'Peace mom' goes back to court

WASHINGTON (AP) -- War protester Cindy Sheehan and several others return to court Thursday for the second day of trials on misdemeanor charges of demonstrating without a permit outside the White House.

The protesters, who are being tried separately in one proceeding, took turns questioning police and arguing their cases Wednesday afternoon in front of U.S. Magistrate Alan Kay.

Charges against at least nine were dismissed, leaving about 30 protesters facing possible fines but no jail time if found guilty by Kay. The maximum fine each faces is $500.

Before the trial began, Sheehan announced plans to return to Texas next week to resume her anti-war protest near President Bush's Texas ranch, despite new county ordinances banning roadside camping.

Beware Confusing Symbolism With Substance: The Senate Votes on Iraq

By John Isaacs, Council for a Livable World

There were mixed views on the Senate votes Tuesday on Iraq. Many saw the votes as a watershed in Congressional criticism of the President’s Iraq policies and a clear vote of no confidence.

Others, however, after reading the actual language, wonder what is the big deal, especially the Warner-Frist language that was adopted 79 – 19 with most Democrats and Republicans voting "aye."

The skeptics are confusing substance with symbolism.

It is true that the adopted language does not remove a single soldier from Iraq; set a timetable for withdrawal; or cut off funds. That is the reality of the substance.

The Blame Game

The Blame Game

November 17, 2005
by Michael Shannon
Democratic Underground

The argument that the Bush administration did not polish – that's the nicest word I could think of – the intelligence concerning Iraq's capabilities in the weeks and months leading to the onset of hostilities is preposterous.

Every speck of information on the subject which has reached the light of day since then has been directly supportive of the notion that a very small group of people came to the conclusion that the removal of Saddam Hussein, and the taking control of Iraq, was not only a good idea, it was a necessary one. It also shows that they then did everything in their power to sell that idea, regardless of any and all evidence to the contrary of its merit and in doing so used every trick in the book. How anyone can deny this is beyond me.

In Lawsuit, Team Bush Swore Saddam Was Behind 9/11

In Lawsuit, Team Bush Swore Saddam Was Behind 9/11
November 17, 2005
by Evelyn Pringle
Democtatic Underground

Much to the dismay of President Bush, Americans can remember all on their own, without any coaching from Democrats, that in the run up to war in Iraq it was top officials from the administration who were making the claim that Saddam was in cahoots with bin Laden and that he was secretly involved in 9/11.

The fact that the administration's disinformation campaign was entirely successful is evidenced by an October 2004 Harris Poll, taken three weeks before the last presidential election, which reported that 62% of all voters and 84% of those planning to vote for Bush still believed that Saddam had "strong links" to Al Qaeda, and that 41% of all voters and 52% of Bush backers believed that Saddam had "helped plan and support the hijackers" who had attacked the country on 9/11.

Open Letter to George's Mama

By Cindy Sheehan

Dear Barbara,

On April 04, 2004, your oldest child killed my oldest child, Casey Austin Sheehan.

Unlike your oldest child, my son was a marvelous person who joined the military to serve his country and to try and make the world a better place. Casey didn't want to go to Iraq, but he knew his duty. Your son went AWOL from a glamour unit. George couldn't even handle the Alabama Air National Guard. Casey joined the Army before your son became commander in chief. We all know that your son was thinking of invading Iraq as early as 1999. Casey was a dead man before George even became president and before he even joined the Army in May of 2000.

Victory for Free Speech at Kent State

See photos and hear students at Kent State announce on Nov. 16th that
the university has canceled the disciplinary hearing against David
Airhart, student and veteran of Guantanamo Bay and the Iraq War. LINK.

Hear the entire, unedited news conference (36:20 minutes; mp3 audio),
and see links to related resources, such as the statements of support
from Cindy Sheehan, Howard Zinn and many others.

Airhart had been threatened with possible expulsion after he climbed
a 30 foot rock climbing wall erected by military recruiters and then

Why the GOP's Attacks on Rockefeller Are Totally Dishonest

By David Sirota

Bill Bennett's new attacks on Sen. Jay Rockefeller (linked below) are about as inane, ridiculous, and embarrassing as his preaching about the need for personal morality while hiding a gambling problem or his offensive public slandering of African Americans.

Bennett claims that Rockefeller supposedly compromised U.S. national security because Rockefeller went on a Mideast trip in early 2002 and told some heads of states that he believed President Bush was planning an invasion of Iraq. Bennett claims that by stating his opinion, Rockefeller tipped off these heads of states to something that wasn't already known. The reason that is a ridiculous charge is not only because Rockefeller was stating his own opinion, but because what he was saying was already well-known. In fact the Bush administration was actually PUBLILCLY saying the same thing:

Allawi Tells Bush White House He Will Not Work With Chalabi

By IIMCR, http://www.iimcr.org/blog

Washington---The Bush White House has asked Iyad Allawi, its leading candidate to become the next prime minister of Iraq, if he would be willing to work with Ahmad Chalabi, the controversial current deputy prime minister of that country. Allawi, the former prime minister of Iraq, has told the Americans that he will not cooperate with Chalabi under any circumstances. In recent weeks, he has referred to Chalabi as “that snake

First Woman GI Publicly Stands Against War; Faces Immediate Deployment

Contacts: Aimee Allison, 510-343-4019; Aiden Delgado, 941-685-7941

Fort Benning, GA: Army National Guard Specialist Katherine Jashinski, on active duty with the 111th ASG since January of this year, makes a public statement against war as a conscientious objector in the face of orders to participate in weapons training and deploy to the Middle East. She will be joined by several members of Iraq Veterans Against the War and Veterans for Peace. Jashinski applied for a discharge as a conscientious objector in 2004. The Army recently denied her claim and ordered her to weapons training and deployment this week.

The World Can't Wait! Drive Out the Bush Regime National Meeting

Drown out Bush's State of the Union speech in January with protest

Saturday/Sunday November 19/20, 2005
The Law School of Columbia University
116th Street at Amsterdam Avenue, New York City

sliding scale: $25 - $100

(working agenda)

Saturday 19 10 am-9:30 pm

9:30 Registration

10:30 Open the conference

11:00 Presentations on what we accomplished with our launch from Steering Committee members. Further Proposals presented on State of the Union, Funds, national mobilization

Free the Sheehan 34!


(Stephanie Allen is a young woman from Buffalo who came down to D.C. for the September 24 March and who decided to get arrested, along with Cindy Sheehan and others, in front of the White House on September 26. The group of over 300 protesters were engaged in peaceful civil disobedience. Their arrests were statements of protest against the war in Iraq, and the lies of the Bush Administration. Stephanie came back to D.C. to have her hearing today. It was also Cindy Sheehan's hearing. Here is Stephanie's report.)

Stephanie has returned from her day in court, which will continue tomorrow. Today was a long day of waiting and riding a roller coaster. No one was sentenced today; some of the cases were dismissed (the arresting officer did not show up) but everyone plans to show up tomorrow.

'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus Demands a Debate on the Iraq War

From Congresswoman Maxine Waters
Contact: Mikael Moore (202)225-2201

Washington, DC - Today, twenty members of the 'Out of Iraq' Congressional Caucus held a press conference to announce the beginning of a drive to secure 218 signatures for a discharge petition on H J Res 55, a bill authored by Congressman Neil Abercrombie (HI) and Congressman Walter Jones (NC). If passed by Congress, H J Res 55 would require the President to begin bringing US soldiers home from Iraq.

Attending the press conference were Congresswoman Maxine Waters, Congressman William Delahunt, Congresswoman Barbara Lee, Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey, Congressman Neil Abercrombie, Congressman Xavier Becerra, Congressman William Lacy Clay, Congressman Sam Farr, Congressman Barney Frank, Congresswoman Sheila Jackson-Lee, Congresswoman Stephanie Tubbs Jones, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, Congresswoman Carolyn Kilpatrick, Congressman Dennis Kucinich, Congressman Jim McDermott, Congressman Jim McGovern, Congressman Major Owens, Congressman Jose Serrano, Congresswoman Hilda Solis, and Congresswoman Diane Watson.

Dems party with Sheehan

Under the Dome
By Jeff Dufour, The Hill

....Dems party with Sheehan

Perhaps seeking to unwind with some like-minded folks before her court date yesterday, anti-war mom Cindy Sheehan popped in at the Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) board reception at the National Democratic Club.

She was joined by Reps. John Conyers (Mich.), Maxine Waters (Calif.) and Raul Grijalva (Ariz.). In no uncertain terms, Conyers called out “the misrepresentations of the sorriest administration in my lifetime,

Pincus: Woodward 'Asked Me to Keep Him Out' of Plame Reporting

Pincus: Woodward 'Asked Me to Keep Him Out' of Plame Reporting
By Joe Strupp
Editor and Publisher
Published: November 16, 2005 12:45 PM ET
NEW YORK Walter Pincus, the longtime Washington Post reporter and one of several journalists who testified in the Valerie Plame case, said he believed as far back as 2003 that Bob Woodward had some involvement in the case but he did not pursue the information because Woodward asked him not to.

"He asked me to keep him out of the reporting and I agreed to do that," Pincus said today. His comments followed a Post story today about Woodward's testimony on Monday before special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, in which Woodward reportedly disclosed that a senior White House official told him about Plame's identity as a CIA operative a month before her identity was disclosed publicly.

GOP senator hits Bush for attacking war critics; Hints Congress endorsing another Vietnam by staying silent

GOP senator hits Bush for attacking war critics; Hints Congress endorsing another Vietnam by staying silent

Republican Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE), a Vietnam veteran and critic of Bush policy on Iraq, excoriated the Administration Tuesday in a speech to Council on Foreign Relations Tuesday, RAW STORY has learned.

Hagel blasted the Administration for going after Iraq war critics and turning the war into a political cause.

"The Iraq war should not be debated in the United States on a partisan political platform," the Nebraska senator remarked. "This debases our country, trivializes the seriousness of war and cheapens the service and sacrifices of our men and women in uniform. War is not a Republican or Democrat issue. The casualties of war are from both parties. The Bush Administration must understand that each American has a right to question our policies in Iraq and should not be demonized for disagreeing with them. Suggesting that to challenge or criticize policy is undermining and hurting our troops is not democracy nor what this country has stood for, for over 200 years. The Democrats have an obligation to challenge in a serious and responsible manner, offering solutions and alternatives to the Administration’s policies."

Call Congress About the Anti-Torture Amendment to the Defense Appropriations Bill

By Global Exchange

In the name of the “war on terrorism,

Bill Clinton Calls Iraq 'Big Mistake'

Bill Clinton Calls Iraq 'Big Mistake'
Wednesday November 16, 2005 4:46 PM
Associated Press Writer

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) - Former President Clinton told Arab students Wednesday the United States made a ``big mistake'' when it invaded Iraq, stoking the partisan debate back home over the war.

Clinton cited the lack of planning for what would happen after Saddam Hussein was overthrown.

``Saddam is gone. It's a good thing, but I don't agree with what was done,'' Clinton told students at a forum at the American University of Dubai.

Sheehan, Other Protesters Plead Not Guilty

Sheehan, Other Protesters Plead Not Guilty
Wednesday November 16, 2005 9:01 PM
By Pete Yost,Associated Press Writer, Guardian.Co.Uk

WASHINGTON (AP) - War protester Cindy Sheehan and several others pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges of demonstrating without a permit outside the White House.

The protesters, who face fines and not jail time, were being tried Wednesday afternoon by U.S. Magistrate Alan Kay after several hours of talks with court officials about how quickly their trial could be wrapped up.

Rep. McGovern Writes to All Congress Members for Support

From Congressman Jim McGovern

A War Begun with Lies and Deception
Requires that an Honorable Withdrawal Begin Now
Cosponsor H.R. 4232: The End the War in Iraq Act

Dear Colleague,

I would like to bring to your attention the November 15th editorial by the New York Times that responds to the recent attacks by President Bush against critics of the war in Iraq. The United States is engaged in a war born out of deceit and lies - and it needs to be brought to an honorable end now. I urge you to join me as a cosponsor to H.R. 4232, the End the War in Iraq Act.

H.R. 4232 would end all funding for the deployment of U.S. troops in Iraq, but it would provide the defense funding needed to ensure a safe and orderly withdrawal of our uniformed men and women from Iraq. It would also provide defense funds to finance and equip the Iraqi security forces and for the consultation with other governments and international organizations - such as NATO and the United Nations - to create and deploy a transitional, international security force to provide for Iraqi security as the U.S. withdraws. Under H.R. 4232, the United States could also provide financial support and equipment to this international security force(s).

Reid snaps back at Cheney on Senate floor

Reid snaps back at Cheney on Senate floor

Washington, DC – Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid gave the following speech on the Senate Floor tonight.

Remarks as prepared for delivery:

“Tonight the Vice President has come out of his bunker and is speaking at a gathering of Washington DC insiders, which is closed to the press.

“Unfortunately, he brought his bunker mentality with him. He is repeating the same tired attacks we’ve heard from administration officials over the last two weeks.

Protest Cnn's negotiations with Robert Novak

This just in from Media Matters:

Last August, CNN suspended syndicated columnist Robert D. Novak, a frequent contributor to the cable news channel's programs, for uttering an obscenity and storming off the set. He has not been reinstated but is currently in negotiations with CNN to renew his contract (which is set to expire in 2006).
Please click here and urge CNN not to renew his contract!

Countdown: How High?

Countdown: How High?
Dionysus, dissent.blogspot.com

John Dean, Nixon's former White House counsel, explains why he suspects Fitzgerald is targeting Cheney (video).

Photo Credit: Photos.blogger.com


Text of Woodward's Statement Testifying in the CIA Leak Case

Text of Woodward's Statement
Testifying in the CIA Leak Case

Wednesday, November 16, 2005; Page A08

On Monday, November 14, I testified under oath in a sworn deposition to Special Counsel Patrick J. Fitzgerald for more than two hours about small portions of interviews I conducted with three current or former Bush administration officials that relate to the investigation of the public disclosure of the identity of undercover CIA officer Valerie Plame.

The interviews were mostly confidential background interviews for my 2004 book "Plan of Attack" about the leadup to the Iraq war, ongoing reporting for The Washington Post and research for a book on Bush's second term to be published in 2006. The testimony was given under an agreement with Fitzgerald that he would only ask about specific matters directly relating to his investigation.

Smears, Lies and Videotape: A Leak Scandal Documentary

Smears, Lies and Videotape: A Leak Scandal Documentary
Think Progress.Org

The story of the CIA leak scandal is far from over. But so much has already happened, sometimes it’s easy to miss the big picture.

We’ve created a video to help you keep everything straight. It uses footage pulled directly from the White House, recent TV news clips and other archival video to explain exactly what happened and why it’s important. Most of the story is told by administration officials themselves.

National Security Adviser was Woodward's source, attorneys say

National Security Adviser was Woodward's source, attorneys say
Larisa Alexandrovna and Jason Leopold, RawStory.com

National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley was the senior administration official who told Washington Post Assistant Managing Editor Bob Woodward that Valerie Plame Wilson was a covert CIA officer, attorneys close to the investigation and intelligence officials tell RAW STORY.

Testifying under oath Monday to Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, Woodward recounted a casual conversation he had with Hadley, these sources say. Hadley did not return a call seeking comment.

Bob Woodward

Bob Woodward
Suz Krueger, Democracy Cell Project

From his involvement in uncovering Richard Nixon's illegal activities during Watergate, and documented in the book All the President's Men, we would think that Bob Woodward was a muckraker, a truthteller, an investigative journalist of the highest order.

However, today, highly esteemed journalist Bob Woodward completed his free-fall from the idealistic journalist of old--the one who showed tremendous integrity and perseverance while protecting the American public from their corrupt government--to the journalist of today who protects his own self interests and connections to a corrupt White House.

Bob Woodward, Lost in Cronyism?

Bob Woodward, Lost in Cronyism?
By Larry Johnson | bio
From: Media
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.

Bill Clinton Says International Crimes Should Be Committed More Professionally and With Better Planning

Bill Clinton Calls Iraq 'Big Mistake'
By LARA SUKHTIAN, Associated Press

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) - Former President Clinton told Arab students Wednesday the United States made a ``big mistake'' when it invaded Iraq, stoking the partisan debate back home over the war.

Clinton cited the lack of planning for what would happen after Saddam Hussein was overthrown.

``Saddam is gone. It's a good thing, but I don't agree with what was done,'' Clinton told students at a forum at the American University of Dubai.

``It was a big mistake. The American government made several errors ... one of which is how easy it would be to get rid of Saddam and how hard it would be to unite the country.''

Breaking Update: More Pathetic Excuses

By Dave Lindorff,

Still squirming at the exposure of its WMD war crime in Fallujah, the Pentagon late Wednesday came up with two more rationales for its use of phosphorus bombs. The first: it's just another part of the "conventional" arsenal. The second: armies have all used this weapon for a century.

Let's examine these excuses. First of all, phosphorus is no conventional weapon. It is a chemical weapon that kills slowly and painfully by burning its way into the body, making it as insidious as any poison gas weapon (precisely why the Pentagon initially denied its use in Fallujah). Second, there are lots of horrible weapons that have been used routinely by armies over the past century. Phosphorus is one. Others are mustard gas, chlorine gas, and various germ weapons. Common usage in the past is no justification for continued use of such barbaric weaponry. Heck, killing POWs was accepted practice long ago, too, as well as rape and pillage following conquest. Now those are war crimes.

Witnesses leery of testifying while Roberts stays on leak investigation

By Alexander Bolton, The Hill

Two witnesses interviewed by the FBI in its probe of classified information leaked from a joint congressional inquiry in 2002 say they are very concerned about cooperating with a Senate Ethics Committee review of the matter because Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) has not recused himself from the review.


Roberts is a member of the Senate Select Committee on Ethics and chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. Good-government advocates have called on Roberts to recuse himself from the committee’s probe into the leak case, which the Justice Department referred to it last summer.

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