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Tilting at Windmills

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January 8, 2006
By: Kevin Drum

THE DOWNING STREET MEMOS REVISITED....Jonathan Schwarz is reading James Risen's State of War and says there's a lot more to it than just the revelations about Bush's domestic spying operation. In particular, it turns out that Risen highlights some new information about the infamous Downing Street Memos.

One of those memos quoted Sir Richard Dearlove, head of MI6, as reporting after a visit to Washington DC that military action against Iraq was inevitable as early as July 2002:

Therefore, one of the most important questions about the Downing Street Memo has always been who exactly Dearlove met with in Washington. This would go a long way to answering why Dearlove believed "the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy." Pundits wishing to play down the important of the memo, such as Michael Kinsley, opined that Dearlove may have just been talking to "the usual freelance chatterboxes" and perhaps was simply reporting on the "mood and gossip of 'Washington.'"

This isn't what Risen writes, to say the least.

Read the rest to find out who Dearlove was really talking to. Hint: it wasn't a bunch freelance chatterboxes.

Kevin Drum 6:46 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (118)

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Comments

Drip, Drip, Drip,.......

Posted by: Rege on January 8, 2006 at 7:00 PM | PERMALINK

One of those memos quoted Sir Richard Dearlove, head of MI6, as reporting after a visit to Washington DC that military action against Iraq was inevitable as early as July 2002:

Therefore, one of the most important questions about the Downing Street Memo has always been who exactly Dearlove met with in Washington.

What? Why would he have to meet anyone in Washington DC to know that? Maybe he just read this Wall Street Journal article which said "Iraq's front-line neighbors are becoming harder of hearing as the drums of war beat louder." Or maybe he just read this leftist article by Robert Scheer in the LA Times saying "War against Iraq is the president's much-planned-for answer if the oft-rumored "economic recovery" doesn't sustain his popularity." He wouldn't even have to go to Washington to know that military action against Iraq was inevitable. Why not just believe this simpler explanation rather than the conspiracy theory you have laid out?

Posted by: Al on January 8, 2006 at 7:05 PM | PERMALINK

The MSM anti-Bush fusillade continues at the great risk of encouraging the insurgents in Iraq.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 7:09 PM | PERMALINK

Of course. If we all shutup, then Iraq will do better. Not shutting up is naturally why Iraq has not gone well. Bush would be a superlative president if everyone would just stop critizing him, yes?

Posted by: western on January 8, 2006 at 7:22 PM | PERMALINK

"The MSM anti-Bush fusillade continues at the great risk of encouraging the insurgents in Iraq."

tbrosz: still stupid after all these years.

Posted by: Joel on January 8, 2006 at 7:22 PM | PERMALINK

It was obvious to a great many people by Fall 2002 that war was inevitable and the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy. There was ample evidence to this effect swirling around in the media, if not on the front page of the Times.

That an intelligence professional who had just had a nice long chat with George Tenet in July 2002 formed the exact same opinion isn't the least bit surprising. It's a nice, pithy summary of this sorry episode that will undoubtedly be blockquoted in future history books, but that's about it.

Posted by: Violet on January 8, 2006 at 7:23 PM | PERMALINK

the insurgents are already plenty encouraged by Bush's amateur-everything style of living and governing. i'm afraid your boy can't be saved from himself much longer. god knows what kind of hell is about to break loose on the world.

Posted by: twoupfromtheright on January 8, 2006 at 7:23 PM | PERMALINK

Al: "He wouldn't even have to go to Washington to know that military action against Iraq was inevitable. Why not just believe this simpler explanation rather than the conspiracy theory you have laid out?"

It's awfully good of Al to concede that Bush, Cheney, Powell and Rice were blatantly lying all the times they said "no decision" had been made to go to war. With more honesty like this from America's right wing, we could really get somewhere.

Posted by: Jon on January 8, 2006 at 7:23 PM | PERMALINK

Here is a meta question about this blog- and a serious one.
How and why is it that these two, al and tbroz are ALWAYS here for comments and always among the first to comment?

Is there another blog where there is a hard core anti blogger (in this case Drum) contingent? I know thee are plenty of regulars at blogs, but they are usually of the same frame of mind as the blogger.

It's weird.

Posted by: james on January 8, 2006 at 7:23 PM | PERMALINK

fake tbrosz, james, fake tbrosz.

Posted by: tony on January 8, 2006 at 7:28 PM | PERMALINK

Because "al" and "tbrosz" are the nom-de-sham of many a troll.

Tbrosz, Inc. (tm) is a fast-growing franchise opportunity in the blogospheric sector! Join this up-and-coming "Spin Missile" (rotary rocket) enterprise today!

Posted by: Phobos Deimos on January 8, 2006 at 7:28 PM | PERMALINK

james - i see it as a testimony to the power of kevin's blog, that these anti-bloggers, as you call them, sit on top of it and jump in to steer and 'balance' the discussion as much as they can. another factor is that they are treated with an amazing degree of tolerance. Not that they aren't slammed and belittled regularly, but compared to the way right-wing blogs treat lefty intruders? This is a stroll in the park for the malcontents.

and great hit, Jon. Can't wait to see Al's response!

Posted by: twoupfromtheright on January 8, 2006 at 7:30 PM | PERMALINK

tbrosz: still stupid after all these years.

Joel: Still falling for imposters after all this time.

I think now we're up to what, about 345 "former and current CIA officials" spreading the skinny around? Unless it's all the same two or three guys, of course. Who have we fired from the CIA recently? Oh, yeah, like that narrows it down.

It's fun to go back through this board over the past few years to count up the number of times that "drip, drip, drip" supposedly signaled the inundation of the Bush administration.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 7:53 PM | PERMALINK

It's fun to go back through this board over the past few years to count up the number of times that "drip, drip, drip" supposedly signaled the inundation of the Bush administration.
Posted by: tbrosz

I thought it was the sound of unnecessarily spilt blood. ...

Posted by: Nads on January 8, 2006 at 8:04 PM | PERMALINK

tbrosz: "I think now we're up to what, about 345 "former and current CIA officials" spreading the skinny around? Unless it's all the same two or three guys, of course. Who have we fired from the CIA recently? Oh, yeah, like that narrows it down."

It's difficult for me to understand what point is being made here.

Posted by: Jon on January 8, 2006 at 8:06 PM | PERMALINK

It's difficult for me to understand what point is being made here.
Posted by: Jon

he's rather ineptly suggesting that all of this can be blamed on disgruntled former or current CIA company men who all have an agenda gainst bush. In tom's world, only those who actively fellate bush and his agenda are reliable sources ... I think he still believes in wmds.

Unfortunately, tom is stupid and his writing becoming increasingly incoherent.

Posted by: Nads on January 8, 2006 at 8:11 PM | PERMALINK

Nads: "he's rather ineptly suggesting that all of this can be blamed on disgruntled former or current CIA company men who all have an agenda against bush."

I see. But that doesn't make any sense at all. Does he mean that the CIA officials are just making it up, and Dearlove actually didn't meet with Tenet on July 20, 2002? And the CIA and Tenet are being quiet about this because...why? They're just too polite?

If that's what he's actually implying, it's just nonsensical. I have a hard time anyone could seriously believe such a thing.

Posted by: grh on January 8, 2006 at 8:16 PM | PERMALINK

"The MSM anti-Bush fusillade continues at the great risk of encouraging the insurgents in Iraq."

If Bush, et al, don't start paying more respect for democracy, some of us will conclude that the insurgents have a point.

Posted by: Thinker on January 8, 2006 at 8:25 PM | PERMALINK

grh:

Does he mean that the CIA officials are just making it up, and Dearlove actually didn't meet with Tenet on July 20, 2002?

Don't know. Do you?

If you want to take this to a logical extreme in these stories, there is absolutely no objective evidence on most of these "revelations." We are relying not only on the accuracy and objectivity of these unknown sources, but on the accuracy and objectivity of the people who are their public mouthpieces in the media or elsewhere.

Accuracy of the information aside, we don't know who the sources are, and we don't know their motivations are, other than what their media representatives attribute to them. And what's THEIR motivation?

In court, this kind of crap would not stand up for two seconds, but in the news industry, it's as good as an on-camera interview.

The beauty of this attack method is knowing damn well that nobody is likely to come out on record with the classified data that would prove any of this wrong.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 8:28 PM | PERMALINK

Note to self: ignore the trolls. ignore the trolls.

Posted by: nut on January 8, 2006 at 8:34 PM | PERMALINK

And to follow up on that, if, for example, Tenet or Dearlove came out and said no such meeting took place, would you believe it?

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 8:38 PM | PERMALINK

The probability that the meeting took place has increased from 20% to 40% after the publication of Risen's book.

Posted by: lib on January 8, 2006 at 8:42 PM | PERMALINK

As Winston Churchill said, in war truth is so precious that it must be surrounded by a bodyguard of lies.

What you liberals fail to understand is that we are at war. Bush is doing what is necessary in a difficult situation. Thank God he's our president and not some poseur like Gore or Kerry.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 8:48 PM | PERMALINK

tbrosz: Don't know. Do you?

No, I don't know it in the sense I know there's a stapler sitting on my desk right now. However, I do possess elementary common sense.

The media uses a blizzard of anonymous sources. But there are two general types: those who would suffer if their superiors found out who they were, and those who wouldn't suffer if their superiors found out, because their superiors approve of what they're doing. Claims by the second type of anonymous source are far, far more suspect, and should be used exceedingly sparingly by any news organization. Unfortunately, journalists like Judith Miller use them all the time. However, this doesn't mean that the first type of anonymous source isn't credible, particularly when they're making a claim that could easily be disproven by the government, if that claim is false.

This story clearly seems to fall into this category. I would believe Tenet or Dearlove if they came out and said no such meeting took place and they produced corroborating evidence, which would be simple for them to do. The fact they haven't done it is significantthat is, if you possess elementary common sense.

Posted by: grh on January 8, 2006 at 8:51 PM | PERMALINK

For Tbrosz no amount of evidence or logic is enough when the story is bad for his guy; when the tables are turned, any factoid he can link to will suffice.

Just remember: Tbrosz learned his science at the Discovery Institute.

Same standard:

Evolution: just a theory; gaps in its explanation; not enough evidence is in; its all complex; it is too soon to tell.

ID: The structure of the eye is irreducibly complex. Must have been designed by some thing, person or force. Done.

Evolution and ID are on an equal footing and schools should teach the "debate".

Posted by: Tbrosz watch on January 8, 2006 at 8:58 PM | PERMALINK

military action against Iraq was inevitable as early as July 2002

Everyone knew that the administration was preparing to attack Iraq. Whether the attack was "inevitable" can't be known, since it depended in part on Iraq's action. The attack seemed "inevitiable" to me, and I didn't meet with anyone in Washington of possess any secret knowledge -- I just thought that Saddam Hussein would not capitulate to demands that were made on him. Even Democratic Senators and Representatives were calling on Bush to remove S.H. from power militarily.

Posted by: contentious on January 8, 2006 at 9:02 PM | PERMALINK

While all of you were reading Jonathan Schwartz's book report describing Dearlove's 90-minute private meeting with Tenet, did anyone click the link at the top of the page to "My Favorite Joke of 2006"?

Very funny punchline: "Adolf Hitler has called a press conference in hell to distance himself from Becker's statements."

Posted by: The Dad on January 8, 2006 at 9:05 PM | PERMALINK

tbrosz: And to follow up on that, if, for example, Tenet or Dearlove came out and said no such meeting took place, would you believe it?

With difficulty; from the July 23, 2002 memo:

C reported on his recent talks in Washington.
That Dearlove ("C", the head of MI6) would not meet with Tenet when in DC is even more difficult to believe without supporting evidence or some indication that the July 23 memo is a fabrication.

Posted by: has407 on January 8, 2006 at 9:14 PM | PERMALINK

grh:

I would believe Tenet or Dearlove if they came out and said no such meeting took place and they produced corroborating evidence, which would be simple for them to do.

So, them simply saying it wouldn't be good enough for you without corroborating evidence, but some author, verbally quoting anonymous sources with no other evidence whatsoever, is gospel?

Why didn't you just skip that long paragraph of explanation and replace it with "fits my agenda = source credible, doesn't fit my agenda = source suspect."

has407:

That Dearlove ("C", the head of MI6) would not meet with Tenet when in DC is even more difficult to believe without supporting evidence or some indication that the July 23 memo is a fabrication.

Again, while I'm not calling this meeting a fabrication, just in the abstract I can't believe how readily this kind of thing is quickly nailed down as an established fact. "I can't believe he wouldn't have met with Tenet" isn't real evidence, either.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 9:27 PM | PERMALINK

grh:

I would believe Tenet or Dearlove if they came out and said no such meeting took place and they produced corroborating evidence, which would be simple for them to do.

So, them simply saying it wouldn't be good enough for you without corroborating evidence, but some author, verbally quoting anonymous sources with no other evidence whatsoever, is gospel?

Why didn't you just skip that long paragraph of explanation and replace it with "fits my agenda = source credible, doesn't fit my agenda = source suspect."

has407:

That Dearlove ("C", the head of MI6) would not meet with Tenet when in DC is even more difficult to believe without supporting evidence or some indication that the July 23 memo is a fabrication.

Again, while I'm not calling this meeting a fabrication, just in the abstract I can't believe how readily this kind of thing is quickly nailed down as an established fact. "I can't believe he wouldn't have met with Tenet" isn't real evidence, either.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 9:27 PM | PERMALINK

Sorry, don't know how that double post got in there. Must be the NSA.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 9:28 PM | PERMALINK

I wouldn't take tbrosz very seriously. He still thinks that desegregation might have been responsible for ostensible low rate of increase in literacy rates among blacks.

Posted by: nut on January 8, 2006 at 9:28 PM | PERMALINK

Phobos: nom-de-sham

Very nice!

Posted by: shortstop on January 8, 2006 at 9:33 PM | PERMALINK

nut:

Normally I would ignore someone like you, but you strike me as one of those who repeats a piece of crap like that endlessly on many different threads.

I said it was liberal social engineering, the welfare culture, that is responsible for many of the social and financial problems modern blacks have, not the desegregation of schools.

I did say that public schools in general had problems, but that's another story.

Actually, you might be the one with the literacy problem. Am I using words that are too long?

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 9:35 PM | PERMALINK

I just thought that Saddam Hussein would not capitulate to demands that were made on him.

Except he did, didn't he? So George moved the goalposts.

Posted by: snowy s.o.b. on January 8, 2006 at 9:42 PM | PERMALINK

tbrosz: Again, while I'm not calling this meeting a fabrication, just in the abstract I can't believe how readily this kind of thing is quickly nailed down as an established fact.

Uh, right. Now that the U.S. government has abandoned all record keeping regarding its highest officials, proving this sort of thing is essentially impossible. You can see how Tenet has no recourse whatsoever.

Posted by: grh on January 8, 2006 at 9:43 PM | PERMALINK

James:

Is there another blog where there is a hard core anti blogger (in this case Drum) contingent? I know thee are plenty of regulars at blogs, but they are usually of the same frame of mind as the blogger.

Don't know if I could be considered "anti-Kevin." Opposition does seem to annoy some people here. Every blog seems to acquire a group of regular commenters. I like it here because it's nationally known, Kevin's a quite reasonable liberal, and unlike some other places, the comments aren't completely overrun by loonies. I comment once in a while on other boards, and quite regularly on a space interest board.

Sometimes I have the time for back and forth, and serious comments. Often I don't comment at all, or pop in after about the 90th post, so I'm not as all-present as it looks.

Would be nice if there were more reasonable conservatives here. There are one or two, and they're not here much.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 9:44 PM | PERMALINK

How and why is it that these two, al and tbroz are ALWAYS here for comments and always among the first to comment?

Truthfully, James, I'm not sure that the original al and tbroz even visit this site anymore. Many people (including me) regularly post messages under those titles. Some people are just mocking the right-wing positions. Other people are playing the Devil's advocate or trying to get a debate started. It generally provokes a lively discussion.

Fake comments under the two pseudonyms have gradually sorted themselves into two categories. "Al" is shorthand for the dumb yokel wing of the Republican party. Comments under that name feature circular reasoning, invented facts, astonishing ignorance, and plenty of bluster. They are usually posted for humor.

"tbroz," on the other hand, represents the Kool-Aid-drinking faithful who take their marching orders from Scalia and Cheney. These people have energy, focus, and determination, coupled with an adamant refusal to ever think for themselves. Truth is what is handed down to them from the Republican leadership and they are willing to pursue those marching orders with messianic zeal. These people are so completely and unquestionably convinced of the truth of what they're repeating that it almost sounds persuasive until you look at the facts. That's why comments from "tbroz" get more of a debate.

Posted by: Imposter on January 8, 2006 at 9:51 PM | PERMALINK

That "Jim Crow schools" were abysmal compared to their white counterparts is beyond argument, but on the other hand, decades of liberal education have now given us a black illiteracy rate of 40 percent, when it was 20 percent back in 1940. I suspect that this is an overall problem with public education as a whole more than it is with desegregation. I think the illiteracy rate for whites has gone up considerably, too. .. tbrosz

tbrosz: I do not normally repeat the crap, but when I pointed out this remarkably insensitive statement of yours yesteday, which clearly leaves open the possibility that desegregation might have led to higher illiteracy rates according to your esteemed opinion, your response was a jocular quip.

I accuse you of being a racist with much deliberation. And I intend to follow you on these boards unless you seriously apologize. That act of contrition will not cure you of your weird sensibilities regarding race, but at least you will know not to post such stuff again.

Posted by: nut on January 8, 2006 at 9:54 PM | PERMALINK

tbrosz: Again, while I'm not calling this meeting a fabrication, just in the abstract I can't believe how readily this kind of thing is quickly nailed down as an established fact.

It's been pretty well established and was reported on some time ago (e.g., see here). The only news from Risen with respect to the meeting that I can see is the part about Tenet's and Dearlove's private time.

Posted by: has407 on January 8, 2006 at 9:57 PM | PERMALINK

Can we begin drafting Articles of Impeachment now? Please????

Posted by: Stephen Kriz on January 8, 2006 at 10:25 PM | PERMALINK

Well Stephen, there seem to be grounds for it. Certainly, if lying to Congress about a blowjob qualifies as impeachable, then lying to Congress about intelligence re:WMD's in order to get them to authorize the killing of thousands of people and the wasting of billions of taxdollars qualfies as well. In addition, if it comes to that, I would be willing to bet that this time the Senate would not be averse to trying the president on those grounds.

Posted by: jcricket on January 8, 2006 at 10:40 PM | PERMALINK

nut:

Properly worded with the hair-trigger sensibilities of the Left in mind, the sentence probably should have read:

"I suspect that this is an overall problem with public education as a whole and not desegregation."

In the context of the original thread the first sentence was understandable to most people.

Just for the record, I already took back that 40 percent number in the other thread, having found too many conflicting pieces of information and different variables on it.

Take that or leave it. It's all I'm saying on the matter.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 10:43 PM | PERMALINK

tbrosz: So, them simply saying it wouldn't be good enough for you without corroborating evidence, but some author, verbally quoting anonymous sources with no other evidence whatsoever, is gospel?

Why didn't you just skip that long paragraph of explanation and replace it with "fits my agenda = source credible, doesn't fit my agenda = source suspect."

Ah, yes. Now I see that these two claims should carry exactly the same weight:

1. We know for certain the head of MI6 had held "recent talks in Washington." Unnamed sources claim these talks were with his precise counterpart in the US government, which is what elementary common sense would lead you to expect, particularly when the two nations are preparing to go to war together.

These sources would have ample reason to fear an administration proven to be vindictive, and would also know that if their claims were false, they could easily be proven so by the US and UK governments.

and

2. A simple denial by George Tenet with none of the corroborating evidence he could easily provide.

HOW FOOLISH OF ME EVER TO THINK OTHERWISE. IT HAS BEEN PROVEN THAT I ONLY BELIEVE THINGS THAT FIT MY AGENDA. POINT, SET AND MATCH TO TBROSZ.

What I particularly like about this little alleyway constructed by tbrosz is that in fact there is no such denial from Tenet. Thus, he is arguing about some hypothetical situation in which his position would still be ridiculous.

Posted by: grh on January 8, 2006 at 10:45 PM | PERMALINK

Cute, Imposter.

While we're on the subject, feel free to point out a single post you have ever made under your own name that has drifted one millimeter away from the dead center of the Democratic party line.

Kevin gets endless grief when he drifts even slightly.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 10:47 PM | PERMALINK

Uh oh Stephen Kriz....You've done it now....King George W the First will be sending his ROYAL INITIALS to investigate you and all of your family and all of their finances and all of their immigration papers and all of their employment status and all of their employers and all of their right to fly.....

Posted by: murmeister on January 8, 2006 at 10:47 PM | PERMALINK

"Take it or leave it," nut. tbrosz does not apologize. Blaming the "hair-trigger sensibilities of the left" for the reaction, rather than acknowledging the action, is his version of a big mea culpa. No man on the right was ever wrong that a liberal wasn't wronger.

Yes, we have some reasonable conservatives here, Tom. We have some honorable ones, too. You aren't among either category.

Posted by: shortstop on January 8, 2006 at 10:56 PM | PERMALINK

And a Clintonista would be the wrongest.

Have to feel a tad sorry for poor Jack A. The man delivers $100,000 to his beloved and his beloved knoweth him not.

Jack A Who? has become the new mantra at 1600. If anyone out there has a photo of Twigless and Jack together, hide it before the Service of the Secrets come for "re-developing".

Posted by: thethirdPaul on January 8, 2006 at 11:04 PM | PERMALINK

"I suspect that this is an overall problem with public education as a whole and not desegregation."

This is the corrected statement! I rest my case.

I thought even the boys at National Review have given up their position on segregation.

How can anyone take this idiot seriously?

Posted by: nut on January 8, 2006 at 11:08 PM | PERMALINK

But, but, he did go to "engine school" where he could say "I R an engineer", and there is a rumor that he stayed at a Holiday Express once.

Posted by: stupid git on January 8, 2006 at 11:14 PM | PERMALINK

Holiday Express

Do not say those words in my presence. I don't want to hear "Delta Airlines," either. Longest night of my life. Hotlanta, my ass!

Sorry. Y'all were saying?

Posted by: shortstop on January 8, 2006 at 11:21 PM | PERMALINK

Hey Shortstop, two chicks passing in the night once more, eh?

Posted by: Global Citizen on January 8, 2006 at 11:24 PM | PERMALINK

Whereyabin, GC?!

Posted by: shortstop on January 8, 2006 at 11:35 PM | PERMALINK


King George W the First has a short fuse:

"Edward Allen's reaction to being on the government's "no-fly" list should have been the tip-off that he is no terrorist.
'I don't want to be on the list. I want to fly and see my grandma,' the 4-year-old boy said, according to his mother....."

And he probably didn't even say half as much as you guys. Remember, this isn't Venezuela.

Posted by: murmeister on January 8, 2006 at 11:37 PM | PERMALINK

This is not your granddaddy's war, murmeister. Mock all you want, but clearly this Allen character was an early graduate of a premier madarassa.

Posted by: shortstop on January 8, 2006 at 11:41 PM | PERMALINK

Shortstop: You have me at a disadvantage. Please explain "premier madarassa". I cannot find a reference to this. Thanks.

Posted by: murmeister on January 8, 2006 at 11:49 PM | PERMALINK

Sorry, mur; I was making a bad joke at Bush's expense.

Posted by: shortstop on January 8, 2006 at 11:52 PM | PERMALINK

On more serious matters if anyone of you has not seen the video of Dean ripping Wolf Blitzer a big one you are missing a remarkable exchange.

Posted by: nut on January 8, 2006 at 11:52 PM | PERMALINK

I've just been busy, Shortstop. Between the holidays (we have em all in our family) and getting the oldest kid ready to go to Kyoto to teach English...And with two kids at home, my on-line time has been curtailed quite a bit...And the new semester is about to start.

I'm getting too old for this shit!

Posted by: Global Citizen on January 9, 2006 at 12:05 AM | PERMALINK

Dearlove met Tenet? No shit, Sherlock. If you're 'C', then you don't go to Washington to take in the air and visit the Smithsonian. You go there to meet the DCI.

See, tbrosz, the head of MI6 -- or, if you're Bill O'Falafel -- Emm-One-Six -- was only publically identified a decade ago. This isn't a particularly public role. The current 'C' was only identified by a single blurry photo until he got involved in the sad David Kelly affair.

Anyway, Tenet has long been suspected as the confirming 'former senior administration official' in stories referring to the Downing Street minutes.

Revelation? More like a statement of the bleedin' obvious. 'C' doesn't travel abroad to hang out with the paeons.

Posted by: ahem on January 9, 2006 at 12:12 AM | PERMALINK

DELTA, DELTA, DELTA has the worst arrival and departure record at Portland International. Did I say DELTA?

Posted by: stupid git on January 9, 2006 at 12:15 AM | PERMALINK

I have never been on a Delta flight that left or landed on time! I loathe flying that airline!

Posted by: Global Citizen on January 9, 2006 at 12:20 AM | PERMALINK

Shortsop,

Nice defensive move on another thread - Great throw to first - Nailed him.

Sorry about Chicago being named the "Fattest" city in the land.

Posted by: stupid git on January 9, 2006 at 12:35 AM | PERMALINK

Read the rest to find out who Dearlove was really talking to. Hint: it wasn't a bunch freelance chatterboxes.- Kevin

The guy who told Bush that WMD in Iraq was a 'slam dunk'?

What would Gore have done? Parchute into Kirkuk and get the data himself?

Posted by: McAristotle on January 9, 2006 at 12:37 AM | PERMALINK

What would Gore have done? Parchute into Kirkuk and get the data himself?

No, parachute into Kuching and order a round of kopis.

How are the steamed buns today, McPeranakan?

Posted by: floopmeister on January 9, 2006 at 12:45 AM | PERMALINK

The defanged and deranged Malaysian krait has slithered out once again.

Posted by: thethirdPaul on January 9, 2006 at 12:48 AM | PERMALINK

As I am awarding you the Medal of Freedom, George, I must say that you did a heckuva job with that "slam dunk".

Posted by: George W on January 9, 2006 at 12:53 AM | PERMALINK

...defanged and deranged...

Literally lovely alliteration, Paul3!

Posted by: floopmeister on January 9, 2006 at 12:55 AM | PERMALINK

I second that, Floop! Paul-3 hit it out of the park!

Posted by: Global Citizen on January 9, 2006 at 1:08 AM | PERMALINK

yeah, we're here, some of us....

Posted by: chris on January 9, 2006 at 1:10 AM | PERMALINK

It's fun to go back through this board over the past few years to count up the number of times that "drip, drip, drip" supposedly signaled the inundation of the Bush administration.

Better to wish the Bush Administration be held responsible for its malfeasance than gloat at their getting away with it, tbrosz. Shame on you.

Posted by: Gregory on January 9, 2006 at 1:36 AM | PERMALINK

Opposition does seem to annoy some people here.

Don't flatter yourself, tbrosz. Opposition is one thing; the steady parade of intellectual dishonesty you present -- including but not limited to one of your favorite tactics, the straw man argument -- is, I will admit, annoying.

Would be nice if there were more reasonable conservatives here. There are one or two, and they're not here much.

Oh, I agree, tbrosz, but I hope I'm reading this comment right in that you're excluding yourself from the contingent of "reasonable conservatives." After all, your agenda seems pretty much to carry water for the Bush Administration, rather than advance any conservative point of view. And as for reasonable, I've said before that the shameful thing about you is that you can debate honestly, but you choose not to. I realize defending the Bush Administration's mendacity and incompetence is nigh-impossible, but that's your problem, not ours.

Posted by: Gregory on January 9, 2006 at 1:43 AM | PERMALINK

He's no son of mine!

Posted by: Aristotle on January 9, 2006 at 1:45 AM | PERMALINK
What would Gore have done? Parchute into Kirkuk and get the data himself?

Not started the push on the intelligence agencies to produce evidence to support a pre-conceived policy of war with Iraq in the first place, presumably.

Had he magically been swapped into office in, say, mid-2002 when that ship had already sailed and the credibility of the United States and, to a lesser extent, international institutions was tied up in securing, by force if necessary, verifiable compliance from Iraq, probably something like embracing the proposal from Mexico and others that had the backing of the majority of the Security Council which would have set firm deadlines, and provided beefed-up inspections backed with armed force and a firm ultimatum, instead of, as Bush did, holding out for an unconditional authorization for for force from the UNSC, declaring boldly that the US would demand a vote on its resolution no matter what the prospects were to force other nations to go on the record, and then when a viable consensus formed around another policy, simply running away from the UNSC process entirely.

Your implicit argument that Bush's policy was the only one imaginable toward Iraq is, well, as stupid as most of the things in your posts.

Posted by: cmdicely on January 9, 2006 at 2:20 AM | PERMALINK

Nothing but personal attacks again. Now back to the argument.

How would a Democrat President check the intelligence better? Appoint a better CIA Director? Check who appointed Mr. 'Slam Dunk'.

Unless you really think Kerry would have swift boated up-river to check the real situation out, how is a President meant to get a second source of intelligence than the CIA?

Illegal spying?

If you can't answer me after a year of this shit, how are you meant to convince the public.

----------
No, parachute into Kuching and order a round of kopis.

How are the steamed buns today, McPeranakan?

Posted by: floopmeister on January 9, 2006 at 12:45 AM | PERMALINK

Kopi and steamed buns are fantastic, BTW.

Posted by: McAristotle on January 9, 2006 at 2:27 AM | PERMALINK

This all seems to bring us back th anonymous sources. Since Dapper Dan got screwed by his anonymous sources, you'd think journalists, and I use the term loosley, would be hesitant to use them without a lot of backup confirmation that is verifiable through other sources.
Risen makes a lot of claims without being able to have the claims verified. He actually came out and indicated we should trust him. Why? So he can sell more books? Why was his book release and the story in the Times scheduled so close together? Was the Times, after holding on to this story for a year, afraid the book would scoop them?
I truly find it difficult to find a reasonable leberal here outside of Kevin, and then at times he's drfited off into NeverNever land. tbrosz and others make valid points and get personal attacks in return. Very sophisticated debate that.
I used to like to respond more often, but many here seem to be in the same lockstep with Dean, Pelosi, Boxer, et al... that they claim we on the right side of the aisle coordinate with Cheney, DeLay, Rush, et al...
Each scandal trumpeted by the media seems to lead to another round of "When does the impeachment trial begin?". But it seems in each instance, the facts get in the way of the scandal, and those with BDS go looking for the next tidbit of trash.
It has come to the point where commenting on this blog is tiresome because everyone is shouting and nobody is listening.

Posted by: Meatss on January 9, 2006 at 2:33 AM | PERMALINK

We are not paid trolls though we have no proof.

Sincerely,

Repulican National Committee
dba tbrosz, McAristotle & Meatss

Posted by: Ken Melhman on January 9, 2006 at 3:37 AM | PERMALINK

TBROSZ: If you want to take this to a logical extreme in these stories, there is absolutely no objective evidence on most of these "revelations."

Woodward in Plan of Attack and O'Neill in The Price of Loyalty have provided objective evidence. In addition, the former British ambassador to the U.S., Sir Chistopher Meyer, has vouched for two of the DSMs.

Posted by: Steve J. on January 9, 2006 at 3:55 AM | PERMALINK

tbrosz: If you want to take this to a logical extreme in these stories, there is absolutely no objective evidence on most of these "revelations."

Even granting this (preposterously false) premise, you'd have to assume that given tbrosz' stated point of view on the need for a high level of evidence, he must be absolutely furious about the unprecedented secrecy of the Bush administration. He must also have been extremely supportive of the Clinton administration's limited but still significant moves to greater government openness. In fact, I'm sure tbrosz has already given lots of money to Public Citizen to support their project tracking Bush's secrecy and seeking to oppose it.

...what's that? You say tbrosz has never done anything of the sort?

Butbut that would mean everything he says here is just a pose! That it's complete bullshit! A transparent excuse not to believe things he doesn't want to believe!

I CAN'T ACCEPT THAT! NOT ABOUT SOMEONE WITH THE INTELLECTUAL INTEGRITY OF TBROSZ!

Posted by: grh on January 9, 2006 at 5:05 AM | PERMALINK

Well, it's quite obvious what we need to do here, not that any of you would agree. The liberals are never under any circumstances going to leave off the misty hope that someday this "evidence" they keep "finding" will be enough to impeach GW Bush. Year after year, every drip drip drip, every dropping shoe, has come to naught.

Naught, I say. Why? Vain jealous resentment that the GOP did it to Clinton? A lifetime's worth of bitterness at being born with exquisitely tiny penises? As an engineer I am a man (a well-endowed man) who deals in facts. Facts and evidence. Evidence and facts. Facts, evidence and meticulous, precise, anal-retentive judgment.
Engineers are universally noted, in fact, for having sphincters that could crush Volkswagens. We clamp tightly down on the facts of a case and squeeze and strain until the truth works its way out at last.

Unnnhhh ... Ahhh ... there, that's better.

As I was saying. Oh yes. The truth. Take a deep, lung-filling sniff and catch the aroma, liberals. That's the fragrance of facts and evidence. Straight from an engineer to you. Never forget that we build the big, bulging missiles that keep you free and that you can only dream about. We get to touch them, play with them, adjust their courses, make them even better than what we made them originally.

You, the weak of the earth, the ungrateful recipients of the freedom that we so skillfully provide, can only look impotently on as they rise nobly into the air. How you'd love to ride in them someday, wouldn't you? It's been your most cherished childhood dream.

But no. We reserve rides upward into the virgin-blue robes of the sky for the new class of space capitalists. The men (of course they are men) with the wherewithal to pay their own way. How you envy them, don't you, liberals. A government program landed us on the moon? Perhaps so, but it is your corporate masters who will colonize Mars.

Breeding stock ... ahhh, yes ... we must have breeding stock. Your wives, daughters and girlfriends, filled with the silly notions of liberal civilization you planted into their heads, are still too much God's creatures not to misunderstand true security, true opportunity, true power, when it is presented to them. Perhaps they'll look over their shoulders, perhaps even wistfully -- with a moistness of eye -- but they'll board the rockets the same. And you know they will. You know you have nothing to offer them compared to the techno-elite that marches God's chosen people forward to our noblest fulfillment.

Goodbye, worms. Try not to squabble too strenuously over your resources. And remember -- never try to fire a missile for strategic advantage.

We won't be around to do it for you.

Perhaps you should have been more grateful to us when you had the chance, eh?

Posted by: tbrosz on January 9, 2006 at 8:26 AM | PERMALINK

uh, Kev? Could you have Debra Dickerson rewrite this post so I can understand what it is you are trying to say? We need clarity here. And maybe a long quote with tangential references to misogyny (I like!) and cryptic punctuation.

Thanks!

Perry

Posted by: perry on January 9, 2006 at 8:48 AM | PERMALINK

Kevin, I think is pointing at one other huge conclusion: The NY Times had all the pieces BEFORE the war to figure out that Iraq had little or no WMDs and that the administration was lying about its stated reasons for going to war.

But they chose not to try to figure the story out. They never pushed the story or asked the question: does this war make sense? Do these rationales make sense? From this book, the Downing street memo, and other leaks it appears that the Times had the sources telling them the crucial bits of information. But the NY Times refused to grapple the issue.

Maybe because they were intimidated, or because their editors had been duped by Judy Miller, or because they just didn't want to believe what was happening they just didn't think it through.

And unfortunately, they were just one piece of our establishment that decided not to think it through. The Liberal Hawks didn't, the other print media outlets didn't, and even most of the GOP didn't. Most of the world knew it was crazy at the time, and a few commentators chimed in here. But it's just amazing how much of our allegely smart establishment just tanked on the issue.

Posted by: Samuel Knight on January 9, 2006 at 9:35 AM | PERMALINK

tbrosz: It's fun to go back through this board over the past few years to count up the number of times that "drip, drip, drip" supposedly signaled the inundation of the Bush administration.

Since you are implicitly claiming to have done this, please provide us with that count, tbrosz.

What? Can't do it? Because it isn't true?

Who would've imagined that to be the case.

Posted by: Advocate for God on January 9, 2006 at 9:54 AM | PERMALINK

tbrosz: Year after year, every drip drip drip, every dropping shoe, has come to naught.

Yep.

Libby was not indicted. Liberal myth.

Abramoff wasn't indicted and convicted. Liberal myth.

DeLay wasn't indicted and forced from his leadership position. Liberal myth.

Funny how these "liberal myths" seem to reflect reality while your criticisms of them do not.

Still kissing Bush's ass regardless of the facts after all these years, though, tbrosz.

Buying a lot of chapstick lately?

Posted by: Advocate for God on January 9, 2006 at 9:58 AM | PERMALINK

Damn! Got taken in by the fake tbrosz again.

Why is that so easy.

Because they are so alike?

Posted by: Advocate for God on January 9, 2006 at 9:59 AM | PERMALINK

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10741787/

See that a Congressional study group says: not much legal justification for NSA domestic spying under Bush.

Posted by: !!! on January 9, 2006 at 10:04 AM | PERMALINK

Wonder why Sleep Country USA has been seen delivering so many mattresses to the White House?

Jack A? Nah, they never knew the man.

Posted by: thethirdPaul on January 9, 2006 at 10:37 AM | PERMALINK
It's fun to go back through this board over the past few years to count up the number of times that "drip, drip, drip" supposedly signaled the inundation of the Bush administration.

No, idiot. "Whoosh" would signal inundation. "drip, drip, drip" signals what Pollkatz illustrates this best with the Coriolis Effect, showing the sustained, long-term, downward spiral of the public perception of the present Administration.

Posted by: cmdicely on January 9, 2006 at 10:52 AM | PERMALINK

Hm. The fake tbroszes are getting smarter. One might almost say they were...evolving...

Posted by: brooksfoe on January 9, 2006 at 11:32 AM | PERMALINK

Hm. The fake tbroszes are getting smarter. One might almost say they were...evolving...

I actually think it's evidence that they're the product of an intelligent designer.

Posted by: Stefan on January 9, 2006 at 11:41 AM | PERMALINK

I guess tbrosz, real or fake, would never agree that consumerism, fuelled by the profit moive, and a direct result of the religion of laissez faire capitalism, is a huge factor in all illiteracy and most other social ills in the US. Not every liberal program has met its goals and some have had unintended negative correlates, but to blame problems on good faith efforts to relieve them instead of upon the greed which has fostereed them is acute philistinism.

Posted by: Ace Franze on January 9, 2006 at 11:52 AM | PERMALINK

I actually think it's evidence that they're the product of an intelligent designer.

Panda's thumb, Brosz's wee-wee. Neither can be explained, and neither is ever used for anything.

All righty, that was unnecessarily skanky of me.

Posted by: shortstop on January 9, 2006 at 11:59 AM | PERMALINK

Yay! Everybody's talking about me! I love it when people talk about me!

Posted by: tbrosz on January 9, 2006 at 12:03 PM | PERMALINK

Here's tbrosz in a contemplative moment, working on his favorite thing in the world...

Posted by: adios on January 9, 2006 at 12:05 PM | PERMALINK

Glad you all enjoyed that insanely grandiose, Strangelovian tbrosz parody upthread. The tbrosz@swivellingsphincter.com one.

That was me :)

*bowing*

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on January 9, 2006 at 12:15 PM | PERMALINK

Jack A? Nah, they never knew the man.

Depends on the meaning of "knew".

Posted by: JeffG on January 9, 2006 at 12:36 PM | PERMALINK

tbrosz: ... feel free to point out a single post you have ever made under your own name that has drifted one millimeter away from the dead center of the Democratic party line.

There is no such thing as "the Democratic party line." For better or worse, that's one key difference between the Democratic Party and the Republican Party. If there is any characteristic that defines the Democratic Party of today, it is energetic disagreement within the party about nearly everything, from the substance of policy to political strategies and tactics.

Whereas trosz and all the Republicans who post here adhere slavishly to their line, which is very simply, "Bush can do no wrong."

That's what the Republican Party party line has been reduced to: licking Bush's boots.

Posted by: SecularAnimist on January 9, 2006 at 12:45 PM | PERMALINK

tbrosz wrote:
"Kevin's a quite reasonable liberal,"

Posted by: tbrosz on January 8, 2006 at 9:44 PM | PERMALINK

on what planet?

Kevin is a moderate Republican or very conservative Democrat. He probably fits in well with Joe Lieberman or former Senator Sam Nunn. These are NOT liberals.

Posted by: MarkH on January 9, 2006 at 12:51 PM | PERMALINK

I AM TBROSZ! HEAR ME ROAR!

Posted by: tbrosz on January 9, 2006 at 1:04 PM | PERMALINK

I apologize again for the fault in these posts.
Those responsible have been sacked.
Those responsible for sacking the people who have just been sacked have been sacked.

Mse trained by TBROSZ
Special Mse Effects TBROSZ
Mse Costumes TBROSZ
Mse Choreographed by TBROSZ
Miss Taylor's Mses by TBROSZ
Mse trained to mix concrete and sign complicated insurance forms by TBROSZ
Mses' noses wiped by TBROSZ

Posted by: tbrosz on January 9, 2006 at 1:14 PM | PERMALINK

cmdicely -
thanks for the link to the Coriolis graph.

Reminds me of watching my toilet!
(and yes, it really does go the opposite way in the S hemisphere.)

Posted by: kenga on January 9, 2006 at 1:34 PM | PERMALINK

I'll soon be visiting the southern hemisphere for the first time, and flushing a toilet to check out the Coriolis effect is like #3 on my list, after viewing the moon and finding the southern cross.

Posted by: shortstop on January 9, 2006 at 1:48 PM | PERMALINK

"What would Gore have done?"

He would have finished the war in Afghanistan, against those who attacked us and their protectors, rather than diverting men and materiel to Iraq.

Posted by: Cal Gal on January 9, 2006 at 2:25 PM | PERMALINK

SecularAnimist:

There is no such thing as "the Democratic party line." For better or worse, that's one key difference between the Democratic Party and the Republican Party. If there is any characteristic that defines the Democratic Party of today, it is energetic disagreement within the party about nearly everything, from the substance of policy to political strategies and tactics.

Okay, now THAT'S funny.

How's Lieberman doing in the party lately? What's his primary situation look like? Zell Miller? What are your views on the DLC? Look at how Kevin is treated if he strays off-message here.

There's not one major Democratic party leader that you couldn't interchange with any other, and get the slightest difference, or that I couldn't predict their response to a question, probably down to the language they use.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 9, 2006 at 3:16 PM | PERMALINK

Advocate for God:

Damn! Got taken in by the fake tbrosz again. Why is that so easy. Because they are so alike?

No, that's not the reason. Think a little harder. Oh, wait...

Posted by: tbrosz on January 9, 2006 at 3:18 PM | PERMALINK

cmdicely:

...probably something like embracing the proposal from Mexico and others that had the backing of the majority of the Security Council which would have set firm deadlines, and provided beefed-up inspections backed with armed force and a firm ultimatum...

What proposal was that? I understood France had declared that it would veto anything that had a deadline, or for that matter, anything that actually changed the status quo. More details?

Posted by: tbrosz on January 9, 2006 at 3:29 PM | PERMALINK

LAW OF DIMINISHING RETURNS ON BODY ARMOR
Soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division's 3rd Brigade ''Rakkasans'' are required to wear an array of protective clothing they refer to as their ''happy gear,'' ranging from Kevlar drapes over their shoulders and sides, to knee pads and fire-resistant uniforms. But many soldiers say they feel encumbered by the weight and restricted by fabric that does not move as they do. They frequently joke as they strap on their equipment before a patrol, and express relief when they return and peel it off. Second Lt. Josh Suthoff, 23, of Jefferson City, Miss., said he sacrifices enough movement when he wears the equipment. More armor would only increase his chances of getting killed, he said.

Posted by: akt on January 9, 2006 at 4:25 PM | PERMALINK

cmdicely wrote: to a lesser extent, international institutions was tied up in securing, by force if necessary, verifiable compliance from Iraq, probably something like embracing the proposal from Mexico and others that had the backing of the majority of the Security Council which would have set firm deadlines, and provided beefed-up inspections backed with armed force and a firm ultimatum,

No such resolution was ever put to a vote of the security council, so the idea that it had majority support is at best untested. Probably in fact false since the French publicly and consistently opposed anything backed by force. UNSC 1442 (yikes, I might be forgetting the correct number) contained both a firm schedule and a threat of "serious consequences", and the French backed off from that when consequences that might be called "serious" were proposed. Hans blix, who opposed the invasion, documented the failure of the Iraq regime to adhere to the requirements imposed on it.

without the US invasion, Saddam Hussein would have won the bluff. that he had no more WMDs (except possibly the mythical weapons shipped to Syria) would not now be known. We'd have had all these extra years of less than complete compliance from Iraq.

Returning to the topic of the thread, even the US Congress knew that the Bush administration was preparing to go to war, which was why opponents of the war demanded that he request a war resolution. The idea that there was some "secret" that the Bush administration was "committed" to the war is silly. Bush was prepared to go to war, he got authority to invade, and if Iraq had adhered to the demands in UNSCR 1442 (or 1441?), there would have been no war.

Posted by: contentious on January 9, 2006 at 5:10 PM | PERMALINK
No such resolution was ever put to a vote of the security council, so the idea that it had majority support is at best untested.

Enough governments openly expressed support that, if those the US had already gotten beyond its war resolution voted for it, it would have been a majority (as I recall, the total votes for would have been 10.)

Of course, no resolution of any kind was put before the Security Council, because even after having shot his mouth of about forcing an up or down vote even if there were veto powers sure to veto, and even if the whip count was against them, Bush ran away from the Security Council when it looked like the draft he preferred wasn't going to get more than a handful of votes. Of course, Ari Fleisher shooting his mouth off and characterizing resisting countries as subject to bribery probably didn't help rally support.

Returning to the topic of the thread, even the US Congress knew that the Bush administration was preparing to go to war, which was why opponents of the war demanded that he request a war resolution.

The Bush Administration claimed that it sought a war-authorizing resolution to strengthen its diplomatic hand in negotiations, and to provide a credible threat to prevent the eventual necessity of war. Congress voted for the AUMF on that premise, not on the premise that it was an unconditional, if delayed, declaration of war.

Bush maintained publicly that no decision had been made to go to war until immediately before the war began.


Posted by: cmdicely on January 9, 2006 at 6:45 PM | PERMALINK

Of course, Ari Fleisher shooting his mouth off and characterizing resisting countries as subject to bribery probably didn't help rally support.

Of course, the fact that some of those nations WERE subject to bribery might be relevant.

From Duelfer's report (boldface mine):

Moreover, the IIS paper targeted a number of French individuals that the Iraqis thought had close relations to French President Chirac, including, according to the Iraqi assessment, the official spokesperson of President Chiracs re-election campaign, two reported "counselors" of President Chirac, and two well-known French businessmen. In May 2002, IIS correspondence addressed to Saddam stated that a MFA (quite possibly an IIS officer under diplomatic cover) met with French parliamentarian to discuss Iraq-Franco relations. The French politician assured the Iraqi that France would use its veto in the UNSC against any American decision to attack Iraq, according to the IIS memo.

From Baghdads perspective, the MFA concluded that the primary motive for French continued support and cooperation with Iraq in the UN was economic.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 9, 2006 at 7:46 PM | PERMALINK
Of course, the fact that some of those nations WERE subject to bribery might be relevant.

Not really to the disaster contributed to by the White House's official mouthpiece confidently stating that the US could win support, if necessary, by bribing the nations in question.

Which, no doubt, would have been true in some cases, if he hadn't said it, making any government that switched positions toward the US's position, whether bribed or not, automatically vulnerable to charges of having been bribed by the Americans.

(Not, of course, that your paper indicates that any nation was bribed. It suggests that France had existing economic interests in Iraq, and that IIS thought those were the overwhelming reasons Iraq decided the way it did on the Iraq war, and that certain French persons assured certain Iraqi persons that they would act exactly as they did. There is a difference between acting in the perceived economic interest of your nation -- what most governments do, indeed arguably have a moral obligation to their constituents to do barring pressing countervailing concerns -- and taking bribes. That the Right doesn't understand the difference might explain certain current scandals.)

Posted by: cmdicely on January 9, 2006 at 8:13 PM | PERMALINK

Not, of course, that your paper indicates that any nation was bribed. It suggests that France had existing economic interests in Iraq, and that IIS thought those were the overwhelming reasons Iraq decided the way it did on the Iraq war, and that certain French persons assured certain Iraqi persons that they would act exactly as they did.

There is a difference between acting in the perceived economic interest of your nation -- what most governments do, indeed arguably have a moral obligation to their constituents to do barring pressing countervailing concerns -- and taking bribes. That the Right doesn't understand the difference might explain certain current scandals.

That has got to be the most beautifully-written rationalization of France putting their cash ahead of international security interests that I have ever seen. If the U.S. did something like that, justifying it with "economic interest," (and I believe it has), half the people here would blow an artery over it.

"You keep the money coming, we'll vote your way."

If that's not a bribe, Abramoff and a lot of politicians are being railroaded.

Posted by: tbrosz on January 9, 2006 at 8:27 PM | PERMALINK

That has got to be the most beautifully-written rationalization of France putting their cash ahead of international security interests that I have ever seen.

Actually, this seems to be a case in which the same course of action was best both for international security interests and French economic interests. In fact, it was probably also best for American economic interests, construed broadly.

Also, this:

If the U.S. did something like that, justifying it with "economic interest," (and I believe it has), half the people here would blow an artery over it.

...is a magnificant piece of tbroszian stupidity. It's so moronic in so many ways you can only stand back and admire it.

Posted by: grh on January 9, 2006 at 10:44 PM | PERMALINK

What would Gore have done?"

He would have finished the war in Afghanistan, against those who attacked us and their protectors, rather than diverting men and materiel to Iraq.

Posted by: Cal Gal on January 9, 2006 at 2:25 PM | PERMALINK


So he would have ignored the advice of the CIA?

He'd be using that keen liberal instinct that makes liberals always right while republicans are always wrong.

So what if the CIA had a prediction on a threat and they were right?

Would he ignore that too?

And if he doesn't...how does he know?


Posted by: McAristotle on January 9, 2006 at 11:54 PM | PERMALINK

At what point do trolls' comments become annoying and thus illegal?

Posted by: Brian Boru on January 10, 2006 at 1:42 AM | PERMALINK

cmdicely, it is still the case that congress knew that Bush was planning the war, it is still the case that opponents of the war sought the war resolution (thinking that it would not pass), and it is still the case that France opposed any resolution that committed the UN to force in case of Iraqi non-compliance.

to quote you again: to a lesser extent, international institutions was tied up in securing, by force if necessary, verifiable compliance from Iraq, probably something like embracing the proposal from Mexico and others that had the backing of the majority of the Security Council which would have set firm deadlines, and provided beefed-up inspections backed with armed force and a firm ultimatum,

A "firm ultimatum" was exactly what the French repeatedly said they would not vote for. UNSCR 1442 was the closest thing to a "firm ultimatum" that could pass (and did pass), and France resolutely refused to back it with "armed force". It was Bush and Blair who pushed securing verifiable compliance by force if necessary. UNSCR 1442 already said that it was the "final" opportunity for compliance, and the diplomatic effort in opposition to Bush and Blair was to override that finality.

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