Monday, July 18, 2005

In This White House, You're Only "Out" if You're a Convict

In This White House, You're Only "Out" if You're a Convict

Wow. The "high" standard for holding a high position in the White House is apparently that you didn't get convicted for breaking the law. I must say, I'm really impressed with Bush's latest promise.(not)

Funny how the President's pie-crust promises crumble as the focus on Karl Rove gets more heavily concentrated.

Bob Somerby - You were rude

Bob Somerby - You were rude
..and your case against Joseph Wilson is unconvincing.

I am extremely disappointed with and dismayed by Bob Somerby of the Daily Howler, who has bought heavily into Deborah Orin's line of reasoning. Orin has all too often been the topic at Media Matters, an organization who lives to scope out misinformation in the media.

Somerby goes overboard in the rudeness department by saying:
Today’s liberals want to be happy but dumb — just as dumb as pseudo-conservatives have been for the past several decades. He [he?! - my emphasis] wants to be fed stupid tales, in which his side is always right, and the other side is wickedly wrong. And no, he doesn’t want ambiguity!
Insulting, indeed...especially when he uses Orin as his reason.

It's a no-brainer that this case is not the big "Ah-ha!" The Bush administration is always snaking their way out of trouble. This is not "the perfect case" for liberals. To know that Bob Somerby only sees it in that light, for me, makes his star fall to the ground - flattened and dulled. I once enjoyed reading him, with no reservation. His credibility, as far as I'm concerned, is damaged by this line of suspicious thinking about any of our motives for caring about this story.

In accusing Wilson of failing to grasp logic, Mr. Somerby doesn't seem to grasp the logic of the claim that's being refuted. It was never necessary for anyone to claim that any transaction took place. The administration just needed to be able to scare people into accepting the war in Iraq. One of Mr. Somerby's references, used to make someone like myself look "dumb", is Susan Scmidt's WaPo quote:
Wilson's reports to the CIA added to the evidence that Iraq may have tried to buy uranium in Niger
which he never mentions was later corrected by the Post, and changed to IRAN.
(Tip of the hat to Duncan at Atrios):

Beyond all that, the point is this: Karl Rove outed a CIA agent. By 2003, he knew, very well, that there were no WMD in Iraq. He knew, whether anyone would like to admit it or not, that Wilson was right to have questioned those 16 words. George Tenet had publically gotten down on bended knee and apologized to America for those 16 words appearing in the SOTU speech.

I think Bob, an extremely good writer in general, has wasted too much time attempting to refute Joseph Wilson and not enough time directing his energy toward the false justifications for war in Iraq and the lie factory which created them. I wish he wouldn't use people like me to cover for what I see as him being sadly close to the RNC talking points on Wilson. I don't think he's made fair assumptions (or a good case) about my motives for caring about this story or believing Joseph Wilson. I'm insulted.

In all fairness, MyDD has posted Bob's statement after he realized how he had offended others. I still don't agree with his theory - not one bit - but at least he realized how he had offended. Paul Rosenberg and Gary Boatwright expound on their disagreement with Bob.

Michael Ledeen, Judy Miller, "Scooter" Libby

Michael Ledeen, Judy Miller, "Scooter" Libby
Fitzgerald investigation is closely-held, yet it seems to go deeper than "Karl-said/Novak-said" - - and you can bet Judith Miller hasn't decided to sit in jail for no good reason. The Plame outing didn't occur in a vacuum, and the investigation may be going deep. Judy Miller has her reasons to remain silent. Those reasons remain a mystery, and we can only speculate.


I would like you to read a post of mine from May, 2004. It includes discussion about Michael Ledeen, a man so voracious for tackling Iran's regime that he has used the recent London terrorist bombings to try to start a whole new "drums-of-war" campaign for America. It also involves Judith Miller and Ahmad Chalabi. My post from May 2004, provides a glimpse into the way the White House has been forced to shelter some very inconvenient (neocon) "friends" in order to save political face.

Judith Miller remains in jail because she apparently doesn't feel comfortable with the waiver Scooter Libby's attorney gave her - and Chief U.S. District Judge Thomas F. Hogan has chided her for it, making it sound as if the protection she's giving a "source" is some sort of a guise. Worse than the chiding, Judge Hogan has raised the possibility (in open court) that Judy Miller could be charged with criminal contempt if she continues to defy Hogan's order to cooperate in the investigation.

It seems as if Ms. Miller found the waiver offer to be coercive in some way. I'm trying to figure why this would be..(?) Judy's well-known to be a smart, relentless, incredibly well-sourced, and fearless reporter, so I don't believe that fear is her motive for silence. Is Judy playing a martyr/saint?...Is she deliberately hiding something? It's a mystery. It's obvious that the investigators are playing hardball with Miller, and I'm sure they would have played the same hardball with any of the other reporters who failed to cooperate. Her attorney, Floyd Abrams has said:
"Judy's view is that any purported waiver she got from anyone was not on the face of it sufficiently broad, clear and uncoerced."- [Source- WaPo]
Four other reporters have answered some of the prosecutors' questions after receiving specific waivers from their sources, including Libby....yet Judy Miller won't do it. Why?

I believe what we have here is an extremely thorough investigation being run by Fitzgerald, Hogan, et al. As stated in the WaPo, "In this closely-held investigation, federal appeals court judges of very different ideological stripes, and Hogan, have reviewed secret evidence and have agreed that Miller's and Cooper's claims of a right to protect their sources is outweighed by the public interest in investigating a possible breach of national security." We have to believe this investigation goes far beyond the "Karl said/Novak said" chatter being bounced around the media and blogosphere, which has reached such a frenzied fever-pitch that people are beginning to tune it out.

I'm not pointing any fingers and I don't think I'm raising any irrational spectres when I ask this question (also asked by Sidney Blumenthal -
"Who gave Ahmed Chalabi classified information about the plans of the U.S. government and military?"
...and what might this have to do with Judy Miller's part in this Plame investigation?

It's clear that Judy Miller's been one hell of a good reporter in the past, although her character flaws, which consist of her ego and her highly competitive nature, seem to have gotten her into trouble with a White House administration who have masterfully used her, and her character flaw, to exploit their propaganda - which many suspect were outright lies facilitated by Miller through Chalabi. The New York Times has apologized for the fiasco, but the ones who should have apologized to the public first, and foremost, was the White House.

I feel it is important to note, for those who may not be aware, that Judy Miller teamed up with notorious neocon Laurie Mylroie on her first book. At the time, she was a fellow at the Bradley Foundation, which is tied to AEI and Bill Kristol's Project for a New American Century, which led the Iraq war charge. AEI (American Enterprise Institute) is a conservative think tank which is a hotbed of Iraq hawks known as "neocons", of which Michael Ledeen is included.

Ledeen is also connected with a lesser-known player named David Wurmser, who is Ledeen's partner in the closely-knit network of neocons (aka "The Lie Factory") who planned this attack upon Iraq based upon false information. David Wurmser is married to Meyrav Wurmser, the director of Middle East studies at the right-wing Hudson Institute. (See John Aravosis' Americablog analysis from 2004 for connections).

Author James Akins has quoted Ledeen, who has, with enthusiasm espoused by sinister neocons, cited Wurmser's disturbing philosophy on US foreign policy in the Middle East: [basically, saying that the reason to pull down Hussein is the hope that Saudi Arabian monarchy will fall to al Qaeda so that the U.S. could extend the "war on terror" into that region]:
"In The War Against the Terror Masters, Ledeen cites Wurmser in charging that, just before 9-11, "Saudi intelligence had become difficult to distinguish from Al Qaeda." Countless other, similar accusations have been flung at the Saudis by neocons. Max Singer, co-founder of the Hudson Institute, has repeatedly suggested that the United States seek to dismantle the Saudi kingdom by encouraging breakaway republics in the oil-rich eastern province (which is heavily Shia) and in the western Hijaz. "After [Hussein] is removed, there will be an earthquake throughout the region," says Singer. "If this means the fall of the [Saudi] regime, so be it." And when Hussein goes, Ledeen says, it could lead to the collapse of the Saudi regime, perhaps to pro-al-Qaeda radicals. "In that event, we would have to extend the war to the Arabian peninsula, at the very least to the oil-producing regions."

Juan Cole has brought up the topic of Michael Ledeen as recently as yesterday. Mr. Cole tells us to check out Katherine Yurica's posting about Michael Ledeen (*) and understand that Scooter Libby was the liaison to the CIA for the network that ran the Office of Special Plans in the Pentagon - and this is highly significant to this entire story.
Libby's network was in competition with the CIA and many members wanted to permanently weaken the agency in favor of the Pentagon, since they had much more influence there.
The neocons of the Bush administration included members of our own Vice President's offices (if not the Vice President himself). The facts surrounding the creation of (false) justifications for the Iraq invasion has threatened to literally pour out of multiple leak sources, like a decayed old hose that's ready to burst. Judith Miller is an inextricable cog in the wheel of the tangled web of lies. How could she possibly separate herself when her involvement was incestuous?

If you were Judy Miller would you talk? You surely wouldn't want to spend one more day in jail than you'd have to. I suppose it would depend upon the nature of the questions you'd be asked. In Miller's case, I would have to guess that the nature of the questioning must carry the threat of incrimination.

* Seeing the Forest has a Round-Up of the Rove Scandal updates