Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Hear that? The sound of a gate closing

So it's Tuesday, day after 9-11 and if you go to Common Dreams, you'll see that Matthew Rothschild used 9/11 to lash out at? The administration? The myth-series? Ann Coulter who's demonized the Jersey Girls? Nope. He wanted to spew at a bunch of people searching for answers. That's called gate keepr. He's shutting the gate and saying, "Ye shall not enter." Hopefully, lots of people will realize that this gate keeping is aimed at them. Today, it's people seeking answers about 9-11, tomorrow? Who knows what's next for the soft and center Progressive? But rest assured, they will maintain their requirement that you be middle-aged to be hired by the magazine. Putting a bland face on the movement, The Progressive.

I find that offensive and wish I had links to pull because if I did have links to them (and I thought I did), I'd be pulling the links right now. I feel bad for C.I. who had some nice stuff to say about Rothschild this morning. (It does fulfill the 'curse' C.I. always jokes about. :D) But that's the way it goes. I e-mailed West and asked him what he thought of it? He's the biggest of Rothschild supporters in the community. He said he couldn't believe Rothschild wrote it because it was "so mean." He also said he'll never bother C.I. with highlights from the magazine again.

It was really important for Rothschild to draw a line between himself and what he saw as the "nutty" left. Instead of accepting their passion and respecting their zeal, he wanted to be "respectable." Which just goes to show you that he'll never be a leader on any issue. He can't lead on impeachment. That would be Elizabeth Holtzman, Michael Ratner, David Lindorff, Barbara Olshansky, Lewis Lapham -- none of whom are on staff at The Progressive. In fact, unlike Harper's and The Nation, The Progressive has never even done a cover calling for impeachment. Instead, they played it safe with a little commentary inside an issue that was tucked away so as not to risk being seen as non-respectable.

Exactly what have they supported loudly this year? Guess they're waiting for some internal polling.

They've got Howard and Barbara but neither appears in every issue.

Rothschild always comes off like such a nice guy and now his latest column calls even that into question. I hope it was worth it to him, spewing like that. (Fortunately, I never try to come off like a nice guy or respectable.)

My first thought was, "Why does Rothy have to go nutty when C.I.'s sick?" If you want to gripe about Rothschild, please write me. C.I.'s too sick to deal with this.

You know what I think it is? I think it's a lot of tired and long in the tooth people who need to leave the national stage. Seriously, how does The Progressive expect to have a young readership when they know nothing about young people and don't bother to cover them?

Two things to check out tonight. The snapshot, of course, and Keith Olberman's speech from last night which I'll start with:

History teaches us that nearly unanimous support of a government cannot be taken away from that government by its critics. It can only be squandered by those who use it not to heal a nation's wounds, but to take political advantage.
Terrorists did not come and steal our newly-regained sense of being American first, and political, fiftieth. Nor did the Democrats. Nor did the media. Nor did the people.
The President -- and those around him -- did that.
They promised bi-partisanship, and then showed that to them, "bi-partisanship" meant that their party would rule and the rest would have to follow, or be branded, with ever-escalating hysteria, as morally or intellectually confused, as appeasers, as those who, in the Vice President's words yesterday, "validate the strategy of the terrorists."
They promised protection, and then showed that to them "protection" meant going to war against a despot whose hand they had once shaken, a despot who we now learn from our own Senate Intelligence Committee, hated al-Qaida as much as we did.
The polite phrase for how so many of us were duped into supporting a war, on the false premise that it had 'something to do' with 9/11 is "lying by implication."
The impolite phrase is "impeachable offense."
Not once in now five years has this President ever offered to assume responsibility for the failures that led to this empty space, and to this, the current, curdled, version of our beloved country.
Still, there is a last snapping flame from a final candle of respect and fairness: even his most virulent critics have never suggested he alone bears the full brunt of the blame for 9/11.
Half the time, in fact, this President has been so gently treated, that he has seemed not even to be the man most responsible for anything in his own administration.
Yet what is happening this very night?
A mini-series, created, influenced -- possibly financed by -- the most radical and cold of domestic political Machiavellis, continues to be televised into our homes.
The documented truths of the last fifteen years are replaced by bald-faced lies; the talking points of the current regime parroted; the whole sorry story blurred, by spin, to make the party out of office seem vacillating and impotent, and the party in office, seem like the only option.
How dare you, Mr. President, after taking cynical advantage of the unanimity and love, and transmuting it into fraudulent war and needless death, after monstrously transforming it into fear and suspicion and turning that fear into the campaign slogan of three elections? How dare you -- or those around you -- ever "spin" 9/11?

Now for C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

Tuesday, September 12, 2006 chaos and violence continue in Iraq with AFP estimating that at least 27 Iraqis were reported dead today, in the United States the divider shows his ugly/only face again, CODEPINK asks that you Give Peace a Vote,
In the United States, Bully Boy is coming under fire for a speech given Monday night in front of photos of his twin daughters who were apparently supposed to represent Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein. Speaking to the nation in a nineteen minute pitch during the second night of ABC's VOTE GOP! infomercial, Bully Boy attempted to sell his illegal war on the shaky grounds that "I know I said it would make things worse not to invade and I was wrong, but it will make things worse to leave, forget that I was wrong before."
Using his circular illogic in his seventeen minute pitch, as the
AP notes, "most of his 17-minute speech was devoted to justifying his foreign policy since that day. With his party’s control of Congress at stake in elections less than two months away, Bush suggested that political opponents who are calling for withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq would be giving victory to the terrorists."
Sounding like Ike Turner (or any other abusive husband), Bully Boy looked a nation of soul-surviving Tina Turners in the face and dared to offer, "
Whatever mistakes have been made in Iraq, the worst mistake would be" to leave.
Leave it to
David Stout (New York Times) to play Ben Fong-Torres, embrace the tawdry and notice nothing while concluding, "Democrats have long accused Mr. Bush and his top aides of disingenuously implying a link between the Iraq of Saddam Huessien and the 9/11 attacks."
To clarify for Stout and other would be Fong-Torreses, the two latest sections of the
Senate Intel Report (released Friday) once again found no link, none, between Saddam Hussein and al-Qaeda -- no links, none, between Saddam Hussein and 9-11.
On the fifth anniversary of 9-11, in the midst of a myth-series, Bully Boy elects to address the nation in some sort of effort to offer Frito Pie for the Soul and he is yet again spending "most of his time," talking about? Iraq.
It's not reporting. It's saying that Democrats called heads in the coin toss and now Democrats charge that they won the coin toss without ever noting the fact that, yes, heads won. [
David Corn (The Nation) addresses Dick Cheney's only loose grasp of reality regarding the fact that there is no link.]
Among those Democrats rightly calling the Bully Boy out on his continued and false linkage of 9-11 and Iraq are US Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.
Reid spoke of 9-11 on Monday at the Palo Verde High School in Las Vegas and nowhere in the nineteen lines did he seek to slam Americans or cite Iraq. Pelosi's sixteen line statement on Monday also failed to politicize the anniversary. By contrast, the Bully Boy offered 31 lines that directly brought Iraq, which, again, has nothing to do with 9-11, into the anniversary.
Even a he-said/she-said press could point out that obvious fact. Possibly all the time spent on Iraq prevented the Bully Boy from noting the obvious, which
Greg Palast has,
"It's been five years and the Bush regime has not done that. Instead, the War on Terror is reduced to taking off our shoes in airports, hoping we can bomb Muslims into loving America and chasing journalists around the bayou. Meanwhile, King Abdullah, the Gambino of oil, whose princelings funded the murderers, gets a free ride in the President's golf cart at the Crawford ranch." No word on what's preventing the so-called mainstream press for noting that reality on the fifth anniversary of 9-11. An earlier BBC News Night report by Palast on the Bully Boy's blocking bin Laden probes can be viewed
Bully Boy did get one thing right in his Monday speech: "
America did not ask for this war". No, but the administration did and resorted to lies, then and now, to have their request granted and continued.
In other "I can't believe it's not butter moment"s,
Reuters reports that Richard Zilmer (Marine Major General in Iraq) declared from Baghdad, outside the al Anbar Province, that the Marines have not lost the province. Citing unspecified "areas," citing them from Baghdad, outside the al Anbar Province, Zilmer stated all was going swimmingly in some "areas" -- unspecified areas. Reuters notes: "The statement did not indicate which parts of the province he believed had effective local government." Prepare for tomorrow's audio-visual presentation where Zilmer, using a projection screen and pointer demonstrates that he can find the province on a map so, therefore, it has not been lost.
Zilmer was attempting to spin
Thomas E. Rick's (Washington Post) Monday report of Marine Col. Pete Devlin's assesment that "that the prospects for securing that country's western Anbar province are dim and that there is almost nothing the U.S. military can do to improve the political and social situation there, said several military officers and intelligence officials familiar with its contents."
The violence and chaos continues throughout Iraq.
CNN reports six dead in Baghdad when "a car bomb exploded at a busy shopping district" and that fifteen were left wounded. AFP notes that a police officer and a civilian were killed by a roadside bomb "near Baghdad's University of Technology" and left seven more wounded, while, in Abu Sayda, a bomb took the life of "Brigadier General Ali Hassan Jubur, head of operations in Muqdadiyah's police headquarters" and the deaths from roadside bombings of a police officer (in Samarra) and an Iraqi soldier (in Kirkuk). CBS and AP report a bombing in Middadiyah resulted in at least 4 dead and 24 wounded (and that the same location resulted in gunfire Monday night leaving seven dead). Reuters reports that, in Kirkuk, a roadside bomb wounded Kassem al-Bayati and that three other roadside bombs in Baghdad left at least eight Iraqis wounded.
KUNA reports that, in Mosul, Iraqi police captain Ziad Ramzi was shot dead and, in a separate attack, four other people were shot dead. Reuters reports that they were four family members and that a fifth was wounded. CNN reports that a police officer was shot dead in Baghdad ("outside his house"). Reuters reports: "Dolonel Abbas al-Nuaimi was gunned down Monday outside a jail in Hindiya" while "in police custody" to stand "trial for crimes committed during Saddam Hussein's rule."
CNN reports that 60 corpses were discovered around Iraq and one severed head carried the message: "This is the fate of those who deal with the U.S. forces." AFP reports three corpses were discovered in the Diyala province. Remember that discovered corpses never make the media's daily tabulation of the death toll.
On the issue of corpses,
CNN reports: "Of the bodies taken to the morgue last month, 90 percent had been shot, the official said. The other 10 percent were killed by other means, such as torture, beheading and stabbing, the official said. The official noted that the morgue figures do not include most bombing victims, as that number is calculated separately."
CBS and AP report that Sunnis in the parliament are attempting "to work together to prevent" a bill that would turn the occupied nation into a federation "from being implemented without changes." This as puppet of the occupation is once again out of the country. CNN notes that Nouri al-Maliki is in Tehran establishing relations with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, president of Iran. As the BBC notes, al-Maliki "lived in Iran during the 1980s" and he will be meeting "Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, on Wednesday."
In peace news,
Camp Democracy continues in Washington, DC. Today's events focus on the environmental crisis caused by global warming and this evening Mark Karlin (the editor and publisher of BuzzFlash) will be presenting. Tomorrow is verdict day and Ann Wright and Ray McGovern are among the scheduled participants of the Bush Crimes Commission and World Can't Wait sponsored events. While on Thursday, Danny Schechter is scheduled to be among the participants with a screening of his documentary WMD: Weapons of Mass Deceptions. On Sunday, Camp Democracy will host a number of events and the theme will be Impeachment Day. Among those participating: Elizabeth Holtzman, Michael Avery, Ray McGovern, David Green, John Nichols, Marcus Raskin, Elizabeth De La Vega, Dave Lindorff, David Swanson, Jennifer Van Bergen, Geoff King, David Waldman, Dan DeWalt, Steve Cobble, Anthony St. Martin, Cindy Bogard, Mubarak Awad, Susan Crane, Frank Anderson. The camp has daily activities and admission is free. A complete schedule can be found here.
Events are scheduled through September 21st, the same day that
CODEPINK's Troops Home Fast concludes. Troops Home Fast is currently on day 69 with at least 5023 people participating. CODEPINK is also promoting Give Peace a Vote (Medea Benjamin: "Part of a coalition effort of Voters for Peace designed to create a strong anti-war voting bloc, the petition asks people to pledge that they will only vote for candidates who support a speedy withdrawal from Iraq and no future wars of aggression.") which over 14,000 people have currently pledged to support.
Writing in The Nation, John Nichols reminds Americans to watch the results of the primaries today and zooms in on the Maryland Congressional race John Sarbanes is running in. (He also notes other races.)
Meanwhile, in Australia,
Dan Box (The Australian) reports that the government wants to up the army from 2,600 to 30,000 ("its biggest intake since the Vietnam war") and that this comes while there seems to be no accountability for officers as evidenced by the abuse of Charles Williams and the hearing into the April 21st Baghdad death of Jake Kovco ("Last week, the family of Private Jake Kovco accused a military board of inquiry into his death of being a 'face-saving exercise' to protect officers.").

Be sure to check out Like Maria Said Paz for Elaine's thoughts. Oh! One more thing. Tony showed me this today and we were talking about impeachment. This is an interview with Elizabeth Holtzman care of Truthdig:

Blair Golson: In your book, you lay out five main issues on which Bush could be impeached ["Deceptions in Taking the Country into War in Iraq"; "Reckless Indifference to Human Life in Katrina and Iraq"; "Illegal Wiretapping and Surveillance of Americans"; "Permitting Torture"; and "Leaking Classified Information".] Which of these do you feel has the strongest chance of being provable and leading to actual impeachment hearings?
Elizabeth Holtzman: They're all provable. The issue isn't whether there are grounds. There are grounds, and they're overwhelming, in my opinion. And they spring directly from the constitutional standard that was used during Watergate. The issue is whether there's political will in Congress to use this tool that was designed by the framers of the Constitution to serve our democracy. We see that this Congress, controlled by Republicans, has no interest in holding the president accountable in ordinary kinds of ways--through investigations or inquiries, trying to find out the facts--much less through impeachments. But if control of Congress shifts, there may be an opportunity to hold the president accountable as the Constitution permits.