Saturday, September 30, 2006

State of Denial

It is no surprise that Bob Woodward' s new book about the Bush presidency is called "State of Denial" and the administration goes full court press into that mode.

When asked about the book, Tony Snow said "You know, in a lot of ways, the book's sort of like cotton candy, it kind of melts on contact,"

The Undersecretary of State, Karen Hughes, comes to the defense of her buddy sitting in the White House and says "It may take decades to change anti-American feelings around the world that have been aggravated by war in Iraq, U.S. policy toward Israel and America's "sex and violence" She is in charge of dealing with the US image abroad, and she just might wonder what she did wrong to deserve that job. But she's laying the groundwork like all good members of this administration for a good old case of "I told you so" when indeed this ideological struggle does last for a long time as she says. "It's going to be the work of years and maybe decades." Here's a thought, Karen, maybe if we hadn't invaded Iraq in the first place, this ideological struggle just wouldn't be where it is today.

The National Intelligence Council released their latest National Intelligence Estimate earlier this year, but declassified key judgments from the report by 16 separate spy agencies who produced this first formal appraisal of global terrorism, were leaked this week. (Are we having fun yet?)
United States-led counterterrorism efforts have seriously damaged the leadership of al-Qa’ida and disrupted its operations; however, we judge that al-Qa’ida will continue to pose the greatest threat to the Homeland and US interests abroad by a single terrorist organization. We also assess that the global jihadist movement"— which includes al-Qa’ida, affiliated and independent terrorist groups, and emerging networks and cells—is spreading and adapting to counterterrorism efforts. We assess that the global jihadist movement is decentralized, lacks a coherent global strategy, and is becoming more diffuse. New jihadist networks and cells, with anti-American agendas, are increasingly likely to emerge. The confluence of shared purpose and dispersed actors will make it harder to find and undermine jihadist groups. Four underlying factors are fueling the spread of the jihadist movement: (1) Entrenched grievances, such as corruption, injustice, and fear of Western domination, leading to anger, humiliation, and a sense of powerlessness; (2) the Iraq “jihad;” (3) the slow pace of real and sustained economic, social, and political reforms in many Muslim majority nations; and (4) pervasive anti-US sentiment among most Muslims—all of which jihadists exploit.

AND pay close attention to this paragraph-

We judge that groups of all stripes will increasingly use the Internet to communicate, propagandize, recruit, train, and obtain logistical and financial support.
That last paragraph is scary for many reasons, the least of which is the President's Torture bill, or more formally The Military Commisions Act of 2006 or HR 6166, which was passed by the Senate this week. This bill does nothing to protect the nation from terrorists. Read it and weep; weep for the loss of our freedoms.

Alex Jones from PrisonPlanet.com summed up some of the more egregious sections.

Subsection 4(b) (26) of section 950v. of HR 6166 - Crimes triable by military commissions - includes the following definition.

"Any person subject to this chapter who, in breach of an allegiance or duty to the United States, knowingly and intentionally aids an enemy of the United States, or one of the co-belligerents of the enemy, shall be punished as a military commission under this chapter may direct."

For an individual to hold an allegiance or duty to the United States they need to be a citizen of the United States. Why would a foreign terrorist have any allegiance to the United States to breach in the first place?

AND

Buried amongst the untold affronts to the Bill of Rights, the Constitution and the very spirit of America, the torture bill contains a definition of "wrongfully aiding the enemy" which labels all American citizens who breach their "allegiance" to President Bush and the actions of his government as terrorists subject to possible arrest, torture and conviction in front of a military tribunal

Bush's response to all of this? Critics who claim the Iraq war has made America less safe "buys into the enemy's propaganda that the terrorists attack us because we're provoking them." No George, we won't listen to your propaganda anymore. AND we will not be silent!
The Phillipines Daily Inquirer correctly calls the war in Iraq "this tragic, unnecessary detour in the war on terror" Part of the blame lies squarely on the shoulders of the White House. As we wrote three weeks ago: "From exclusivist language (Bush: You are either for us or against us) to breathtaking "‘short-termism"’ (no provision at all, in the original budget, for rehabilitation in Afghanistan) to massive disinformation (the conspiracy of lies to justify the invasion of Iraq) to murderous incompetence in the post-invasion years (disbandment of the Iraqi army, the hyping of al-Zarqawi), the Bush administration has managed to turn a righteous cause (unremitting defense of the values of freedom) into a perpetual campaign (narrow-minded, vicious-hearted) of the Republican Party."

But the most ominous statement that we heard this week was from Bob Woodward's book. He tells of a meeting that Bush had key Republicans to the White House to discuss Iraq, he told them, "I will not withdraw, even if Laura and Barney are the only ones supporting me. Despite the best advice by the most experienced military advisors (which he isn't listening to) this president is still going to stay his disastrous course. It's just wrong!

It really hasn't been a very good week.

1 comment:

pogblog said...

9/28: Torture Bill Day, the end of America.

This is the way the country ends,
this is the way the country ends --
not with a bang or a whimper,
but with a scream.