So Wrong for So Long: Greg Mitchell on How the Press, the Pundits — and the President — Failed on Iraq
This is a puzzle any kid can put together. Adults with emotional attachments to the issues at hand may have a little trouble, at first, with putting 2 and 2 together.
AMY GOODMAN: On Monday, Present Bush admitted the Iraq war is "straining the psyche of our country," but he vowed to stay the course. A reporter questioned him about why he opposed withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq.
REPORTER: A lot of the consequences you mentioned for pulling out seem like maybe they never would have been there if we hadn’t gone in. How do you square all of that?
PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: I square it, because — imagine a world in which you had Saddam Hussein who had the capacity to make a weapon of mass destruction, who was paying suiciders to kill innocent life, who would — who had relations with Zarqawi. Imagine what the world would be like with him in power. The idea is to try to help change the Middle East.
Now, look, I didn’t — part of the reason we went into Iraq was — the main reason we went into Iraq at the time was we thought he had weapons of mass destruction. It turns out he didn’t, but he had the capacity to make weapons of mass destruction. But I also talked about the human suffering in Iraq, and I also talked the need to advance a freedom agenda. And so my question — my answer to your question is, is that — imagine a world in which Saddam Hussein was there, stirring up even more trouble in a part of the world that had so much resentment and so much hatred that people came and killed 3,000 of our citizens.
You know, I’ve heard this theory about, you know, everything was just fine until we arrived, and then, you know, kind of that we’re going to stir up the hornet’s nest theory. It just — just doesn’t hold water, as far as I’m concerned. The terrorists attacked us and killed 3,000 of our citizens before we started the freedom agenda in the Middle East.
REPORTER: What did Iraq have to do with that?
PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: What did Iraq have to do with what?
REPORTER: The attack on the World Trade Center?
PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: Nothing, except for it’s part of — and nobody has ever suggested in this administration that Saddam Hussein ordered the attack. Iraq was a — Iraq — the lesson of September the 11th is, take threats before they fully materialize, Ken. Nobody has ever suggested that the attacks of September the 11th were ordered by Iraq.
2. President Bush Gives Iraqi President Saddam Hussein a 48-Hour Deadline to Leave Iraq: We Hear From Dennis Halliday, Ralph Nader, Leslie Cagan and Jeremy Scahill
President Bush last night vowed to attack Iraq if President Saddam Hussein and his sons do not flee the country within 48 hours.
Bush also told Iraqi soldiers not to fight for a "dying regime" - and not to destroy Iraq’s oil wells.
UN Secretary General Kofi Annan ordered the evacuation of the weapons inspectors and humanitarian staff from the country. The first wave of UN workers has already landed in Cyprus. Annan also suspended the oil-for-food program.
Bush’s speech came just hours after the US and Britain admitted they had failed to win United Nations Security Council backing for war. They pulled the second U.N. resolution without taking a vote.
U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan challenged the legitimacy of unilateral military action but refrained from branding it illegal.
In Britain, three ministers have already resigned. The leader of the British House of Commons Robin Cook resigned just after the US and Britain pulled the UN resolution. His resignation speech late last night was met with an unprecedented round of applause and a standing ovation by some Members of Parliament.
Today, Home Office Minister John Denham and Health Minister Lord Hunt of Kings Heath also resigned. But International Development Secretary Clare Short announced she would stay in her cabinet post despite earlier threats to resign.
Russian President Vladimir Putin called for a peaceful resolution said a U.S. attack would have the "gravest consequences." Meanwhile, the Russian parliament delayed ratification of a major nuclear disarmament treaty with the US. A parliamentary spokesman said the decision was made after Bush’s declaration and "in the conditions of the massive US pressure on the international community."
French Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin denounced the United States, for pulling the resolution from the U.N. He said a wide majority of the 15 members of the Security Council oppose the US. He said the US, Britain and Spain are resorting to force "despite the clearly expressed will of the international community."
German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder said today there is no justification for war that will "bring certain death to thousands of innocent men, women and children."
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao opposed Bush’s ultimatum to Hussein, and held out hope of a diplomatic solution.
Meanwhile the U.S. government raised its terrorist threat level to orange, or "high risk," last night as President Bush was delivering his speech on Iraq.
Top federal officials asked states to deploy the National Guard or state police to protect sensitive sites across the nation from possible attack.
- President George Bush, recorded March 17, 2003.
- Denis Halliday, ex-Director of UN Humanitarian Program for Iraq.
Background for following article proofs is here.
"In fact, the entire $1.2 trillion dollars that the sequester is supposed to save could be realized by cutting one unneeded, wasteful boondoggle: the $1.5 trillion F-35 fighter program. The F-35, billed as the next generation all-purpose military fighter and bomber, has been an unmitigated disaster. Its performances in recent tests have been so bad that the Pentagon has been forced to dumb-down the criteria. It is overweight, overpriced, and unwieldy. It is also an anachronism: we no longer face the real prospect of air-to-air combat in this era of 4th generation warfare. The World War II mid-air dogfight era is long over" http://the-free-foundation.org/tst3-3-2013.html
The man once regarded as the world's most powerful banker has bluntly declared that the Iraq war was 'largely' about oil.
Appointed by Ronald Reagan in 1987 and retired last year after serving four presidents, Alan Greenspan has been the leading Republican economist for a generation and his utterings instantly moved world markets.
In his long-awaited memoir - out tomorrow in the US - Greenspan, 81, who served as chairman of the US Federal Reserve for almost two decades, writes: 'I am saddened that it is politically inconvenient to acknowledge what everyone knows: the Iraq war is largely about oil.'
In The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World, he is also crystal clear on his opinion of his last two bosses, harshly criticising George W Bush for 'abandoning fiscal constraint' and praising Bill Clinton's anti-deficit policies during the Nineties as 'an act of political courage'. He also speaks of Clinton's sharp and 'curious' mind, and 'old-fashioned' caution about the dangers of debt.
Greenspan's damning comments about the war come as a survey of Iraqis, which was released last week, claims that up to 1.2 million people may have died because of the conflict in Iraq - lending weight to a 2006 survey in the Lancet that reported similarly high levels.
More than one million deaths were already being suggested by anti-war campaigners, but such high counts have consistently been rejected by US and UK officials. The estimates, extrapolated from a sample of 1,461 adults around the country, were collected by a British polling agency, ORB, which asked a random selection of Iraqis how many people living in their household had died as a result of the violence rather than from natural causes.
Previous estimates gave a range between 390,000 and 940,000, the most prominent of which - collected by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and reported in the Lancet in October 2006 - suggested 654,965 deaths.
About Scalia (rich white dude in Supreme Court):
With that remark, Scalia made clear (if he hadn’t already) that he’s more suited for the talk radio dial alongside Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity than he is for the Supreme Court bench.
The right-wing justice’s rant goes to the heart of long-held conservative ambivalence about democracy: that corrupt politicians will be able to buy off the rabble, with “spoils” or patronage or jobs; even outright gifts of cash. Only men of wealth, property and education could be trusted to rise above such rank bribery, which is why many states had property requirements and other limits on voting in the early days of our country; universal suffrage didn’t even reach all white men until 1830.
Still, Romney only railed against Obama providing “gifts” like healthcare to Latinos and contraceptives to women. Limbaugh called him “Santa Claus,” one of his nicer names for the president, for those popular new programs. A majority of Americans, O’Reilly opined during his election night self-pity party, “want stuff. And who is going to give them things? President Obama. He knows it, and he ran on it.”
But not even O’Reilly implied that the “stuff” Obama gave his voters included their constitutional right to vote.
Judge Scalia Said: Only men of wealth, property and education could be trusted to rise above such rank bribery,
That means, these guys:
Attorney John Bonifaz argues the president has commited high crimes by lying to the American public and Congress about Iraq in the lead-up to the invasion. He makes his case in the new book "Warrior-King: The Case For Impeaching George W. Bush." [Includes transcript]
One of the main reasons for the book’s popularity is undoubtedly Clinton’s account of the events that led him to become the second American president in US history to be impeached.
Clinton denied having had a sexual affair with Monica Lewinsky, a young intern who had worked at the White House. But in December 1998, a Republican-dominated House voted to impeach Clinton, charging him with lying under oath to a federal grand jury and obstructing justice.
While Clinton was impeached over a personal scandal, some say President George W Bush should be impeached for much serious crimes. John Bonifaz makes that case in his latest book "Warrior-King: The Case for Impeaching George W. Bush."
In February and March 2003, Bonifaz served as lead counsel for a coalition of US soldiers, parents of soldiers, and six Members of Congress–led by Representatives Conyers and Kucinich–in a federal lawsuit challenging the authority of President Bush and Secretary Rumsfeld to launch a war against Iraq absent a congressional declaration of war or equivalent action.
The federal courts eventually ruled that they couldn’t decide the case because it raised "political questions" to be addressed only by the political branches of government. John Bonifaz is also the founder and general counsel of the National Voting Rights Institute, a prominent legal center in the campaign finance reform field.
- John Bonifaz, author of the new book "Warrior King: The Case For Impeaching George W. Bush." Last year Bonifaz and a coalition of U.S. soldiers, parents of soldiers and six members of Congress sued the president and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld seeking to prevent them from waging an undeclared and illegal war. He is a Boston-based attorney and the founder of the National Voting Rights Institute.
"This war violates every legal principle governing the resort to force. It clearly has little to do with disarmament, democracy, human rights, or even Saddam Hussein, and everything to do with oil and power."
The report warns that an illegal war in Iraq would threaten the pillars of collective security established after World War II to protect civilians from a recurrence of that unprecedented carnage.
Meanwhile other international law experts say the United States is well within its legal right to attack Iraq. Often cited is Iraq’s failure to abide by the ceasefire agreement that ended the first Persian Gulf War.
Today we are going to have a debate on the legality of a U.S. attack against Iraq.
- Roger Normand, executive director of the Center for Economic and Social Rights.
- Ruth Wedgewood, senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and professor of international law at both Johns Hopkins.
Bush's Legacy: Massacres, War Crimes, Neo-Nazi's, Murder & Terrorism http://www.culturesocietyblog.com/2013/03/bushs-legacy-massacres-war-crimes-neo.html
BBC-Guardian Exposé Uses WikiLeaks to Link Iraq Torture Centers to U.S. Col. Steele & Gen. Petraeus http://www.culturesocietyblog.com/2013/03/bbc-guardian-expose-uses-wikileaks-to.html
Bush's Legacy: Dahr Jamail Returns to Iraq to Find Rampant Torture and a Failed State Living in "Utter Devastation" http://www.culturesocietyblog.com/2013/03/bushs-legacy-dahr-jamail-returns-to.html
Bush's Legacy: Ten Years Later, U.S. Has Left Iraq With Mass Displacement & Epidemic of Birth Defects, Cancers http://www.culturesocietyblog.com/2013/03/bushs-legacy-en-years-later-us-has-left.html
Breaking: Iraq Spies Lies Exposed! & Tony Blair Ignores His Own Spy Agencies! http://www.culturesocietyblog.com/2013/03/breaking-iraq-spies-lies-exposed-tony.html
Amanpour On Iraq: Where were the journalists? http://www.culturesocietyblog.com/2013/03/amanpour-on-iraq-where-were-journalists.html
Democracy Now! Iraq War Timeline Recaps a Decade of Independent Reporting on Occupation and Protest http://www.culturesocietyblog.com/2013/03/democracy-now-iraq-war-timeline-recaps.html
CNN: Drones killing innocent Pakistanis, U.N. official says http://www.culturesocietyblog.com/2013/03/cnn-drones-killing-innocent-pakistanis.html
The Halliburton Agenda: The Politics of Oil and Money http://www.culturesocietyblog.com/2013/03/the-halliburton-agenda-politics-of-oil.html
The Iraq Effect (2007): New Study Finds 600% Rise in Terrorism Since US Invasion of Iraq http://www.culturesocietyblog.com/2013/03/the-iraq-effect-2007-new-study-finds.html
Arundhati Roy on Iraq War’s 10th: Bush May Be Gone, But "Psychosis" of U.S. Foreign Policy Prevails http://www.culturesocietyblog.com/2013/03/arundhati-roy-on-iraq-wars-10th-bush.html