't he demand updated intelligence? And why did Bush's reliance on this "evidence" take such a catastrophically different course?
Congressman Howard Berman is now claiming, through his staff, that he would have voted for H Res 505 last week, but that he couldn't make it back to DC from California in time. H Res 505 was a Resolution of Inquiry into the White House Iraq Group, and it lost by two votes after picking up two Republican supporters. Two Democrats, Berman and Congressman Faleomalvaega, failed to show up and vote. Other Congress Members from California did make it to the vote on time.
By David Swanson
Right-wing columnists like George Will can manage to seem quite fair and honest when they offer advice to the Democrats, because they usually offer advice that's identical to what Democratic advisors are themselves offering. But it's just possible that the George Wills are promoting their own agenda, and that it's the Democratic strategists we should be wondering about.
Read this closing paragraph of a Will column on Russ Feingold:
"Cindy Sheehan, surely a Republican mole toiling to make the anti-war position repulsive, starred at a Washington rally that featured exactly two speakers from Congress – including Cynthia McKinney, the Georgia Democrat who darkly hints that President Bush may have known that the 9/11 attacks were coming and welcomed them as a boost for defense-industry stocks owned by 'persons close to' his administration. In 2008, the many Democratic activists who vibrate like tuning forks to such stimuli will find their Howard Dean, some firebrand who will force, or tempt, other candidates to move in his direction. If that person is not Feingold, the country could conceivably have this contest: McCain vs. Feingold."
Is Ron Harris Telling the Truth?
By JIMMY MASSEY, CounterPunch
When I'm on my death bed and I have to face God with all the sins I committed throughout my life, when I come to the sin of killing innocent people in Iraq, I know I will only be able to meet my maker if I tell the truth now.
My story has been widely published in mainstream American and international press, as well as widely circulated on right-wing pro-war websites, for more than 1 year and 8 months. In December, 2004, MSNBC interviewed Pentagon Marine Corps spokesman Maj. Douglas Powell about me saying, "We're not saying he's lying, but his perception of what the situation was in relation to the rules of engagement, and what was justified, is different than ours." In a letter written to the editor of the Mountaineer, which was the first newspaper to publish my story in February 2004, Major Dan Schmitt, my former Commanding officer said, "There is no profit for anyone in discrediting his story in any way."
Hundreds of anti-war protesters brought the centre of the Scottish capital to a standstill as they demanded UK and American forces be withdrawn from Iraq.
Up to a thousand people made their way down Edinburgh's Royal Mile and past the Scottish Parliament before staging a brief sit-down protest a hundred yards from the US Consulate.
After proceeding along Princes Street, the crowd gathered on the Mound for a rally, where various speakers called for Tony Blair to bring the troops home.
Rose Gentle, whose 19 year old son Gordon, a Fusilier, was killed in a roadside bomb in Basra last year, Scottish Socialist leader Colin Fox and Lindsey German, convenor of the Stop the War Coalition, addressed the crowds.
By Patrick Condon, Associated Press
MONTGOMERY, Minn. -- For better or worse, Coleen Rowley the candidate for Congress sounds a lot like Coleen Rowley the FBI whistleblower.
The former FBI agent who scathingly exposed the bureau's failure to uncover the Sept. 11 plot is running for a House seat in Minnesota in 2006 as a Democrat, and she is employing her fearlessly blunt style on the campaign trail.
"This was a lied-into war that is a quagmire now," the 50-year-old Rowley recently told a group of rural Democrats in a garage in this small town south of the Twin Cities. "It could be worse than Vietnam. The truth is we can't win, and there's still an ongoing deception."
Returning soldiers and their spouses, parents, and children are the backbone of the antiwar movement spreading today in the United States. And they're speaking louder than ever.
By Nan Levinson, Boston Globe
CARLOS ARREDONDO, a wiry man with expansive gestures, circles the Cambridge Common, handing out copies of letters his son Alexander wrote in January 2003 as he shipped out for his first tour of duty in Iraq. "I feel so lucky to be blessed with the chance to defend my country 6 months after I joined the military," Alexander writes to his brother. To his parents: "I am not afraid of dying. I am more afraid of what will happen to all the ones that I love if something happens to me." He had enlisted in the Marines at 17, just before beginning his senior year in high school at Blue Hills Regional Technical School in Canton, and left for training days after graduation. On August 25, 2004, Alexander Arredondo was killed in Najaf, Iraq. He was 20 years old.
An OTR Editorial
By Ahmed Amr, http://www.thousandreasons.org
"While the indictment and resignation of Lewis 'Scooter' Libby is a welcome development, the responsibility for lying to the American people and targeting critics and dissidents needs to go all the way up the chain of command. Scooter Libby was clearly one of the administration's attack dogs unleashed on opponents of this fraudulent war, but he serves higher masters. This administration continues to wage a war based on lies, a war that has taken the lives of 2,000 Americans, including my son, and the lives of tens of thousands of innocent Iraqis. This indictment reinforces the growing calls in this country and around the world to end the occupation, bring our troops home and hold those responsible accountable for their crimes. Let this serve as a springboard to put the war on trial and bring our troops home now." Cindy Sheehan
By Armando, Dailykos
Please call your Senators and urge them to vote for the Bingaman Amendment regarding habeas corpus at Guantanamo Bay. If you agree, please call your senators, and ask them to vote for Jeff Bingaman's S. AMDT 2517 to bill S. 1042.
Hilzoy and Katherine at Obsidian Wings have a long series explaining why.
I also agree with the New York Times:
It certainly is a relief that the Senate is finally getting around to doing the job it so shamefully refused to do four years ago, after the 9/11 attacks: requiring the administration to follow the law and the Geneva Conventions in dealing with prisoners taken by the military and intelligence operatives.