'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus Meets with a Jordanian to Hear a Middle East Perspective of the Iraq War

Washington, DC - On Tuesday, the 'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus met with Dr. Munther J. Haddadin, who served in the Jordanian government in numerous capacities, including Minister of Water and Irrigation. Dr. Haddadin was invited to address the Caucus by its Chair, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (CA-35), and Congressman Jim McDermott (WA-7).

"Dr. Haddadin's knowledge of the Middle East provided us with a unique prospective of the war in Iraq and the public opinion about the war in neighboring countries," said Congresswoman Waters. "Dr. Haddadin said it was his belief that this war was based on false information and sold to the public in order to justify a policy that was conceived a long time ago, a belief that is shared by many members of this Caucus."

Reflections on Bring Them Home Now Tour, Central Route

Reflections on Bring Them Home Now Tour, Central Route;
participant; Lietta Ruger, Military Families Speak Out,

Opportunities that might never have crossed my path were afforded by the Bring Them Home Now Tour, Crawford, TX to Washington DC, September 2005. I was fortunate to be included and participated in the central route, through the central Eastern states. There are two stories that emerged from my experiences. The story of interaction with thousands of people at each of our city stops is amazing in itself. The story, though, of being a part of the birthing of our 4 young panel speakers is yet another story. And of course, there is yet another story; the behind-the-scenes story of 6-12 adults travelling on an RV for almost 4 weeks on a whirlwind schedule of stops in cities across the states. Amusing anectodal storylines developed in our travels together and that's another time, another story.

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History of the War Machine: From NSC68 to 2005

Brian Bogart
strikeforpeace.org
(Transcribed from the audio presentation)

This presentation comes from a wealth of sources, but I want to acknowledge the outstanding contribution by David Callahan, author of Dangerous Capabilities. For the sake of audio recordings, some of what I say will undoubtedly paraphrase his work, and—lest there be any misunderstanding—whatever overlap occurs between his work and my notes is to his credit and not mine.

Today’s presentation provides information surrounding the co-opting of Cold War policies by post-Cold War neoconservatives to plan and carry out the war on terror. You’re about to experience what I call HyperEducation, which my independent Peace Studies program drives me to do at home for some twelve hours a day—and something that I hope you find motivating and useful in your peace work.

Bin Laden's Little Helper

By Sidney Blumenthal
The Guardian UK

US administration lectures about God delivered to Muslims are a dangerous folly.
President Bush has no adviser more loyal and less self-serving than Karen Hughes. As governor of Texas, he trusted the former Dallas television reporter-turned-press secretary with the tending of his image and words. She was mother hen of his persona. In the White House, Hughes devoted heart and soul to Bush as his communications director until, suddenly, she returned home to Texas in 2002, citing her son's homesickness. There were reports that Karl Rove, jealous of power, had been sniping at her.

Questions and Answers on CIA Leak Case

The Associated Press

Washington - Reporters hauled before grand juries. A White House under fire. With the CIA leak investigation perhaps ending soon, some questions and answers about what it has meant:

Q: Who in the government disclosed the identity of covert CIA officer Valerie Plame?

A: There is not a simple answer. In conversations inside the Bush administration, Plame was referred to as the CIA employee who was the wife of a former U.S. ambassador, Joseph Wilson.

In this regard, at least Karl Rove, President Bush's top political adviser, and I. Lewis Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, qualify as leakers. Rove learned of Plame's name in a conversation with columnist Robert Novak. Where Novak heard about Plame's name is not known publicly. Libby says he did not learn Plame's name until he saw it in Novak's column. The reason any of this matters is that leaking the identity of a covert agent can be a crime.

Marine Mourns 11 Friends Killed in Bombing

The Associated Press

Haditha Dam, Iraq - Cpl. David Kreuter had a new baby boy he'd seen only in photos. Lance Cpl. Michael Cifuentes was counting the days to his wedding. Lance Cpl. Nicholas Bloem had just celebrated his 20th birthday.

Travis Williams remembers them all - all 11 men in his Marine squad - all now dead. Two months ago they shared a cramped room stacked with bunk beds at this base in northwest Iraq, where the Euphrates River rushes by. Now the room has been stripped of several beds, brutal testament that Lance Cpl. Williams' closest friends are gone.

For the 12 young Marines who landed in Iraq early this year, the war was a series of hectic, constant raids into more than a dozen lawless towns in Iraq's most hostile province, Anbar. The pace and the danger bound them together into what they called a second family, even as some began to question whether their raids were making any progress.

Tomgram: Withdrawal Symptoms

Last One to Leave, Please Turn On the Lights
Experiencing Withdrawal Symptoms in Iraq
By Tom Engelhardt

Recently, our top commander in Iraq, Gen. George W. Casey Jr., was brought back to the United States, officially to consult with George Bush on what the President still calls "our strategy for victory." Along with retiring Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Richard Myers, Centcom Commander Gen. John Abizaid, and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, Casey then testified before Congress on military "progress" in Iraq. As Rumsfeld confidently told the Armed Services Committee, ``Every single week that goes by, the number of [Iraqi] security forces goes up, the total.'' In a statement from the White House Rose Garden after meeting with his generals, the President made the same point: "The growing size and increasing capability of the Iraqi security forces are helping our coalition address a challenge we have faced since the beginning of the war. And General Casey discussed this with us in the Oval Office… Now, the increasing number of more capable Iraqi troops has allowed us to better hold on to the cities we have taken from the terrorists… We're on the offense. We have a plan to win."

IRAQ: Mommy and Daddy Are Fighting

By Larry C. Johnson

Just like a doomed relationship between a wife beater and a woman knocked senseless too many times, the Kurds are discovering that they are in a bad marriage with an abusive spouse. According to various press reports Kurdish leaders, including President Talabani, have complained to Shia Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari that the coalition's Shia parties, known as the United Alliance, are welching on promises to start work on resettling Kurds in the northern city of Kirkuk and to fairly distribute government positions between the coalition parties.

Gee whiz. The Shias promised to share and now they, by virtue of their status as the majority population in Iraq, are laying claim to their self-perceived right to rule the country as they please. It seems that the Kurds have fallen victim to the same fantasy based approach to policy and politics in Iraq that afflicts the Bush Administration.

With Apologies to the Beatles

Can't buy you votes, votes
Can't buy you votes

You can forget my vote, my friend, if you support this war
I'll laugh at your ads, my friend, if you support this war
'Cause all you care about is money, but money can't buy you votes

If the other guy is for the war, how can you be for it too?
I don't vote for corporate whores, and I sure won't vote for you
So go ahead and spend your money, money can't buy you votes

Can't buy you votes, everybody tells me so
Can't buy you votes, no mo do, ho

Say you'll oppose this evil war, and I'll be by your side
I'll help you find a million votes that money just can't buy
Just stop caring so much for money, money can't buy you votes
More Songs

Iraq war protester Sheehan to visit UK

Iraq war protester Sheehan to visit UK
By Jenifer Johnston

CINDY Sheehan, the campaigning American mother who lost her soldier son in Iraq, is to visit the UK before the end of the year.
Sheehan’s representatives have said that the visit, thought to include trips to Downing Street and the Scottish parliament as well as a number of speaking events, will also include a second meeting with Glasgow mother Rose Gentle, whose 19-year-old son Gordon was killed in Basra in June 2004.

Sheehan and Gentle were keynote speakers at an anti-war rally in Washington last weekend.

The American, whose 24-year-old son Casey was killed in Iraq in April 2004, has become an international figurehead for anti-war activists.

Anti-War Protesters Rally During Rice's Princeton Visit

Published on Saturday, October 1, 2005 by The Times of Trenton (New Jersey)
By Kelly Meisberger

PRINCETON BOROUGH - More than 150 people came out yesterday to protest the Bush administration's Iraq policy, with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's visit to Princeton University as a lightning rod for searing criticism.

A rally sponsored by the Princeton-based Coalition for Peace Action (CFPA) was held in Palmer Square. It was followed by a march to the university's Jadwin Gymnasium, where Rice was giving the keynote address in a celebration marking the 75th anniversary of the university's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.

Dissonance The War Is the Question

Dissonance
The War Is the Question
ANSWER is not the answer
by MARC COOPER

The largest anti-war demonstration since the invasion of Iraq came and went in Washington this past weekend, but the peace movement remains adrift.

The post-demonstration debate is all about media coverage. Were there 100,000 marchers or 300,000? Why didn’t the networks show more aerial shots? Why were the small groups of pro-war counterdemonstrators given so much airtime? Those are the wrong questions.

What’s missing in the debate is what is always missing: a focus on strategy. Drum circles, bare-breasted guerrilla theater and giant puppets aside, there are only two ways the anti-war movement can achieve its goals. Either by what the Europeans call “extraparliamentary

"The Vice President's Office: The Emotional and Intellectual Force Pushing the U.S. to War"

"The Vice President's Office: The Emotional and Intellectual Force Pushing the U.S. to War" Arianna Huffington

Here's the money quote from this morning's article by Jim VandeHei and Walter Pincus in the Washington Post:

The Niger claim was central to the White House's rationale for war, and Wilson was on a one-man crusade to disprove it. Early on, his actions caught the eye of the vice president's office, which was often the emotional and intellectual force pushing the United States to war based on fears of potential weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Cheney and Libby were intimately involved in building the case for the war, which included warnings that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein was actively pursuingnuclear weapons.

Tom DeLay's House of Shame

Tom DeLay's House of Shame

(Editor's note: The Delay era includes most of the same officials who impeached a sitting President yet refuse to investigate all the crimes of this administration. This article lays it exactly on the line for us--the reasons why Progressives, Independants, and Democrats must unite or continue to let the house of corruption continue until the America and democracy as we know it is destroyed. Take action now and work towards the elections in 06.)

Congress has always had its share of extremists. But the DeLay era is the first time the fringe has ever been in charge.

Role of Rove, Libby in CIA Leak Case Clearer

Role of Rove, Libby in CIA Leak Case Clearer
Bush and Cheney Aides' Testimony Contradicts Earlier White House Statement

By Jim VandeHei and Walter Pincus
Washington Post Staff Writers
Sunday, October 2, 2005; A05

As the CIA leak investigation heads toward its expected conclusion this month, it has become increasingly clear that two of the most powerful men in the Bush administration were more involved in the unmasking of operative Valerie Plame than the White House originally indicated.

With New York Times reporter Judith Miller's release from jail Thursday and testimony Friday before a federal grand jury, the role of I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Vice President Cheney's chief of staff, came into clearer focus. Libby, a central figure in the probe since its earliest days and the vice president's main counselor, discussed Plame with at least two reporters but testified that he never mentioned her name or her covert status at the CIA, according to lawyers in the case.

Source to Stephanopoulos: President Bush Directly Involved In Leak Scandal

Source to Stephanopoulos: President Bush Directly Involved In Leak Scandal

Stephanopoulos: President Bush Directly Involved In Leak Scandal?
Judd posted this: "Near the end of a round table discussion on ABC’s This Week, George Stephanopoulos dropped this bomb:

Definitely a political problem but I wonder, George Will, do you think it’s a manageable one for the White House especially if we don’t know whether Fitzgerald is going to write a report or have indictments but if he is able to show as a source close to this told me this week, that President Bush and Vice President Cheney were actually involved in some of these discussions.

George Drops a Bombshell On "This Week"

Sunday :: Oct 2, 2005
George Drops a Bombshell On "This Week"

It looks like things are about to get interesting on the Fitzgerald investigation into who within the Bush Administration was involved in exposing the identity of Valerie Plame. And if George Stephanopoulos has a credible source, then things are about to get much worse for the administration than they already were. According to Judd Legum over at ThinkProgress, George dropped a bombshell this morning on “This Week.

Analysis: Can Patrick Fitzgerald Indict Bush and Cheney?

Analysis: Can Patrick Fitzgerald Indict Bush and Cheney?
by DC Pol Sci [Subscribe]
Sun Oct 2nd, 2005 at 11:14:45 PDT
If Patrick Fitzgerald is indeed either contemplating the indictment of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney or contemplating naming them as unindicted co-conspirators in the plot to out Valerie Wilson as a CIA agent, we are entering uncharted legal waters. The one example history presents us, that of Watergate, differs in a very important respect: Leon Jaworski, the Watergate special prosecutor, had a House Judiciary Committee that was willing to take action and provide a remedy in the form of impeachment. Since the current House Judiciary Committee is obviously not so inclined, Fitzgerald is essentially faced with three options: 1) Indict Bush and Cheney and provoke a constitutional crisis on the question of whether a sitting President is indictable; 2) Name Bush and Cheney as unindicted co-conspirators and watch them get off scot free, to be tried only in the court of public opinion; or 3) Do nothing and let them get off without even public criticism.

Bush Directly Involved?

Source to Stephanopoulos: President Bush Directly Involved In Leak Scandal
Near the end of a round table discussion on ABC’s This Week, George Stephanopoulos dropped this bomb:

Definitely a political problem but I wonder, George Will, do you think it’s a manageable one for the White House especially if we don’t know whether Fitzgerald is going to write a report or have indictments but if he is able to show as a source close to this told me this week, that President Bush and Vice President Cheney were actually involved in some of these discussions.

This would explain why Bush spent more than an hour answering questions from special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald. It would also fundamentally change the dynamics of the scandal. President Bush could no longer claim he was merely a bystander who wants to “get to the bottom of it.

Plame affairs

Plame affairs
by kos
Sun Oct 2nd, 2005 at 09:57:29 PDT
This is getting good. On ABC's This Week:

[Stephanopoulos:] Definitely a political problem but I wonder, George Will, do you think it's a manageable one for the White House especially if we don't know whether Fitzgerald is going to write a report or have indictments but if he is able to show as a source close to this told me this week, that President Bush and Vice President Cheney were actually involved in some of these discussions.

And this is entirely relevant, because Fitzgerald may be moving toward the "conspiracy" route.

OIL FOR FREEDOM

By David Bacon
The Progressive, October 2005

BASRA, IRAQ -- The morning of April 9, 2003, started like any
other at Basra's huge, dilapidated oil refinery. Workers knew the
US/British invasion of their country might begin anytime. Still, no
one expected American tanks when they suddenly pulled up at the gate.
After thirty years of Saddam Hussein, the vast majority of the
refinery's laborers had had their fill of war and repression. While
there was always a small core of Baathist loyalists among them, most
were prepared to welcome almost any change that removed the old
regime, even foreign troops.

Attn: Cindy Sheehan. Can you help this student defend his first amendment rights?

Attn: Cindy Sheehan. Can you help this student defend his first amendment rights?
by Rojo [Subscribe]
Sun Oct 2nd, 2005 at 09:29:39 PDT
I was over visiting the Web site Information Clearing House,which is a great source of information for those capable of individual evaluation of sources, when I came across this appeal to Cindy Sheehan:

Cindy Sheehan is scheduled to visit [Holyoke Community College]in November. We will be trying to contact her to notify her of the recent police brutality and to ask her to make a statement in support of students. If anyone reading this can help us get in touch with her, please let us know.

Bush Moves to Block Torture Probe

Reuters

Washington - The White House on Friday threatened to veto a $440.2 billion defense spending bill in the Senate because it wasn't enough money for the Pentagon and also warned lawmakers not to add any amendments to regulate the treatment of detainees or set up a commission to probe abuse.

Last summer, Republican Sens. John McCain of Arizona and John Warner of Virginia and others sought legislation banning cruel and degrading treatment of prisoners.

The administration has been criticized for holding prisoners at Guantanamo Bay indefinitely. Critics have also questioned whether administration policies led to abuses at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.

U.S. Generals Now See Virtues of a Smaller Troop Presence in Iraq

By Mark Mazzetti
Los Angeles Times
October 1, 2005

WASHINGTON — The U.S. generals running the war in Iraq presented a new assessment of the military situation in public comments and sworn testimony this week: The 149,000 U.S. troops currently in Iraq are increasingly part of the problem.

During a trip to Washington, the generals said the presence of U.S. forces was fueling the insurgency, fostering an undesirable dependency on American troops among the nascent Iraqi armed forces and energizing terrorists across the Middle East.

For all these reasons, they said, a gradual withdrawal of U.S. troops was imperative.

National Guard sent to protect oil, not people

SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER
Tuesday, September 27, 2005
STACY BANNERMAN, GUEST COLUMNIST

Hurricane Katrina blew apart President Bush's rickety arguments about how invading Iraq would make us safe.

We don't know Hurricane Katrina's death toll, or how many Americans might have lived had the thousands of National Guard troops trained to help in the wake of hurricanes and floods not been protecting oil in the desert.

But we know 35 percent of Louisiana's and 40 percent of Mississippi's National Guard troops were in Iraq while their towns were leveled. National Guard officers repeatedly had warned officials about the catastrophic impact of having so many Guardsmen deployed in the event of a major natural disaster.

War, Racism and Global Warming

Future Hope column, October 1, 2005
By Ted Glick

The three days of anti-war actions in Washington, D.C. last
weekend organized primarily by United for Peace and Justice
were a huge victory for the progressive movement. From the
Saturday rally and march co-organized with ANSWER, to the
Peace and Justice Fair all day on the Washington Monument
grounds, to the highly successful Operation Ceasefire
concert/rally Saturday going late into the night attended by
tens of thousands, to the tent revival inter-denominational
religious service Sunday evening, to the mass lobbying of
many hundreds on Capitol Hill Monday morning followed by

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