Friday, November 18, 2005

November 17, 2005

Who's Lying Now ?

When did this happen?

WASHINGTON, - White House advisers convene secret sessions about the political dangers of revelations that American troops committed atrocities in the war zone ..... in the face of an increasingly unpopular war, they wonder at the impact on support at home. The best way out of the war, they agree, is to prop up a new government that they hope can unite the fractured foreign land.....The President, meeting with the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told them to pull out all the stops. "don't worry, we're taking the political heat. "Publicly, we say one thing," he told aides. "Actually, we do another."

You are forgiven for assuming that was George Bush and Dick Cheney's talking points yesterday. Actually it straight out of newly released Nixon administration documents from 1969. Back then Nixon was trying to worm out of blow back from the Mai Lai massacre and his illegal bombing of neutral Cambodia. (Full Story)

The reason I bring this up is because yesterday our current President and Vice President were busy furiously denying they lied to get us into another war.

WASHINGTON, Nov. 16 - Vice President Dick Cheney joined the White House attack on critics of the Iraq war Wednesday night when he told a conservative group that senators who had suggested that the Bush administration manipulated prewar intelligence were making "one of the most dishonest and reprehensible charges ever aired in this city." (Full Story)

It took 36 years to confirm that Nixon lied. So, do we now have to wait another 36 years to find out whether or not this administration's lied to us too? Should we have to? After all, democracy is just a sham if citizens are forced to vote in dark.

The President and VP say they did not lie ("I'm not a crook?") Instead they accuse those who who say they did of being the liars. Okay, so let's find out who's lying. The Senate should get on with it's Phase 2 investigation.

But considering the Senate is under control of the ruling party, a Senate investigation is not enough now. Things have gone too far now. Instead Congress should impanel an independent commission, ala the 911 Commission. And, considering that the war in Iraq is an ongoing conflict, time is of the essence. This commission's mandate should be narrowed to the the question at hand: Did the administration make an honest mistake, exaggerate, manipulate, misrepresent or flat out lie on their stated reasons for attacking Iraq? And get that answer to us, not 36 years or 36 months from now, but within 4 months.

And it can be done just that quickly too. We learned today with the release of the Nixon documents, that the answers are already right there on paper, over at the White House. They were there 36 years ago and they are there today. Go get them. If they contain real secrets, keep the parts that deserve secrecy, secret. But expose the lies. Lies are not secrets. They are simply lies -- who knows, they might even be evidence of high crimes and misdemeanors.

Has this administration pulled a Nixon on us? ("Publicly, we say one thing. Actually, we do another.")

Don't you think we should find out – and much sooner rather than too late?

McGovern Redux
Today Democrat Congressman John Murtha formally demanded that US troops be "redeployed" (withdrawn) from Iraq over the next six months. Finally, someone bit the bullet and said it. It was this war's McGovern moment.

When George McGovern came out against the Vietnam War the Nixon gang had a problem on their smarmy little hands. They couldn't paint McGovern as unpatriotic because, while Nixon honed his poker-playing skills behind the lines during WWII, McGovern flew 35 combat missions as a B-24 bomber pilot over Germany. He was among the half of such pilots who survived those dangerous missions earning him a Distinguished Flying Cross.

The Bush neocons, none of whom served in the military, face a similar dilemma in the form of Congressman John Murtha. Bush and Cheney's are now accusing Democrats of aiding and abetting America's enemies by raising questions about their veracity. But Murtha's patriotism is unassailable. In 1966 then Marine Corps Captain John Murtha volunteered for Vietnam, receiving the Bronze Star with Combat "V", two Purple Hearts and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry.

During that same war George W. Bush won several drinking contests in Houston while protecting Texas one weekend each month from the much feared Viet Cong Air Force. Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld successfully avoided the (very) Selective Service dragnet entirely.

Now comes John Murtha, a guy who knows a quagmire when he sees one because he saw one up close. Are George and Dick going to turn their attack dogs loose on Captain Murtha now? I'd like to see them try.

By the way, while Murtha is a Democrat, he is also a favorite of Pentagon brass. Which raises the possibility that Murtha is speaking for frustrated Generals and Admirals sick of watching this administration waste their troops and treasure on a wet dream cooked up by a bunch of chicken hawk neocons who don't know a trigger assembly from a light switch.