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Thursday 23rd June 2005 (00h30) :
June 21, 2005
Ms. WATERS. Mr. Speaker, I am here this evening to talk about something new and wonderful that has happened in the Congress of the United States of America. I am here to talk about a new caucus that is named Out of Iraq Caucus. I am here to talk about the men and women of this House who have decided they can be silent no longer. I am here to talk about men and women who represent various points of view relative to support for the President from the time that he first announced he was going into Iraq to now. I am here to talk about why we have formed this caucus, what we plan to do, but more than that this evening, we are going to focus on our soldiers and those who are in Iraq serving this country, those who are there in harm’s way, those who have been killed in Iraq, those who are up at Walter Reed Hospital suffering from serious injuries, having lost limbs, having lost their eyesight, those who do not know what the future holds for them. We are going to focus on that this evening because it is extremely important for the families of these soldiers to know and understand that we support these soldiers. We know that many of them went there because they were called to duty. They were recruited to go to Iraq because their President asked them to do so, and they wanted to serve this country despite the fact they did not understand all of the reasons why. Many of them went to serve because they thought that Saddam Hussein was responsible for 9/11. But, of course, we know now that Saddam Hussein was not responsible for 9/11, and many of the soldiers know that now.
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.
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 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.
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.
By the Lone Star Iconoclast
WASHINGTON, D.C. — A month and a half after the so-called “Downing Street Memo
By Susan Webb
People's Weekly World Newspaper, www.pww.org
The “Downing Street Memo
By Cynthia Bogard
I think I witnessed history last Thursday, June 16, 2005.
It didn't start off on a very promising note. I was denied entrance to the media-packed, basement room next door to where they stack dirty Capitol cafeteria trays. But as I was standing in the hall wondering what to do, Congressman Conyers passed by and we nodded to each other right before he stepped across the threshold of the closet-sized room, jaw set, determined to change the course of our forlorn nation. He was followed by some of the other 122 Congressional signers of the letter asking President Bush for an explanation of the contents of the Downing Street Memo.
I hope everyone had a chance to watch the Rep. Conyers-led hearings on Thursday, June 16th. If so, you saw the brave leadership of several of the finest Members of Congress. They were well informed and asked the four-person panel critically important questions. If not, please call / contact C-Span and ask them to re-air them as soon and as often as possible.
This is the forum to discuss Congressional events, efforts, meetings and other matters re: the Downing Street Minutes and the After Downing Street Coalition. Please limit discussion to this topic, and discuss other topics under the other forums - Activism, Evidence, Media, or General.
I write to express my profound disappointment with Dana Milbank's June 17 report, "Democrats Play House to Rally Against the War," which purports to describe a Democratic hearing I chaired in the Capitol yesterday. In sum, the piece cherry-picks some facts, manufactures others out of whole cloth, and does a disservice to some 30 members of Congress who persevered under difficult circumstances, not of our own making, to examine a very serious subject: whether the American people were deliberately misled in the lead up to war. The fact that this was the Post's only coverage of this event makes the journalistic shortcomings in this piece even more egregious.
SOME IN CONGRESS MORE VOCAL IN OPPOSITION; RESOLUTION CALLS FOR WITHDRAWAL NEXT YEAR
By Ron Hutcheson
KNIGHT RIDDER WASHINGTON BUREAU
WASHINGTON - Two years after the Iraq invasion, America seems to be losing its stomach for war.
With recent polls finding support for the Iraq war at a record low, members of Congress are becoming increasingly vocal about their desire for an exit strategy. Yesterday, 41 House Democrats formed a new "Out of Iraq" caucus.
Separately, four lawmakers -- two Democrats and two Republicans -- introduced a resolution calling for withdrawal starting in October 2006. It doesn't specify an end point for complete withdrawal, but it bucks the Bush administration line all the same.
TODAY'S DEMOCRACY NOW!:
* The Downing Street Memo Comes To Washington, Conyers Blasts "Deafening Sound of Silence" *
We speak with Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) who is convening a public hearing tomorrow in Washington on the so-called Downing Street Memo and other newly released documents that he says show the Bush administration's "efforts to cook the books on pre-war intelligence." We also speak with former CIA analyst Ray McGovern.
Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D., Calif.), Co-Chair of the Progressive Caucus, is circulating a letter to other Congress Members asking them to sign onto a Resolution of Inquiry.
While Lee's Resolution is unlikely to refer to the possibility of impeachment, it raises the same issues that AfterDowningStreet.org has been raising.
Her letter includes this request:
"Join me in cosponsoring a 'Resolution of Inquiry' to learn -- as the Downing Street memo indicates -- whether steps were being taken by the Bush administration to 'fix' intelligence and facts between the two countries around a decision to go to war."
Congressman Maurice Hinchey believes it is time for a Resolution of Inquiry.
Congressman Maurice Hinchey (D-NY) spoke to the media yesterday.
Here's a quote from the Times Herald-Record article: "If the president intentionally twisted the facts about the Sept. 11 attacks and the Iraq war, and lied to Congress about it, and then elicited authorization from Congress to launch a war that's caused the deaths of 1,700 U.S. men and women along with tens of thousands of others, that is definitely an impeachable offense."
Leaked memo hints at deceit
By Anthony Farmer
KINGSTON -- The Bush administration needs to answer lingering questions that it secretly decided to invade Iraq before seeking congressional authority and later distorted the justifications for going to war, U.S. Rep. Maurice Hinchey, D-Hurley, said Monday.
Hinchey, D-Hurley, is one of 90 congressmen who have signed a letter written by U.S. Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich., calling on President Bush to answer questions raised by the so-called "Downing Street Memo." The memo, leaked to the British press, purportedly offers proof the United States and Great Britain secretly agreed to invade Iraq in the summer of 2002, well before seeking a U.N. resolution to remove Saddam Hussein from power.
Congress Member and House Judiciary Committee Member Maxine Waters (D., Calif.) shook up the Rainbow Push Coalition's 34th Annual Convention in Chicago today, winning huge standing ovations for a speech denouncing President Bush for lying about the war. Waters announced that she and other members of the Congressional Black Caucus plan to inform the House Democratic Leadership that they will introduce amendments on the issue of the war EVERY DAY from now on.
Waters told the crowd that Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean had received attention for criticizing the Republican Party in recent days, but that "he did not say enough."
TELEGRAM & GAZETTE (Massachusetts)
June 09, 2005 Thursday, ALL EDITIONS
SECTION: NEWS; Pg. A1
By Richard Nangle; Telegram & Gazette Staff
Referring to the so-called Downing Street memo - minutes of a high-level British meeting in July 2002 - U.S. Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., yesterday accused the Bush administration of "dishonesty, lack of candor, and lack of planning" in launching war on Iraq.
Mr. Kennedy's statement comes a month after 90 members of Congress, including six from Massachusetts, signed a letter that asks President Bush to address questions raised by the secret British memo, which claims the president had decided by the summer of 2002 to invade Iraq regardless of evidence of weapons of mass destruction there.
In a statement e-mailed to the Phoenix on Tuesday, Kerry spokesman Setti Warren said,
"Senator Kerry believes every American deserves a thorough explanation of the Downing Street memo. The Administration and the Washington Republicans who control Congress insult Americans by refusing to answer even the most basic questions raised in this memo about pre-war intelligence and planning for the aftermath of war. That�s unacceptable, especially with the lives of America�s sons and daughters on the line. John Kerry will demand answers in the Senate. Stay tuned."
BUZZFLASH NEWS ALERT
News from the offices of Congressman John Conyers, Jr.:
Representative John Conyers, Jr., (D-MI) House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member, issued the following statement in response to the joint Bush- Blair press conference and President Bush's and evasive answers to inquiries about the Downing Street Minutes:
"We have moved from silence to stonewalling on the issue of the Downing Street Minutes. The President's contention that he had not made up his mind to go to war on or before the summer of 2002 is now contradicted by the Downing Street Minutes, former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill, former National Security Adviser Richard Clarke, former Ambassador Joe Wilson and a number of former Blair Administration official.
Congressman John Conyers Talks About Bush Lying America Into War and His Campaign to Hold Bush Accountable: The Downing Street Memo and More
A BUZZFLASH INTERVIEW
Congressman John Conyers is the first recipient of the BuzzFlash.com "Wings of Justice Award". "This guy's a Rocky for Constitutional Rights," we note in out citation. "When it comes to champions of democracy, Congressman John Conyers, ranking minority member of the House Judiciary Committee, flies like a butterfly and stings like a bee.... If Representative Conyers had subpoena powers, by now he would have had Bush, Rumsfeld, Cheney and DeLay slinging mash potatoes in a federal prison."
Please post as comments below the responses Congress Members and Senators send you to your Emails.
Senator Ted Kennedy has raised his powerful voice on this issue.
Please thank him, and ask him to address the constitutional consequences of this evidence by endorsing a full congressional investigation via the House Judiciary Committee on whether the President has committed impeachable offenses.
Read Kennedy's statement:
Sign his petition:
On the Downing Street Minutes
by Senator Edward M Kennedy, Daily Kos
Tue Jun 7th, 2005 at 07:18:49 PDT
Cross-posted at www.tedkennedy.com
The contents of the Downing Street Minutes confirm that the Bush Administration was determined to go to war in Iraq, regardless of whether there was any credible justification for doing so.
The Administration distorted and misrepresented the intelligence in its attempt to link Saddam Hussein with the terrorists of 9/11 and Osama bin Laden, and with weapons of mass destruction that Iraq did not have.
06.05.2005 Rep. John Conyers, Huffington Post
We have reached a point where all but the most delusional enthusiasts of the Iraq war have now acknowledged that Iraq did not possess weapons of mass destruction at the time of the U.S. invasion and likely for over a decade preceding the war. Fox News and the President were slow to acknowledge this fact, but now have.
Unfortunately, it seems this rare consensus has lulled many into failing to ask the follow-up question: why were the President and other high-ranking administration officials so definitive in their statements that Iraq possessed WMD? This question is not of a merely historical significance: we deserve to know whether these statements were the result of a "massive intelligence failure" as some have contended or a deliberate deception of the Congress and the American people.
By weldon berger at DailyKos
Fri Jun 3rd, 2005 at 22:05:23 CST
Many, many people seem to be under the impression that the White House has not commented upon the Downing Street Memo.
That's wrong: They have. My White House writer, Eric Brewer, posed a question about it to Scott McClellan at the May 23 White House briefing, and McClellan very carefully avoided disputing that Straw and Dearlove said what the minutes describe them as saying or that what they said was true.
Here's Eric's question and McClellan's response:
Eric Brewer: Scott, last week you said that claims in the leaked Downing Street memo that intelligence was being fixed to support the Iraq War as early as July 2002 are "flat-out wrong." According to the memo, which was dated July 23, 2002, and whose authenticity has not been disputed by the British Government, both Foreign Minister Jack Straw and British Intelligence Chief Sir Richard Dearlove said that the President had already made up his mind to invade Iraq. Dearlove added that "intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy." Do you think these two very senior officials of our closest ally were "flat-out wrong"� And if so, how could they have been so misinformed after their conversations with George Tenet and Condoleezza Rice?
Senator John Kerry has questioned the media silence on the Downing Street Minutes.
The Standard Times reports:
Sen. John F. Kerry yesterday called on Americans to be more aware of the "bait and switch" Iraq war and the "hollowing out" of the Army in the pursuit of a mistaken policy.
In a swing through SouthCoast, the 2004 Democratic presidential nominee attacked the priorities of the Republican Party and President Bush, elaborating on what they are sacrificing -- health care for children, infrastructure, Social Security -- in the pursuit of tax cuts.