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THE MEANING OF "FIXED"
Ah, it's summertime, the flowers are in bloom, and the smell of panic wafts through the air of that malarial swamp on the Potomac River called the District of Columbia.
The Downing Street Memo is not going away. A month after it was first leaked it remains one of the top ten stories in terms of how many people are accessing the text. Despite wishful thinking by the US Mainstream media, the story of the Downing Street Memo story is not fading away, not even in the face of obvious distractions including Michael Jackson, Africa, and that storm forming in the Caribbean.
So desperate are the Neocons to squelch this story that the mainstream media has been forced to fall back on some patently absurd excuses why they are avoiding the story, including their inability to find a "trustworthy" copy (would that they had been that skeptical when Bush first started talking about Saddam's 'nookular' weapons), and their expert opinion that the average American just doesn't CARE that the President lied to send our kids off to war and their real interest remains the charges being filed against the "Runaway Bride".
None of that has worked, as floods of mail sent to newspapers has forced them to acknowledge the existence of the memo, even if it is just in the "Opinions" page. But the public awareness and interest in the story continues to grow. The story has, as they say in the biz, "Legs".
The center of controversy are these sentences from the memo.
"There was a perceptible shift in attitude. Military action was now seen as inevitable. Bush wanted to remove Saddam, through military action, justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD. But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy."
The text of this memo, which both governments have confirmed as authentic, supports a view of the war in which President Bush made the decision to go to war, then drummed up anything he could find to justify it.
To the families of young men and women who have been killed and crippled in Iraq, this is a devastating revelation. It means in no uncertain terms that our young men and women in uniform did not die or suffer grievous injury to protect the United States from an outside threat. They died and were maimed because, well, just because Bush felt like it. War first, excuse later. Even Paul Wolfowitz has admitted that the WMD claim was just something they all agreed would sucker the American people into supporting the invasion.
Since the invasion, of course, every single claim made by Bush and the Neocons to support the war has been proven false. There were no weapons of mass destruction. Saddam was not helping Al Qaeda. Iraq had nothing to do with 9-11. Iran gassed the Kurds. And had Saddam been the monster we were told he was, the Iraqi people would have taken care of him and his weakened-by-sanctions forces as easily as they are taking care of the mighty US military.
It was all lies.
Bush and his Neocon buddies have dodged the issue of guilt by claiming it as all an innocent mistake. It was an "Intelligence Failure". A goof. A botch. No wrong doing intended. Critics responded by pointing out that an Intelligence Failure is when something is there and you miss it. In the case of the claimed Iraqi weapons of mass destruction there could not be any information about them to be misinterpreted because there were no such weapons. Everything supporting the claims about Iraq's WMDs was made up from whole cloth. A total fiction. Fabricated. A Canard. A fib. A LIE.
The Downing Street Memo destroys the claim that the Bush administration is the victim of a simple misunderstanding. There are other proofs to be sure, such as John Bolton's orchestrated firing of Jose Bustani, the director of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons,