People's Weekly World Newspaper, 06/22/05 18:23
Author: Tim Wheeler
BALTIMORE – Members of Baltimore Pledge of Resistance went to the district office of Rep. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) June 17 to demand that he speak out against the Iraq war. The group met for several hours with Cardin’s chief administrative aide Chris Lynch.
Cindy Farquhar told Lynch she was "disappointed" that Cardin did not sign on to the Woolsey Amendment, named for Rep. Lynn Woolsey (D-Calif.) requiring President George W. Bush to announce an "exit strategy" to bring U.S. troops home from Iraq.
"We’re long past the idea that providing a better helmet is 'supporting the troops,'" she said. "We are also asking him to join in pursuing the investigation of the Downing Street Memo. There are 120 House members who have signed Conyers’ letter to Bush on that memo."
Published on Wednesday, June 22, 2005 by CommonDreams.org
by David Michael Green
I have seen the future of American politics, and its name is John Conyers.
Finally. Finally. It looks like the heavy cloud of this dark and ugly chapter of American history may be lifting.
The best bit of evidence for this greatly welcome and long overdue development came last Thursday in Washington. The setting for this historic moment appeared remarkably inauspicious, but the import of what occurred there was unmistakable. Indeed, in many ways the incongruity between the locale and the events it contained only underscored the degree to which Thursday's proceedings were so consequential.
Written by Kevin Zeese, Director, DemocracyRising.US
Wednesday, 22 June 2005
An Interview with (ret.) Colonel Sam Gardiner describes "what propaganda literature would refer to as the big lie."
Sam Gardiner has taught strategy and military operations at the National War College, Air War College and Naval War College. He was recently a visiting scholar at the Swedish Defence College. During Gulf II he was a regular on the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer as well as on BBC radio and television, and National Public Radio. He authored "The Enemy is Us" an article describing how the Bush Administration used disinformation and psychological warfare - weapons usually used against the 'enemy' - against the American public in order to support the war in Iraq. He has done an extensive analysis of the media coverage before the war, during the war and during the occupation as well as of the statements of Administration officials. His conclusions are startling and of great concern. He has put his findings in a report entitled: "Truth from These Podia."
Meetings to focus on Bush impeachment
The Capital Times, WI
By Steven Elbow
June 22, 2005
The Madison chapter of Veterans for Peace is planning a series of town hall meetings to discuss the impeachment of President Bush.
Retired UW Professor Bob Kimbrough hopes the meetings will spark a serious discussion on impeachment.
"It's pretty much in the air now, thank goodness," he said.
The state Democratic Party has called for the impeachment of Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, and some Democrats in Congress have broached the subject.
By Greg Mitchell, Editor & Publisher
Posted on June 21, 2005, Printed on June 22, 2005
Dana Milbank of The Washington Post, in a column on Friday, suggested that the congressional forum the previous day on the Downing Street memos was something of a joke. In his opening sentence he declared that House Democrats "took a trip to the land of make-believe" in pretending that the basement conference room was actually a real hearing room, even importing a few American flags to make it look more official.
Oddly, he seem less interested in the far more serious "make-believe" that inspired the basement session: the administration's fake case for WMDs in Iraq that has already led to the deaths of over 1,700 Americans and tens of thousands of Iraqis. No, Milbank used the valuable real estate of the Post -- its only coverage of the event -- to mock Rep. John Conyers, who arranged the meeting, and his "hearty band of playmates."
Why isn't the media screaming about the latest proofs of Bush's war scams? Don't you know?
- By Mark Morford, SF Gate Columnist
Wednesday, June 22, 2005
This is the white-hot question right now gushing forth from the Far Left, from progressive blogs and liberal patriots and blue staters and angry anti-Bushers alike, and it is like a plea, a rallying call, an indignant stomp of deep frustration. It is this:
Why is the major American media not swarming all over the Downing Street Memos thing? Why is the entire nation not just appalled and disgusted and aghast at finding seemingly irrefutable proofs about what we all already knew, which is that BushCo planned to invade Iraq long before 9/11 and needed to find a way to justify it?
Part 1 of a two part-series
Secret admirers: The Bushes and the Washington Post
By Michael Hasty
Online Journal Contributing Writer
February 5, 2004—Ever since the days of the Watergate scandal, when a series of front-page articles by Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein ultimately led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon, the Post has had a reputation among many Americans as one of the elite bastions of the "liberal media."
This opinion is especially prevalent among conservatives, who also fault the Post for its publication (along with that other "liberal" icon, The New York Times) of the Pentagon Papers—an action they correctly view as having made a major contribution to undermining domestic support for the war in Vietnam. During the '70s, there was an angry conservative boycott of the paper in the Washington, DC, area, with "I Don't Believe the Post" bumper stickers appearing on cars and WP vending boxes.
June 22, 2005
Ray McGovern was a CIA analyst for 27 years, and is co-founder of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity. He now works at Tell the Word, the publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour.
With last week's hearings on the Downing Street memos concluded, much work lies ahead. Now, the information in the Downing Street memos needs to be collated carefully with evidence from the mainstream media, on the Internet, and from other sources regarding what was going on in top policymaking circles in Washington in the preparations for the invasion of Iraq.
TakeBacktheMedia will have ready by tomorrow a 2-DVD set with all the footage of the June 16, 2005, hearing on the Downing Street Minutes held in the U.S. Capitol and hosted by Congressman John Conyers, plus the delivery of Conyers' letter and 560,000 signatures to the White House, plus the rally in Lafayette Square Park, plus interviews of those involved. To get your DVDs, just go here, and make a donation of at least $20.
To get a taste of what you'll be buying, watch this clip.
David Corn, TomPaine.com
June 21, 2005
David Corn writes The Loyal Opposition twice a month for TomPaine.com. Corn is also the Washington editor of The Nation and is the author of The Lies of George W. Bush: Mastering the Politics of Deception (Crown Publishers).
I'm obsessed with the Downing Street memos. Now, I don't want to come across as a cranky lefty who waves these memos about and calls for the impeachment of George W. Bush. But I've recently appeared on several TV and radio shows and have encountered mainstream media people who dismiss the memos as nothing new. And this is getting me angry. I expect conservatives who back Bush and his war in Iraq to try to spin these documents away. They're merely following the deny-reality strategy that has worked so well for their man in the White House. It's the non-ideologues who say the memos are no big deal who get me riled.
Detroit Free Press
June 22, 2005
Excerpts of commentary on the Downing Street memos:
Another confidential British memo has surfaced to fan fresh criticism about the run-up to the 2003 Iraq war. This time, the issue is whether the Bush administration ignored warnings to plan for the war's complicated aftermath. ...
The force of the British memo comes from the clarity of its language. It was written July 21, 2002, and its warning -- that "a postwar occupation of Iraq could lead to a protracted and costly nation-building exercise" -- now looks prophetic. ...
A White House spokesman said the memo was off base. "There was significant postwar planning," said David Almacy. "More importantly, the memo in question was written eight months before the war began; there was significant postwar planning in the time that elapsed." ...
DOWNING STREET MEMO
The Miami Herald
Do you want to know?
That's the only popular division that matters in the United States today: Those who want to determine once and for all if President Bush knowingly ''fixed the facts'' regarding Iraq, thereby misleading Congress and the American people into supporting an unnecessary war, and those who will cover their ears and hum loudly in order to maintain their belief that Bush and his advisors remain above reproach.
You're in one camp or the other. Either you want to know if you've been lied to, or you don't.
The American public is inching tentatively toward a reckoning unlike any this nation has ever experienced. The oh-so-clever Bush administration strategists and their quasi-media acolytes, who have kept the reckoning at bay with a deft combination of we're-at-war patriotic fervor and fear-the-evil-liberals rhetoric, are running out of parlor tricks.
By Molly Ivins
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Salt Lake Tribune
I hope this is not too Inside Baseball, but I am genuinely astonished by what the bloggers call "Mainstream Media." (In my youth, it was quaintly called "the Establishment Press.")
The New York Times, The Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times have all gone way out of their way to deny that the Downing Street memos (it's now plural) are news. Like many of you, during the entire lead-up to the war with Iraq, I thought the whole thing was a set-up.
I raise this point not to prove how smart we are, but to emphasize that I followed the debate closely and probably unconsciously searched for evidence that reinforced what I already thought. Most people do that. I read some of the European press and most of the liberal publications in this country. I read the Times, the Post, the Wall Street Journal and several Texas papers every day. It's my job.
Distracted By History (Wolfowitz is on message: focus on present, that's old news, we're busy right now...)
Wolfowitz won't discuss critical British memos
By Jon Sawyer
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
(KRT) - WASHINGTON - World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz, a prime architect of the Iraq war during his service as Deputy Defense Secretary, said Tuesday that he hasn't read any of the recently disclosed British government memos that call into question his role and that of other senior administration officials in the run-up to war during 2002.
At a breakfast meeting with reporters, Wolfowitz said he hasn't read the memos because he doesn't want to be distracted by history from his new job as head of the world's leading development bank. He returned this weekend from a tour of four African nations.
HARDBALL 7:00 PM EST
June 20, 2005 Monday
David Shuster, David Gregory
GUESTS: David Kay, James Woolsey, Michael Smith, Mike Allen, Terence Samuel, Barbara Boxer, George Allen
The Democrats have blocked a vote on John Bolton, the president`s embattled nominee to be U.S. ambassador. Might the president consider a recess appointment now? What is fact and what is fiction in terms of the so-called Downing Street memo?
DAVID GREGORY, GUEST HOST: Tonight, the Democrats have done it again. They have blocked a vote on John Bolton, the president`s embattled nominee to be U.S. ambassador. Might the president consider a recess appointment now?
Date: Tuesday, June 21, 2005
By: Monica Lewis, BlackAmericaWeb.com
A simple British memo is now causing a band of U.S. politicians to demand some concrete answers from President George W. Bush on how he plans to end the conflict in Iraq.
The “Downing Street Memo,
Published on Tuesday, June 21, 2005 by the Denver Post
By Ed Quillen
Some well-meaning people are expressing outrage at the Bush administration following the disclosure of previously secret British memoranda from 2002, the year before the United States and Great Britain invaded Iraq.
It seems that President George W. Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair were discussing ground battle plans, and for the immediate future, the U.S. Air Force and Royal Air Force would increase their activity while patrolling a "no-fly zone" over Iraq. In March 2002, no bombs were dropped; in August, 14.1 metric tons fell on Iraq.
Published on Tuesday, June 21, 2005 by The Progressive
By Matthew Rothschild
The Bush dam is beginning to crumble.
The dam that defied opposition to the Iraq War.
The dam that kept Republicans from coming to their senses on Social Security.
The dam that held back critics of the USA Patriot Act.
It's no longer holding.
Bush's popularity is in the low forties, and may get to the freezing point soon.
And so his ability to keep getting away with "disassembling," as he would put it, is being washed away.
46 percent of Americans want U.S. troops to leave Iraq now.
Published on Monday, June 20, 2005 by CommonDreams.org
As "The Feeling Grows"
by Danny Schechter
Suddenly, the words "exit strategy" has entered into the popular discourse. 41 Congress members have formed an Out of Iraq caucus. Four, including two Republicans are proposing a Congressional resolution to set the date. More newspapers and opinion columnists are mouthing the words that were downright unacceptable or even treasonous in last fall's Presidential election,
Then the Democrats were out bushing Bush in their fidelity to the "stay the course until we win" mantra. Anything else was "cutting and running" in the GOP parlance, and one by one the "opposition" party cleaved to the center for cover and respectability. MoveOn moved off the war issue while Howard Dean dropped his anti-war focus to become Party Chairman. All was quiet on the western front as the White House trumpeted success after success and the press abandoned analysis for hotel-based reporting of incidents. Even the anti-war movement seemed to have slowed its momentum,
In the US the latest leaked memos are seen as a smoking gun on Iraq, but in Britain we are struggling to keep up
Wednesday June 22, 2005
Now try to work this one out. Before the war on Iraq, Britain witnessed a ferocious debate over whether the case for conflict was legal and honest. It culminated in the largest demonstration in the country's history, as a million or more took to the streets to stop the war. At the same time, the US sleepwalked into battle. Its press subjected George Bush to a fraction of the scrutiny endured by Tony Blair: the president's claims about Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction and links to al-Qaida were barely challenged. While Blair had to cajole and persuade his MPs to back him, Bush counted on the easy loyalty of his fellow Republicans - and of most leading Democrats.
Fauquier Times Democrat (Virginia)
By Cheryl K. Chumley
Laying bridges across the ocean, the Independent Party candidate who ran against England's Tony Blair for prime minister brought his anti-war message to America, staying with a Fauquier County family while attending a Capitol Hill impromptu hearing on the now-infamous Downing Street memo.
The memo, the talk of Britain this past month, is a run-down of a 2002 meeting between Blair and several of his advisors during which he was supposedly appraised of President George W. Bush's purported efforts to slant intelligence in favor of invading Iraq, post Sept. 11.
I wrote some criticism of the Washington Post's "reporting" yesterday:
Today one of the member organizations of our coalition, Democrats.com, announced a boycott of the Washington Post:
I would like to see the Post transform itself into a democratic media outlet and succeed. The Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild, on whose executive council I serve, represents Post workers to the best of its ability, in the face of extreme hostility to workplace rights and discriminatory practices in the newsroom. There are workers at the Post who try hard and mean well, but who work for editors and publishers whose primary interests do not include quality journalism. We cannot shake up those editors and publishers without putting our money where our mouths are.
Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting
Media analysis, critiques and activism
Post Explains "Wing Nuts" Label
June 21, 2005
Washington Post ombudsman Michael Getler used his June 19 column to respond to FAIR's June 14 Action Alert regarding Post reporter Dana Milbank's use of the term "wing nuts" to describe activists pressing the media to take the Downing Street memos more seriously.
The relevant portion of Getler's column is below, followed by FAIR's response.
The White House spin cycle (David Shuster)
I don't know if things are getting better or worse in Iraq. But I do know the Bush administration is now in total panic mode over the erosion of public support for the occupation. How else could one explain the President's bizarre radio address this past Saturday or the even more surreal comments recently from other administration officials?
First, the president's radio address: On Saturday President Bush defended the war in Iraq saying, "We went to war because we were attacked." Huh? In September 2003, the President himself stated, "We've had no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved with the September 11th attacks." (For the record, the 9/11 Commission is on the side of the Sept. 2003 President Bush — The commission found there was "no collaborative relationship between Iraq and Al-Qaeda.")
By Virginia Rodino
June 21, 2005
Cindy Sheehan, founder of Gold Star Families for Peace, an advocacy group for families of soldiers killed in Iraq, voiced her satisfaction at a June 16 "Presidential Accountability" rally which focused on the Downing Street Memo and the crisis of the Bush Administration regarding its continued occupation of Iraq.
The rally followed a hearing led by Representative John Conyers, Jr., the ranking Democratic member of the House Judiciary Committee and the Dean of the Congressional Black Caucus. The hearing explored details of the "Downing Street Memo," the leaked British document which shows that the Bush Administration planned the pre-emptive invasion of Iraq as early as July 2002.
By Congressman John Conyers
Thank you for signing the Downing Street Minutes letter to the president. I personally delivered your letter to the White House last Thursday.
Your participation in this issue has made a difference. The mainstream media has been very slow to report on this British Intelligence document claiming that evidence was being "fixed" to support the lead up to war against Iraq.
Yet, neither the media nor President Bush could ignore the massive groundswell of interest demonstrated by the more than 560,000 individuals who joined you in signing this letter.
How about a peaceful nonviolent protest when he comes to town?
Tuesday, June 21, 2005
RICE in Middle East and Europe: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will travel to the Middle East and Europe from June 17-23, 2005. Secretary Rice will visit Ramallah, Jerusalem, Jordan, Egypt and Saudi Arabia to discuss regional peacemaking efforts, support for democracy and reform throughout the region, and counter terrorism. The Secretary will then travel to Brussels for the International Conference on Iraq, where representatives from over 80 nations and international organizations will come together in support of the Iraqi Transitional Government and its effort to build a free, democratic, and prosperous Iraq. The Secretary will proceed to London for the Ministerial Meeting of the G-8 in preparation for the July G-8 Summit. [Department of State, 6/13/05]
THE SAD AND CONTINUING SAGA OF THE DOWNING STREET MEMO'S 'COVERAGE'
IN THE NEW YORK TIMES
By David Michael Green
“Perhaps it's the result of my having worked as a correspondent in the Soviet Union for a few years, but I think there's a strong case that excessive government secrecy leads to waste and abuse, and that an aggressive press improves the effectiveness of intelligence agencies in the long run.
The U.S. corporate media has rolled over, yawned, stretched, cleared its throat, and rubbed its eyes. All that's needed now, after all the noise we've been making, is an ice cold bucket of water in the face.
Here's How to Deliver It:
Go to the AfterDowningStreet.org site, and find the Take Action box on the right.