New Blogger, More Bolton, and Other News
LINK TO ORIGINAL
Good morning, everyone.
Joining our cast of bloggers today is Leon Hadar, a research fellow in foreign policy studies at the Cato Institute, a journalist, a professor, and a gentleman. Leon is the author of the just published Sandstorm: Policy Failure in the Middle East (Palgrave Macmillan, 2005)."
Overnight, AP's Liz Sidoti reported on Senator Biden's request for information on whether Bolton testified before the Fitzgerald grand jury, providing significant exposure to the story (Google News shows around 150 newspapers picked it up). Hidden in the bowels of Sidoti's piece was a bit of new information - Representative Jane Harman is looking into the production of the State Department memoranda that identified Wilson's wife:
Mark Schmitt: Constitutional Crisis
LINK TO ORIGINAL
I'm grateful to Steve for inviting me to fill in at The Washington Note. I've been encouraging Steve for a few weeks to make the leap across the thin barrier that separates the Bolton nomination from the Rove-Plame scandal. Being a very responsible, seasoned foreign policy professional, however, Steve hesitates to go further than the available information justifies. And while I admire that restraint, I'm glad Steve has allowed his blog to be temporarily held hostage by people like me with a little more penchant for speculation.
Why would a news channel have a show called "The Big Story" and leave out the big story of Karl Rove and Traitorgate? Because it's Fox News following the GOP game plan of misdirection.
"The Big Story" on Wednesday (July 27, 2005) avoided mentioning the grand jury investigation into Rove's involvement in revealing the identity of a CIA agent. The outing was in retaliation for her husband's op-ed piece disproving the administration's claim that Saddam Hussein was trying to buy uranium to build a nuclear bomb.
The White House has been trying to divert attention from the scandal, even moving up its announcement of a Supreme Court nominee by ten days to get the press looking in another direction.
By Tony Thompson, Mark Townsend, Martin Bright and Barbara McMahon Rome
The Observer UK
One of the men accused of taking part in the failed terror attacks in London on 21 July has claimed the bomb plot was directly inspired by Britain's involvement in the Iraq war.
In a remarkable insight into the motives behind the alleged would-be bombers, Hussain Osman, arrested in Rome on Friday, has revealed how the suspects watched hours of TV footage showing grief-stricken Iraqi widows and children alongside images of civilians killed in the conflict. He is alleged to have told prosecutors that after watching the footage: 'There was a feeling of hatred and a conviction that it was necessary to give a signal - to do something.'
By Linda McQuaig
In the official, mainstream view of terrorism — the view trumpeted by western governments, think tanks and media commentators — terrorists are freedom-loathing zealots with an irrational hatred of our western lifestyle and culture.
But another view, polls suggest, is gaining ground with the public: Terrorism is actually a response to military interventions perpetrated by western governments.
These sharply diverging views are central to the question of how to deal with terrorism. Under the "irrational hatred" view, there's not much we can do other than ratchet up our security and hunker down for a long fight with a bunch of lunatics.
By Robert Winnett, Whitehall Correspondent
THE SPLIT over the Iraq war, which ran through the Labour party, reached into Tony Blair’s innermost circle, according to an updated biography of the prime minister.
Key Downing Street advisers including Alastair Campbell, former director of communications, and Baroness Morgan, former director of political and government relations, are revealed to have had “private reservations
By C. Fraser Smith
IF YOU leave aside the war in Iraq and the spread of terrorism, this thing about leaks and presidential adviser Karl Rove is just another inside-the-beltway story.
It's the usual slashing and burning told in the obscure language of Washington politics. Lives and limbs are hanging in the balance, along with the nation's good name, but that's just collateral damage.
News stories about leaked information and reporters protecting sources and special prosecutors float out to the rest of the nation on a turbid sea fathomable only by the wily inside players.
By Carl Doerner
Each time I encounter constitutional attorney John Bonifaz I am more impressed with his grasp of contemporary political problems and historical analysis and with his ability to crisply articulate the issues before us. On Saturday afternoon he addressed 160 of us packed tightly into the meeting room of the Media Education Foundation in Northampton, MA. This was one of 350 such July 23 meetings throughout the country, marking the third anniversary of preparation of what is referred to in infrequent media accounts as the Downing Street Memo.
Forty members of Congress have now co-sponsored Congresswoman Barbara Lee's Resolution of Inquiry. Many more will almost certainly do so if asked by their constituents.
More Info. and What You Can Do.
TAKE PART IN DFA MEETUPS ON WED. AUGUST 3
Democracy for America is taking up the cause of promoting investigation of the Downing Street Memos. They have organized meetings all over the country on Wednesday, August 3, and you can sign up for one here: http://dfa.meetup.com/
Later in the month of August, DFA will organize meetings with Congress Members while they are home in their district offices. Sixty of these meetings have already been scheduled. At these meetings, people will ask their Congress Members to co-sponsor Rep. Lee's Resolution. To help organize these events, participate in the MeetUps on Wednesday.
FORUM: THE DOWNING STREET MEMOS
Has Bush Conspired to Lie to Congress and the American People about the Basis for the Iraq War?
Date, Location and Speakers:
Sunday, July 31, 6:30-8:30pm
Arlington St. Church
Arlington & Boylston Streets, Boston
Representative, Massachusetts 4th Congressional District
Gloria L. Fox
State Representative, Seventh Suffolk District (Boston)
Discussion of what we can do in response to this information.
The speakers will include Representative Barney Frank, State Representative Gloria Fox and John Bonifaz, a Boston-based attorney who specializes in constitutional law and is co-founder of www.afterdowningstreet.org. Mr. Frank and Mr. Bonifaz will discuss the Downing Street Memos and their implications, while Ms. Fox will discuss the impact of the illegal Iraq War on Boston and other inner cities. After questions and answers, a discussion will ensue about the need to launch a full investigation of these stunning and disturbing revelations.
The Huffington Post
By Arianna Huffington
The more I'm reading about Judy Miller and her actions leading up to and during the early days of the war, and then through the unfolding Plame-Rove-Libby-Gonzalez-Card scandal, the more I’m struck by the special access and relationships she enjoyed with many of the key players in the Iraq debacle (which, at the end of the day, is really what Plamegate is all about).
For starters, of course, we have her still unfolding involvement in the Plame leak. Earlier this month, Howard Kurtz reported that Miller and Libby spoke a few days before Novak outed Plame -- and I’m hearing that the Libby/Miller conversation occurred over breakfast in Washington. Did Valerie Plame come up -- and, if so, who brought her up? There is no question that Miller was angry at Joe Wilson… and continues to be. A social acquaintance of Miller told me that, once, when she spoke of Wilson, it was with “a passionate and heated disgust that went beyond the political and included an irrelevant bit of deeply personal innuendo about him, her mouth twisting in hatred.
This morning a group of eight citizens from Fauquier County, Virginia were cordially greeted by their Congressman, Rep. Frank Wolf (Republican - Virginia’s 10th Congressional District). We were made comfortable in his Capitol Hill office and invited to let him know our concerns. One member of his staff also sat in on the meeting.
Rep. Wolf had been invited to attend an AfterDowningStreet house party in Warrenton, VA last Saturday evening but he declined to attend or to provide a statement to be read. His scheduler did invite us to meet with him in his office whenever we would like, and since the August recess starts next week, we took the opportunity to meet with him today.
Last Saturday's Los Angeles rally with Maxine Waters, on the third anniversary of the Downing Street Memo, was packed to beyond capacity (1000+), with hundreds turned away. Hundreds of similar events, many of which were also standing room only, took place around the country. Momentum is building...
U.S. TOUR OF DUTY proudly presents Gold Star mom NADIA McCAFFREY, the woman who defied President Bush by allowing the media to view her son's coffin, for four big events in Southern California:
Saturday, July 30 - Anaheim
Sunday, July 31 - Venice
Monday, August 1 - San Pedro
Wednesday, August 3 - West Hills
People's Weekly World Newspaper
By Rosalio Muñoz
Overflow meetings urge action on Iraq withdrawal, Bush lies
LOS ANGELES — A fiery Out of Iraq Town Hall/Teach In drew a standing-room-only, overflow crowd of 1,000 to Inglewood’s Covenant Worship Center here July 23. The multiracial crowd packing the church cheered calls for a stepped up struggle to end the U.S. occupation of Iraq and bring the troops home “sooner rather than later.
The media’s perplexing performance on the Downing Street memo
American Journalism Review
By Rem Rieder
Rem Rieder is AJR's Editor and Senior Vice President.
Back before I became obsessed with journalism, I was obsessed with drag racing.
I loved nothing more than heading to South Jersey–-there were no drag strips in Philadelphia–-to Atco or Vineland, to see just how quickly my '60 Chevy (the one with the spray-painted gold wheels and Sun tach and lakes pipes) could navigate the quarter mile.
It was my good fortune to do this on a number of occasions with the Untouchables, a car club based in Philly's western suburbs whose members' red shirts featured an embroidered roller skate enhanced by a huge, souped-up engine.
A BUZZFLASH READER CONTRIBUTION
by Daniel Patrick Schamle
Recently in my local Kansas paper, a man wrote a Letter to the Editor deriding Democrats for, "carping, whining, crying and having much gnashing of teeth about nothing." (Lawrence Journal World - Public Forum, Friday, July 22, 2005). With a mischievous grin towards former President Clinton, I would respond that this depends on what your definition of "nothing" is.
This man, and others like him, would have us believe that an Iraq war, based on lies, is "nothing." Perhaps you too remember statements such as, "We know exactly where these Weapons of Mass Destruction are." The threat of nuclear mushroom clouds, springing forth over American cities, was trumpeted by President Bush, Vice-President Cheney, Secretary of Defence Rumsfeld, National Security Advisor Rice and others. The Downing Street Minutes show clearly that these were known lies. This Administration lied to the United States Congress, but more importantly they lied to the American People. And yet, the cry echoing throughout our land from a large part of the media is usually something like, "Have you noticed how weird Michael Jackson is?" or "Oh my God, look, it's the Runaway Bride!!"
Ceder Creek Pilot (Texas)
Thompson gearing up for Congressional seat run
By John H. Cox
A retired U.S. Navy Commander and economic development executive acknowledged recently that his official announcement to seek the Democratic nomination is still forthcoming.
However, Charles Edward "Charlie" Thompson was ready to make his unofficial notice available to the public.
"Right now I'm in the midst of putting together a campaign team," the 61-year-old Athens resident said. "I do have a well-known Cedar Creek Lake Area resident as my campaign manager, Bill Hanstom. "When we get everything together, we hope to make our major official announcement."
Reporters are questioning dubious claims that could be being employed for the purpose of launching the next war, and they are doing so BEFORE the war kills tens of thousands of people. This is a sign of MAJOR ACCOMPLISHMENT! Don't let up now!
Today at the White House:
Q On another matter, does the White House have an update on the investigation into Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's role in the Iran hostage crisis?
MR. McCLELLAN: Sure. A couple of things. One, it is something that we have been looking into. In terms of the President, we've looked into the allegations that were made, and -- about his involvement in the 1979 Iran hostage crisis. We know he was a leader of the student movement that organized the attack on the embassy and the taking of American hostages. However, we are still looking into whether or not he was actually one of the hostage-takers. That's something we continue to look into.
MEDIA ACTIVISM NEEDED NOW
Most of the corporate media ignored the mass events on July 23rd and ignored the introduction of Congresswoman Barbara Lee's Resolution of Inquiry.
Please Contact National Media Outlets:
We have put together a tool kit for you to make it easy to work on your local media as well, with letters, phone calls, op-eds, editorial board meetings, and protests.
Get Tools to Bring Your Local Media Around:
Downing Street Memo Teach-In
Part VI | Rep. Maxine Waters:
Stand for Justice -- 07.29.05
Rep. John Conyers, Jr., Ranking Member, House Judiciary Committee
Nearly four years ago, in the immediate aftermath of the September 11 tragedy, many of us warned that we should not let our anger over an attack against our nation be used as an excuse to undermine our fundamental liberties. Unfortunately, today, as the USA PATRIOT Act comes up for renewal, it seems increasingly clear that we have failed in the task of balancing our nation's need for security and our citizen's freedoms.
While the PATRIOT Act may not deserve all or even most of the ridicule that is heaped against it, there is little doubt that the legislation has been repeatedly and seriously misused by the Justice Department. Consider the following
Downing Street Memo Teach-In
Part V | Reverend James Lawson: Slaying the Monster -- 07.28.05
Los Angeles Times
By Juliette Kayyem
It was President Bush himself who insisted on calling it a global war on terror. He wanted to indicate that this was not just another piddling law enforcement action, but an all-out, full-scale military response to Sept. 11 that would involve U.S. troops around the globe.
"A war between good and evil," he called it. A war "to save the world."
But now, apparently, a decision has been made that the language of war isn't working for him anymore. So in recent days, the "global war on terror" — which had been conveniently shortened to GWOT in bureaucrat-speak — has been shelved in favor of the "global struggle against violent extremism."
This column was written by CBS News Early Show Co-Anchor Harry Smith.
I don't know if you noticed, but the "War On Terror" is over. That ubiquitous catchall phrase that the administration so liberally used to help draw support for the War In Iraq has been deemed unfit for public consumption. From now on, it is "The Global Struggle Against Violent Extremism."
You think I'm making this up?
Well Donald Rumsfeld seems to have dropped the War On Terror in favor of the clunkier "Global Struggle Against Violent Extremism," and Monday at the National Press Club, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Richard Myers said he objected to the old phrase. Said Myers, "Because if you call it a war, then you think of people in uniform being the solution."
Bob Fertik's blog
Democrats.com member Richard Mathews suggested this action:
It would be a huge success for us if we got MoveOn to endorse impeachment. That would get the impeachment message to millions of people and send a strong message that the group founded to fight impeachment sees that this is a case that truly deserves it.
Now through August 2, MoveOn is asking for input on slogans to get rid of Rove. Currently, the number 8 suggestion is "Indict Rove / Impeach Bush". That represents over a thousand MoveOn members who have voted for impeachment. If we can move that up a few notches in the rankings, it will help convince MoveOn that impeachment is the right answer.