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BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath

GUEST 30 Mar 04 - 11:28 AM
SueB 30 Mar 04 - 11:33 AM
GUEST 30 Mar 04 - 12:02 PM
Big Mick 30 Mar 04 - 12:08 PM
GUEST,petr 30 Mar 04 - 12:34 PM
GUEST 30 Mar 04 - 01:15 PM
Blackcatter 30 Mar 04 - 01:37 PM
DougR 30 Mar 04 - 01:43 PM
GUEST 30 Mar 04 - 01:58 PM
DougR 30 Mar 04 - 02:20 PM
SueB 30 Mar 04 - 02:27 PM
Nerd 30 Mar 04 - 02:36 PM
Deckman 30 Mar 04 - 02:42 PM
SueB 30 Mar 04 - 02:44 PM
GUEST 30 Mar 04 - 02:45 PM
SueB 30 Mar 04 - 02:49 PM
GUEST 30 Mar 04 - 02:54 PM
GUEST 30 Mar 04 - 02:57 PM
kendall 30 Mar 04 - 03:08 PM
GUEST 30 Mar 04 - 03:20 PM
Nerd 30 Mar 04 - 03:28 PM
GUEST,petr 30 Mar 04 - 03:28 PM
GUEST,pdc 30 Mar 04 - 03:37 PM
GUEST,Whistle Stop 30 Mar 04 - 03:37 PM
GUEST,JH 30 Mar 04 - 03:47 PM
SueB 30 Mar 04 - 03:51 PM
Barry Finn 30 Mar 04 - 04:08 PM
GUEST,JH 30 Mar 04 - 04:11 PM
Bev and Jerry 30 Mar 04 - 04:12 PM
GUEST 30 Mar 04 - 05:43 PM
GUEST 30 Mar 04 - 06:00 PM
McGrath of Harlow 30 Mar 04 - 06:06 PM
DougR 30 Mar 04 - 06:15 PM
mg 30 Mar 04 - 06:22 PM
GUEST 30 Mar 04 - 06:29 PM
Bev and Jerry 30 Mar 04 - 06:33 PM
GUEST 30 Mar 04 - 07:44 PM
TIA 30 Mar 04 - 09:17 PM
DougR 30 Mar 04 - 09:28 PM
TIA 30 Mar 04 - 10:03 PM
GUEST,guest from NW 30 Mar 04 - 11:07 PM
DougR 31 Mar 04 - 11:59 AM
GUEST 31 Mar 04 - 12:37 PM
GUEST,guest from NW 31 Mar 04 - 02:50 PM
GUEST,petr 31 Mar 04 - 05:15 PM
DougR 31 Mar 04 - 05:57 PM
GUEST,guest from NW 31 Mar 04 - 06:58 PM
GUEST,guest from NW 01 Apr 04 - 02:04 AM
GUEST,Teribus 01 Apr 04 - 03:02 AM
GUEST 01 Apr 04 - 03:26 AM
GUEST,guest from NW 01 Apr 04 - 03:27 AM
GUEST,Teribus 01 Apr 04 - 04:38 AM
GUEST,guest from NW 01 Apr 04 - 03:35 PM
Peace 01 Apr 04 - 03:39 PM
Donuel 01 Apr 04 - 05:41 PM
Peace 01 Apr 04 - 06:11 PM
Tiocfaidh 01 Apr 04 - 06:14 PM
Donuel 01 Apr 04 - 07:49 PM
DougR 01 Apr 04 - 11:20 PM
Stilly River Sage 02 Apr 04 - 12:23 AM
CarolC 02 Apr 04 - 12:30 AM
GUEST,Teribus 02 Apr 04 - 01:25 AM
GUEST,guest from NW 02 Apr 04 - 03:02 AM
GUEST,Teribus 02 Apr 04 - 04:53 AM
GUEST,petr 02 Apr 04 - 01:26 PM
Peace 02 Apr 04 - 02:10 PM
CarolC 02 Apr 04 - 02:26 PM
Peace 02 Apr 04 - 02:36 PM
Peace 02 Apr 04 - 02:42 PM
CarolC 02 Apr 04 - 03:14 PM
Peace 02 Apr 04 - 03:20 PM
GUEST,Clint Keller 02 Apr 04 - 07:34 PM
Stilly River Sage 02 Apr 04 - 10:24 PM
Peace 02 Apr 04 - 10:39 PM
GUEST,Clint Keller 03 Apr 04 - 03:33 AM
CarolC 03 Apr 04 - 10:35 AM
GUEST,Clint Keller 03 Apr 04 - 06:18 PM
Peace 04 Apr 04 - 11:31 AM
dianavan 04 Apr 04 - 01:27 PM
DougR 04 Apr 04 - 01:36 PM
Peace 04 Apr 04 - 01:54 PM
GUEST,Clint Keller 04 Apr 04 - 02:32 PM
Peace 04 Apr 04 - 02:46 PM
GUEST,guest from NW 04 Apr 04 - 10:13 PM
dianavan 05 Apr 04 - 12:58 AM
Teribus 05 Apr 04 - 04:06 AM
GUEST,pdc 05 Apr 04 - 02:02 PM
GUEST,petr 05 Apr 04 - 04:12 PM

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Subject: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 11:28 AM

Looks like Bush/Cheney campaign is going to win this one in the public opinion wars.

From GoogleNews:

White House allows Rice to testify in public


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: SueB
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 11:33 AM

Interesting conclusion, guest. One could also conclude that Bush/Cheney had LOST in the public opinion polls, and have
had to cave in under pressure.

Shall we wait and see Rice's testimony before we come to any more conclusions?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 12:02 PM

Oh SueB, were it about what really happened leading up to 9/11. It is so not about that. It is all about the Committee to Re-elect the President politicking.

Do you really believe this wasn't the strategy all along? Now she will nitpick each and every little thing Richard Clarke said in his book and in his testimony, until it looks like a big pile of doubt.

That is what Powell did when he went to the UN to argue the "compelling case" in the lead up to the Iraq war. The Bush/Cheney team are masters at this. I've never seen anyone do evil with greater finesse than this group.

By the time Rice is done testifying, the Clarke case against the Bush White House will be made to disappear from the media (due to back channel pressure and interference from the White House), and the public opinion polls will show (as they already do) that the character assassination of Clarke was wildly successful. The American public not only will not believe Clarke, they will believe he had a personal ax needing grinding with the White House. He will be portrayed as an enemy of Bush state, and therefore, an enemy of America.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Big Mick
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 12:08 PM

GUEST, sit down cause I don't want you to swoon, but I completely agree with you on this one. This is not bowing to pressure, this was the tactic from the git go. It is now up to progressives to not let the Bush-Cheney folks create enough premise shifting smoke to lose the substance of Clarke's charges.

Mick


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,petr
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 12:34 PM

even on macneil lehrer newshour all the journalists (including the republican ones) agreed she should testify - it is hard after all to appear on every talk show and than claim executive privilege not to testify. (of the 247 misleading statements about Iraq made by the bush govt, 10 were totally false and 4 of those were by Rice)

they also agreed to let her testify on the provision that there be no further public testimony from Rice or any other White House officials.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 01:15 PM

The Bush administration had vetted Clarke's book for several months prior to it's publication.

Anyone who thinks the White House refusal to allow Rice to testify, followed up by the conservative outcry to let her testify, and the neatly wrapped gift of Rice's public testimony under oath laid on the doorstep of the 9/11 commission today, wasn't the Rove/Hughes strategy all along needs to stop consuming mainstream news so gullibly and readily.

This group is far and away the best group of devious and deceptive spinmeisters I've ever seen. What makes them such a tremendous threat to our democracy, as John Dean of Watergate fame pointed out in his book, is that their sole raison d'etre is to keep themselves and the boss in power by intentionally deceiving the public.

I can't believe how good they are at this.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Blackcatter
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 01:37 PM

And of course, we all know that she'll only tell the truth and even if she does shade the truth, she'll never be punished for it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: DougR
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 01:43 PM

Mick: even if Condi Rice's testimony refutes Clarke's testimony? So you are siding with Clarke even before she testifies under oath. Interesting.

Anyone interested can find the letter the White House sent to the Chair and Co-Chair of the Commission on the Drudge Report. It's also reproduced under the Associate Press News.

I don't know how widely it has been printed in other newspapers, but one of our state's senators (the effective one, Jon Kyl)wrote an op-ed piece for the Scottsdale Tribune that is most interesting. He chairs the Senate Sub-Committee on Intelligence, and Clarke appeared before his committee many times during the eight years Clarke served President Clinton and President Bush. I would urge you to seek it out and read it. Sorry I can't supply a blue clicky.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 01:58 PM

Doug, anyone who has witnessed the Bush administration's full court press in the media in the last week already knows what Rice will testify to, and what she won't testify.

You think the oath means anything to people like them? The only reason why the oath part is meaningful to them is because of it's legal ramifications--they can get nailed with more criminal charges for what they say under oath. Which is why what we will get is nitpicking as a stonewalling tactic. Even when asked pointedly direct questions, these pros don't answer, they hedge, respond vaguely that they stand by what they said previously, they disagree with the interpretations of their critics, blah blah blah.

But they NEVER address the charges directly. Never.

We won't learn a thing from Rice's testimony, just as we didn't learn a thing from Powell's testimony or Rumsfeld's. None of them will ever admit the intentionally lied to deceive the American public and Congress, even though it is now the conventional wisdom that is exactly what the Bush White House does as standard operating procedure.

Even the majority of people in other countries believe that. Even half of the American voters believe it in this instance.

Only the blind ideologues like yourself can't see it Doug. But the rest of us have sat here watching the Bush deception unravel. All we are left to wonder now is, will the unraveling make any difference, or is their grip on power too great for our democracy to be saved?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: DougR
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 02:20 PM

GUEST: it pains me to reply to a "Guest" but I must.

Your post, in which you express your personal views, is well written but, in my opinion, off base.

You have no evidence that Powell, Rumsfield, or anyone else from the current administration lied to the commission. You just want to BELIEVE that they did!

Your attitude, which is as cemented in stone every bit as much as mine ...though we are diametrically opposed in point of view, is the very reason I think it is unimportant whether or not Condi Rice testifies before the committee under oath.

She is not going to say anything that she has not told the commission before, EXCEPT, she, more than perhaps anyone else, is in a position to refute the charges Clarke made against the Bush administration and she may do so. So those of you who are Bush haters may regret that she is testifying. She may burst your bubble! She may prove Clarke wrong.

But ...you will not believe her.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: SueB
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 02:27 PM

Any one who doesn't think exactly what you think is a gullible consumer of mainstream news? Hmm.

I'm glad some one, especially such a brilliant someone as you, guest, is privy to the Rove/Hughes strategy. And here I thought
young Bush and his cronies were just a transparent bunch of bungling megalomaniacs, kept barely afloat by the power of Big Money with the tacit permission of a public which is one part poorly educated, one part apathetic and one part knee-jerk reactionaries nostalgic for a "simpler, better" time when America was Number One!

(I'm leaving out parts, of course. This would be a good place for a Venn diagram.)


Thank goodness you have come along to show me, anonymously, the error of my ways. It turns out they're not a bunch of bungling megalomaniacs at all, they're actually devilishly smart! Smarter than any one else, except, of course, anonymous you! Who sees through it all, because you're so smart! Please let me know where I can sign up for your course in "Discerning Evil Genius." And please, don't hide your light under a bushel basket, but reveal your true identity, so we may all bask in the glow of your brilliance.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Nerd
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 02:36 PM

And DougR WILL believe Rice and will not believe Clarke, no matter what Rice says. Let's face it, there will precious little "evidence" that any of us will be privy to, anyway; it will all be "he said, she said" by the time this is over, so can you blame any of us, including DougR, for going with our political instincts?

There is only a small number of people out there whose minds can be changed by ANY testimony before the commission. This is why it WAS important for Bush and Co. to put her out there. By letting Clarke testify without a rebuttal, the administration risked losing those people in the next election. By letting Rice get the last word (for surely she will trump the previously obscure Clarke in the media), they insure the Lion's share of those voters. At least that's the theory.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Deckman
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 02:42 PM

Sometime, somewhere, I would love to read a serious LEGAL discussion of just what "under oath," really means. Under who's oath? Under what oath? Which bible? Why the right hand? Does "under oath" mean that I cannot lie? Can a non-believer even take the oath? HMMMM? Bob


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: SueB
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 02:44 PM

Whose, theory, Nerd?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 02:45 PM

"Please let me know where I can sign up for your course in "Discerning Evil Genius."

Touche. Now that is a great comeback.

So SueB, am I correct in assuming then, that you believe Ms Rice to be a credible witness? One who can be taken at her word?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: SueB
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 02:49 PM

I would rather see Ms. Rice's testimony, guest, before drawing any conclusions about it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 02:54 PM

FYI.

Many people lie under oath. Not many of them get caught. But of the ones who do, there are legal repurcussions of lying under oath. Lying to Congress while under oath is a big deal legally, and can get you jail time. Which is why Republican Senate Majority Leader Frist's first response to Clarke's testimony was to accuse him of perjuring himself. That charge will never stick legally, of course. But that wasn't why he made the charge. He made the charge in the hope it would stick to Clarke in the public's eye. It played very well on Faux News and in the Washington Times, I hear.

In the courtroom where I just served jury duty, no one was sworn in using a Xtian bible, nor were they required to take the oath by saying "so help me God".


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 02:57 PM

Well, my mind is made up, and I see no reason to give any creedence to her testimony. I felt the same way when Powell testified to the UN prior to the invasion of Iraq. This administration isn't credible to me. The pile of evidence that now exists that members of this administration have routinely intentionally mislead the Congress and the American people is insurmountable.

You are, of course, entitled to make up your mind in your own time and come to any conclusion that seems reasonable to you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: kendall
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 03:08 PM

Even if Clark is out in left field, what about Paul O'Neill and the Chairman of the joint chiefs? Are they all wrong too?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 03:20 PM

If Clark is any field, I assure it isn't the left one. Not by a long shot. The guy is as conservative and gung ho military as they come.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Nerd
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 03:28 PM

SueB,

I meant the theory behind allowing Rice to testify; hence, the administration's. Surely they didn't think, even if it is "the truth," that her testimony matters BECAUSE it is "the truth." If that were the case they would not have resisted her testifying in the first place. Her testimony matters because of the image it presents of the administration.

Part of the set-up was to have Rice go on about how important a principle it is that the NS advisor NOT testify before Congress. Now it looks like the administration is bending over backwards to help out. It matters not what she says, or whether it is true: none of us will be able to verify it. What matters is the impact on that small group of voters who may be swayed.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,petr
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 03:28 PM

Id tend in the direction of bungling megalomaniacs kept afloat by big money than evil genii - (I enjoyed that exchange btw SUe & guest)
either way though - if its a question of credibility? Id say the WhiteHOuse.

the facts
lets face it: the pretense for going to war was WMDs and the immediate threat to the west. when the wmds failed to appear (and as David Kay said they are not likely to appear) the focus became Iraqi freedom and democracy - but then the US is handing over power before free elections can be held - so forget democracy. Now they are saying
it doesnt matter about WMDs because Saddam was a bastard and the world is better off without him.

at the same time a CIA agent that infiltrated and exposed the nuclear black market operated by AQ Khan the pakistani father of the bomb - and the worlds most dangerous nuclear proliferator
sharing nuclear secrets with Libya, Iran and North Korea (hey isnt that the axis of evil - and pakistan our key ally against it?)

(who was immediately pardoned by Musharraf an unelected dictator). Even though Teribus tried to refute it - I didnt hear any complaints from the white house - and even minimal coverage in the press-

- wasnt the original focus of the war on terrorism - nuclear proliferation and the axis of evil - and are we safer after 9/11
with 2/3 of Alqaeda eliminated - well in the 30 months after 9/11
the attacks around the world increased and up to 1950 people have been killed. Compare that with the 30 months before 9/11.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 03:37 PM

One interesting aspect of the O'Neill and now the Clarke accusations is that the White House, rather than attempting to rebut the accusations with facts, have attempted to discredit the accusers.

Another interesting aspect is that to get Rice to testify under oath and in public, the White House struck a deal with the 9/11 commission: we'll give you Rice in exchange for Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and Perle not having to testify.

And people are still asking why the White House required 29 pages of the original report on 9/11 classified as Top Secret and not released.

If it looks like a duck....


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,Whistle Stop
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 03:37 PM

Anyone who claims that it's obvious that the Bush administration (or the Rove/Hughes machine) planned all along to have Dr. Rice testify under oath should have predicted this beforehand. Did any of you offer up that prediction before today?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,JH
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 03:47 PM

so it's come to this. There is nothing that either side can do or say to change the mind of the other. Mick has his (very good) mind closed before Rice testifies.

A house divided against itself cannot stand. I don't give "us" long. Too bad. It was a cool run while it lasted.

Oh, I remember that same freaked-out feeling of Clinton's invincibility (teflon-coating) no matter what he did. But, just as you will all change your minds about presidential power when Bush loses in November -- and you remember back to thes wierd. kookburger, over-involved conspiracy schemes -- you'll see that there are things bigger than any single administration.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: SueB
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 03:51 PM

"The pile of evidence that now exists that members of this administration have routinely intentionally mislead the Congress and the American people is insurmountable."

I don't disagree with this statement.

To say the administration lacks credibility seems to me to be belaboring the obvious.

I also believe Rice has deliberately and knowingly lied to the public. How she has managed to rationalize this to herself, I have no idea.

This doesn't mean I feel I can predict what will happen when Rice sits in the hotseat before the Congressional Committee.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Barry Finn
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 04:08 PM

A very interesting article. Larry served with the CIA from 1985 through 1989 and worked in the State Department's office of Counter Terrorism from 1989 through 1993.


I also thought I heard on NPR that another official, maybe 3rd under Clarke came forward to back some of Clarke's claims.


The War on Clarke


By Larry C. Johnson, TomPaine.com

March 30, 2004


Richard Clarke must be wondering if explaining what the United States did not do in the war on terrorism is more dangerous than actually fighting the terrorists. Clarke, the former terrorism czar for both Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, is now being vilified by a host of Bush officials, including Dick Cheney and Condoleezza Rice, as a liar.



The attack on Clarke, which consists of leaks, threats and intimidation tactics, has become the genuine hallmark of the Bush presidency. Previous victims of the Bush smear machine include:


Army Chief of Staff Eric Shinseki, who challenged the fantasy spun by Don Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz and correctly insisted that several hundred thousand troops would be needed to pacify Iraq.


Ambassador Joseph Wilson, who had provided the Bush administration with a report that Niger had not supplied Iraq with uranium yellowcake essential for building a nuclear device. Not only were his character and competence called into question, but his family's security was jeopardized by a White House leak that his wife, Valerie Plame, was a covert CIA operative.


Secretary of the Treasury Paul O'Neill, who reported on the Bush administration obsession with Iraq and talk early on of removing Saddam Hussein. These smear campaigns were mild compared to the vicious assault now underway against Richard Clarke. What is the truth about Richard Clarke?


I was neither a personal friend nor fan of Richard Clarke when I was in government. Richard Clarke, in my experience, was arrogant and intense. He probably still is. (People who know me would suggest that I am the pot calling the kettle black.) However, Richard Clarke also is a competent professional who has served faithfully with Democratic and Republican administrations since the 1970s.


My first contact with Mr. Clarke came during January of 1991 in the operations center at State Department. Clarke, who was the assistant secretary of state for political military affairs, had been denied space in the task force area, and my boss, State Counterterrorism Chief Morris Busby, interceded for Clarke and carved out space for his PM unit. Our two groups shared space in the back rooms of the task force area.


In 1992, Clarke was exiled to the National Security Council over a flap involving Israel. I was told at the time that this move was intended to get rid of him. Those who hoped that banishing Clarke to the National Security Council would lead to his dismissal from government did not understand what a formidable professional he was.


I left government service in 1993 but continued to monitor Clarke's counterterrorism activities through friends and former colleagues in the various policy and intelligence bureaucracies. Some close friends complained (and still do) that Richard was too alarmist and too pushy on some issues. While some can quibble about his personality, there should be no dispute that Richard Clarke was an aggressive advocate for a tough response to terrorism.


Unfortunately, politicians in both parties chose to ignore him on key issues. President Clinton, for example, sat on the Presidential Decision Directive 39, which laid out his administration's plan for fighting terrorism, for 28 months after taking office in January of 1993. Clinton finally signed the document after the Oklahoma City bombing in April 1995. Clarke pushed to get it done sooner but ran up against political apathy in the early days of the Clinton administration.



Clarke was just as pushy with the Bush administration. In the first months of the Bush presidency a terrorism issue unrelated to Al Qaeda, which first surfaced during the Clinton administration, came to the front burner. Four U.S. oil workers were being held by individuals tied to Colombian terrorists in the jungles of Ecuador. The U.S. Embassy requested the deployment of U.S. counterterrorism forces (civilian and military) to Ecuador to help find and rescue the workers.


Clarke chaired a meeting of the Counter Terrorism Support Group (CSG) at the Old Executive Office Building to consider the matter. He wanted to grant the request and was backed by the Department of State, the CIA and the FBI. The Department of Defense, however, balked. At the end of the day, the Bush administration, against Clarke's recommendation, chose to treat terrorism in Ecuador as criminal matter rather than a military issue. U.S. military forces stayed at home.



Clarke has told the uncomfortable truth in his book, and now finds himself the target of the full fury of angry Bush partisans, who insist that fighting terrorism was Bush's highest priority. The evidence shows otherwise.


For starters, Clarke presented a memo to Condi Rice outlining the URGENT (this tag is on the document) threat presented by Al Qaeda in January 2001. While Dr. Rice insists she made terrorism a top priority, one of her first decisions in the early days of 2001 was to downgrade Clarke's position as the National Coordinator for Counter Terrorism. How is that making terrorism an elevated priority? It is not. Clarke also requested in January 2001 that President Bush convene a meeting of principal Bush officials (e.g., the secretary of state, secretary of defense and the attorney general) but this meeting was postponed by Dr. Rice until Sept. 4, 2001. That seven-month gap represents time that, in retrospect, could have been used to prevent the 9/11 attacks.



The Clarke bashers also insist that that no more could have been done before 9/11 than what was done during the first eight months of the Bush presidency. Oh? If that was the case, then why did Bush direct the airlines to lock cockpit doors after 9/11? Why did the Bush administration decide to arm pilots, put more air marshals on planes and federalize the security force doing screening at airports? Why did the Bush administration order attacks on Al Qaeda camps in Afghanistan if, in the words of the Bush spinners, "we did all that we could do prior to 9/11"? Why did Bush officials establish emergency financial task forces comprised of intelligence and law enforcement officials to hunt down the trails of terrorist financing if all had been done prior to 9/11?


The uncomfortable facts show that Richard Clarke proposed many of these measures in the early days of the Bush presidency. Action was taken only in the aftermath of 9/11.


Here is the bottom line – Richard Clarke was right, and the Bush administration and the people of the United States would have been better off if his warnings in the early days of 2001 had been heeded.


Rather than attack Richard Clarke's character, Republican operatives should focus their venom on the terrorists who killed Americans in the World Trade Centers and the Pentagon. George W. Bush should set the tone and thank his former terrorism chief, apologize for this week's ugliness, and focus on getting Osama Bin Laden. As one American, I say: Thank you, Richard Clarke.



Larry C. Johnson is a member of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity. He served with the CIA from 1985 through 1989 and worked in the State Department's office of Counter Terrorism from 1989 through 1993. He also is a registered Republican who contributed financially to the Bush Campaign in 2000.


Barry


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,JH
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 04:11 PM

so defending yourself is smearing the oppostition.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Bev and Jerry
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 04:12 PM

"...Her horrible deeds she did not deny
For to do so she would have had to lie
And lying she knew was a sin, a sin
And lying she knew was a sin"

Bev and Jerry


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 05:43 PM

I disagree that because we live in "a house divided" as someone up the line claimed, that we can't get at the truth.

What we have seen in the past year, since the US invasion of Iraq, is the truth that was hidden from plain view, is now coming into plain sight. The facts, slowly but surely, have come out about how this administration pulled out all the stops to get the Congress to pay for an invasion of Iraq, when Iraq was the last place we needed to focus our attention, on a long list of neglected priorites.

But where I disagree with Clarke, is that the first priority should have been AlQ. The first priority should have been the nuclear blackmarket run out of Pakistan by our good friend and ally, on behalf of all our sworn enemies.

The second priority should have been Afghanistan.

The third priority, cutting off the head of AlQ's racketeering.

Killing Bin Laden, based upon what we all know now after all the testimony, revelations, and damn lies being exposed in the past year, should have been a bit lower on the list than what Clarke has said it should be. Nukes trump everything.

WMDs are the biggest threat to the national security of the US and to the world. But nobody, not the Clinton administration, not the Bush administration, gives a rats ass about them, because it is the monster we created, and it is a monster that makes a lot of very rich and powwerful men even richer and more powerful.

But nobody talks about that. Nobody batted an eye when the Bush administration unilaterally abrogated our nuclear treaties as soon as he got in office. How come that fact was never brought in the context of the need to find Saddam's WMDs, hmmmmm?

We all know now, we shouldn't have stopped with the invasion of Afghanistan, we should have gone into Pakistan too. Iraq was so far down on the list of threats it boggles the mind to think the mainstream media, the punditocracy, the policy wonks, everybody bought into the Iraq lie. It has to be the biggest of Big Lies that has come down the pipeline in awhile.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 06:00 PM

DugR, when there is conflicting testimony, the first thing I look at is what is the person's likely motives for saying what they are saying.

Clarke has nothing to fear. He can't get fired, because he isn't in the administration anymore. He apparently doesn't fear prosecution for perjuring himself, so presumably he either has the goods, or knows where the goods are at the very least, that would exonerate him of any such charge.

Now, what would Rice's motives be? To protect the president and his administration, including covering her own ass, so there are no more investigations into adminstration actions.

Let us not forget Doug, in the Watergate era, Nixon administration officials lied, engaged in a cover-up, and conspiracy to cover-up, lied again and again to Congress and the American people, and finally, did jail time. Quite a few of them, in fact.

These are serious charges we deserve to the answers to, yet you and some others here, are pretty damn glib about all this. You are prepared to dismiss anything former administration officials have said that is critical of the president and the current administration.

Why would you be so uncritical and unconcerned about these charges, given the history of such deceptions, conspiracies, and cover-ups being exposed in our recent history?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 06:06 PM

"Your attitude, which is as cemented in stone every bit as much as mine..."

That's very honest, Doug - but is it really a good thing in either case?

There's a time for "no surrender" but there's also a time when it is necessary to be ready to withdraw. That applies just as much in arguments as it does in physical conflicts.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: DougR
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 06:15 PM

GUEST: if you have been a member of this forum for long, you will know that I have not been uncritical. I have been very critical of the Clinton administration for lobbing tennis balls at Al Quida instead of taking a more aggressive stance.

On the other hand, I will admit, had Clinton chosen to do so, he probably would have been as crucified for taking such aggresive action and probably would never have won the Congress over to approve it.

9/11 changed everything.

Bush could take the aggresive action he took because of it. I would also remind you that the first act did not take place in Iraq, it took place against the Taliban in Afghanstan. Somehow this fact becomes lost in all the rhetoric about the Iraq invasion.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: mg
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 06:22 PM

I just don't have time to read all the posts here due to a computer problem, but I wish/hope/pray that our desire for a safe world and effective opposition to the terrorists (see today's Drudge report about Londona and Philippines) is outweighed by our desire to see Bush humiliated/removed from office etc. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 06:29 PM

That's just the point! There is compelling evidence that Bush and Co. were more worried about an old grudge than about effective opposition to the terrorists.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Bev and Jerry
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 06:33 PM

"I would also remind you that the first act did not take place in Iraq, it took place against the Taliban in Afghanstan."

That act consisted of sending a small number of special forces troops to Afghanistan to help the existing rebel forces rout the Taliban government. Those special forces were then moved to Iraq to capture Sadaam. While they were looking for Sadaam, the Taliban regained control of about half of Afghanistan. Now they're back in Afghanistan looking for Osama.

The special forces apparantly are well trained to successfully fight the battle with terrorism. So why do we have 130,000 American targets in Iraq who are not trained to fight terrorism?

Bev and Jerry


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 07:44 PM

And our troops in Afghanistan still won't be allowed to chase the Taliban and AlQ into our friend Pakistan's territory by our friend Musharraf.

DougR, the problem is, you are only willing to be critical of your sworn enemy. We will never get at the truth unless we are willing to examine our friends' houses too. And look critically at our own assumptions.

I have no problem whatsoever condemning Clinton's response to the worst national security threats, as I have no problem condemning Bush's response to those same threats.

You just don't seem to be able to admit your man may well have done some things badly, that he may have been wrong in his assumptions.

Why the partisan reaction Doug? If the 9/11 commissioners be act in a unified way to get at the truth, why the hell can't you?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: TIA
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 09:17 PM

If DougR or Teribus ever admit that their hero Georgie may just possibly have made even the slightest misjudgement, I think I will keel over on the spot.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: DougR
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 09:28 PM

Well, TIA, I certainly can't speak for Teribus, but I don't want to be responsible for that!

Bev and Jerry: they are there to try to bring peace and civility to a country that needs it badly.

Guest: Clinton is not my sworn enemy. I just think he was an ineffectual president. One of the best communicators we have had in that office, and if he had concentrated on being a good president instead of using his talents to seduce young interns he probably would have been a good president. He has no one to blame but himself.

I have stated that I am sure Bush has made mistakes, no one is perfect. But if you compare Bush to Clinton (in my humble opinion of course)there is no comparison. Bush is a real leader and inspires confidence. Clinton was a showman.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: TIA
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 10:03 PM

Oh my, was the job growth, booming stock market, budget surplus, environmental protection, peace and prosperity all a show?!?

Well then, Encore! Encore!


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,guest from NW
Date: 30 Mar 04 - 11:07 PM

the main point of all of our discussion and soul searching should be to figure out how to deal with terrorism. there is blame for clinton and bush. i am definately not a bushite but it seems to me that if we can't put aside partisan baloney to try to come together to solve this problem our world is going to become a very dangerous and unpleasant one and the god's truth is that we ALL have to live in it.

people in washington are having a hard time eschewing politics to face this problem. the smear campaigns are the worst i've ever seen in years of studying politics and the level of discourse is at an all time low. everyone that had anything to do with relevant gov't agencies to 9/11 should STEP FORWARD voluntarily and testify UNDER OATH to the comission. that includes rice (now bowing to pressure) bush, cheney (no time limits and all members present) clinton, gore, and the rest. to avoid this is a truly traitorous act. if we can't put the trail together now, with hindsight, and see how we failed so that we might make corrections we're in big trouble. playing politics with this issue is unconscionable and disgusting.

the facts show that what we are doing is not working. there have been more terrorist acts worldwide since 9/11 that before. we are hearing about splinter groups that didn't exist or were very small before that are now growing. saying "find 'em and kill 'em" is a lot easier said than done. that attitude is just not good enough. clarke's criticism boils down to"clinton was interested but didn't do enough and bush wasn't even interested until 9/11". why can't the bushies just say " yes, you're right we didn't do enough", acknowledge that the clitonites didn't either and stop the character assassination, close that subject and get to work on the real problem, fer chrissakes?? the world has to come together if the problem is to be solved and we need an administration that can, and is willing, to work with others to attain this goal. i don't know if kerry can do that but i know, based on his record, that bush hasn't. until there is some indication that he can i'm in favor of new people and a new approach.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: DougR
Date: 31 Mar 04 - 11:59 AM

I think "both sides" have admitted that they could have done more, GUEST. Do you have any suggestions as to what either or both of them should have done?

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 31 Mar 04 - 12:37 PM

I'm waiting for the 9/11 Commission's report, DougR.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,guest from NW
Date: 31 Mar 04 - 02:50 PM

"I think "both sides" have admitted that they could have done more, GUEST. Do you have any suggestions as to
what either or both of them should have done?"

since you seem to have altered your "never reply to a guest" policy dougR, i invite you again to consider the documented bush lie i posted on the "popular views of the bush admin." thread and let us know if you do consider it to be an actual lie. it is documented in both print and videotape as a statement GWB made during an interview with the polish news service.

one thing both administrations should have done was tell the truth to the american people about what goes on and lift the veils of secrecy that the national security state uses to further its own political and economic agendas. in the current case declassifying all the testimony of the principals including the emails and communications of rice and clarke to let people make up their own minds rather than being subject to political spinmeisters would be an astonishingly bold expression of faith in the american people to decide their own fates in the world. think that's gonna happen?

by the way, that last guest post was not me. i identify myself as guest from NW.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,petr
Date: 31 Mar 04 - 05:15 PM

heres a good one from the drudge report.

http://www.upi.com/view.cfm?StoryID=20040331-112127-9812r

the white house has fought the 911 commission from its conception, to releasing certain papers, extending the deadline and even having people testify.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: DougR
Date: 31 Mar 04 - 05:57 PM

Guest from NW: I had NO idea GWB SPOKE Polish!

Perhaps you didn't read my offer in one theard or another. Identify yourself by name and I'll take a shot at your question.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,guest from NW
Date: 31 Mar 04 - 06:58 PM

my name is arthur blanchard

and since GWB just barely speaks english i can see why you'd be surprised if he spoke polish.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,guest from NW
Date: 01 Apr 04 - 02:04 AM

"Kean said he saw no need to place Bush under oath. "We're happy just to have him talk to us," he told CBS Wednesday."

that is pathetic. "just happy to have him talk to us"...the guy who was president on the day of 9/11, who signed the order to create the commission after intense public pressure, who should be the most informed person in the country on terroism activities after months of daily briefings with the CIA director and have lots of information that would be helpful to their mission. and first, he won't testify, next, he'll testify for only one hour and with only two members of the comission, next, he'll forego the time limit but no oath and VP cheney has to sit with him and make sure he doesn't blow any of his answers. oh, and if he consents to this then no other white house people can be questioned. wouldn't want anyone to contradict anything he might say.

i just don't understand why anybody who cares about their country can accept this kind of obvious stonewalling in the face of the event that "changed everything". what do these people have to hide? its a nonpartisan group, 5 dems, 5 repubs, and a director handpicked by bush's people. can any bush supporter explain why fearless leader refuses to do his patriotic duty? what logical reason can there be besides they've something important to keep hidden from the american people?

oh, dougR, you've got my name now. what about that documented lie?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 01 Apr 04 - 03:02 AM

I am not sure what people expect to hear from the current NSA.

The facts remain the same, irrespective from who you hear them. What differs is the personal perceptions of those involved, that is not fact, it is opinion, informed opinion admittedly, but at the level we are talking about here it is all fairly equally weighted, pro & con.

Those making up the committee (5 Rep & 5 Dem) to-date have been quite impressive and I believe that it is perfectly credible that they will deliver as full and as impartial Report as possible. On matters of procedure, considering the subject, complexity and importance of this Inquiry, why on earth are the members of the committee restricted to 15 minutes of questions? (I know they may get another, secondary round of supplimentary questions, but the time/opportunity they are afforded seemed very short).

Accusations seem to centre on whether, or not, the attention to the threat posed by Al-Qaeda was less under the direction of the Bush administration in the period January to September 2001, than during the time of the previous administration.

All the evidence heard to date strongly suggest that it was not regarded as being less important to the Bush administration, but that it was not regarded as being as urgent as by the previous Clinton administration. There are a number of extremely plausible, obvious and valid reasons for the incoming administration adopting that view, and they did have the comfort of knowing that the team looking after this issue remained intact apart from a change of NSA.

At the end of it all, with a report issued, people will believe very much what they believed before, but at least the facts and judgements as arrived at by the committee will be a matter of record. It will be interesting to read the committee's recommendations to improve security with a view to preventing further attacks. I wonder if they will take up Richard Clarke's proposal for a seperate "Secret Police" agency for the USA - I am sure from what people have said in this forum such a recommendation will be heartily welcomed, originating as it does from the person most here seem to regard as being the fount of all knowledge and wisdom pertaining to international terrorism and the security of the United States of America.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Apr 04 - 03:26 AM

"... originating as it does from the person most here seem to regard as being the fount of all knowledge and wisdom pertaining to international terrorism and the security of the United States of America."

i wouldn't say clarke is the fount of all knowledge and wisdom, etc. but i think you must acknowledge that his credentials and position at the top of the US anti-terrorism policy chain for several years and several administrations afford him a particularly unique viewpoint on the whole issue. that, and the fact that he WILLINGLY testifies under oath to all relevant commitees and commissions and answers questions in a forthright manner even occasionally using the words "yes" and "no", tremendously dangerous terms if you don't think you're telling the truth. because you can then face prosecution, unlike the stonewallers who prevaricate. to me this adds some weight to his allegations.

"...and they did have the comfort of knowing that the team looking after this issue remained intact apart from a
change of NSA."

and then, for some reason, didn't pay attention to them. according to clarke, out of 100 "principles" meetings chaired by rice before 9/11, one was devoted to terrorism. that's 99 that were not. this would suggest to me that some other agenda was in play and whatever chance there may have been to prevent 9/11 was lost. since you rely quite a bit on your military experience, teribus, in your explications. wouldn't you say that after a disaster of this magnitude it's kind of strange that not a single official in the chains of command has been fired, demoted, or resigned? does that seem like responsible leadership is in control?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,guest from NW
Date: 01 Apr 04 - 03:27 AM

ooops, that was me guest from NW


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 01 Apr 04 - 04:38 AM

guest from NW,

"...but i think you must acknowledge that his credentials and position at the top of the US anti-terrorism policy chain for several years and several administrations afford him a particularly unique viewpoint on the whole issue."

I think I would acknowledge that if indeed his position had been as you describe above, but it wasn't. Richard Clarke was a Presidential Advisor on anti-terrorism, he did not head anything. Others also had extremely informed viewpoints on the issue, George Tenet and Samuel Berger in particular, they were actually in charge, but as they both disagree with Richard Clarke's up-take on the situation, their credentials, positions and insight are apparently totally dismissed.

Didn't pay attention to THEM, or to Clarke? I do not think that was case in any shape or form. Incidently, out of those "principals" meetings you mentioned, how many did Clarke attend?

I believe from what, Clarke, Tenet and Berger have said in evidence, "whatever chance there may have been to prevent 9/11 was lost", due to existing faults in procedure relating to exchange of information and analysis of information, within the domestic and international intelligence agencies of the United States of America.

To answer your questions:

"Wouldn't you say that after a disaster of this magnitude it's kind of strange that not a single official in the chains of command has been fired, demoted, or resigned? does that seem like responsible leadership is in control?"

No, I do not find it strange, because in the final analysis it will be apparent that no particular individual was at fault. The standard operating procedures were adhered to, the procedures proved to be faulty and inadequate. In such a situation it would be extremely irresponsible to "Byng" the issue. Byng was an Admiral in the Royal Navy who was court-martialled and executed on the quarter-deck of his own flag-ship. His offence was supposedly that he had not engaged the enemy vigorously enough in the minds of their Lordships of the Admiralty. He was supposedly found guilty and shot in order to encourage the others to try harder in future - all it suceeded in achieving was that the Royal Navy lost a competent and capable commander in time of war for no real reason or gain.

Subsequent to the attacks of 9/11. Procedures were re-thought and amended where necessary, exchange of information and evaluation of that intelligence was improved greatly, means of acquiring intelligence was improved**, powers of arrest and detention were improved and streamlined**, co-operation with intelligence, customs, immigration and law enforcement agencies throughout the world was improved. Those were the measures taken that reflected responsible leadership by those in control, including Rice, Tenet and Clarke.

The items above marked ** reflect improvements introduced by way of the Patriot Act - which you all rave so much about. Clarke's input - It is imperative to identify and hit them before they hit you - he's quite right of course, as the only defence you have against any terrorist/bomber with a modicum of training and a good measure of dedication is intelligence, obtained by what ever means necessary. If that happens to be against your principles and too hard to stomach, well so be it - accept the incidents, the fatalities, the casualties, the damage to your infrastructure, economy and way of life and look forward to the prospect that such attacks will only ever increase in number and magnitude.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,guest from NW
Date: 01 Apr 04 - 03:35 PM

"Clarke was a Presidential Advisor on anti-terrorism, he did not head anything"

i didn't say he headed anything. i said he resided at the top levels of the policy chain thru 3 administrations. i think presidential advisor suits that claim.

"...but as they both disagree with Richard Clarke's up-take on the situation, their credentials, positions and insight are apparently totally dismissed."

i've read tenet's and berger's public testimony and i don't see serious disagreements in facts. there are certainly some differences in opinion. i deal in my own opinions in an internet discussion such as this so i don't think you'll find instances where i have dismissed or to this point even commented on tenet or berger's testimony. point it out if you find such.

"Incidently, out of those "principals" meetings you mentioned, how many did Clarke attend?"

what does that have to do with anything? if the circumstance is true (1 meeting out of 100) and my job and expertise were in that area that was not being addressed why would i want to sit thru a bunch of meetings about, say, "star wars" missile defense systems?
you seem to say that 9/11 occurred due to procedural problems and that it's not really anyone's fault. isn't that the height of beaurocratic buck-passing? people at the highest levels are charged with responsibility to see that procedures are workable and functioning. how can no one anywhere be charged with some responsibility? that smells to high heaven as far as i'm concerned.

"...way of the Patriot Act - which you all rave so much about."

once again, i don't recall raving at all, up to this point, about the patriot act so feel free when addressing my statements and/or questions to stick to my own statements and leave out the sweeping generalizations or putting of words in my mouth. thank you.

"...if that happens to be against your principles and too hard to stomach, well so be it - accept the incidents, the fatalities, the casualties, the damage to your infrastructure, economy and way of life..."

if this picture of surrendering all principles that our country is founded upon or accepting total destruction is true as you state it, i'm afraid we're in a war that we can never win. i can't really see things that way. it seems to me there must be a middle way, as there is in everything else in life.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Peace
Date: 01 Apr 04 - 03:39 PM

Under oath or not, people lie. This administration is so damned corrupt that if the truth bit their collective ass they'd wonder forever what it was. Wanna bet there are a few "I'll take the Fifth" remarks? Anyone?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Donuel
Date: 01 Apr 04 - 05:41 PM

This editorial toon took all damn day. I usually can do 4 a day.


http://www.angelfire.com/md2/customviolins/delaware.jpg


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Peace
Date: 01 Apr 04 - 06:11 PM

Excellent, as always.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Tiocfaidh
Date: 01 Apr 04 - 06:14 PM

That's very good!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Donuel
Date: 01 Apr 04 - 07:49 PM

WHACK A DICK

http://www.angelfire.com/md2/customviolins/whacka.jpg


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: DougR
Date: 01 Apr 04 - 11:20 PM

Arthur Blanchard ...hmmm, it has a ring to it. No way to check out the authenticity of course, but you replied with a name so I'll take a look at your question tomorrow, and post a reply. After all, you could said your name was Sherlock Holmes, I guess, but that REALLY would have rung a bell so ...

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 12:23 AM

From today's New York Times:

    Bush Aides Block Clinton's Papers From 9/11 Panel
    By PHILIP SHENON and DAVID E. SANGER

    Published: April 2, 2004

    WASHINGTON, April 1 — The commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks said on Thursday that it was pressing the White House to explain why the Bush administration had blocked thousands of pages of classified foreign policy and counterterrorism documents from former President Bill Clinton's White House files from being turned over to the panel's investigators.

    The White House confirmed on Thursday that it had withheld a variety of classified documents from Mr. Clinton's files that had been gathered by the National Archives over the last two years in response to requests from the commission, which is investigating intelligence and law enforcement failures before the attacks.

    Scott McClellan, the White House spokesman, said some Clinton administration documents had been withheld because they were "duplicative or unrelated," while others were withheld because they were "highly sensitive" and the information in them could be relayed to the commission in other ways. "We are providing the commission with access to all the information they need to do their job," Mr. McClellan said.

    The commission and the White House were reacting to public complaints from former aides to Mr. Clinton, who said they had been surprised to learn in recent months that three-quarters of the nearly 11,000 pages of files the former president was ready to offer the commission had been withheld by the Bush administration. The former aides said the files contained highly classified documents about the Clinton administration's efforts against Al Qaeda.

    The commission said it was awaiting a full answer from the White House on why any documents were withheld.


This is a really long story, broken into three pages by the NYT folks. The rest can be found at http://www.nytimes.com/2004/04/02/politics/02PANE.html?amp.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: CarolC
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 12:30 AM

My name is Sherlock Holmes. May I have an answer please?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 01:25 AM

Beg to differ Mr. Blanchard,

You originally described Clarke's role and position through several administrations as being, "at the top of the US anti-terrorism policy chain", for some reason you have now found it convenient to demote Mr. Clarke to being someone who, "resided at the top levels of the policy chain" - there is a marked difference in the two statements, I responded, as requested, to your first job description for Mr. Clarke, which was incorrect.

Under Clinton the person at the top was Berger, his immediate subordinate on security matters was George Tenet. Currently it is Rice, her immediate subordinate on security matters is George Tenet.

If Richard Clarke, did not attend "principals" meetings, and was not copied on the minutes of those meetings, he is in no great position to comment on their content.

Procedural weaknesses and failings happen, inter-departmental and intra-organisational rivalries occur. With the former those weaknesses only ever become evident once the procedure has been tested and been seen to clearly fail - nobody's fault, nobody can structure something to accommodate every single contingency, IMO, in this particular case increased work-load also contributed, particularly with regard to evaluation and co-ordination of the information held. The fact that a procedure may prove to be faulty does not mean that those implementing it are in any way incompetent, or are personally at fault, so in such an instance who would you suggest should be fired/prosecuted/made to pay and for what?

With regard to my introduction of the Patriot Act into the discussion. I believe you did ask if I thought responsible leadership had been demonstrated in the wake of the attacks of 9/11. That I did and marked out two factors that improve the capability of US intelligence and law enforcement agencies to combat the threat. Widespread reaction, within this particular forum, against the provisions of the Patriot Act are fairly well known - I was not attempting to put words into your mouth, if I had been doing that the word "all", would not have appeared after the "you".

The principles upon which your country was founded are not being "surrendered", far from it, they are being protected. Post-9/11, things changed dramatically for the USA, unfortunately there appears to be a number of Americans who, for some obscure reason, refuse to realise, or accept that that change has occurred.

Your enemy, declared war on you at least six years ago, their demands are your destruction. Believe if you may that, "there must be a middle way", with respect to the demands of groups such as Al-Qaeda there isn't, they deal only in absolutes, acknowledge that, or pay their price, it's simple. I'll go along with Mr. Clarke - Identify them and hit them, before they hit you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,guest from NW
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 03:02 AM

"You originally described Clarke's role and position through several administrations as being, "at the top of the US anti-terrorism policy chain", for some reason you have now found it convenient to demote Mr. Clarke to being
someone who, "resided at the top levels of the policy chain" - there is a marked difference in the two statements, I responded, as requested, to your first job description for Mr. Clarke, which was incorrect."

your statement, in reply to my first, was that clarke "did not head anything". both of my statements you've included show that i never said he was the head of anything. they are variations of the same sentiment- at the top/resided at the top levels. i did not change the meaning of my statements nor did i say what you've claimed for me. this type of word parsing is evidence of an awfully powerful need to be "correct". in this case i'm afraid you're reaching.

"If Richard Clarke, did not attend "principals" meetings, and was not copied on the minutes of those meetings, he is in no great position to comment on their content."

i would think that in this type of organization there would be minutes of the meeting and records of what was discussed that clarke would be privy to in order to base his claims of what was the agenda of the meetings. if my assumption on this is wrong i'm sure we'll hear about it next week at the hearings.

"The fact that a procedure may prove to be faulty does not mean that those implementing it are in
any way incompetent, or are personally at fault, so in such an instance who would you suggest should be
fired/prosecuted/made to pay and for what?"

i'm curious. do "procedures" occur out of thin air? are they somehow"traditional" like folk music? surely some human or group of humans must at some point create and implement "procedures". and i would think that "procedures" might be inspected by an incoming administration to assure that things haven't been bollixed up by the previous bunch that they campaigned so hard against. i'm not sure how this process has occured in this case so i'm not in a position to identify the person/persons who should be held responsible but i would think that senior officials in the administration should find this type of responsibility in their job description. am i wrong?

"Widespread reaction, within this particular forum, against the provisions of the Patriot Act are fairly well known - I was not attempting to put words into your mouth, if I had been doing that the word "all", would not have appeared after the "you".

you illustrate my point. if you read what i said you'll see that i do not speak for this entire forum or anyone else on it but only for myself and i don't care to be represented by things "fairly well known" or "widespread reaction". i speak clearly and am willing to defend my words and don't care to be characterized otherwise. if you are addressing me and my questions as you indicated then forget the generalizations and speak to my statements. i try to do the same to you in my past posts. if i have failed to do so please call it to my attention.

"The principles upon which your country was founded are not being "surrendered", far from it, they are being
protected. Post-9/11, things changed dramatically for the USA, unfortunately there appears to be a number of
Americans who, for some obscure reason, refuse to realise, or accept that that change has occurred."

this is a point on which we must disagree. i think there are other ways to have dealt with the changed world than GWB has. lots of other people think that also. i both realise and accept that change has occurred but i neither realise nor accept that the approach the bush admin. has taken is the best or only way to resolve the issue. right now the only thing those of us who feel this way can do is try to change administrations in the fall and hope we can implement a more coherent strategy of gathering the world's power, not just our power, against this scourge. the key statement to me in your previous post is this...

"...obtained by what ever means necessary."

i think the means we are now following will lead us to the opposite ends that we all would wish to see. we'll see.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,Teribus
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 04:53 AM

Mr. Blanchard,

So far it seems that we have established the common understanding that Mr Clarke was not heading up the effort being mounted by the US Government against international terrorists.

With regard to the "principals" meetings, on agenda and minute distribution, assuming that neither of us are in any position to state definitely how that is organised. Within the organisation I work in, although at a fairly senior specialist level, I do know that I do not receive notification or agenda for top level meetings, my immediate superior does. Likewise minutes of those meetings are not distributed outside of those who attended. Parts affecting my area of expertise are transposed into either memo's or specific instructions which are then followed. From that I may be able to deduce what was discussed in relation to my specific area, but as that is indirect, I only get specifics if changes to what is already in progress have been proposed and adopted. As you say let's wait and see what comes out of next Thursdays appearance of the NSA before the Commission.

On procedures, drafting of them and their development. I believe that in this particular instance, in terms of personnel, apart from the person at the top, i.e. the NSA, there were no changes between the outgoing Clinton administration and the in-coming Bush administration. The personnel and procedures had proved to have been successfull previously, therefore, to those engaged in the work in hand, there was no indication that anything had been screwed up by the previous bunch. In fact there was absolutely no oversight or review of the process, and nobody qualified to undertake such a review. What was done, if statements made so far are to be believed, was that the policy regarding international terrorist groups such as Al-Qaeda was under review (Clinton's containment and marginalising v Bush's aim to actively seek the destruction of Al-Qaeda). Such a review would take time, such a shift in emphasis would take time to evaluate and implement. The time-frame we are talking about here is not measured in days or weeks, done thoroughly and correctly it's months.

We are discussing this subject in an open forum. If you wish me to restrict my responses specifically to what you have stated, then this becomes a private correspondence and can be continued using the PM facility offered by this site.

You state your belief that the principles upon which your country was founded have been surrendered and you think that there are other ways to deal with the changed world we have discussed. I would only be too pleased and interested in hearing about them - so far you have offered nothing, apart from suggesting the following:

"in the current case declassifying all the testimony of the principals including the emails and communications of rice and clarke to let people make up their own minds rather than being subject to political spinmeisters would be an astonishingly bold expression of faith in the american people to decide their own fates in the world."

While the above might represent, "an astonishingly bold expression of faith in the american people", it would also amount to an astonishingly generous gift to your enemies.

The transparency you seek, sounds very similar to the situation described in detail by Richard Clarke, before the 9/11 Commission, relating to the prevailing attitude within the CIA in the past, one of near-paralysis with people being almost too frightened to act, for fear of being dragged up in front of some committee or other and publically censured for doing their jobs.

In terms of formulating a "coherent strategy" in combating international terrorism and "gathering the world's power", whatever that means, your current President has not done too bad a job so far. International co-operation between intelligence and law enforcement agencies has never been better, and it is constantly being improved. You disagree, your recommendation is to change administrations and adopt a new and as yet unspecified approach.

Yes there have been more terrorist attacks since 9/11 - but where? Directed against whom? What has been their result? How many of the perpetrators have been caught? How many attempted attacks have been prevented?

The "means we are now following" has saved lives, as to an alternative approach - I await your recommendations.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,petr
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 01:26 PM

the means we are now following has saved lives?

not unless youre one of the 600+ US and Coalition soldiers, and 10,000 or so Iraqi dead.
for that matter 1950 or so have died in the 30 months since 911,
(Bali, Kenya, Saudi Madrid, etc) contrast that with the 30 months before 911.)

Im also sure that invading Iraq has made the ISlamic world more sympathetic to the US and the number of Alqaeda recruits has decreased.

the premise for the war was the WMD threat, but since they havent materialized, or to paraphrase Rumsfeld 'absence of evidence' does seem to be 'evidence of absence', the reasoning has now shifted to how bad Saddam was and the crimes toward his people - and yet even last May Wolfowitz said that 'crimes toward his people' is no reason enough for American kids to die.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Peace
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 02:10 PM

It is infantile to think that terrorists do not deserve to be punished. (Let's not play semantics with this; by terrorist I mean murderous bastard who kills people to make a political point or coerce the opposition into responses that will cause political fallout beneficial to the terrorist agenda.) I am in favour of giving a UN strike force the money and equipment, training and license to hunt terrorists where ever they may be and visit the wrath of Shiva on their rotten f#ckin' heads. I think they should be exterminated. Period. No trial, no surrender, no mercy. F#ck 'em! I do not care what caused them to become terrorists, what country they belong to, what religion they are part of, what language they speak, what colour their skin is, what their ideals are or why they exist. Give the vermin no safe place on this planet to live, train or hide. Meet their attacks with force majeure and destroy them. Teach them what it really means to deal in death. I am sure there would be well trained men and women lining up for the right to join a unit like that, or lots of units like that.

I am amazed that so many intelligent people find excuses for murderers. That is what terrorists are. Nothing more, nothing less. I have always perceived violence to be a last resort. I think we are there. It is time to teach terrorists what violence really means. It means they will face their God or belief system ASAP. No questions, no arguments, just bye-bye.

Now, I will wait for the flak.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: CarolC
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 02:26 PM

How do you feel about state-sponsored terrorism, brucie?


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Peace
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 02:36 PM

Same as you, Carol, the same as you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Peace
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 02:42 PM

Before we get into the Palestinian/Israeli dance, let me say this: The reason we have state-sponsored terrorism is that we have never empowered a UN strike force to take care of business. I have made clear that I do NOT give a rat's ass WHERE the terrorist is found. Kill 'em and be done with it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: CarolC
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 03:14 PM

I wasn't referring specifically to the Middle East. I don't know about Canada, but the US has a looooonnnnggggg record of state-sponsored terrorism in a lot of places around the world, including South and Central America, Asia, the Middle East, and various Island nations. The reason the US sponsors terrorism is to protect the activities of powerful corporations that have a vested interest in robbing weaker countries of their resources and keeping their populations in a position of weakness. I would submit that it is this very state-sponsored terrorism that creates the problem of terrorism that is not state-sponsored.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Peace
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 03:20 PM

I agree with you, Carol. Probably one of the reasons we have NOT empowered the UN to be able to do anything decisive.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,Clint Keller
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 07:34 PM

Who gets to define and/or identify the terrorists? And who gets to define "aid to terrorists?"

clint


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 10:24 PM

Anybody listen to Bill Moyer's NOW this evening? John Dean was very interesting.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Peace
Date: 02 Apr 04 - 10:39 PM

Let the UN do that. They got the teams, let them call the shots (literally and figuratively).


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,Clint Keller
Date: 03 Apr 04 - 03:33 AM

Getting back to the subject, I read an editorial by David Broder today. It was in the paper, not the net, so I don't have a link.

He said Bush chickened out by agreeing to let C. Rice testify under oath, which annoyed me; isn't it time somebody was honest with us?

But when I read it all I saw I hadn't really thought it through.

Broder's right: if Bush was the hero he claims to be he'd have had Condoleeza keep her mouth shut -- especially shut to the talk shows, for godsake -- and taken the oath and the responsibility himself. That's what he's supposed to get his name in the history books for, taking the responsibility. Instead he'll feed Condoleeza to the wolves and evade responsibility while Cheney holds his hand. And feeds him the answers.

clint


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: CarolC
Date: 03 Apr 04 - 10:35 AM

Is this the one, Clint?

Bush wrong to give up Rice


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,Clint Keller
Date: 03 Apr 04 - 06:18 PM

That's the one, Carol. Thank you, thank you.

"Instead of acting as the man in charge, and saying to the commission, "No, you may not put my national security adviser on the mat, but I will answer to the public for what happened," he did just the opposite. He gave up Rice and then turned on his heel and walked out of the briefing room even as reporters were trying to ask him questions.

"At a time when the American people — and the world — desperately need reassurance that the government was not asleep at the switch, Bush has clenched his jaw and said nothing that would ease those concerns. Instead, he has arranged that when he answers the commission's questions in a yet-to-be-scheduled private session, he will not face it alone. He and Vice President Cheney will appear together. It will be interesting to learn who furnishes most of the answers."

And I understand he will not be under oath.

clint


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Peace
Date: 04 Apr 04 - 11:31 AM

Bush don't got no cajones.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: dianavan
Date: 04 Apr 04 - 01:27 PM

brucie - Terrorists are murderers and so are military forces.

I see no difference between them. They both kill innocent victims. Military forces just have bigger guns. Terrorists are terrorists because they have no other way to fight. Its their last defense.

d


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: DougR
Date: 04 Apr 04 - 01:36 PM

Brucie: when was the last time you can recall the UN EVER doing anything decisive?

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Peace
Date: 04 Apr 04 - 01:54 PM

dianavan: True, but military units tend to target other soldiers, and terrorists target civilians. Generally, five-year-old kids don't cause wars. There is a difference. Undoubtedly, Venn diagrams would show overlap.

Doug: I have NO answer for that. The word 'never' comes to mind.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,Clint Keller
Date: 04 Apr 04 - 02:32 PM

Coalition military forces have killed at least as many Iraqi & Afghani civilians as Al Qaeda killed American civilians. And histortcally, there've been things like the Dresden bombing, and a whole lot of civilians killed by Hitler's troops in WW2.

Military units don't always target civilians, but they kill more of them than terrorists do.

Too many people want to solve problems by killing.

clint


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Peace
Date: 04 Apr 04 - 02:46 PM

I agree, Clint. That's why I'd like to see a UN force--something like it--move to a more select low-intensity warfare. Killing doesn't solve lots of problems, as you point out, but if it takes some killers off the street (and dipomacy certainly isn't doing that at this time), that would be a good thing, IMO.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,guest from NW
Date: 04 Apr 04 - 10:13 PM

"With regard to the "principals" meetings, on agenda and minute distribution, assuming that neither of us are in
any position to state definitely how that is organised. Within the organisation I work in, although at a fairly senior specialist level, I do know that I do not receive notification or agenda for top level meetings, my immediate superior does. Likewise minutes of those meetings are not distributed outside of those who attended. Parts affecting my area of expertise are transposed into either memo's or specific instructions which are then followed. From that I may be able to deduce what was discussed in relation to my specific area, but as that is indirect, I only get specifics if changes to what is already in progress have been proposed and adopted. As you say let's wait and see what comes out of next Thursdays appearance of the NSA before the Commission."

in short, you don't know anymore than i do. ok, next...


"On procedures, drafting of them and their development. I believe that in this particular instance, in terms of
personnel, apart from the person at the top, i.e. the NSA, there were no changes between the outgoing Clinton
administration and the in-coming Bush administration. The personnel and procedures had proved to have been
successfull previously, therefore, to those engaged in the work in hand, there was no indication that anything hadbeen screwed up by the previous bunch. In fact there was absolutely no oversight or review of the process, and nobody qualified to undertake such a review. What was done, if statements made so far are to be believed, was that the policy regarding international terrorist groups such as Al-Qaeda was under review (Clinton's containment and marginalising v Bush's aim to actively seek the destruction of Al-Qaeda). Such a review would take time, sucha shift in emphasis would take time to evaluate and implement. The time-frame we are talking about here is not measured in days or weeks, done thoroughly and correctly it's months."

so there was no oversight or review, no one qualified to make such a review, yet there was a review underway which would, of course, take months to complete. so no body could possibly be judged responsible...??!!

"We are discussing this subject in an open forum. If you wish me to restrict my responses specifically to what you have stated, then this becomes a private correspondence and can be continued using the PM facility offered bythis site."

what i requested is that when answering statements made by me, as you indicated you were, please don't lump me into your generalizations about forum participants. i am an individual who attempts to speak clearly and i try to refrain from such generalizations about you. i am not requesting a private correspondance but merely a respectful one. i am glad to answer in kind.

"You state your belief that the principles upon which your country was founded have been surrendered and you think that there are other ways to deal with the changed world we have discussed. I would only be too pleased and interested in hearing about them - so far you have offered nothing, apart from suggesting the following:"in the current case declassifying all the testimony of the principals including the emails and communications of rice and clarke to let people make up their own minds rather than being subject to political spinmeisters would be anastonishingly bold expression of faith in the american people to decide their own fates in the world."While the above might represent, "an astonishingly bold expression of faith in the american people", it would also amount to an astonishingly generous gift to your enemies."

amazingly enough, freedom and democracy and their principles contain contradictions. a government by the people means people must be able to know what their leaders are up to. transparancy is required. when you don't have that some say the secrets must be held to thwart our enemies. those who actually believe in freedom and democracy realize that when government stops being open you start to lose that which you hold dear. having an open, free and democratic society has always been a risk. i prefer it to the police state.

"The transparency you seek, sounds very similar to the situation described in detail by Richard Clarke, before the9/11 Commission, relating to the prevailing attitude within the CIA in the past, one of near-paralysis with people being almost too frightened to act, for fear of being dragged up in front of some committee or other and publicallycensured for doing their jobs."

those who work at the CIA and other organizations that are so hidden that congress can't even see their budgets should be held to the highest standard. if that is so frightening to the folks there maybe we need some new folks or some new ideas on how to run our intelligence operations. judging by the current rash of excuses about all the "bad intelligence" that caused our fearless leaders to make the mistakes in iraq, it seems more of them should have been "dragged up in front of some committees".

"In terms of formulating a "coherent strategy" in combating international terrorism and "gathering the world's
power", whatever that means, your current President has not done too bad a job so far. International
co-operation between intelligence and law enforcement agencies has never been better, and it is constantly beingimproved. You disagree, your recommendation is to change administrations and adopt a new and as yet
unspecified approach."

i disagree that GWB has done a good job internationally. i don't feel like rehashing all the figures but if you look up the number of nations commiting troops and resources on our behalf, i don't think it's impressive or compares favorably with the last gulf war. could you cite any sources or facts on how much better international law cooperation is now? that seems to me speculation on your part.

"Yes there have been more terrorist attacks since 9/11 - but where? Directed against whom? What has been their result? How many of the perpetrators have been caught? How many attempted attacks have been prevented?"

where/whom?...what does that matter? lives lost are lives lost whether american or iraqi. result?...many people killed most spectacularly recently in madrid...perps caught? i don't know. do you?...attacks prevented?... neither you nor i know that. the information we are given on that is suspect.

"The "means we are now following" has saved lives, as to an alternative approach - I await your recommendations."

can you cite figures on lives saved? i don't think so. there are certainly high figures on lives lost. my recommendation on another approach is to replace this administration ASAP with people that have a clue about diplomacy and how to create cooperation among western countries that can have a program to combat terrorism that is more than throwing bombs back and forth. also, hopefully, an administration that will not use lies and manipulation to goad the american people into wars that are about agendas that are not revealed to us other than under extreme pressure and until it's too late to do anything but clean up a colossal mess. nothing i could recommend will take place under the current pack of rogues that is looting our treasury and making us a pariah in the world.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: dianavan
Date: 05 Apr 04 - 12:58 AM

More children were killed and maimed in Afghanistan following 911 than all of the occupants of the World Trade Center.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: Teribus
Date: 05 Apr 04 - 04:06 AM

Guest from NW,

"i would think that "procedures" might be inspected by an incoming administration to assure that things haven't been bollixed up by the previous bunch that they campaigned so hard against. i'm not sure how this process has occured in this case so i'm not in a position to identify the person/persons who should be held responsible but i would think that senior officials in the administration should find this type of responsibility in their job description. am i wrong?"

Policy might, strategy might, existing procedures that appeared to be working and effective? The senior personnel, apart from the new President's National Security Advisor, remain the same, so who does the new administration bring in to inspect the existing procedures. Rather difficult considering the subject matter. They could of course use personnel from the existing security agencies, but that would, by necessity, divert resources from the task in hand wouldn't it? By the accounts of those in charge, the effort being made to combat the threat, was not diminished in terms of personnel or resources at any time during the transition of administrations.

Just to go back to what I did say regarding what happened when the Bush administration took over:

"What was done, if statements made so far are to be believed, was that the policy regarding international terrorist groups such as Al-Qaeda was under review (Clinton's containment and marginalising v Bush's aim to actively seek the destruction of Al-Qaeda)."

In that sentence, I believe I specifically mention "policy", therefore your latest comment:

"so there was no oversight or review, no one qualified to make such a review, yet there was a review underway which would, of course, take months to complete. so no body could possibly be judged responsible...??!!"

Rather mystifies me - you are talking about a review of procedures, while the review that was under way that I mentioned, was a review of policy - we are talking about different things here, government policy is not the same as the working/operating procedures of a government agency.

Still no alternative solutions, I see, apart from:

"can you cite figures on lives saved? i don't think so. there are certainly high figures on lives lost. my recommendation on another approach is to replace this administration ASAP with people that have a clue about diplomacy and how to create cooperation among western countries that can have a program to combat terrorism that is more than throwing bombs back and forth."

To answer your first question to, "cite figures on lives saved" - no, of course I can't. But I would imagine the projected numbers would be quite impressive from just one of the most notable examples. Quite a few months ago now, in a combined operation linking the intelligence agencies of the USA, UK, France and Russia, an attempt by a UK national to supply upwards of 30 advanced, state of the art, Russian shoulder launched SAM's to what he thought were Islamic terrorists in the USA was foiled and three men arrested. His suggested/recommended target was a simultaneous attack on fifteen civilian airliners on take-off from various airports in the US. Now carefully select your airports, link that to weather where the aircraft take-off so that their flight-path is over densely populated areas, destroy wide-body aircraft on long-haul routes fully laden with fuel - the numbers that would die on the aircraft, would be an impressive enough strike, but combined to the cone of devastation caused by those aircraft hitting the ground, then you could be into the tens of thousands - good enough for you?

You propose to fight terrorism with diplomacy? - good luck to you, you'll need it. The above example, provides some indication of the degree of co-operation already in existance. The EU has just recently, in the light of the Madrid bombings, decided to co-ordinate efforts on counter-terrorism still further.

Brucie, has suggested a UN strike force to counter terrorism. The problems that would have to be overcome to create such a force are such that it could never happen. The UN as an organisation is just simply not structured for such a role, which is not surprising, it was never meant to fulfil such a role, it is primarily a talking-shop. For arguements sake, if such a force was created, for it to have any chance of succeeding, it would largely have to be American run, American funded, American equipped.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,pdc
Date: 05 Apr 04 - 02:02 PM

The following speech, which seems to have 20/20 hindsight, was actually made in Atlanta, Georgia, in June 2003, by Senator Max Cleland, who served in Vietnam. It is excellent.

Mistakes of Vietnam repeated with Iraq

By MAX CLELAND


The president of the United States decides to go to war against a nation led by a brutal dictator supported by one-party rule. That dictator has made war on his neighbors. The president decides this is a threat to the United States.

In his campaign for president he gives no indication of wanting to go to war. In fact, he decries the overextension of American military might and says other nations must do more. However, unbeknownst to the American public, the president's own Pentagon advisers have already cooked up a plan to go to war. All they are looking for is an excuse.

Based on faulty intelligence, cherry-picked information is fed to Congress and the American people. The president goes on national television to make the case for war, using as part of the rationale an incident that never happened. Congress buys the bait -- hook, line and sinker -- and passes a resolution giving the president the authority to use "all necessary means" to prosecute the war.

The war is started with an air and ground attack. Initially there is optimism. The president says we are winning. The cocky, self-assured secretary of defense says we are winning. As a matter of fact, the secretary of defense promises the troops will be home soon.

However, the truth on the ground that the soldiers face in the war is different than the political policy that sent them there. They face increased opposition from a determined enemy. They are surprised by terrorist attacks, village assassinations, increasing casualties and growing anti-American sentiment. They find themselves bogged down in a guerrilla land war, unable to move forward and unable to disengage because there are no allies to turn the war over to.

There is no plan B. There is no exit strategy. Military morale declines. The president's popularity sinks and the American people are increasingly frustrated by the cost of blood and treasure poured into a never-ending war.

Sound familiar? It does to me.

The president was Lyndon Johnson. The cocky, self-assured secretary of defense was Robert McNamara. The congressional resolution was the Gulf of Tonkin resolution. The war was the war that I, U.S. Sens. John Kerry, Chuck Hagel and John McCain and 3 1/2 million other Americans of our generation were caught up in. It was the scene of America's longest war. It was also the locale of the most frustrating outcome of any war this nation has ever fought.

Unfortunately, the people who drove the engine to get into the war in Iraq never served in Vietnam. Not the president. Not the vice president. Not the secretary of defense. Not the deputy secretary of defense. Too bad. They could have learned some lessons:

• Don't underestimate the enemy. The enemy always has one option you cannot control. He always has the option to die. This is especially true if you are dealing with true believers and guerillas fighting for their version of reality, whether political or religious. They are what Tom Friedman of The New York Times calls the "non-deterrables." If those non-deterrables are already in their country, they will be able to wait you out until you go home.

• If the enemy adopts a "hit-and-run" strategy designed to inflict maximum casualties on you, you may win every battle, but (as Walter Lippman once said about Vietnam) you can't win the war.

• If you adopt a strategy of not just pre-emptive strike but also pre-emptive war, you own the aftermath. You better plan for it. You better have an exit strategy because you cannot stay there indefinitely unless you make it the 51st state.

If you do stay an extended period of time, you then become an occupier, not a liberator. That feeds the enemy against you.

• If you adopt the strategy of pre-emptive war, your intelligence must be not just "darn good," as the president has said; it must be "bulletproof," as Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld claimed the administration's was against Saddam Hussein. Anything short of that saps credibility.

• If you want to know what is really going on in the war, ask the troops on the ground, not the policy-makers in Washington.

• In a democracy, instead of truth being the first casualty in war, it should be the first cause of war. It is the only way the Congress and the American people can cope with getting through it. As credibility is strained, support for the war and support for the troops go downhill. Continued loss of credibility drains troop morale, the media become more suspicious, the public becomes more incredulous and Congress is reduced to hearings and investigations.

Instead of learning the lessons of Vietnam, where all of the above happened, the president, the vice president, the secretary of defense and the deputy secretary of defense have gotten this country into a disaster in the desert.

They attacked a country that had not attacked us. They did so on intelligence that was faulty, misrepresented and highly questionable.

A key piece of that intelligence was an outright lie that the White House put into the president's State of the Union speech. These officials have overextended the American military, including the National Guard and the Reserve, and have expanded the U.S. Army to the breaking point.

A quarter of a million troops are committed to the Iraq war theater, most of them bogged down in Baghdad. Morale is declining and casualties continue to increase.

In addition to the human cost, the war in dollars costs $1 billion a week, adding to the additional burden of an already depressed economy.

The president has declared "major combat over" and sent a message to every terrorist, "Bring them on." As a result, he has lost more people in his war than his father did in his and there is no end in sight.

Military commanders are left with extended tours of duty for servicemen and women who were told long ago they were going home. We are keeping American forces on the ground, where they have become sitting ducks in a shooting gallery for every terrorist in the Middle East.

Welcome to Vietnam, Mr. President. Sorry you didn't go when you had the chance.


--Max Cleland, former U.S. senator, was head of the Veterans Administration in the Carter administration. He teaches at American University in Washington.


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Subject: RE: BS: Rice to testify publicly, under oath
From: GUEST,petr
Date: 05 Apr 04 - 04:12 PM

btw in the last senate elections the Republicans portrayed Max Clelland (who lost 3 limbs in Vietnam) as unpatriotic and ran posters of him next to Osama Bin Laden.

none of the Chicken hawks in the Bush administration who pushed for war in Iraq have had ever fought overseas.


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Mudcat time: 13 May 12:10 AM EDT

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