If Not Now... When?

By Barbra Streisand

If there was ever a time in history to impeach a President of the United States, it would be now. In my opinion, it is two years too late. We should have done this before the election to spare the country the misjudgment, the incompetence and the malfeasance of this administration. Let us remember that UN weapons inspectors asked for more time to search Iraq for WMDs. Two months into their search, the Director General of the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency, Mohamed ElBaradei, stated that he found no evidence that Iraq had revived its nuclear weapons program since its elimination in the 1990s. And Saddam Hussein had begun to comply with the administration's demands. Why would you invade a country if there was still a chance for peace? Shouldn't war be an absolute last resort? We went to war because we were misled. And we should be angry because of the 2,000 American soldiers and the 200 armed coalition forces that have died. We should be livid because of the 15,000 American soldiers that have been horribly maimed and wounded. We should be disgusted because of the 30,000 innocent Iraqi civilians that have been killed and the 20,000 that are wounded after administration officials claimed that the US was going to liberate the Iraqi people.

Smoking Gun on Manipulation of Iraq Intelligence? 'NY Times' Cites New Document

Editor and Publisher
By E&P Staff

NEW YORK Ever since the Democrats briefly closed the U.S. Senate from view earlier this week, to protest alleged Republican foot-dragging in probing Bush administration pre-war manipulation of intelligence, the press has been asking: So what new evidence do the Democrats have in this matter?

Tomorrow, The New York Times starts to answer the question, with reporter Doug Jehl disclosing the contents of a newly declassified memo apparently passed to him by Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan, the top Democrat on the Senate Armed Services Committee.

It shows that an al-Qaeda official in American custody was identified as a likely fabricator months before the Bush administration began to use his statements as the foundation for its claims that Iraq trained al-Qaeda members to use biological and chemical weapons, according to this Defense Intelligence Agency document from February 2002.

Iraq war has exposed us to terror at home, says Meyer

Ewen MacAskill and Julian Glover
The Guardian

Britain's former ambassador to Washington, Sir Christopher Meyer, delivers a damaging critique of Tony Blair's approach to the war in Iraq in an interview in the Guardian today.

Sir Christopher, who had a ringside seat in the decision-making that led to the war, unfavourably contrasts Mr Blair with the boldness and attention to detail of Margaret Thatcher. He says Lady Thatcher took pride in knowing more detail than her officials. "That is why it was terrifying to be summoned into her presence because if you did not know your stuff, she would expose you. There was never that danger with Tony Blair."

Cheney Seeks CIA Exemption to Torture Ban

By DAVID ESPO and LIZ SIDOTI, Associated Press Writers

Vice President Dick Cheney made an unusual personal appeal to Republican senators this week to allow CIA exemptions to a proposed ban on the torture of terror suspects in U.S. custody, according to participants in a closed-door session.

Cheney told his audience the United States doesn't engage in torture, these participants added, even though he said the administration needed an exemption from any legislation banning "cruel, inhuman or degrading" treatment in case the president decided one was necessary to prevent a terrorist attack.

Cheney now seven points behind the public beating of children

http://www.bobharris.com

Bush's approval rating has fallen to 35. Maybe America is starting to realize that secret prisons and endless war aren't really the best government we can possibly hope for.

Dick Cheney, in the same poll, has a 19 percent approval rating.

19 percent.

That's two points less popular than cheating on your spouse and seven points behind corporal punishment in schools (scroll down).

That's down in what can be politely called lunatic territory. As I've been pointing out for years, twenty or thirty percent of Americans believe any insane thing you can imagine.

U.S. Should Repay Millions to Iraq, a U.N. Audit Finds

New York Times
By JAMES GLANZ

An auditing board sponsored by the United Nations recommended yesterday that the United States repay as much as $208 million to the Iraqi government for contracting work in 2003 and 2004 assigned to Kellogg, Brown & Root, the Halliburton subsidiary.

The work was paid for with Iraqi oil proceeds, but the board said it was either carried out at inflated prices or done poorly. The board did not, however, give examples of poor work.

Some of the work involved postwar fuel imports carried out by K.B.R. that previous audits had criticized as grossly overpriced. But this is the first time that an international auditing group has suggested that the United States repay some of that money to Iraq. The group, known as the International Advisory and Monitoring Board of the Development Fund for Iraq, compiled reports from an array of Pentagon, United States government and private auditors to carry out its analysis.

Iraq War Questions

News Hour, PBS

Retired Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, Colin Powell's former chief of staff, has sharply criticized the Bush administration's handling of the run up to the Iraq war. Following an interview with Wilkerson, two experts debate his charges.

RAY SUAREZ: In recent weeks, criticism has intensified over the Bush administration's Iraq policy, both in the run-up to the war and its aftermath.

A former top-level foreign policy insider claimed the vice president and other administration officials hijacked some of the most important decisions about US national security, including vital decisions about post-war Iraq.

Woman Sees Husband Off to Iraq, Gets Fired

By Associated Press

Caledonia, Mich: A woman who took an unpaid leave of absence from work to see her husband off to war with an Indiana National Guard unit has been fired after failing to show up for her part-time receptionist job the day following his departure.

"It was a shock," said Suzette Boler, a 40-year-old mother of three and grandmother of three. "I was hurt. I felt abandoned by people I thought cared for me. I sat down on the floor and cried for probably two hours."

Officials at her former workplace, Benefit Management Administrators Inc., a Caledonia employee-benefits company, confirmed that Boler was dismissed when she didn't report to work the day after she said goodbye to her husband of 22 years.

Federation of Oil Unions in Iraq formed

Federation of Oil Unions in Iraq formed in Iraqby Hassan Juma'a Awwad Al-Assadi, President, Federation of Oil UnionsNovember 4th, 2005

From US Labor Against the War

All are aware of the role that Iraqi labour unions have played in theprevious and present phrases of Iraq's history as the most importantbasis of Iraqi society for development and construction. Unionscontinued with their work until they became the object of a conspiracyon the part of the despotic regime, which stripped them of their rightsin 1987. After the dictator fell, on 20/04/2003, that is eleven daysafter the entry of the occupation forces, activists formed the oilUnion, the first nucleus of which was the Southern Oil Company and theother oil companies. The Union masterfully led the process of buildingand reconstruction and equipping of the plants and oil installations andthe process of improving living conditions and obtaining the rights ofits members. ...Building on what has gone before and in accordance with presentexperiences of Iraqis as part of embodying the practice of democracy forthe new phase, we announce with God's blessing the formation of theFederation of Oil Unions in Iraq, with its centre in Basra, composed ofunions representing the oil sector in Basra, Meisan, and DhiQar, as a Federation specialised in all aspects of the oil sector and part of the movement of Iraqi labour unions. READ COMPLETE ARTICLE AT:

National Priorities Project adds military recruitment data

National Priorities Project Bulletin

In the long tradition of National Priorities Project turning data into action, NPP releases today a major expansion of the NPP Database. With the addition of military recruitment data, we're once again highlighting the cost of war and militarism on local communities.

As of today, from anywhere in the country, you can find out the number of military recruits in 2004 that came from your high school, zip code, county or your state, along with breakdowns by race, ethnicity, gender and income levels. Get your local numbers at: www.nationalpriorities.org/database.

Veterans Day Parade NYC

From U.S. Labor Against the War

Friday, November 11, 2005, 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM, Up Fifth Avenue, from 26th Street to 56th Street

Labor participation in Anti-War Action at the NYC Veterans Day Parade: Iraq Vets Against the War, Military Families Speak Out, Veterans for Peace, and Gold Star Families for Peace are having an anti-war float at the Veterans Day Parade on Friday, Nov. 11th. They are asking for only Veterans and their families to join them in the parade. If you know of any union activists or anti-war activists, co-workers, friends, neighbors, etc, who are vets or their families, please tell them to meet at 10:30 am on E. 28th Street between Madison and Fifth Avenue on Nov. 11th. US Labor Against the War and other anti-war groups will have an anti-war contingent as observers on the parade line of march (Fifth Avenue between 26th and 51 Streets --exact details will be sent out as soon as we have them), so if you can come to the parade on Friday, November 11th, please consider joining us.

The Road Out of Iraq

By Larry Beinhart
HuffingtonPost

The first step in getting out of Iraq is to blame George W. Bush.

This is a serious suggestion. It is neither facetious nor partisan.

It would be wonderful if the occupation were going to lead to the creation of a stable, secular, self-sustaining democracy. But that doesn't seem to be the case. Chaos and disorder are increasing.

The best prediction is that the country is headed toward full-scale civil war. It will end with Iraq divided along ethnic and religious lines. At least one segment will have an Islamic government closely tied to Iran. Our presence seems to be making things worse. Nor has anyone suggested some alternative way of running the war that might work better.

The Consequences of Covering Up

Washington Post withholds info on secret prisons at government request
FAIR

On November 2, the Washington Post carried an explosive front-page story about secret Eastern European prisons set up by the CIA for the interrogation of terrorism suspects. While the Post article, by reporter Dana Priest, gave readers plenty of details, it also withheld the most crucial information--the location of these secret prisons--at the request of government officials.

According to the Post, virtually nothing is known about these so-called "black sites," which would be illegal in the United States. Given the abuses at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay, news that the U.S. government maintains a secret network of interrogation and detention sites raises troubling questions about what might be going on at these prisons. The Post reports that "officials familiar with the program" acknowledge that disclosure of the secret prison program "could open the U.S. government to legal challenges, particularly in foreign courts, and increase the risk of political condemnation at home and abroad."

Forum on the Iraq War featuring views from leading Democrats

November 5, 2005 from 7-9 p.m.
Turners Falls High School
222 Turnpike Road, Montague, MA

Please join us for an exciting event
A panel discussion with Congressman Jim McGovern and John Bonifaz.
Massachusetts Democratic Party Chairman Phil Johnston will moderate the forum.

At their annual state convention in June, Massachusetts Democrats unanimously approved a resolution calling for an end to the war in Iraq.

The panelists will discuss how the U.S. got involved in the war, the present situation in Iraq, and our exit strategy.

What: A panel discussion on the Iraq War

Who: Congressman Jim McGovern

A stacked indictment against Libby to get him to testify against Cheney?

From an article on FindLaw.com by James Dean (former counsel to Richard Nixon):

...Fitzgerald has clearly thrown a stacked indictment at Libby, laying it on him as heavy as the law and propriety permits. He has taken one continuous false statement, out of several hours of interrogation, and made it into a five-count indictment. It appears he is trying to flip Libby - that is, to get him to testify against Cheney - and not without good reason. Cheney is the big fish in this case.

Bush and Nixon Battle It Out

LINK TO ORIGINAL

With the latest CBS poll putting Bush's approval rating at 35%, he's genuinely entered into Nixon territory. Since polling began, Nixon is the only two-term president with lower approval ratings at a comparable point in his presidency:

GALLUP
Johnson 66% (Oct. 1965)
Reagan 63% (Oct. 1985)
Clinton 57% (Oct. 1997)
Eisenhower 57% (Oct. 1957)
Truman 49% (Oct. 1949)
Bush 39% (Oct. 2005)
Nixon 29% (Oct. 1973)

So, I've helpfully graphed both Bush's approval rating and disapproval rating against Nixon's. Note Bush still has about a year to go before he gets to the point in Nixon's presidency when Nixon resigned.

The Constellation of Impeachment

By Stirling Newberry, http://www.bopnews.com

In the last week the nation has turned the corner on impeaching George W Bush. It has gone from a cry of protest and anger, to being the subtext of what is said and done at the highest levels of government. The tumblers are whirring, and one by one falling into place. The force of gravity is now on the side of it occurring, rather than it not occurring. Impeachment is a Trial by Constitution, and the search for probable cause has begun.

The reason for this is that scandals do not happen, they are allowed to happen. Either they are the product of desperation, as a side that is defeated in a political bout grabs for any weapon to use in a last ditch attempt, or they are the product of a general disgust and desire to force out a government that has lost all connection with those it governs.

H Res 505 Co-Sponsors Now at 63

Lee; Adam Smith; Tauscher; Kilpatrick; Jackson-Lee; Serrano; Grijalva; Watson; Clay; DeFazio; Woolsey; Frank; Jackson; Rangel; McNulty; McDermott; Abercrombie; Conyers; Ackerman; Maloney; Allen; David Price; Schwartz; Danny Davis; McKinney; Filner; Stark; Kaptur; Meeks; Tim Bishop; Sherrod Brown; Becerra; Capuano; Cummings; Gutierrez; Stephanie Tubbs Jones; McGovern; Payne; Towns; Millender-McDonald; Mike Thompson; Velazquez; Rahall; Gwen Moore; Sanders; Slaughter; Solis; Inslee; Doggett; Van Hollen; McCollum; Napolitano; John Lewis; Farr; Honda; Eddie Bernice Johnson; Strickland; Sabo; Schako

Hinchey, Waxman, & Conyers Request Cheney To Testify Before Congress On CIA Leak Case

http://orbstandard.com

Hinchey, Waxman, & Conyers Request Cheney To Testify Before Congress On CIA Leak Case
From the Office of Rep Hinchey
November 3 , 2005

Daniel J. Ahouse
District Director
Congressman Maurice Hinchey
291 Wall Street
Kingston, NY 12401
845-331-4466

For Immediate Release: Contacts: Jeff Lieberson (Hinchey) 202-225-1265

November 3, 2005 Dena Graziano (Conyers) 202-225-6906

Hinchey, Waxman, & Conyers Request Cheney
To Testify Before Congress On CIA Leak Case

Say Many Doubts & Questions Remain Unanswered About Vice President's Involvement
With Disclosure Of CIA Agent's Identity; Call On Vice President To Follow The Example Of His Former Boss, President Ford, Who Testified On Capitol Hill While In Office On Nixon Pardon

Feet to the Fire: New York Event

COME LISTEN AND TALK TO A RARE PANEL OF FOUR OF U.S. MEDIA'S MOST BRILLIANT AND FORTHRIGHT REPORTERS AND NEWS EXECUTIVES DISCUSSING PRE-WAR AND WAR REPORTING

Distinguished journalists Paul Krugman, John MacArthur, Chris Hedges and Tom Yellin will be on a panel at the Union Square Barnes and Noble (33 East 17th Street) at 7:00pm on November 11, 2005 to discuss their interviews in Kristina Borjesson's new book, FEET TO THE FIRE: The Media After 9/11, Top Journalists Speak Out. Books signed by all of them will be available.

FEET TO THE FIRE contains a series of 21 interviews with leading reporters specializing in areas most germane to pre-war and war reporting. There are five sections in the book:

End the War in Iraq Act of 2005

By Sue Udry, UFPJ

Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA) today introduced H.R. 4232, the "End the War in Iraq Act of 2005"

Rep. McGovern's long-awaited bill cutting off funding for the war was introduced today!

The bill would allow Defense Dept. funds to be used only to provide for:

  • The safe and orderly withdrawal of all troops;
  • Consultations with other governments, NATO and the UN regarding international forces;
  • Financial assistance and equipment to either Iraqi security forces and/or international forces.

In addition, the bill would not prohibit or restrict non-defense funding to carry out reconstruction in Iraq

Defending Imperial Nudity

By Paul Krugman
The New York Times

Hans Christian Andersen understood bad rulers. "The Emperor's New Suit" doesn't end with everyone acclaiming the little boy for telling the truth. It ends with the emperor and his officials refusing to admit their mistake.

I've laid my hands on additional material, which Andersen failed to publish, describing what happened after the imperial procession was over.

The talk-show host Bill O'Reilly yelled, "Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!" at the little boy. Calling the boy a nut, he threatened to go to the boy's house and "surprise" him.

Libby's Lying Habit

By Dennis Kelleher, TomPaine.com

Dennis Kelleher is a legislative director for a Democratic senator. He was the deputy staff director and general counsel for the senior Democrat on the Senate Committee on Help, Education, Labor and Pensions and he was a litigation partner at the law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom. The views expressed are his own.

As the scandal over the outing of the CIA agent mushrooms throughout the White House, people are asking an obvious question: Why didn’t the vice president’s indicted chief of staff and other senior White House officials just publicly and directly rebut Ambassador Wilson’s criticism? He said that the administration “twisted

Former CIA agent says Bush to blame for 9/11

Ray McGovern, who spent 27 years as a CIA analyst, tells an audience of about 50 at the USF Library on Tuesday that preventable intelligence failures and questionable priorities led to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

By Chris Gardner, The Oracle

Former CIA agent Ray McGovern went over what he considers the failures of the intelligence community and current administration over the past few years. He has 27 years of experience as a CIA analyst to draw upon and has dealt with every administration from Kennedy to Bush Sr.

"It's difficult for people to learn the truth about things like Iraq," said McGovern, a member of the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS), which is comprised of more than 40 former employees of agencies such as the CIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency, Department of State's Bureau of Intelligence and Research, Army Intelligence, the FBI and the National Security Agency.

The New Web Slingers

Politcal bloggers scoop the mainstream media on Plamegate
By TIM DICKINSON, RollingStone

Clearly, it was the wrong moment to declare war on the blogosphere. Barely a week before the New York Times went public with its baffling account of ex-star reporter Judith Miller's unholy entanglement with vice-presidential aide "Scooter" Libby, the paper's executive editor, Bill Keller, proclaimed that Weblogs do nothing more than "recycle and chew on the news." Pride, as ever, goeth before the fall.

Caught flat-footed on the CIA-leak story, the Times saw its lunch handed to it by the new blogging elite. Leading the charge were the upstart gumshoes of RawStory.com, the pundits of the Huffington Post and a rear guard of Internet editorialists, all taking the Gray Lady to task for failing to practice the very "journalism of verification" that Keller claimed set the Times apart.

Michael Medved and Civil Discourse

This was my favorite Email of all the ones I receieved after spending an hour on the Michael Medved radio show yesterday. The least favorite ones included words like "Commie" and "dirtbag."

______________

Congratulations!

I can’t tell you how long I’ve been waiting for someone capable of standing up to the cheap shot artists on reactionary right radio. Most of the time when I’m out driving around, I tend to switch back and forth between Air America, the local NPR channel and the local wacko right wing talk channel. But even though I find the right wing crazies fascinating to listen to (sort of like watching a major fire), I often have to switch away because it gets frustrating hearing them walk all over an endless stream of well-meaning, but outgunned progressive guests (victims?). Sometimes the victims just aren’t up for the challenge (I often wonder if they screen liberal listener call-in guests, looking for ones that they can easily humiliate on-air.) It’s especially frustrating when the leaders or other representatives of progressive groups come on the show and are unable to stand toe-to-toe with Medved, Ingrahm (sp?), Praeger (sp?), Hewitt or the others.

Axis of Hardliners, From Tehran to Washington

By Norman Solomon

The huge gap between Tehran and Washington has widened in recent
months. Top officials of Iran and the United States are not even
within shouting distance. The styles of rhetoric differ, but the
messages in both directions are filled with hostility.

While visiting Iran's capital in early summer, during the home
stretch of the presidential campaign, I was struck by paradoxes. From
all appearances, most Iranians despise the U.S. government but love
Americans. Repression, imposed from above, coexists with freedom
taken from below. The press is largely dogmatic, but some media

Source of Forged Niger-Iraq Uranium Documents Identified

By Elaine Sciolino and Elisabetta Povoledo
The New York Times

Rome - Italy's spymaster identified an Italian occasional spy named Rocco Martino on Thursday as the disseminator of forged documents that described efforts by Iraq to buy uranium ore from Niger for a nuclear weapons program, three lawmakers said Thursday.

The spymaster, Gen. Nicolò Pollari, director of the Italian military intelligence agency known as Sismi, disclosed that Mr. Martino was the source of the forged documents in closed-door testimony to a parliamentary committee that oversees secret services, the lawmakers said.

Co-Sponsors of Inquiry into WHIG Jump to 53 in Three Days

53 Current cosponsors: Lee; Smith, A; Tauscher; Slaughter; Conyers; Rangel; Kaptur; Doggett; Brown, S.; Kilpatrick; Jackson-Lee; Serrano; Grijalva; Watson; Clay; DeFazio; Woolsey; Frank; Jackson; McNulty; McDermott; Abercrombie; Ackerman; Maloney; Allen; Davis, D; McKinney; Filner; Stark; Meeks; Price, D; Bishop, T; Schwartz; Filner; Becerra; Capuano; Cummings; Gutierrez; Jones; McGovern; Payne; Towns; Millender-McDonald; Thompson, M.; Velazquez; Rahall; Moore, G.; Sanders; Solis; Inslee; Van Hollen; McCollum; Napolitano.

Is YOUR Congress Member listed here? 191 Members voted with Pelosi yesterday. they should all be here. Let's get to work!

CINDY SHEEHAN TO SPEAK IN SAN DIEGO

Progressive Talk Radio AM 1360 KLSD Hosts Live Event

Cindy Sheehan, who has been leading protests against President Bush’s Iraq War policies, will appear in San Diego on Monday, November 7, during a live radio broadcast of the Stacy Taylor Show on Progressive Talk AM 1360 KLSD.

Sheehan, who lost a son in the Iraq War, will be the featured guest during the three-hour special broadcast event being held from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. on the radio plaza outside the AM 1360 KLSD studio building located at 9660 Granite Ridge Drive. (near I-15 and Aero Drive).

Stacy Taylor will be broadcasting live and the show will also feature interviews and remarks by other speakers who support the anti-war cause of Cindy Sheehan.

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