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2003-06-22 - 5:41 a.m.

Some Breaking News

Still no WMD, so Bush has shifted the blame to the looters. When he runs out of people to blame, will he 'fess up and admit he was wrong?


The hawks in Washington are still harping on Iran. It doesn't matter that Iran has a dual need for a nuclear program: energy for the country and to protect itself from Pakistan and Israel who both have nuclear programs. Nor does it matter that Iran holds fair elections and have co-operated with stabilizing Afghanistan and with the EU on drug trades. No, none of this matters to the Hawks in Washington. They are on a war drive and refuse to be stopped, even though they still haven't cleaned up their messes in Afghanistan or Iraq.


Is Bush-43 going down the same road as his dad, Bush-41? I remember reading after the first Gulf War that Bush-41 was critisized by the CFR for not ousting Saddam. Now Bush-43 is being critisized by a senior fellow of the CFR who was also a General during the first Gulf War: General William Nash. Nash told The Observer the US had 'lost its window of opportunity' after felling Saddam Hussein's regime and was embarking on a long-term expenditure of people and dollars for which it had not planned. 'It is an endeavour which was not understood by the administration to begin with,' he said. Here is more of what Nash had to say:

    Nash said the US had 'failed to understand the mindset and attitudes of the Iraqi people and the depth of hostility towards the US in much of the country'.

    'It is much greater and deeper than just the consequences of war,' he added. 'It comes from 12 years of sanctions, Israel and Palestinians, and a host of issues.'

    As a result, he says, 'we are now seeing the re-emergence of a reasonably organised military opposition - small scale, but it could escalate.'

    It was insufficient for the US to presume that the forces now harassing and killing American troops were necessarily confined to what he called a residue of the Saddam regime. 'What we are facing today is a confluence of various forces which channel the disgruntlement of the people,' said Nash.

    'You can't tell who is behind the latest rocket propelled grenade. It could be a father whose daughter has been killed; it could be a political leader trying to gain a following, or it could be rump Saddam. Either way, they are starting to converge.'

    He said: 'the window of opportunity which occurred with the fall of Saddam was not seized in terms of establishing stability'.

    'In the entire region - and Iraq is typical - there is a sense that America can do whatever it wants. So that if America decides to protect the oilfields and oil ministry, it can.

    'And if America doesn't provide electricity and water or fails to protect medical supplies, it is because they don't want to or they don't care.'


Steve Chapman has written a really good commentary on the unfulfilled promises of the Iraq war. He says, Nothing has gone quite as the supporters of war envisioned. Rather than being hailed by cheering throngs welcoming them as liberators, arriving American troops were generally met with wary caution. But it turns out the critics were wrong, too, when they warned that in time, the Iraqi people would resent the occupiers: It took no time at all.


David Corn, reporting for The Nation, has written a really good report called Probing 9/11. The stance is from the view point of Bruce DeCell, a retired New York City cop who has been attending the latest 911 hearings. DeCell surmises, "The Administration," he says, "and most politicians, really don't want to get to the bottom of it, because they're all implicated in some way, in too many different areas, for too many years." I am inclined to agree with him. And I believe it is for those very reasons that this whole thing has taken so long to get off the ground. Something this tragic should have been investigated thoroughly and immediately, instead, almost 2 years later, we still do not know what really happened that day. The question is, with all the secrecy in this Administration, will we ever really know the full truth?


John B. Judis & Spencer Ackerman reporting for The New Republic make an interesting point about the selling of the Iraq war to the public. They make the point that because of security issues and the need for secrecy to protect that national security, we, the general public, must rely on intelligence information and we must put our trust in the President and his administration to use that intelligence honestly and fairly before committing us to a war. They go on to point out that this was the case because the intelligence just wasn't there. Read the full report. It is quite interesting.


In great Hollywood style, the events surrounding Bush on 911 will be distorted just in time to be aired on tv for the anniversary of that day, and just in time to kick off Bush's massive campaign strategy for the 2004 Presidential race. As reported in The Independent:

    According to one version of history, President George Bush was so slow to react to the momentous attacks of 11 September 2001 that he continued reading to a group of primary school children in Florida even after being informed of the first plane crashing into the World Trade Centre.

    Then, after making an anodyne remark about finding "the folks who committed this act", he was whisked off in Air Force One, first to Shreveport, Louisiana and thence to an underground bunker in Nebraska, where he was hastily coached in the art of responding to the crisis in an appropriately presidential manner.

    That, however, is not the George Bush who emerges from a new television docudrama due to air on cable in time for the second anniversary of the attacks this September.

    In this version, the President is all swagger and seize-the-moment bravado. "If some tinhorn terrorist wants me, tell him to come and get me," he says. "I'll be at home. Waiting for the bastard." "But Mr President ..." stammers his Secret Service chief. "Try 'Commander-in-Chief'," Mr Bush corrects him, "whose present command is, 'Take the President home!'"

    If this scenario sounds like wishful thinking cooked up by the Republican National Committee, it probably is, given that the film, entitled DC 9/11, was produced and written by a direct associate of the President's, Lionel Chetwynd, in close co-operation with Mr Bush's chief political strategist, Karl Rove.

    From the administration's point of view, it is arguably, the most successful attempt to date to recruit Hollywood to help the White House in its war on terrorism - or, in this case, its war on the Democratic presidential nominee in the November 2004 election.


Austrialia's Prime Minister Howard is now underfire after comments made by US General Franks about US, British and Austrialian special forces going into Iraq before the war even officially started. The reason for the controversy is that Howard told Parliment in mid-March that he hadn't committed troops yet - he formally did so on March 18th when he announced the committment of troops; however, General Franks remarks contradict this.

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~Did You Miss These?~

Just a Reminder - Tuesday, Nov. 04, 2003
Ravyne Is Moving - Friday, Oct. 17, 2003
The Mission - Sunday, Oct. 12, 2003
Siege Heil - Thursday, Oct. 09, 2003
Litany Of Lies - Wednesday, Oct. 08, 2003

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