Fear of Clowns

"Faith may be defined briefly as an illogical belief in the occurrence of the improbable."
- H. L. Mencken
gozz@gozz.com

Monday, May 30, 2005

Star Tribune doesn't mince words, minces Bush's invasion of Iraq 

From the Memorial Day editorial in my home town paper,

... On Memorial Day 2005, we gather to remember all those who gave us that ultimate gift. Because they are so fresh in our minds, those who have died in Iraq make a special claim on our thoughts and our prayers.

In exchange for our uniformed young people's willingness to offer the gift of their lives, civilian Americans owe them something important: It is our duty to ensure that they never are called to make that sacrifice unless it is truly necessary for the security of the country. In the case of Iraq, the American public has failed them; we did not prevent the Bush administration from spending their blood in an unnecessary war based on contrived concerns about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. President Bush and those around him lied, and the rest of us let them ...

The "smoking gun," as some call it, surfaced on May 1 in the London Times ...

At a time when the White House was saying it had "no plans" for an invasion, the British document says Dearlove reported that there had been "a perceptible shift in attitude" in Washington. "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 ..."

On the day before Bush's speech, the CIA's Berlin station chief warned that the source for some of what Bush would say was untrustworthy. Bush said it anyway. He based part of his most important annual speech to the American people on a single, dubious, unnamed source. The source was later found to have fabricated his information ...

As this bloody month of car bombs and American deaths -- the most since January -- comes to a close, as we gather in groups small and large to honor our war dead, let us all sing of their bravery and sacrifice. But let us also ask their forgiveness for sending them to a war that should never have happened. In the 1960s it was Vietnam. Today it is Iraq. Let us resolve to never, ever make this mistake again. Our young people are simply too precious.

Ouch. That brings my unscientific tally tracking appearances of the Downing Street Memo in the US media to 47,

My method is searching news.google.com for Downing Street Memo or iraq facts fixed and tallying the results which are not blogs.

Rep. John Conyers is seeking signatures for a letter he's drafted to Bush on the document, asking,

  1. Do you or anyone in your administration dispute the accuracy of the leaked document?
  2. Were arrangements being made, including the recruitment of allies, before you sought Congressional authorization to go to war? Did you or anyone in your Administration obtain Britain's commitment to invade prior to this time?
  3. Was there an effort to create an ultimatum about weapons inspectors in order to help with the justification for the war as the minutes indicate?
  4. At what point in time did you and Prime Minister Blair first agree it was necessary to invade Iraq?
  5. Was there a coordinated effort with the U.S. intelligence community and/or British officials to "fix" the intelligence and facts around the policy as the leaked document states?
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