Another Attempt by Conservatives and Bush Administration Criminals to Smear Their Opponents

Nancy Pelosi is one of the strongest voices for Progressive Reform in the Congress, so it's no suprise that the Republican Noise Machine has launched a smear campaign against her, charging that she knew and therefore implictly  condoned about the use of waterboarding, and that she is lying when she denies this. In a press conference today she reiterated that she was not briefed on the use of waterboarding: Pelosi Defends Herself on Waterboarding.

"The CIA briefed me only once on enhanced interrogation techniques in September 2002 in my capacity as ranking member of the Intelligence Committee. I was informed then that the Department of Justice opinions had concluded that the use of enhanced interrogation techniques were legal. The only mention of waterboarding at that briefing was that it was not being employed," she said.

 

She said she was not in a second briefing in 2003 where she said lawmakers learned that waterboarding was being used.

Pelosi said that the CIA misled members of Congress, just as the Bush team misled the country on the existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq to justify the war.

She said she was not in a second briefing in 2003 where she said lawmakers learned that waterboarding was being used.

Pelosi said that the CIA misled members of Congress, just as the Bush team misled the country on the existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq to justify the war.

"We also now know that techniques including waterboarding had already been employed and that those briefing me in September 2002 gave me inaccurate and incomplete information," she added. "At the same time, the Bush administration -- exactly the same time -- September of 2002, the fall of 2002, at the same time, the Bush administration was misleading the American people about the threat of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq."

"They didn't tell us everything they were doing," she told reporters. "We had to get a new president to change the policy."

It is an outrage that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld et al are not being held to account. Let's not lose sight of the fact that Speaker of the House Pelosi has been one of the strongest advocates for holding hearings on Bush Administration war crimes and also on the financial malfeasance that led to the curret collapse.

Beyond the attempt to smear Pelosi is the ongoing attempt of Conservatives to create distrust for government. "They're all a bunch of thieves and liars." "We need to get government out of lives." etc. "Washington!  expletive, etc.
 

 

0
No votes yet

Comments

Senator Bob Graham: The CIA Made Up Two Briefing Sessions

"In addition to repeating earlier reports that he was never briefed on waterboarding, Graham revealed that the first time he asked the CIA when he was briefed on torture, it claimed it had briefed him on two dates when no briefing took place. ... CIA claimed Graham had been briefed on two days when no briefing occurred, which is not dissimilar from their claims that Jello Jay was briefed on February 4, 2003 when he didn't attend the briefing in question."

carol

Carol,

You said,

"It is an outrage that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld et al are not being held to account."

I fully agree. But then you went on to say,

"Let's not lose sight of the fact that Speaker of the House Pelosi has been one of the strongest advocates for holding hearings on Bush Administration war crimes and also on the financial malfeasance that led to the curret collapse."

To that I say, let us also not lose sight of the fact that it was Nancy Pelosi who first said, "Impeachment is off the table."  So we need to find out how deeply this woman was involved in this situation.  If a red flag went up for Jane Harman during the briefings, why didn't the same red flag go up for Pelosi?

We need to be careful not to get into this our side against their side mentality.  We need to get rid of ALL of them who are culpable--Republican and Democrats.  After all, the political class is a side within itself.  None of them are on our side--they're on their own side.  If they were on our side, Iraq never would have happened.

Personally, I think we need to get a whole new group of people in Washington, because all of the current group, with very few exceptions, have proven to be self-serving, and they've failed us miserably.

Eric L. Wattree
wattree.blogspot.com

Religious bigotry: It's not that I hate everybody who doesn't look, think, and act like me - it's just that God does.

At risk of repeating something I have written (and said) repeatedly, I think the track you are suggesting on the, "Get rid of the bums," is dangerously wrong. That mentality resulted in the victory of Adolph Hitler. Please remember that he became Chancellor of Germany strictly according to the electoral process.

Why did this happen?

Because Communists, Trotskyists, Independent Socialists etc. were of your openion translated into that period. Their reasoning was "this guy Hitler is outrageous but then so is Schleicher," (the conservative.) The left of center parties were more concerned to duke it out themselves then unite and prevent Hitler from coming to power.)

Moveover I do not think that Nancy Pelosi is morally equivalent to the conservative Schleicher (although by not rallying to defeat Hitler even at the cost of electing Schleicher Germany became responsible for the Holocaust and many, many other horrors etc.) I think Pelosi is and has been a fighter for social reform.

At the time when impeachment seemed to be gathering support we were already in the fight to chose a Democratic nominee and make him or her president. Anything would have been a distraction from the main battle of the day.

Even if Barack Obama turns out to be a disappointment -- and the jury is definitely still out on that one -- I am convinced that a McCain/Palin ticket was a ticket to World War III, absolutely and inevitably.

I think that the burden of responsibility is on us, on the Progressives, to build a powerful movement for social reform.

Karl Rove has a long history as a political operative, going back to the Nixon days when he was still in college. One of his tactics at that time was to send people into the Democratic Party, SDS, and other radical groups. They would discredit the leadership of these groups and foster internal disputes within the progressive movement of that day, in order to render it impotent. (I happen to know this first hand from my own experiences) but I urge you to read David Brock's excellent account of this The Republican Noise Machine, and also Tom Hayden's review of Mark Rudd's recent memoir.

SDS had become a powerful student movement with broad support in the general population (from people who opposed the Vietnamese war, etc.) until radical fanatics destroyed it. Who were these radical fanatics. There were two groups the Maoist Progressive Labor and the anarchist Weatherman. I believe that both were heavily infiltrated by the FBI, local police intelligence, the CIA etc., and right wing dirty tricks operatives. I think the name of the game was not only to monitor SDS but to push it in the direction of self-destruction. Let's not repeat the past!

carol

I'm sorry Carol, we have to disagree on this one.

I'm not falling for the Republican con, I'm thinking for myself. I've thought for some time that the old entrenched Democrats were a liability. They fail to realize that they are representatives--not our "leaders." And as for choosing between Pelosi and a Hitler, I don't think things are nearly so dire that if we lose Pelosi the nation will collapse to a dictatorship.  Granted, she's a formidable woman, but she's not all that.  We can simply nominate a more acceptable Democrat to take her place--one who represents the people instead of dictating to them.

We need politicians in office who know what side their bread is buttered on, not people who are going to dictate to us what's on or off the table. You said, "At the time when impeachment seemed to be gathering support we were already in the fight to chose a Democratic nominee and make him or her president. Anything would have been a distraction from the main battle of the day."

In response, I'd say that some things are more important than the political expedience of the next election--and that was one of them. And beyond that, whether we choose to agree or disagree on that point, I'm sure we can agree on the fact that whether or not we chose to impeach Bush should have been the peoples' call, not Pelosi's.

I feel the very same way about the current call for the prosecution of the Bush administration for war crimes. There shouldn't even be a debate on this issue. Each one of those politicians, including Obama, took an oath to uphold the constitution. Thus, by dragging their feet on this issue, they're violating that oath--just as they violated their oath by taking impeachment off the table.

As I mentioned before, politicians have become a class onto themselves. They are protecting one another for their own political expediency, and that’s unacceptable. They’ve already set a precedent with Nixon during Watergate, and Reagan during Iran/Contra, which makes the thought of Bush or Cheney being made accountable for their war crimes unthinkable. That’s why, as you pointed out, impeaching Bush would have been a "distraction."

 We've got to reverse that trend, even if it means voting every incumbent in Washington out of office. Once we allow the law to become a distraction that’s inconvenient for politicians, the nation, and the people, are rendered irrelevant.

Eric L. Wattree
wattree.blogspot.com

Religious bigotry: It's not that I hate everybody who doesn't look, think, and act like me - it's just that God does.

I don't subscribe to the view that we must support Democratic candidates at all costs. Let's put the heat on by targetting Lieberman and the Blue Dog Dems.Democrats who are openly intent on sabotaging any move toward New Deal values and New Deal economics. Let's put the heat on Democrats by going after the worst of the bunch.

carol

I'm with you on that, but I take it one step farther--let's put the heat on them all.  I'm not on the Democratic side or the Republican, that's how thEy blind us to reality. They have us treating politics like it's a sporting event--my team against your team.  I don't have a dog in this fight.  I'm on my side, and anyone who don't dance to my music, is on the other team.  I know that sounds kinda selfish, but that's what it means when they say "We the people"--or in my case, Me the people.  

Eric L. Wattree
wattree.blogspot.com

Religious bigotry: It's not that I hate everybody who doesn't look, think, and act like me - it's just that God does.

Since the Reagan era the big We, ie the population here in the good old USA, has been subject to a campaign to get us to renounce all expectations from the government. Concomicant with this has been an unravelling of social welfare reforms that were put in place beginning in the New Deal and Johnson's Great Society until Jimmy Carter and then Reagan took office.

Don't get me wrong. I am not an advocate of the Democrat Party. I guess I'd call myself a Social Democrat in that I would like to see state supported health care, child care, job protection of the kind in place in Denmark and France.

I think we are all being manipulated to embrace a libertarian ethos that in fact supports increasing class divisionand inequality.

carol

Now we completely agree - and just goes to show, that  people of good will, integrity, and in a legimate search for truth, will always find consensus.

Eric L. Wattree
wattree.blogspot.com

Religious bigotry: It's not that I hate everybody who doesn't look, think, and act like me - it's just that God does.