Published on Monday, October 31, 2005 by Reuters
By Alastair Macdonald
BAGHDAD - Seven U.S. troops were killed by bombs near Baghdad, the military said on Monday, making October the bloodiest month for Americans in Iraq since January.
In the far west, where U.S. marines have been fighting for months to stem a flow of foreign Arab fighters and funds coming through Syria, local doctors and tribal leaders accused American forces of killing some 40 civilians in an air strike.
The military said it knew of no civilian deaths and believed it had killed an al Qaeda leader targeted by precision bombing.
Friday, October 28, 2005 -- Rep. Waxman asks for congressional hearings to examine (1) who should be held accountable for the leak of the identity of CIA agent Valerie Plame Wilson, (2) why the White House failed to meet its obligations to revoke the security clearances of I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby and Karl Rove, and (3) how the leak relates to the broader issue of whether the President and his top advisors used misleading intelligence to launch an unnecessary war in Iraq.
Letter to Chairman Davis PDF
Army Secret Surfaces: Deadly Chemicals at Sea
By John Bull
The Morning Call
Sunday 30 October 2005
Millions of pounds of unused weapons of mass destruction were dumped in oceans before Congress banned the practice in 1972. The threat is still out there, and may be growing.
First of a Two-Day Series
A clam dredging operation off the coast of Atlantic City, N.J., in 2004 pulled up an old artillery shell.
The long-submerged, World War I-era explosive was filled with a black, tar-like substance.
Bomb disposal technicians from Dover Air Force Base in Delaware were brought in to dismantle it. Three of them were injured, one hospitalized with large, pus-filled blisters on his arm and hand.
Lewis "Scooter" Libby resigned on Friday after being indicted on five counts of obstruction of justice, perjury to a grand jury and making false statements to FBI agents during the CIA leak investigation. President Bush's chief advisor Karl Rove has so far escaped indictment for his role in the outing of CIA operative Valerie Plame. We speak with former CIA agent, Larry Johnson. [includes rush transcript]
For the first time in 130 years, a White House staff member has been indicted for crimes committed in the office. On Friday, Lewis "Scooter" Libby was indicted on five counts of obstruction of justice, perjury to a grand jury and making false statements to FBI agents during the CIA leak investigation. He resigned following the indictments.
By Dave Lindorff
There is little doubt that the even if the Bush administration doesn't go down in flames, it will go down in history as one of, if not the most incompetent, corrupt and dangerous presidencies in the history of the republic.
The question is, with crimes so colossal, why isn't there a public demand for his impeachment?
In fact, there is a powerful and growing popular sentiment for impeachment--we just don’t hear about it. The Zogby organization, the only polling outfit to have posed the question to date, found last June that 42 percent of Americans felt Bush should be impeached if he lied about the war (a much larger percentage believe he lied). That, of course, was before the mainstream media began finally reporting, as a result of special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald's investigation of Plamegate, on the disinformation campaign for war against Iraq directed by Vice President Dick Cheney and the White House Iraq Group. It was also before Bush himself was found to have been in on the cover-up of the outing of Valerie Plame by Cheney chief of staff I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby and presidential advisor Karl Rove. It was also before the US death toll in Iraq topped 2000.
The New York Times
October 31, 2005
Doubts Cast on Vietnam Incident, but Secret Study Stays Classified
By SCOTT SHANE
WASHINGTON, Oct. 28 - The National Security Agency has kept secret since
2001 a finding by an agency historian that during the Tonkin Gulf episode,
which helped precipitate the Vietnam War, N.S.A. officers deliberately
distorted critical intelligence to cover up their mistakes, two people
familiar with the historian's work say.
The historian's conclusion is the first serious accusation that
communications intercepted by the N.S.A., the secretive eavesdropping and
CONGRESSMAN JERROLD NADLER
8th Congressional District of New York
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Reid Cherlin
October 31, 2005 202-225-5635
Letter to Chairman Sensenbrenner calls for committee investigation into
whether Administration deliberately and illegally misled Congress in order
to make a case for war
"The question now before the Committee is whether the CIA leak itself was
part of an effort to cover up a broader conspiracy to mislead Congress
into authorizing a war."
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Congressman Jerrold Nadler today demanded the House
Judiciary Committee investigate whether White House officials deliberately
Time Reporter Says He Learned Agent's Identity From Rove
Matthew Cooper Says I. Lewis Libby Confirmed Information
Oct. 31 2005 — One of the reporters at the center of the investigation into the leak of the identity of an undercover CIA officer, says he first learned the agent's name from President Bush's top political advisor, Karl Rove.
Time magazine reporter Matt Cooper also said today in an interview with "Good Morning America," that the vice president's chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, confirmed to him that Ambassador Joseph Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame, was a covert CIA operative.
Memo to Democratic Pundits
I sat through a whole lot of hooey this morning on the Sunday talk shows. And then sat through a bunch of further hooey reviewing some of the quotes from pundits, Republican strategists and other anonymous apologists.
All of which were varying attempts to minimize, discredit or otherwise discount entirely the indictment of Scooter Libby, the continuing investigation into a matter that the CIA felt was serious enough to refer it to the DOJ for further inquiry and criminal prosecution, and/or the implications that this matter has on the Administration and the persons who work for it.
By Norman Solomon
A lot of media outlets are now scrutinizing some of the lies told by the Bush administration before the invasion of Iraq. Yet the same news organizations are bypassing their own key roles in the marketing of those lies. A case in point is the New York Times.
On Oct. 29, hours after the indictment of Lewis Libby, the lead editorial of the Times ended by declaring that “the big point Americans need to keep in mind is this: There were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.
TV Newsman Is His Own News in the Leak Case
By TODD S. PURDUM
New York Times
Published: October 31, 2005
WASHINGTON, Oct. 30 - On any given Sunday, the cream of Washington officialdom presents itself for confession before Tim Russert, a big, bluff lawyer-turned-journalist who may be the capital's most intimidating interlocutor outside a courtroom or Congress. Vice President Dick Cheney, not a chatty guy, has been his guest no fewer than 10 times since taking office.
But on this particular Sunday, the news compelled Mr. Russert to turn his trademark attention to an atypical topic: himself.
Rodolfo Gonzalez © News
Iraq war veteran Kelly Dougherty, 27, of Colorado Springs, right, smiles as Korean War veteran E.L. Van Laningham, 75, of Colorado Springs, offers words of support following a press conference at the Pikes Peak Justice and Peace Center in Colorado Springs on Aug. 25.
Iraq vet works against war
Former soldier's doubts grew as conflict wore on
By Deborah Frazier, Rocky Mountain News
October 31, 2005
COLORADO SPRINGS - Sgt. Kelly Dougherty went to Iraq in 2003, doubting that the war was just.
She returned in 2004, certain it was wrong, and co-founded Iraq Veterans Against the War.
A BUZZFLASH GUEST CONTRIBUTION
By Danny Schechter, Editor, Mediachannel.org
In the community I grew up in, much of the news, especially the bad news, prompted a defensive inward-looking response: "Yes but what does it mean for the Jews?" The indictment of Irving Lewis "Scooter" Libby raised another question for those of us in the media—-- what does it mean for reporters and say about our profession today..
There has been a lot of hand-wringing. "Novel Strategy Pits Journalists Against Source" was how the New York Times framed the issue on page one. "It is all but unheard of for reporters to turn publicly on their sources of for prosecutors to succeed in conscripting members of a profession that prizes its independence," was the argument.
As always, we begin with the action links:
http://www.nocrony.com/no_conservative.htm (Supreme Court)
http://www.nocrony.com/no_torture.htm (McCain Amendment)
The Senate amendment to the new Defense Appropriations Act would explicitly prohibit the U.S. government from subjecting those in its custody to cruel, inhumane, or degrading treatment or punishment. It's pretty straightforward stuff. Yet despite a rousing 90-9 vote for its passage, there are still dark forces at work trying to subvert the intent of this measure, the language of which must survive the conference committee in the House of Representatives.
After 3 years at Guantanamo, Afghan writers found to be no threat to U.S.
BY JAMES RUPERT
October 31, 2005
PESHAWAR, Pakistan - Former U.S. soldiers at the Pentagon's military prisons overseas have given evidence that a great many of the captives in "the global war on terror" are innocent.
In the past year, a former Army interpreter at Guantanamo and an interrogator at U.S. prisons in Afghanistan have published books on their experiences that in many ways buttress the accounts of ex-prisoners such as Afghan writers Badr Zaman Badr and Abdurrahim Muslim Dost.
October 30, 2005
By Casey Morris
Democracy Cell Project
The "We don't do body counts" Pentagon, then:
General Tommy Franks, March 2003
"I don't believe you have heard me or anyone else in our leadership talk about the presence of 1,000 bodies out there, or in fact how many have been recovered," Gen. Tommy Franks, commander of the Afghanistan operation, said Monday at Bagram Air Base. "You know we don't do body counts."
Donald Rumsfeld, November 2003
RUMSFELD: Well, we don't do body counts on other people.
The "We don't do body counts" Pentagon now:
The New York Times, (emphasis added)
Beginning of the End? Watergate 2005? Gotterdammerung for the Bushies?
By CounterPunch, ALEXANDER COCKBURN and JEFFREY ST. CLAIR
Scooter Libby was the lawyer who got the charges dropped against billionaire scamster Marc Rich back in Clintontime. But that had more to do with Rich's billions than with any legal talents Libby may have. On the evidence of the indictment brought by special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald on Friday, October 28, one fact stands out: SCOOTER LIBBY IS INCREDIBLY STUPID.
And this is what CounterPunch gets from the Fitzgerald indictment as a whole.
Special prosecutor Fitzgerald could have suggested that there is a cancer growing on the presidency, metastasizing out of Dick Cheney's suite. He could have stated, or even hinted that yesterday's indictment of Libby is the first drum roll in a mighty symphony of prosecutorial onslaughts on felonious conduct in high places.
Democrats launch offensive after CIA probe
By Demetri Sevastopulo in Washington
Democrats have jumped on the indictment of Lewis “Scooter
By Larry Johnson
How is it that one of the most revered investigative reporters of our generation is such a dunce when it comes to outing a CIA officer? If you had a chance to watch Woodward's "dazzling" performance on Larry King Live this past Thursday, you would have been treated to the spectacle of incurious Bob dismissing the leaking of a CIA officer's identity as gossip run amuck. Nothing more, nothing less. Yep, nothing to report here, move along.
Yet, for those more in touch with the inner workings of Washington, Woodward's vain attempt to downplay this matter sure smacks of someone trying to protect his sources. In a recent Washington Post puff piece on Lewis "Scooter" Libby we are told that Scooter:
Let's Tell Mikey, He'll Print Anything
by Jane Hamsher
It wasn't like Michael Isikoff didn't already have plenty to be ashamed of. After all, it was he who turned the pages of once-respectable Newsweek into a lurid bodice-ripper of Brobdingnagian proportions during Monicagate. I really didn't think it was possible to top a journalistic career built on three-ways with Lucianne Goldberg and Linda Tripp, but it seems I have underestimated the boy.
Isikoff really contorts himself into a shameless media pretzel in order to give Turdy a clean bill of political health today. I mean, I know Luskin is out there spinning -- that's his job as Rove's attorney -- but the idea that any journalist would unquestioningly accept whatever he says as an objective statement of fact and then print it as such is really quite remarkable even in a world of ever-escalating MSM shilling one-upsmanship, especially when Rove's new "alibi" includes accusing Patrick Fitzgerald of prosecutorial misconduct.
Sunday, October 30, 2005
Ari Fleischer is the Third Man?
by Jane Hamsher
According to Josh Marshall, a key sentence was cut out of the Gellman WaPo piece last night, but is sitll available on Nexis:
On July 12, the day Cheney and Libby flew together from Norfolk, the vice president instructed his aide to alert reporters of an attack launched that morning on Wilson's credibility by Fleischer, according to a well-placed source.
Libby talked to Miller and Cooper. That same day, another administration official who has not been identified publicly returned a call from Walter Pincus of The Post. He "veered off the precise matter we were discussing" and told him that Wilson's trip was a "boondoggle" set up by Plame, Pincus has written in Nieman Reports.
One Step Closer to the Big Enchilada
By Frank Rich
The New York Times
Sunday 30 October 2005
To believe that the Bush-Cheney scandals will be behind us anytime soon you'd have to believe that the Nixon-Agnew scandals peaked when G. Gordon Liddy and his bumbling band were nailed for the Watergate break-in. But Watergate played out for nearly two years after the gang that burglarized Democratic headquarters was indicted by a federal grand jury; it even dragged on for more than a year after Nixon took "responsibility" for the scandal, sacrificed his two top aides and weathered the indictments of two first-term cabinet members. In those ensuing months, America would come to see that the original petty crime was merely the leading edge of thematically related but wildly disparate abuses of power that Nixon's attorney general, John Mitchell, would name "the White House horrors."
A Leak, Then a Deluge
Did a Bush loyalist, trying to protect the case for war in Iraq, obstruct an investigation into who blew the cover of a covert CIA operative?
By Barton Gellman
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, October 30, 2005; A01
Air Force Two arrived in Norfolk on Saturday morning, July 12, 2003, with Vice President Cheney and his chief of staff aboard. They had come "to send forth a great American ship bearing a great American name," as Cheney said from the flag-draped flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan.
As Cheney returned to Washington with I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, the two men spoke of the news on Iraq -- the most ambitious use of the war machine Reagan built two decades before. A troublesome critic was undermining a principal rationale for the war: the depiction of Baghdad, most urgently by Cheney, as a nuclear threat to the United States.
By Larry C. Johnson
The radical right is desperate and grasping at straws in the wake of Scooter Libby's indictment. They are carrying copies to most TV interviews of the report by the Senate Intelligence Committee from July 2004 regarding what the intelligence community knew and reported on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. One poor soul on Wolf Blitzer the other day tried reading from it in a desperate bid to try to make Joe Wilson the focus of the story. Sorry guys, Joe didn't get indicted for perjury, Scooter did. Let's keep our liars list up to date. Okay?
That said, it is also worth noting that the Senate Intel report is an abomination. It is full of misleading information and was deliberately crafted to shield Vice President Cheney and his staff from scrutiny. Unfortunately, the Democrats rolled over and signed off on the report.
Published on Sunday, October 30, 2005 by the Boston Globe
Mother of slain US soldier addresses crowd of 2,000
By Michael Levenson
About 2,000 antiwar protesters marched on Boston Common yesterday, loudly calling for an immediate withdrawal of US troops from Iraq after a week in which the number of Americans killed in the war topped 2,000.
Chanting ''No more war," demonstrators trudged down snow-whipped Tremont Street and up Park Street past the State House and then looped back to the Common, streaming peacefully past scores of police officers who lined the parade route, clutching batons.
By Dan Carol
Ok, so it's weird enough to see Tim Russert acting as prosecutor and witness-in-waiting in the CIA Leak case, but I think it's time to ask former Bush 41 DOD chief press flack Pete Williams to take a bow out from actively covering the story which involves his old boss Dick Cheney and former DOD colleague Scooter Libby.
It is past absurd isn't it -- to see him grilling Patrick Fitgerald on Friday wondering how we should take the word of three reporters "versus the vice president's chief of staff."
Like this guy's take on the case isn't biased?
In May, Williams had this to say about Patrick Fitgerald: "He has broken a great deal of china in going through his investigation so far..."
The most patriotic element of George Bush's speech in Norfolk on Friday morning wasn't the flags on the big "Strategy for Victory" sign behind the podium.
It wasn't the backdrop bleachers artfully decorated with warm bodies in military uniforms.
It was the moment early on when a man stood up in Chrysler Hall, yanked open his shirt to expose his "Dump Bush" T-shirt in full view of shocked members of Pat Robertson's Christian Broadcasting Network seated nearby and cried, "War is terrorism! Torture is terrorism!" before he was hustled out by security people.
"That was me," says Tom Palumbo, anti-war activist and, now, presidential party-crasher. "I think maybe he heard me. I know he looked befuddled."
By Greg Moses
Whip lashed by serial collisions of imperial power,
dissident movements in the USA brace for the next
shocking thing. We have been hijacked into a crashing
invasion of Iraq, slammed around by evasive maneuvers
in New Orleans, and now along the borderlands of the
Southwest USA, signs warn that a highway of
accommodation is about to end, dumping us head-on into
deserts of aggression upon Latin American peoples.
Into each new crisis, empire roars forward, pumping
high octane into its five-piston engine. Whether
Rome - Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, on the eve of a trip to Washington, said he repeatedly tried to persuade U.S. President George W. Bush against invading Iraq.
The Italian leader voiced his unease with the military operation to remove Saddam Hussein in a television interview to be broadcast on Monday, the day he meets Bush.
Berlusconi is one of Washington's strongest allies but he did not send troops to join the invasion, preferring to despatch forces only after the fall of Baghdad.
"I tried many times to convince the American president not to go to war," Berlusconi was quoted as saying by the La7 television network, which recorded the interview.