Friday, October 03, 2003

Former CIA Agent Lashes Out at White House For Blowing Colleague’s Cover-Democracy NOW

Thursday, October 2nd, 2003
Former CIA Agent Lashes Out at White House For Blowing Colleague’s Cover

From the interview:

LARRY JOHNSON: "....instead of focusing on the substance of the issue what is underway we continue to see Scott McClellan engage in this to suggest that because of some political beliefs by ambassador Wilson that that discredits the substance of his report.
Unfortunately, that is what has become typical of politics. We saw it under the Clinton administration and now we're seeing it under the Bush administration. George Bush promised a new tone in town and got the same old note..."

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

AMY GOODMAN: "Larry Johnson to say the least, this is a political firestorm. You're a Republican. Why are you speaking out?"

LARRY JOHNSON: "There's right and wrong in this. I was disgusted by a lot of things I saw happening under the Clinton administration, and I expected a new tone and new direction. Instead we're getting a level of thuggery with -- the White House continues to do it.

What's unfortunate, when I say White House I mean Scott McClellan by raising questions about Joe Wilson's political affiliation. It's not relevant The simple question is, who revealed the name of his wife and compromised her cover status; and why are they attacking Joe Wilson for bringing the news that was available also in other sources which told them that that report that the President based his State of the Union message on was erroneous; and that there was in fact no credible evidence that Iraq was trying to obtain nuclear material. That was used as a pretext for war. That's wrong.."



AMY GOODMAN: " Larry Johnson, it was interesting to watch the Vice President, Dick Cheney, on “Meet the Press” with Tim Russert a couple of weeks ago, because when he was asked about Joe Wilson he said, I never met Joe Wilson, I don't know Joe Wilson.
We did a piece called “Does a Felon Rove the White House” I did with fellow producer Jeremy Scahill.
Looking at what Cheney said, he then went on to say when Russert told him, “Well he was sent by the C.I.A. “ he said, “Who sent him?” clearly raising this question of his wife, I think is the suggestion.
But what about Dick Cheney going to the C.I.A. with Scooter Libby, his top aide, I believe Scooter Libby went, "Washington Post" reported, many times perhaps close to 20, the Vice President went a number of times as well during the period after Joe Wilson gave his report. He says he never heard about this, which is quite hard to believe considering the unprecedented nature of his visits as well as Scooter Libby's. Do you think they have anything to do with this?............................................"


Community Debates on US Foreign Policy Important to Healthy Democracy

This is what our nation needs:
"The People Speak: America Debates Its Role in the World"

See article about the organization's positive effect on American community here.

Related article by Swanee Hunt of Harvard's Kennedy School of Government here.



Speaking of the Harvard Kennedy School, the Institute of Politics at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government will host a series of one-on-one, hour-long, live forums with the Presidential candidates. MSNBC will produce and telecast each forum as part of its program "Hardball: Battle for the White House."
See article.

All the Democratic candidates have been invited to participate. Currently, the following candidates and dates are confirmed.

Oct. 13 - Sen. John Edwards

Oct. 20 - Sen. John Kerry

Oct. 27 - Rev. Al Sharpton

Nov. 3 - Rep. Dick Gephardt

Nov. 10 - Sen. Bob Graham

Nov. 17 - Former U.S. Ambassador to New Zealand Carol Moseley Braun

Has Bush Become a Threat to the Ruling Elite?

This is a Must-Read:
Has Bush Become a Threat to the Ruling Elite?
Who Got Us Into This Mess and Why?

Readers, I do not want you to miss this article.
In my humble opinion, truer words about the current state of the Bush administration were never spoken.
The only part in which I tend to disagree is the possibility of the entrance of one Hillary Clinton into this race. I don't believe you'll see that happen.

"....the Bush Administration, now faced with its first serious opposition from Congress members and editorial writers from leading newspapers, no longer speaks with one clear, albeit simplistic voice..."

Corruption Probe Involving US Oil in Kazakhstan

Kazakhs: Let's talk about succession
By Sergei Blagov
Asia Times
**Corruption Probe Involving US Oil in Kazakhstan**

Greed in America:
This is what happens when good oil men go bad

The eldest daughter of Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev has told the Russian media that her father's opponents "could relax" for the next decade. However, she has become increasingly high-profile in terms of Kazakh domestic politics..


" recent months talk of succession has gained new momentum, being somewhat fueled by an ongoing criminal investigation in New York into alleged kickbacks to top Kazakh officials as part of oil deals between the government and Western oil majors.

In June, a former US oil executive, J Bryan Williams, pleaded guilty to charges of tax evasion and conspiracy to defraud the US government in connection with a deal to develop Kazakhstan's energy sector. Williams, a lawyer, aided Mobil's oil operations in Russia and other parts of the former Soviet Union, including Kazakhstan. The guilty plea of Williams is helping to refocus attention on a bribery case involving unnamed Kazakh officials and merchant banker James Giffen........."


....Giffen, who is chairman of the New York-based Mercator Corp, was arraigned on March 31 on two counts of violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. According to the indictment, Giffen allegedly funneled $78 million in fees from a deal between Mobil Oil Corp and the Kazakh government to two bank accounts controlled by top Kazakh officials. The indictment does not name the Kazakh leaders.

The Giffen indictment is part of a wider US corruption probe that is examining the dealings of oil conglomerates in Kazakhstan. Giffen reportedly served as an adviser to Nazarbayev, and had close ties with Kazakh Oil Minister Nurlan Balgymbayev.

Therefore, Nazarbayev is now understood to be seeking to position his daughter as his successor, allowing him the option of quickly departing office if developments in the graft probe made it expedient to do so. Dynastic succession would also secure life-long immunity from prosecution for Nazarbayev..."


Companion article: Ex-Mobil executive gets prison in Kazakhstan case

"...He [Williams] said that after the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States, he realized that, if he had been killed, his family would have been left to deal with the result of his crimes.

"It would have been a huge mess," he said, explaining that he then hired tax lawyers to help resolve the problem. But the government had already begun its investigation..."

This is why Howard Dean is successful on the road to
President of the United States in 2004-
He understands and in many ways,
has created "the new rules"

A very interesting case made by Joan Vennochi of the Boston Globe.

The new rules of political rhetoric
By Joan Vennochi, 10/2/2003
Boston Globe


"...Candidates like Schwarzenegger, Romney, and former Vermont governor Howard Dean are bypassing the traditional political constituencies and cutting right to the chase, the general voting population. They are banking on their gut feeling that American voters are sick to their stomachs of the same old rhetoric, the same old jargon, the same old broken promises.

Much of the Democratic presidential field is stuck in the old rhetoric, jargon and symbolism. Missouri congressman Richard Gephardt and Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts are up in arms over the notion that a Democrat -- specifically, Howard Dean -- once said something to the effect that Medicare is poorly run. They are so incensed they are trying to crucify him politically in Iowa and New Hampshire by comparing him with Newt Gingrich, the former speaker of the House who remains the devil incarnate to old-fashioned liberals.

Senator Joe Lieberman of Connecticut is also outraged by Dean's suggestion that Mideast peace negotiations might take an actual turn toward peace if the United States isn't automatically on Israel's side in every "negotiation." Then there is all the vying for endorsements from labor unions, women's organizations, and failed politicians like Gary Hart. Within the context of Democratic primary politics, it is heavy pressure, and Dean is clearly trying to placate the interest groups who hold enormous sway in the process. Every time he does, he weakens his campaign argument to the general voting population...."

Krugman: Slime and Defend

'Slime and Defend'
Published: October 3, 2003
NY Times

Bottom line...Bush knew about the inexcusable leaks 11 weeks ago.
What did he do?

" long as the media were willing to let the story lie — which, with a few honorable exceptions, like David Corn at The Nation and Knut Royce and Timothy Phelps at Newsday, they were — he didn't think this outrage required any action..."

And Cheney of course, went out on Meet The Press and pretended he'd never heard of Joseph Wilson.
***AS IF!***

It's no wonder a solid majority of Americans no longer have confidence in these so-called "leaders".
They display very few positive elements of good character when times get tough.
When they're caught in their web of lies, they make an outer-transformation to the sludge they really are under the surface.

As Paul Krugman aptly states:

".... the true test of patriotism isn't whether you are willing to wave the flag, or agree with whatever the president says. It's whether you are willing to take risks and make sacrifices, including political sacrifices, for the sake of your country. This episode is a test for Mr. Bush and his inner circle: a true patriot wouldn't hesitate about doing the right thing in the Plame affair, whatever the political costs.

Mr. Bush is failing that test."


As I commented just yesterday, "A determination to live sustained, proud, cold, and hard lies will never translate to consensus...within or without these United States.

This, ultimately, is the failure of the Bush presidency."

Dohiyi Mir reference

Around the Blogs:

A must-see.
Dohiyi Mir scores a homer with this one!

Al Gore

Al Gore back in the news

Mr. Gore is close to striking a deal to acquire Newsworld International, a tiny cable network owned by Vivendi Universal.
Gore and his backers want to turn the digital channel into a liberal-leaning network. His partners include ex-Democratic fund-raiser Joel Hyatt and media investment banker Steve Rattner, who's said to be lining up financing.

Let's hope it happens...and soon.
We surely could use a sane network.

An entire weblog dedicated to the basic hatred of Europe-
-and a blatant hatred of LeMonde
A Waste of Fine Intelligence

Front Line Voices


Whether you agree with the soldiers' varied opinions or you don't, you may get a glimpse of their reality....and I think they, above all, deserve a good listen.

"....Are American soldiers still dying? Yep, about one a day from my outfit, the 4th Infantry Division, most in accidents, but dead is dead.

If we are doing all this for the Iraqis, why are they shooting at us?"

"...I've already talked the weapons of mass destruction thing to death - bottom line, who cares? This country was one big conventional weapons ammo dump anyway.. We have probably destroyed more weapons and ammo in the last 30 days than the U.S. Army has ever fired in the last 30 years (remember, this is a country the size of Texas), so drop the WMD argument as the reason we came here. If we find it great if we don't, so what?..."

From a letter entitled "Our Real Motivator" by:
Deputy Division Engineer
4th Infantry Division


**I sense a hope to control the tone of what is said on the seems to basically be a
"give us some good-news"website. It seems to be based upon an inherent distrust in the media, which always gives one cautionary pause when weighing the possibility of censorship.
Bear this in mind...but do not close your mind. Read the organization's mission statement below and decide for yourself:**

Front Line Voices Introduction

Since, as the saying goes, perception is nine-tenths of reality, those who control what we learn about the war in Iraq and other conflicts have an immense power. They can spin a victory into a failure, and a perceived failure in the fight against tyranny can only strengthen the resolve of tyrants.

It has increasingly been the complaint of many troops that the picture that the media is painting of the progress in the War on Terror is far from reality. The mission of this site is to get out the full story by posting first-hand accounts as written by men and women who have actually been to Iraq and Afghanistan. There is no editing or commentary by those who run this site, and we will print any letter or story submitted by a legitimate source who has served overseas. Our only goal is to offer you the opportunity to read these stories and to find out what the reality is.


The Kuwait Story--

A fellow blogger wonders the same thing I have been asking....

from the "fast eddie's bullet" blog 10-02-03:

Fast Eddie asks:

"I wonder why...
... the neo-con administration isn't blasting this all over the front pages?"

Kuwait foils smuggling of chemicals, bio warheads from Iraq

"Kuwaiti security authorities have foiled an attempt to smuggle $60 million worth of chemical weapons and biological warheads from Iraq to an unnamed European country, a Kuwaiti newspaper said on Wednesday..."

He goes on to say:

"Hmmm, perhaps when there are actual FACTS they will, until then the Hindustan Times will have to be the groundbreaker. Oh wait a minute... this scoop, probably the most important piece of information since the issue of UN Resolution 1441, isn't even on their front page. May I repeat... hmmmm..."

It makes you wonder, eh?

Jack Straw says it was fail

If you're still feeling gullible, swallow this one:
Coalition Couldn't Have Given U.N. Inspectors More Time, British Official Says
By Michael McDonough Associated Press Writer

"If we allowed more time, we were simply allowing more time for deceptions and defiance by the Saddam regime," Jack Straw told British Broadcasting Corp. radio. "Gradually, the resolve of the international community to deal with this matter would have died down. "

Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Sure Jack Straw.
I presume you are the same Jack Straw who stressed his embarrassment at not finding WMDs in Iraq in the months after the attack upon Iraq?

If we allowed more time, you're saying that Hussein would have deceived us more?
Do you mean more than you and Colin Powell deceived us at the UN with all those WMD ghost stories?
More than your Blair and our Bush spoke of 45 minutes to doom and yellowcake from Niger?

Hey, Jack Straw--Are you saying it would have been better for resolve to have been lost at the UN instead of what actually occurred...losing total respect for your nation and ours in the UN-based international community?
See: "Annan rejects US plan for Iraqi transition-issues stinging rebuke"

I mean, it's fine to have resolve.
David Kay has resolve to spare, but he hasn't come up with one frigging weapon of mass destruction.

What have YOU found, Jack Straw?

And where is Saddam Hussein today, for all your "we couldn't waits"?


Sunni/Shiite Strife in Pakistan-Act of terror takes place

Criminal Sunni Gang Attacks Shiites in the Powderkeg known as Pakistan
Or, as simple George W Bush might simply say,
"The Terrorists Attack the Terrorists"

Bus Carrying Shiite Space Agency Employees Attacked in Southern Pakistan, Five Killed.
By Afzal Nadeem Associated Press Writer
Published: Oct 3, 2003

As you can see, Muslim extremist turmoil is no different in Pakistan than in Iraq.
And THESE folks are the ones making up the supporting troops we're requesting in Iraq?

Is it me...or is anyone else a little shaky on this?

Rush and Bush..only one letter apart

Feeling threatened on 9-25-03,
rump-pimpled draft-dodger Rush Limbaugh
said of General Wesley Clark:

"Note that Clark.. is looking at this like bombing that passenger train and the Chinese embassy during the Kosovo campaign from 15,000 feet; he doesn't want to incur any damage so he's going to have his lackeys do the grunt work."

Typical run-of-the-mouth, run-of-the-mill garbage as we've come to expect from this non-gentleman.

GW Bush's opinion of Rush? "Rush is a great American," the president said.

Yet, ask GW Bush what he thinks of another critic's honesty and greatness....

"But, you know, I don't think we're serving our nation well by allowing the discourse to become so uncivil that people say — use words that they shouldn't be using."
GW Bush speaking about Ted Kennedy


The only "greatness" about Rush is his great ability to squeeze out uncivil bullshit about people he doesn't agree with day in/day out....and never gives an opportunity for a balanced view.

Hey, I'm not always so civil myself, so here goes...

Rush--you totally suck as a human being!