There's no shortage of backward-looking analysis explaining how the press betrayed the public trust during the run-up to the Iraq war. And such finger-pointing is undeniably important. It helps us understand how so many were misled and hopefully prevents similar duping in the future, as Judith Miller and others are called out for their shoddy journalism. However, It's also refreshing to see someone issue a challenge to the media regarding its present coverage of matters related to Iraq, as Sydney Schanberg does in this week's Village Voice.
What the 'Shield' Covered Up
By E. J. Dionne Jr.
Has anyone noticed that the coverup worked?
In his impressive presentation of the indictment of Lewis "Scooter" Libby last week, Patrick Fitzgerald expressed the wish that witnesses had testified when subpoenas were issued in August 2004, and "we would have been here in October 2004 instead of October 2005."
Note the significance of the two dates: October 2004, before President Bush was reelected, and October 2005, after the president was reelected. Those dates make clear why Libby threw sand in the eyes of prosecutors, in the special counsel's apt metaphor, and helped drag out the investigation.
By Russ Baker
Investigative reporter and essayist Russ Baker is a longtime contributor to TomPaine.com. He is the founder of the Real News Project, a new organization dedicated to producing groundbreaking investigative journalism. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Patrick Fitzgerald’s indictment of Scooter Libby for lying about how he learned of the Valerie Plame affair is an interesting and important development. But the narrowness of that focus, absent further developments, shows again the limitations of “the system
By Debra Sweet, National Co-ordinator, the World Can't Wait
Tomorrow is the beginning of the end of the Bush Regime! I wanted to pass along some ideas about the character of the rallies and demonstrations for our launch.
We've got to keep in mind what we're trying to do with these events. We are beginning a movement that will drive Bush from office and reverse the whole direction in which he's been taking society. Every day a new outrage drives home the need for nothing less than this. If anyone needs more proof, look at the Libby indictment, followed closely by the Alito nomination!
This piece of legislation is the clearest way for Congress to demand a serious investigation of the Plame leak and the war lies that preceded it.
This privileged Resolution of Inquiry, introduced by Dennis Kucinich, has a lifespan of 14 legislative days, ending on or about November 9 with a vote in the House International Relations Committee. It is crucial that we build support before that date through a long list of cosponsors.
H Res 505 would require the White House to turn over all white papers, minutes, notes, emails or other communications kept by the White House Iraq Group (WHIG). The WHIG, comprised of the President's and Vice President's top aides, was central to the White House's effort to sell Congress, the media, and the public a war on fraudulent grounds.
BAGHDAD, Nov 1 (Reuters) - Five hundred prisoners walked free from the U.S. military's Abu Ghraib jail in Iraq on Tuesday, released in a goodwill gesture to mark the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
The detainees were presented with a Koran and $25 on their release which marked Eid al-Fitr celebrations. Their release was in addition to 1,000 prisoners set free in October at the start of the month of fasting.
All 1,500, who also received traditional white shirts, were released after their cases went before an Iraqi-led review board and were found not to have committed serious or violent crimes, the U.S. military said in a statement.
By E&P Staff
NEW YORK Nicholas Kristof, the New York Times columnist who had long been skeptical of criminal wrongdoing in the Plame/CIA leak case, continued pressing Vice President to come clean in his Tuesday column. He had first made this plea in his Saturday column.
"So, Mr. Cheney, tell us what happened," Kristof writes today. "If you're afraid to say what you knew, and when you knew it, then you should resign."
He notes, "Five lawyers I've consulted all agree that there is no compelling legal reason why you should not discuss the situation....As it is, you're pleading 'no contest' in the court of public opinion, and that's painful for all of us who want to believe in the integrity of our government."
How Karl Rove Got His Groove Back -- And Other Sordid Tales of the White House Betraying America
A BUZZFLASH EDITORIAL
In an unprecedented media moment, long before most Americans were awake, the White House released the news that one of those mild-mannered looking right wing ideological perverts would be Bush's second Supreme Court nominee, just four days after his first nominee announced she was "withdrawing."
News of Mr. Scalito's appointment hit the wires on a Monday morning so early that the squirrels were still sleeping in Camp David. Normally, rumors fly before a Supreme Court nomination, but it's not confirmed as a nomination until the President presents the candidate at a press event.
World Can't Wait
305 W Broadway #185,
NY, NY 10013
October 31, 2005
For Immediate Release
Contact: Mary Lou Greenberg 917-903-3538
CAMPAIGN TO DRIVE OUT BUSH REGIME HOLDS RALLY AT STEPS OF THE WHITE HOUSE
Nationwide actions on November 2
WASHINGTON, DC LAFAYETTE PARK
11:30 AM-2:00 PM
The movement to drive out the Bush regime begins tomorrow, Wednesday,
November 2 with actions in 67 cities, 43 colleges and universities, and 90
high schools (at last count). In Washington DC, people will gather at
11:30 am in Lafayette Park, at the gates of the White House, to serve
By Henry Meyerding
I am always mystified by what the general public is supposed to believe in. It just doesn't make any sense. At least it doesn't make any sense if one applies generally accepted truth to solve the mystery. It's a kind of self-frustrating logic, like catch-22. If you take it as gospel that we (in America) have a vigorous free press, then the actions of that press are inexplicable. If you decide that the press is prejudiced and expresses the opinion of a small, powerful minority (that owns the press), you can explain a lot, but your conclusions are discounted by the vast majority of people.
"Isn't it just amazing that a sex scandal is enough to impeach a president, but giving up the name of CIA agents and giving out secret information to other countries gets just a slap on the wrist? Gee, how things work. With everything going on in this administration right now, not impeaching Bush is just not right. This country needs to wake up, get to the voting booth and get something done about this."
- Falling Waters, W.Va.
Urging action for impeachment
Letter to Editor
I sent this letter to Rep. Bernard Sanders on July 9:
"I sent you the first version of this letter about a year ago. In reply I received a non-responsive form letter about the situation in Iraq. Since that time the threat to the United States posed by the Bush administration has grown more grave, and we are faced with three and a half more disastrous years.
"I write to urge you to put before the House Judiciary Committee a motion to impeach George W. Bush and Richard Cheney on the following grounds:
They have conspired to endanger Americans at home and abroad by initiating and pursuing a war of aggression based on false premises.
Letter to Editor
The majority in our Congress is stating that perjury is a minor thing and officials should only be indicted for "serious" crimes.
The senator from Texas was adamant concerning this, but she has reversed herself from seven years ago when she voted to impeach President Clinton for perjury because "justice had to be protected."
Clinton had not sent our troops into a war for dubious reasons. He had not spent billions of tax dollars on a wasteful war and, finally, he had not gotten more than 2,000 of our troops killed in a dubious war.
Where are our members of Congress when impeachment needs to be started? The silence is immense and all-pervading. Amazing how "justice" for one is not the same for someone from your own party.
By Geov Parrish
Source: Working For Change
In my column of June 9, 2003, I led with the assertion that:
"The Bush Administration's case for invading Iraq was a combination of willfully gross exaggerations and flat-out lies."
Even at the time, this was nothing new; it was a claim critics of the war had been making for nearly a year. The lack of discovery of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq was simply confirming what war opponents knew all along.
Now, with Friday's five-count felony indictment of I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, the investigation of special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald has parted the curtains on some of the mechanisms of that campaign of lies -- specifically, the lengths to which the Vice President's chief of staff was willing to go to in an attempt to smear an ex-ambassador, Joseph Wilson, who had meticulously disproven a key administration claim. Those lengths allegedly included lying twice to a grand jury, and twice more to FBI investigators, about whether he had leaked to the press that Valerie Wilson, the wife of the ex-ambassador, was a CIA operative.
By Paul Craig Roberts
Lewis "Scooter" Libby, chief of staff to vice president Richard B. Cheney and assistant to the president, has been indicted for a cover up.
As US attorney Patrick Fitzgerald made clear at the October 28 press conference announcing Libby’s indictment, he believes Libby "went before a federal grand jury and lied under oath repeatedly and fabricated a story about how he learned this information, how he passed it on." By obstructing Fitzgerald’s investigation, Libby has prevented Fitzgerald and the grand jury from finding out who leaked the name of the covert CIA agent, Valerie Plame, and why.
Part 2: Tribunal on Crimes Against Humanity Indicts the Bush RegimePart 2:Revolution #021, November 6, 2005, posted at revcom.us
This week we continue our coverage of this historic tribunal. Click here for previous coverage on revcom.us
An extraordinary Tribunal came together on October 21-23 to indict the Bush regime for crimes against humanity. The First Session of The 2005 International Commission of Inquiry on Crimes Against Humanity Committed by the Bush Administration brought four indictments against the regime:
1. Wars of Aggression
LONDON, Oct. 31 (UPI) -- British troops will remain in Iraq until the violent insurgency ends, Prime Minister Tony Blair said Monday.
Speaking after Downing Street talks with Massoud Barzani, leader of Iraq's Kurdish minority, Blair said multinational forces could leave the country tomorrow if the insurgency ended.
Referring to the Pentagon's report Sunday that 26,000 Iraqi civilians had been killed or wounded as a result of the insurgency since January 2004, Blair said he "regretted" every civilian death.
However, he made clear he regarded the insurgents, and not the presence of coalition troops, as responsible for the killings.
Posted by: Captain on http://PEJ.org Monday, October 31, 2005 - 03:42 PM
No! This Regime Does Not Represent Us!
by Gerry Deiter
PEJ News - On Nov. 2, the first anniversary of Bush's "re-selection," people in 67 cities, at 43 colleges and universities, and 90 high schools (at last count) will leave work and school and gather in the city centers to declare No! This Regime Does Not Represent Us! and to launch a movement to drive Bush from power.
67 CITIES, 45 CAMPUSES, 90 HIGH SCHOOLS - RED STATE & BLUE: In the four months since the WCW call was issued, chapters have been formed in 53 cities, with demonstrations taking place in another 14; students at 43 colleges and universities will be participating; and there are 90 high schools where significant numbers of students will take part.
By Tomdispatch and the New York Review of Books
A superb essay from the latest New York Review of Books, released exclusively on line by Tomdispatch: In "What Bush Wants to Hear" http://www.tomdispatch.com/index.mhtml?pid=32668
David Cole considers the new book by former Justice Department lawyer, now Berkeley law professor John Yoo (known for, among other things, producing the infamous "torture memo" of August 2002 for then-White House Counsel Alberto Gonzales). Cole skillfully dissects the extreme views of an influential legal figure in the Bush administration who believes in the most unfettered and extreme version of an imperial presidency possible -- the very one that the Bush/Cheney team has tried to put in place since September 11, 2001. This is an important essay.
By Robert Parry
Washington pundits are showering George W. Bush with advice on how to “restart
AS IT BECOMES CLEARER THAT THE WORLD CAN'T WAIT, A MOVEMENT TO DRIVE OUT
THE BUSH REGIME TAKES SHAPE - AND GAINS MOMENTUM
"The Bush Administration is the most dangerous force that has ever
existed. It is more dangerous than Nazi Germany because of the range and
depth of its activities and intentions worldwide. I give my full support
to the Call to Drive out the Bush Regime."
- Nobel Laureate Harold Pinter, October 31, 2005
By Debra Sweet, National Coordinator, World Can't Wait, www.worldcantwait.org
On November 2, people in 67 cities, 43 colleges and universities, and 90
high schools (at last count) are walking out of school and work and
By Cindy Sheehan
This immoral invasion and occupation of Iraq has cost the world so much. George and his reckless war of choice have cost the American taxpayers billions of dollars that could be better spent at home. Judging from Katrina, Iraq has cost our country much of its security. It has cost the US any good standing we enjoyed in the world community. It cost America the post 9/11 good will from almost the entire world. We Americans are the laughing stock of the world community. Not only is our callous and careless leadership disdained, but we the people are scorned because we "re"-elected George for a 2nd term and not only that, we are allowing him to continue to mis-lead our country into ruin.
According to Senator Lincoln Chafee, the only Republican to oppose the war, "I never believed that the Iraq war was about weapons of mass destruction. It was this grand vision of changing the Middle East."
Published on Monday, October 31, 2005 by CommonDreams.org
By Laura Santina
A recent Boston Globe article focused on the fact that the Democrats are struggling to find one voice on Iraq. We don't need one voice from the Democrats. We need every Democrat who voted for this war to apologize for this illegal and immoral war and to insist that we leave Iraq immediately.
On October 11, 2002, the Senate voted 77-23 and the House voted 296-133 to authorize President Bush to attack Iraq if Saddam Hussein refused to give up weapons of mass destruction as required by UN resolutions.
THE WORLD CAN'T WAIT: Hold a Vigil or Rally Against Bush on Wednesday
November 2nd is the one-year anniversary of the election. Numerous organizations are working together to create vigils and rallies around the country against the war and against the Bush regime. Go here to get involved:
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:
More Information and How to Get Involved:
After Downing Street is working with the BackBone Campaign to encourage Congress Members to cosponsor a Resolution of Inquiry into the White House Iraq Group. Click here to download a Spine Postcard PDF to print (preferably on cardstock) and send to your Congress member.
BONIFAZ MAY RUN FOR MASS. SECRETARY OF STATE
Left I on the News
Not by the U.S. government, anyway. 40 Iraqis are dead and 20 wounded thanks
to a "precision strike" on a "terrorist safe house." As you know without
even reading the linked article, the latter two phrases come from the U.S.
military, while the numbers come from Iraqi hospital sources; you don't
expect the U.S. military (or the U.S. media) to actually inspect the damage
and report the results, do you?
This particular article is oh-so-typical and oh-so-telling. Here's what the
U.S. military says:
"The only air strike in that area (west of Qaim) of which I am aware is an
Published on Saturday, October 29, 2005 by CommonDreams.org
By Scott Ritter
NEW YORK -- The indictment of I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby by Special Prosecutor Patrick J. Fitzgerald provides the most cogent and visible evidence to date of the criminal mindset that exists inside the Bush administration regarding the decision to invade Iraq.
The indictment is linked to Libby's involvement in illegally revealing the identity of a covert CIA operative, Valerie Plame, in violation of U.S. law, and the resultant conspiracy to deny and cover up the fact that this crime had in fact taken place. But the real crime committed here is the deception leading to war carried out by the Bush administration, in particular the activities of the vice president, Dick Cheney, and his chief of staff, "Scooter" Libby, which is why they felt they needed to go after former Ambassador Joseph Wilson and his wife, Plame.
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.