By Kevin Drum
July 18, 2005
NUKES AND THE BASE....Step back from Plamegate for a moment and ask yourself a broader question: why did the White House react so violently to Joe Wilson's suggestion that the story about Saddam Hussein trying to procure uranium from Niger was false? After all, as conservative apologists never tire of pointing out, Wilson didn't really debunk George Bush's words in the 2003 State of the Union address. Bush said only that Saddam "sought" uranium from Africa, while Wilson merely provided evidence that no uranium ever changed hands. The fact is, Wilson's report didn't invalidate Bush's statement.
By Mark Shields
WASHINGTON (Creators Syndicate) -- In my line of work, you get lied to a lot.
There are the generally forgettable fibs, like a senator who's making his seventh political trip to New Hampshire since the first of the year insisting he has made no decision about a White House run.
The falsehoods you remember are bold and brassy. I will never forget President George H.W. Bush stating with a straight face that the nominee's race had never even crossed his mind when he picked Clarence Thomas for the Supreme Court.
Presidential candidate Bill Clinton demonstrated early his flair for fiction by contradicting all his campaign's previous statements on his non-service in the military when he admitted that, yes, during the Vietnam War he actually had received a draft notice calling him to military service.
By Rep. Henry A. Waxman
Monday 18 July 2005
Dear Mr. President:
In June 2004, you said that you would fire anyone found to be involved in the disclosure of Valerie Wilson's identity as a covert CIA agent.  Today, you significantly changed your position, stating that you would remove Karl Rove or other White House officials involved in the security breach only "if someone committed a crime." 
Your new standard is not consistent with your obligations to enforce Executive Order 12958, which governs the protection of national security secrets. The executive order states: "Officers and employees of the United States Government ... shall be subject to appropriate sanctions if they knowingly, willfully, or negligently ... disclose to unauthorized persons information properly classified."  Under the executive order, the available sanctions include "reprimand, suspension without pay, removal, termination of classification authority, loss or denial of access to classified information, or other sanctions." 
Raw acquires copy of letter from British ambassador in lead-up to war: 'Need to wrongfoot Saddam'
Larisa Alexandrovna and John Byrne
RAW STORY has acquired a copy of the Mar. 18, 2002 letter dispatched from then-British ambassador to the United States Sir Christopher Meyer to Tony Blair's chief foreign policy advisor, David Manning.
The release comes just before the third anniversary of the Downing Street minutes. The minutes documented a high-level meeting between the Blair and Bush governments, at which the director of British intelligence declared 'the facts were being fixed around the policy' before either nation sought approval for war.
By Jim Mullins
The Bush administration and much of the major media either ignored or gave little publicity to the revelations in the "Downing Street Memo" when it was leaked and published in London's Sunday Times close to two months ago. Now the leak has become a flood of memos written by British cabinet ministers that affirm and substantiate its damning statement that "the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy."
British officials in intelligence, legal and military leadership had expressed great misgivings about the invasion's legality, American claims of quick military success and the lack of US plans to govern Iraq and secure the peace. Its legality was particularly troubling to the legal and military oficials who saw themselves as liable for Nuremberg style war crime trials in the International Criminal Court to which they were bound by treaty. A treaty signed by President Clinton but not given senatorial ratification at President Bush's insistence.
Congresswoman Maxine Waters Featured Speaker at Teach-In On Downing Street Memo This Saturday
Washington, DC - Today, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (CA-35) announced that she will be the featured speaker at a town hall meeting and teach-in on the third anniversary of the Downing Street Memo this Saturday, July 23rd at the Covenant Worship Center, 425 S. La Brea Avenue in Inglewood, California from noon until 3:00 pm.
The Congresswoman, who has been a leading voice in calling for the Administration to conclude the war in Iraq, stated, “As the Co-Founder of the Out of Iraq Caucus, I call on the United States to reexamine its role in the Iraqi War. I will continue the ongoing discussions regarding the war, including the implications of the Downing Street memo.
By Ray McGovern
July 18, 2005
Ray McGovern works at Tell the Word, the publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in Washingon, DC. He had a 27-year career as an analyst at CIA.
The significance of the Plame affair is not about former U.S. ambassador Joseph Wilson; or his wife, Valerie Plame; or Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby; or even President George W. Bush's alter ego, Karl Rove. White House v. Wilsons is about Iraq, where our sons and daughters—and many others—are daily meeting violent death. And it's about manipulation.
Her supporters point to principles her silence undermines
No reasonable person believes that a journalist's right to protect their confidential sources is absolute. Yet one is virtually required to act as though it is, and any exception to this right will have a devastating effect on investigative journalism, in order to justify New York Times reporter Judith Miller's non-cooperation with the special prosecutor investigating the Valerie Plame Wilson leak.
That journalists' privilege cannot be absolute is easy to demonstrate: If after obtaining a promise of strict confidentiality, Karl Rove had told Time's Matthew Cooper that he was a serial killer planning to strike again, who would argue that Cooper should not immediately go to the police--let alone defy a subpoena from a grand jury seeking evidence of Rove's crimes?
Downing Street Minutes, July 23, 2002
Also known as the Downing Street Memo
All Eight Leaked Downing Street Documents
Iraq Options Paper, March 8, 2002
Legal Background Paper, March 8, 2002
David Manning Memo, March 14, 2002
Christopher Meyer Letter, March 18, 2002
Peter Ricketts Letter, March 22, 2002
Jack Straw Memo, March 25, 2002
Cabinet Office Briefing Paper, July 21, 2002
Downing Street Minutes, July 23, 2002
Also known as the Downing Street Memo
All eight leaked documents in one PDF.
THE DOWNING STREET PAPERS, Transcriptions
Text of the Iraq Options paper - March 8, 2002 Memo from Overseas and Defence Secretariat
IRAQ: OPTIONS PAPER SECRET UK EYES ONLY
Since 1991, our objective has been to re-integrate a law-abiding Iraq which does not possess WMD or threaten its neighbors, into the international community. Implicitly, this cannot occur with Saddam Hussein in power. As at least worst opinion, we have supported a policy of containment which has been partially successful. However:
By PETE YOST
Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) - Time magazine's Matthew Cooper says a 2003 phone call with White House political adviser Karl Rove was the first he heard about the wife of Bush administration critic Joseph Wilson apparently working for the CIA.
Giving a first-person account of his role in a case that nearly landed him in jail, the reporter recalled that Rove told him, ``I've already said too much'' after revealing that the wife of the former ambassador apparently was with the CIA.
Cooper speculated in the piece, released Sunday, that Rove could have been ``worried about being indiscreet, or it could have meant he was late for a meeting or something else.''
You are cordially invited to a Mad Hatters Tea Party
Date: Saturday 23rd July
Place: Whitehall - opposite Downing Street
Please come dressed as a character from Alice in Wonderland and bring a picnic
To mark the third anniversary of a crucial meeting of Blair's war cabinet on July 23rd, 2002, at which the head of MI6 said the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.
Supporting the call for an enquiry into whether Bush should be impeached - a dramatic recreation of the "Downing Street Minutes" 23rd July 2002
. . . or an amazing 9-minute recreation thereof that uses the exact words of the "Downing Street Memo."
This remarkable audio production conveys far more clearly than the written word what went on behind closed doors that day three years ago. The cast and credits for this production, are as follows.
Chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee John Scarlett -- Anonymous
Sir Richard Dearlove, the Chief of Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service (MI6) – John Rafter Lee
Admiral Sir Michael Boyce, Chief of Defence Staff – Demian Martell
Then Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon – Ed Asner
Listen to an hour on the Downing Street Minutes, with After Downing Street Co-Founder David Swanson on the Brad Show:
in the 7/16/05 show, HOUR 2.
Sacramento Bee (California)
By Pete McCloskey
The eerie parallels between the Richard Nixon and George W. Bush administrations continue.
Once again the famous words of Lord Acton in 1887 come to mind: "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely."
Both Nixon in 1972 and Bush in 2004 won re-election to a second term. Both had impressive agendas for domestic reform, but both were at war - Nixon in Vietnam, Bush in Iraq. Both faced what they felt was disloyal, if not treasonous, conduct by former federal employees. Marine veteran Daniel Ellsberg had given the then top secret Pentagon Papers to the New York Times in 1971, and the Times risked prosecution for publishing excerpts, among which was the damning statement by Assistant Secretary of Defense John McNaughton that 70 percent of the reason for fighting the war was to save American face. The Nixon White House was desperate to discredit Ellsberg to preserve dwindling public support for the war - to allow a "decent interval" to elapse before South Vietnam fell to the North, in Henry Kissinger's words.
By Matthew Cooper
Monday 25 July 2005 Issue
Matthew Cooper reveals exactly what Karl Rove told him--and what the special counsel zeroed in on.
It was my first interview with the President, and I expected a simple "Hello" when I walked into the Oval Office last December. Instead, George W. Bush joked, "Cooper! I thought you'd be in jail by now." The leader of the free world, it seems, had been following my fight against a federal subpoena seeking my testimony in the case of the leaking of the name of a CIA officer. I thought it was funny and good-natured of the President, but the line reminded me that I was, very weirdly, in the Oval Office, out on bond from a prison sentence, awaiting appeal--in large part, for protecting the confidence of someone in the West Wing. "What can I say, Mr. President," I replied, smiling. "The wheels of justice grind slowly."
- By PETE YOST, Associated Press Writer
Sunday, July 17, 2005
(07-17) 12:58 PDT WASHINGTON, (AP) --
The vice president's chief of staff, Lewis Libby, was a source along with the president's chief political adviser for a Time story that identified a CIA officer, the magazine reporter said Sunday, further countering White House claims that neither aide was involved in the leak.
In an effort to quell a chorus of calls to fire deputy White House chief of staff Karl Rove, Republicans said that Rove originally learned about Valerie Plame's identity from the news media. That exonerates Rove, the Republican Party chairman said, and Democrats should apologize.
ANTI-BUSH/WAR PROTEST RALLY!
- JULY 23rd, 2005 -Saturday @ 7:00 PM
Downtown Phoenix @ Patriot's Square
Address: 1 W. Washington St @ Central Ave.
This is the 3-year anniversary of the Downing Street Memo.
These minutes & related documents made it clear that British Intelligence believed that President George W Bush had decided on going to war MONTHS even before telling the public or asking Congress. He decided to deceive the public & Congress with lies about weapons of mass destruction & ties to terrorism, and that Tony Blair had in fact, begun the war that summer by drastically escalating bombings of Iraq with NO Congressional approval!
By Martin Bright and Peter Beaumont
Sunday July 17, 2005, The Observer
A controversial fly-on-the wall account of the Iraq war by one of Britain's most senior former diplomats has been blocked by Downing Street and the Foreign Office.
Publication of The Costs of War by Sir Jeremy Greenstock, UK ambassador to the UN during the build-up to the 2003 war and the Prime Minister's special envoy to Iraq in its aftermath, has been halted. In an extract seen by The Observer, Greenstock describes the American decision to go to war as 'politically illegitimate' and says that UN negotiations 'never rose over the level of awkward diversion for the US administration'. Although he admits that 'honourable decisions' were made to remove the threat of Saddam, the opportunities of the post-conflict period were 'dissipated in poor policy analysis and narrow-minded execution'.
By valabor, DailyKos
In all the focus on the minutia of the Plame leak, and with a possible Gonzalez Supreme Court nomination, I wanted to remind everyone of this Harkin moment in the Congressional Record (after the flip).
Could Alberto Gonzalez be a subject in the cover-up portion of the Plame investigation???
In short, after Attorney General John Ashcroft delayed mounting any investigation into the Plame leak, he then delayed informing the White House of the investigation (in order to trigger their duty to preserve documents). Once Ashcroft did notify the White House, White House Counsel Alberto Gonzalez asked if he could wait until the next day to send out the official notice to White House staff to preserve documents relevant to the investigation. Even though the request was extraordinary, and outside any normal prosecutorial procedures, Ashcroft obliged. Harkin laid it all out way back in October 2003:
New York Times
By FRANK RICH
"I am saying that if anyone was involved in that type of activity which I referred to, they would not be working here."
- Ron Ziegler, press secretary to Richard Nixon, defending the presidential aide Dwight Chapin on Oct. 18, 1972. Chapin was convicted in April 1974 of perjury in connection with his relationship to the political saboteur Donald Segretti.
"Any individual who works here at the White House has the confidence of the president. They wouldn't be working here at the White House if they didn't have the president's confidence."
- Scott McClellan, press secretary to George W. Bush, defending Karl Rove on Tuesday.
Add Congressman Tom Udall (Dem., N.M.) to the growing list of Congress Members hosting public events in their districts on July 23rd to mark the three-year anniversary of the infamous meeting on Downing Street.
On July 23rd, bloggers from around the country are invited to post reports and links on the homepage of AfterDowningStreet.org. To find an event near you to report from, see: http://heh.pl/&tm To get a username and password that you'll need, contact us here Please send us your name, URL, Email address, and the location of the event you'll be reporting on. Your posts will have to be approved before they show up, but on the 23rd someone will be watching the site at all times and approving post
Help afterdowningstreet.org raise money with a song!
US-THE BAND (from the S.F. Bay Area) has written a truly great protest song for modern times. It's called "How Did This Country Get So Bad? (I 1 2 NO!)", and it will make you smile, clap your hands, and stomp your feet (unless you are a Bush supporter, of course!).
The song is available for a $1.00 download (plus a 33-cent PayPal transaction fee) at www.ustheband.com
And from now through July 31, 50 percent of all proceeds will be donated to afterdowningstreet.org to help spread the word about this VERY important document which proves without a doubt that Bush is guilty of an impeachable offense: sending American armed forces into war based on deliberately manufactured false evidence - that is, LIES!
PDF of This
Rep. John Conyers, Jr., Invites You to Join Him for a
TOWN HALL MEETING ON THE DOWNING STREET MINUTES:
Mourn the Losses, Learn the Truth, and Investigate the Lies
*SATURDAY, JULY 23RD, 2005*
2:00 - 4:00 pm
Wayne State University Law School
471 W. Palmer
Detroit, MI 48202
Rep. John Conyers, Jr.
Tony Trupiano, Syndicated Broadcaster and Author
Lila Lipscomb, Co-Founder, Gold Star Families for Peace
Prof. Bob Sedler, Wayne State University Law School
Al Fishman, Coordinator, Detroit Area Peace and Justice Network
Please Join Congresswoman Maxine Waters, Progressive Democrats of Los Angeles, Iraq Veterans Against the War & Other Peace Activists for an
Out of Iraq! Teach-in On The 3rd Anniversary of the Smoking Gun Downing Street Memo
Participate in a ...
Day of Truth
Saturday, July 23, noon-3 PM
Covenant Worship Center
425 So. La Brea Ave. (2 blocks south of Manchester in ),
Learn about the Out of Iraq Caucus in Congress & the Resolution of Inquiry
*Congresswoman Maxine Waters, Organizer of the Out of Iraq Caucus
Brattleboro Reformer, VT
The Downing Street Memos have faded from the headlines, overshadowed by the furor over Karl Rove and whether he leaked the identity of CIA agent Valerie Plame to reporters.
We know it's tough for the Washington press corps to focus on more than one story at a time, but we'll make it easy for them.
Both the Downing Street Memos -- the secret documents from Britain's intelligence agency on the Bush administration's preparations for invading Iraq -- and the ongoing scandal involving President Bush's most trusted advisor are both tied together. They show the lengths that the Bush administration will go to in convincing Americans to accept a unnecessary war. They also show how the White House bullied and discredited anyone who got in its way.
Add another great event to the national lineup for July 23rd:
Chuck Pennacchio, Ph.D., 2006 Democratic U.S. Senate candidate, Pennsylvania, will discuss the importance of the Downing Street Minutes in Reading, Penn., on July 23rd.
Learn more at:
P.O. Box 739
Plumsteadville, PA 18949
REP. HENRY A. WAXMAN RANKING MINORITY MEMBER
COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENT REFORM
U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
JULY 15, 2005
Karl Rove’s Nondisclosure Agreement
Today, news reports revealed that Karl Rove, the White House Deputy Chief of Staff and the President’s top political advisor, confirmed the identity of covert CIA official Valerie Plame Wilson with Robert Novak on July 8, 2003, six days before Mr. Novak published the information in a nationally syndicated column. These new disclosures have obvious relevance to the criminal investigation of Patrick Fitzgerald, the Special Counsel who is investigating whether Mr. Rove violated a criminal statute by revealing Ms. Wilson’s identity as a covert CIA official.