Weaponsgate is a Media Scandal

Published on Monday, October 24, 2005 by CommonDreams.org
By Jeff Cohen

I admit it: I'm gleeful about the White House scandal, as indictments appear imminent. These last days have been some of the happiest since Team Bush seized power 57 months ago. It couldn't happen to a more reckless bunch of bullies-- who launched one of the most disastrous wars in history.

It's traditional in elite punditry to grouse about how such a scandal hurts our country or our image abroad. I take a different view: If the White House is demoralized and paralyzed, our country and world can breathe easier.

Cindy Sheehan to Begin Week-long Vigil at White House

Civil Disobedience Planned for Day After 2000th US Death in Iraq is Announced

Sheehan and other peace activists will mourn the lives lost in Iraq and serve as a daily reminder to the Bush administration that the majority of Americans want the troops brought home from Iraq NOW

WHEN: Tuesday, October 25, 12 Noon thru Friday, October 28, 8 PM

WHERE: Lafayette Park side of the White House, Washington, DC

WHAT: Daily vigil at the White House, from 12 Noon – 8 PM Tuesday, October 25 thru Friday, October 28. A larger protest and civil disobedience will take place at 6 PM the day after the US announces the 2000th US soldier death in Iraq

Expose the WHIG

EXPOSE THE WHIG!

Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich (D-OH) has introduced a Resolution of Inquiry to demand the White House turn over all white papers, minutes, notes, emails or other communications kept by the White House Iraq Group (WHIG).

"This group, comprised of the President and Vice President's top aides, was critical in selling the Administration's case for war," Kucinich said. "We now know that the Administration hyped intelligence and misled the American public and Congress in their effort to 'sell' the war."

This Resolution must be voted on in the House International Relations Committee by November 9th, 2005. The same committee, on September 14, came within one vote of passing a Resolution of Inquiry into the Downing Street Memo (H. Res. 375).

That near victory came after a great deal of citizen activism. This time we need to persuade all of the Democrats on the Committee to push a little bit harder and a few more Republicans to do the right thing. Co-Sponsorship of the Resolution by members not on the committee helps this effort.

Email Your Congress Member:
http://www.democrats.com/peoplesemailnetwork/72

More Information and How to Get Involved:
http://www.AfterDowningStreet.org/whig
_____________

On the Death of Rosa Parks

See Photos.

Congressman Jesse L. Jackson, Jr. released the following statement tonight
on the death of Rosa Parks:

"I am deeply saddened by the loss of one of our national treasurers, Rosa
Parks. My thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends.

"Rosa Parks became the 'Mother of the Civil Rights Movement' because 50
years ago she sat down, and inspired a modern Civil Rights Movement to stand
up. She took the 1954 Brown decision's principle of 'equal protection under
the law' to public transportation. That major step led us to the 1964 Civil

Off With Their...WHIG...

Huffington Post
By Steve Cobble

Congressman Dennis Kucinich wants to look under Bush's WHIG, and see what's festering there.

The WHIG is the White House Iraq Group, the secret group that was quietly formed in 2002 in order to sell the war to the American people--whether they wanted it or not, whether it was legal or not, whether the facts about WMDs were there or not.

Rep. Kucinich has introduced H. Res. 505, a Resolution of Inquiry demanding "all documents from 2003 pertaining to the taskforce organized by Andrew Card, consisting of Karl Rove, Karen Hughes, Mary Matalin, Nicholas E. Calio, James R. Wilkinson, Condoleezza Rice, Stephen Hadley and I. Lewis Libby, known as the White House Iraq Group."

C.D. in D.C.

2000, Why?
Not One More

By Cindy Sheehan

"Civil disobedience becomes a sacred duty when the State becomes lawless and corrupt." Mahatma Gandhi

Unfortunately the 2000th American death in Iraq is tragically coming up too soon. In addition to the wasted young lives in Iraq, 246 of our brave men and women have been killed in Afghanistan. Our troops and the war in Afghanistan get even less attention than Iraq, if possible.

I am in Washington, DC now and along with a coalition of peace groups and local activists, we will be holding vigils at the White House for the rest of the week from 12 noon to 8 PM.

NY Times Does Actual Reporting -- Nails Cheney

Cheney Told Aide of C.I.A. Officer, Notes Show
New York Times
By DAVID JOHNSTON, RICHARD W. STEVENSON and DOUGLAS JEHL

WASHINGTON, Oct. 24 — I. Lewis Libby Jr., Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff, first learned about the C.I.A. officer at the heart of the leak investigation in a conversation with Mr. Cheney weeks before her identity became public in 2003, lawyers involved in the case said Monday.

Notes of the previously undisclosed conversation between Mr. Libby and Mr. Cheney on June 12, 2003, appear to differ from Mr. Libby’s testimony to a federal grand jury that he initially learned about the C.I.A. officer, Valerie Wilson, from journalists, the lawyers said.

Who Told Dick Cheney?

My first cut at the NY Times scoop. WOW!
Who Told Dick Cheney?
By Larry C. Johnson

Thanks to the NY Times one more piece of the tangled web woven by White House operatives has unraveled and we now know that Vice President Cheney told Scooter Libby that Joe Wilson's wife worked at the CIA. It also seems pretty clear that the notes show that Libby lied to the Grand Jury when he claimed he learned the name from reporters. Libby faces big trouble. Although the NY Times story reports that Libby's notes indicate that George Tenet told Cheney about Plame, there are some intriguing unanswered questions. For starters it is highly unlikely that George Tenet showed up at the White House and just happened to know the name of Valerie Plame. Someone at the White House asked for it first. Tenet clearly came prepared to respond to a White House request. I'm sure the prosecutor, Patrick Fitzgerald, knows who called CIA to ask the question.

EXPOSE THE WHIG!

EXPOSE THE WHIG!

Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich (D-OH) has introduced a Resolution of Inquiry to demand the White House turn over all white papers, minutes, notes, emails or other communications kept by the White House Iraq Group (WHIG).

"This group, comprised of the President and Vice President's top aides, was critical in selling the Administration's case for war," Kucinich said. "We now know that the Administration hyped intelligence and misled the American public and Congress in their effort to 'sell' the war."

Bush Calls CIA Leak Case 'Very Serious'

By Adam Entous
Reuters

Washington - U.S. President George W. Bush said on Monday the investigation into the outing of a covert CIA operative was "very serious," even as Republican allies started casting aspersions on the prosecutor and the possibility of perjury charges.

The mixed signals came as special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald appeared close to indicting top White House officials in the nearly two-year investigation, lawyers involved in the case said.

Fitzgerald's investigation has focused largely on Karl Rove, Bush's top political adviser, and Lewis Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, and their conversations with reporters about CIA operative Valerie Plame in June and July of 2003.

2,000th Memorial in Houston, Texas

A Memorial to those Fallen in the Iraqi Conflict

Saturday, Oct.29, 2005, at 6 p.m., will begin a weeklong observance of the 2,000th U.S. Military Casualty and a memorial to all nationalities killed or wounded in the ongoing Iraq conflict. The location of the observance is on the Heights Boulevard esplanade between 10th and 11th St., next to the World War II Memorial.

At 6 p.m., following the placement of some 2,000 American flags and some 180 Texas flags (to honor fallen Texans) there will be an ecumenical ceremony and the planting of the 2,000th flag.

Each evening of the memorial period, there will be a ceremony at 6 p.m., marked

MASS DEMS AND PROGRESSIVE DEMOCRATS OF AMERICA (PDA) KICK OFF SERIES OF IRAQ WAR FORUMS IN WESTERN MASS

MONTAGUE—More than two and a half years have passed since President Bush sent our troops to Iraq. In that time, almost 2,000 young American lives have been lost. Over $300 billion has been spent. And still, there is no exit strategy.

Congressman Jim McGovern and national experts join together Saturday, Nov. 5, 2005 in the first of a series of exciting forums sponsored by the Massachusetts Democratic Party and Progressive Democrats of America. The Iraq forums are the first of their kind hosted by a Democratic state party and are dedicated to exploring the many issues surrounding the war. The first forum will be moderated by Party Chairman Phil Johnston.

Pentagon Purchases: Millions in Markups

By Lauren Markoe and Seth Borenstein
Knight Ridder Newspapers

Washington - The Pentagon paid $20 each for plastic ice-cube trays that once cost 85 cents. A supplier was paid more than $81 each for coffee makers that for years were purchased from the manufacturer for $29.

That's because instead of receiving competitive bids or buying directly from manufacturers as it once did, the Pentagon now uses middlemen who set prices. It's the equivalent of shopping for weekly groceries at a convenience store.

And the practice is costing taxpayers 20 percent more than the old system, an investigation found.

Iraq War Foes Ready for 2,000th Military Death

By Deborah Zabarenko
Reuters

Washington - Cindy Sheehan, the military mother who made her son's death in Iraq a rallying point for the anti-war movement, plans to tie herself to the White House fence to protest the milestone of 2,000 U.S. military deaths in Iraq.

"I'm going to go to Washington, D.C. and I'm going to give a speech at the White House, and after I do, I'm going to tie myself to the fence and refuse to leave until they agree to bring our troops home," Sheehan said in a telephone interview last week as the milestone approached.

"And I'll probably get arrested, and when I get out, I'll go back and do the same thing," she said.

Iraq Is Not Vietnam. But ...

By Norman Solomon
t r u t h o u t | Perspective

Many politicians and pundits have told us that "Iraq is not Vietnam." Certainly, any competent geographer would agree.

Substantively, the histories of Iraq and Vietnam are very different. And the dynamics of US military intervention in the two countries - while more similar than the American news media generally acknowledge - are far from identical.

Iraq is not Vietnam. But the United States is the United States.

War after war, decade after decade, the US news media have continued to serve those in Washington who strive to set the national agenda for war and lay down flagstones on the path to military intervention.

Enemy Body Counts Revived

By Bradley Graham
The Washington Post

US is citing tolls to show success in Iraq.

Eager to demonstrate success in Iraq, the U.S. military has abandoned its previous refusal to publicize enemy body counts and now cites such numbers periodically to show the impact of some counterinsurgency operations.

The revival of body counts, a practice discredited during the Vietnam War, has apparently come without formal guidance from the Pentagon's leadership. Military spokesmen in Washington and Baghdad said they knew of no written directive detailing the circumstances under which such figures should be released or the steps that should be taken to ensure accuracy.

1,997 U.S. Soldiers Killed in Iraq

Check the latest numbers. Each one is somebody's child. And each one represents many more Iraqis killed, each one of whom was somebody's child.

The 2,000th is soon. What you can do:

17 Dead as Bombs Hit Baghdad Hotel Housing Foreign Journalists

The Associated Press
Monday 24 October 2005

Baghdad, Iraq - Three enormous bombs, including a cement-mixing truck packed with explosives, blew up near an Iraqi police post outside the Palestine Hotel - home to many foreign journalists in Iraq. Iraqi officials said 17 people were killed.

A second bomb exploded inside a car not far from the police position on the northeast side of Firdous Square and more than 100 yards east of the hotel grounds. Both were believed to be suicide attacks. Security officials said a third bomb struck the area around the same time.

It did not appear that anybody was killed inside the hotel, which has been the target of previous insurgent attacks. Three of the wounded were in the hotel but were not hurt seriously. Three others were at a U.S. military checkpoint at the northwest corner of the hotel compound.

Pre-Emptive War Against Patrick Fitzgerald

Huffington Post
By Congressman John Conyers

As if spin and character attacks were a viable justification for a massive breach of national security, Republicans have already decided to smear Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald rather than take responsibility for their own misdeeds. Prevailing wisdom expects grand jury indictments to be issued this week. Any criminal charges will likely reach deep into the White House.

Over the weekend, the GOP spin machine gave us a preview of what we can expect from the Republican Party when we finally learn who outed CIA operative Valerie Plame Wilson.

OPEC AND THE ECONOMIC CONQUEST OF IRAQ

Why Iraq Still sells its oil à la cartel
Twilight of the neocon gods

Exclusive to Harper's Magazine
Monday, October 24, 2005
By Greg Palast

Note: This Saturday, October 22, Greg Palast and his co-author, the Rev. Jesse Jackson, received a Project Censored award, the "alternative Pulitzer Prize," for their report, JIM CROW RETURNS TO THE VOTING BOOTH: DOES AMERICA HAVE AN APARTHEID VOTE-COUNTING SYSTEM?

The Palast investigative team received a second award for uncovering the State Department's confidential pre-war plans for the economic conquest of Iraq.

By special arrangement with Harper's magazine, we are reproducing here for the first time the entire updated article on the US government's secret schemes for seizing control of the oil fields of Iraq....

In the Plame case, media took the bait

Philadelphia Inquirer
By Crispin Sartwell

Patrick Fitzgerald's investigation into the Valerie Plame case is winding down, and he will perhaps indict a few people for the crime of revealing the identity of a CIA agent. I would like, however, to issue a broader indictment.

It is obvious that the Bush administration, and specifically Vice President Cheney, was intent on invading Iraq under almost any conditions. It did not, probably, simply manufacture intelligence to justify the invasion; rather, it purported to take seriously any flimsy rumor or doctored document that lent support to the case for war, while attempting to discredit all information that tended to undermine that case.

Fitzgerald expanded scope of inquiry in 2004 to probe Niger forgeries

By Jason Leopold
www.RawStory.com

The special prosecutor investigating the outing of a covert CIA agent expanded his probe last year to include intelligence information used by the Bush administration claiming that Iraq tried to purchase yellow-cake uranium from Niger, RAW STORY has found.

According to a court filing posted on the website of Patrick Fitzgerald, the special prosecutor investigating who leaked the name of undercover CIA agent to reporters, was interested in questioning New York Times reporter Judith Miller about the CIA agent or whether she discussed Iraq's alleged efforts to purchase uranium from Niger.

Cheney aide passed Plame's name to Libby, Hadley, those close to leak investigation say

Filed by Jason Leopold and Larisa Alexandrovna
www.RawStory.com

With the possibility of indictments just days away, sources close to the investigation into who outed covert CIA agent Valerie Plame Wilson have provided RAW STORY a more detailed account into how and why Plame's name was leaked and what role the Pentagon and the vice president's office played.

Those close to the investigation say that Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald has been told that David Wurmser, then a Middle East adviser to Vice President Dick Cheney on loan from the State Department, met with Cheney and his chief of staff I. Lewis “Scooter

THE LAST CORNER?

Read this blog about the coming 2,000th death of a U.S. soldier in Iraq.

Investigating Bush Crimes, Lies, and Failures

By Mike Hersh

Despite their utter failure to keep us safe on 9/11/01, the Bush
administration exploited that terrorist attack and manipulates our
emotions to narrow partisan advantage. Along came Richard Clarke proving
Bush blew it and let 9/11 happen. Paul O'Neil saying Bush intended to
attack Iraq long before 9/11 - despite sworn statements to Congress that
he'd exhaust all diplomatic and nonmilitary means before attacking. The
Downing Street Minutes which prove Bush was already coordinating efforts
to "sell" the war and fitting intelligence to this policy.

It seems the Bush Administration finally went too far attacking Joe

Top Ten Things We Will Soon Learn From The Drudge Report About Patrick Fitzgerald

LINK TO ORIGINAL

1. He Murdered Vincent Foster

2. Is Son Of A Liberal Elitist Doorman

3. Claims He Spent Christmas, 1983 In Cambridge; Actually Was In Somerville

4. Casey Sheehan Would Be Ashamed Of Him

5. Charles Krauthammer Thinks He's Crazy, And Krauthammer Is A Psychiatrist

6. Fathered John McCain's Illegitimate Black Child

7. Let's Not Forget That The Vatican—The Center Of His Religion—Is The Great Whore Of Revelation 17

8. Is Irish, Not That We're Implying Anything About Him And The Booze

9. A Friend Of Mine Knows The Cousin Of The Neighbor Of Someone Who Worked With Him In 1986 Who Says the Coffee Machine In The Office Cost 50 Cents But Sometimes You Would Put In A Quarter And It Would Start Working Which Meant it Had Eaten The Quarter Of The Person Ahead of You And Once They Saw Fitzgerald Get Coffee Like This Which Meant He Essentially Stole A Quarter From Someone In The Office, Which Really Brings Up The Character Issue

10. Michael Moore Is Fat

Thanksgiving Memorial for Our Troops

By Jeeni Criscenzo

Friday, November 25, 2005, 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Carlsbad Blvd., Between Pine Ave. & Cannon Rd., Carlsbad, CA

On the day after Thanksgiving, hundreds of people will stand in silent mourning for the 2,000 troops who have died in Iraq. The vigil, Nov. 25, 2005 from 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM, will span nearly two miles along Carlsbad Blvd. (Carlsbad’s old Coast Hwy.) between Pine Ave. and Cannon Rd. with the Pacific Ocean as a backdrop. We will assemble in Cannon Park at the intersection of Cannon and Carlsbad Blvd.

Participants will be dressed in black, each wearing the name, age and date of death of one of the fallen pinned to their shirt.

MORE IMPORTANT NOW: 60 Minutes Niger story that never aired... Let's get it aired!

MORE IMPORTANT NOW: 60 Minutes Niger story that never aired... Let's get it aired!
by jbalazs [Subscribe]
Mon Oct 24, 2005 at 10:30:38 AM PDT
Re-Post from August 25th and September 30. Commenters encouraged me to post it again when the time was right... The time is right! With Fitzmas coming this week, CBS needs to get this timely story out NOW!

Consider this an actionable item diary for all of you Kossacks. I think the tone in the media has changed sufficiently over the past few months that now is the time to push to get stories out there.

One story inparticular is already done but has never been aired. 60 Minutes has it ready to go, they've just never aired it. Now is the time to contact them and request they show this important story. Here is the contact information:

Plame Week Perspective

From Tomdispatch

At the edge of what is certain to be Plame Week in America comes Steve Weissman's "Outing CIA Agents, Valerie Plame Meets Philip Agee" http://www.tomdispatch.com/index.mhtml?pid=30695 It's an attempt to put the law that launched the Firtzgerald investigation into some historical perspective -- to remind people that, as Weissman writes, "Being bashed by Team Bush does not turn the Central Intelligence Agency into the home team or necessarily make Valerie Plame a modern-day Joan of Arc." It is above all an attempt to consider, again in the context of the past, the "outing" of CIA agents, to put the subject of Plame's outing in particular into some perspective. As I point out in my introduction to the piece, there is a certain irony -- and a hint of blowback -- in the possibility that this administration will have come undone over the 1982 law on the outing of CIA agents.

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