Grannies Against the Iraq War

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I’m working on an article about whether or not we will bomb Iran right now — and am trying to sort through a mesmerizing talk that Peter Bergen gave about a resurgent al Qaeda organization. I’ll be back later when finished with the op-ed.
But in the mean time, this YouTube item on “Grannies Against the Iraq War” may interest some. It’s a bit too sentimental for me in my current mood watching the Petraeus/Crocker hearings, but some may enjoy it.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

23 comments on “Grannies Against the Iraq War

  1. Kathleen says:

    Speaking of nuking Iran, here’s a scarey piece on the B-52 carrying nuclear warheads…and the possiblity that Darth was planning a false flag event.
    http://www.informationclearinghouseinfo/article18374.htm

    Reply

  2. arthurdecco says:

    Sandy,
    Bright white post at 2:45pm! Thanx. Write more!
    Please…(I’m polite because I’m the good kind of Canadian.)

    Reply

  3. karenk says:

    Loved the Grannies from Brooklyn! It’s classic of old people-telling it like it is, they don’t give a damn, cause they’re old…best was the lady who said I’m a grandmother from Brooklyn and I knew this war was wrong from the beginning why didn’t they. That’s just how I felt cept not a Grannie, just an average person who READS and uses common sense-they just didn’t convice me with their “evidence”. But everyone else seemed “on board”, now here we are, stuck.
    GO Grannies

    Reply

  4. Sandy says:

    http://www.antiwar.com/justin/?articleid=11599
    September 12, 2007
    Surging Toward Iran
    The surge is buying time – for what?
    Amid all the back-and-forth between the administration and its critics about how to measure “progress” in Iraq, what gets lost is the question asked by Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.) at the Petraeus-Crocker hearings the other day:
    “I have to ask this question: where is this going? … Are we going to continue to invest American blood and treasure at the same rate we are doing now. For what? The president said let’s buy time. Buy time? For what?”
    Petraeus is surely cooking the books, as the MoveOn.org folks aver in their great New York Times ad – nice to see they’re (finally!) growing a pair – but this avoids the larger question: what is the administration really up to in Iraq? They’re hanging on, “buying time,” as the pundits ceaselessly report – but what do they hope to accomplish?
    If you go through the Petraeus report, the key passages are those that deal with Iran. Petraeus continually points the finger at Tehran as an explanation for the lack of “progress” in Iraq. He claims to have “disrupted Shia militia extremists” – you know, the ones that sit in the Iraqi parliament – and to have captured the leaders of “Iranian-supported Special Groups, along with a senior Lebanese Hezbollah operative supporting Iran’s activities in Iraq.” Who is this operative, and what are these “Special Groups”? Apparently, they are too special to be named in testimony before Congress. The “ethno-sectarian competition,” Petraeus avers, is being pushed toward violence, in part because of “malign actions by Syria and, especially, by Iran.”
    What actions? No answer is given: not that anyone is asking, at least not in the Congress or among the presidential candidates of either party. Prior accusations that IEDs found in Iraq were manufactured in Iran have proved sketchy, at best, and pure invention, at worst. Yet Petraeus’ words are simply taken as gospel, much as Colin Powell’s peroration of Scooter Libby-produced lies performed in front of the UN was hailed as a home run. Years from now, will we look back on the Petraeus-Crocker dog-and-pony show with the same bitter regret that nobody – or almost nobody – doubted them?
    You can bet the ranch on it.
    More lies from the “honorable” Gen. Petraeus:
    “In the past six months we have also targeted Shia militia extremists, capturing a number of senior leaders and fighters, as well as the deputy commander of Lebanese Hezbollah Department 2800, the organization created to support the training, arming, funding, and, in some cases, direction of the militia extremists by the Iranian Republican Guard Corps’ Qods Force. These elements have assassinated and kidnapped Iraqi governmental leaders, killed and wounded our soldiers with advanced explosive devices provided by Iran, and indiscriminately rocketed civilians in the International Zone and elsewhere. It is increasingly apparent to both Coalition and Iraqi leaders that Iran, through the use of the Qods Force, seeks to turn the Iraqi Special Groups into a Hezbollah-like force to serve its interests and fight a proxy war against the Iraqi state and coalition forces in Iraq.”
    What, in the name of Allah, is “Department 2800”? There ain’t no such creature on God’s green earth. I can find no reference to it anywhere: not in the standard studies of Hezbollah, not on the Internets, not anywhere. The only other reference to this mysterious organization, aside from the testimony of Petraeus, is on the Web site of Veterans for Freedom, a pro-administration front group that exists as a prop for their leader, the square-jawed Pete Hegseth, to appear on television as a counterweight to VoteVets.
    In other words, they just make stuff up.
    Haven’t we learned this time and time again? It happened with Iraq’s infamous “weapons of mass destruction,” and now it’s happening again, this time with Iran’s alleged activities in Iraq.
    Refuting this farrago of half-baked fantasies doesn’t require any special knowledge, only a basic understanding of the current situation in Iraq and a bit of common sense. For example, why would Shi’ite militias go after the Shi’ite government in Baghdad – when, in reality, they are the armed wings of the parties that make up that government?
    Even more egregious is the contention that “it is increasingly apparent to both Coalition and Iraqi leaders” that “Iran seeks to turn the Iraqi Special Groups into a Hezbollah-like force” to “fight a proxy war against the Iraqi state.” Is that why Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki traveled to Iran recently, where he walked hand in hand with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, then took off for Damascus, where he was warmly greeted by the last of the Mesopotamian Ba’athists?
    A proxy war is being fought in Iraq, but it isn’t one pitting the Iranians against the Iraqis: the U.S. is the proxy, f
    ighting on behalf of Israel against Iran and Syria.
    That’s what all this malarkey detailing how the Iranians want to “Hezbollah-ize” the Iranian-run “Special Groups” is about. So now we’re fighting Hezbollah, a group that arose
    because of the Israeli occupation of Lebanon, and is concerned exclusively with ridding their country of Israeli troops and influence.
    The “surge,” as the escalation of the war is being euphemized, is working, albeit not in the way the hapless Democrats and the American public understand it. “Progress” in Iraq, insofar as this administration is concerned,
    means we’re closer to war with Iran.
    That has always been our target,
    and now that we’ve got the Ba’athists out of the way, we don’t mind allying with the “dead-enders” against the real enemy: the Shi’ite mullahs of Tehran.
    In answer to questions from the senators, Petraeus gave away the show when he bluntly stated,
    “We cannot win Iraq solely in Iraq.”
    Oh no, we have to conquer most of the rest of the Middle East, including Iran, Syria, and who-knows-where-else before we can even begin to talk about winning in Iraq.
    I have emphasized, in this space, that nothing short of complete and immediate withdrawal from Iraq is going to avert a regional war in the Middle East, because that’s exactly what’s on the administration’s agenda.
    That’s what Bush and Petraeus are buying time for – what Norman Podhoretz calls “World War IV.”
    Every political leader who claims to be “antiwar” yet claims that we cannot just leave Iraq
    is complicit in this conspiracy to drag us into a conflict with Iran.
    Hillary, Obama, and all the Democrats except, perhaps, Bill Richardson, Dennis Kucinich, and Mike Gravel, and surely each and every one of the Republicans,
    with the single exception of Ron Paul –
    all are guilty, no matter how much they protest, of enabling this administration in its plans to carry the war into Iran, Syria, and even beyond: Pakistan, perhaps, or the oil-rich regions of Central Asia.
    We’ve said this over and over – down through the years! – until we’re blue in the face, and as the reality of it is becoming too apparent for even the worst evaders to continue dodging, I see that Andrew Sullivan has finally caught on. Well, bully for him – now that he, in his previous pro-war incarnation, helped bring us to this moment. The same realization is also dawning over at National Review, where
    Petraeus’ emphasis on blaming Iran for the mess we made in Iraq
    is being interpreted as good news (which it is,
    if you’re a warmongering, wholly-owned adjunct of the Israel Lobby).
    The dynamic sweep of the neoconservatives’ grand plan to “transform” the Middle East and “drain the swamp,” as they put it, is something to behold. First, take on the Ba’athist Sunnis, pulverize them, isolate them, and let the Shi’ites fill the power vacuum left behind by Saddam. Then, change course abruptly, declare the Shi’ites
    – supported by Iran – to be the main enemy, ally with the Sunni remnants, and launch a final offensive against Tehran. Strike, stall for time, and strike again.
    Note, also, how the “redirection” in favor of the Sunnis allows the administration to claim substantial progress in Iraq: by allying with these former “dead-enders” and “terrorists,” we can say we’re bringing Iraqis “together” – even as the insurgents continue their battle with the ostensibly pro-American government. This is supposed to keep war critics at bay on the home front, but not everyone is falling for it.
    The sharpest questions at the Petraeus-Crocker hearings were asked, tellingly, not by the Democrats, who remained cautious in their criticisms,
    but by two Republican senators, Hagel and John Warner, who, not coincidentally, are retiring this year. The latter opined: “I hope in the recesses of your heart that you know that strategy will continue the casualties, the stress on our forces, the stress on military families, the stress on all Americans,” and then asked Petraeus if his recommendations – to continue the surge for another six months – would make the U.S. “safer.”
    The general replied, somewhat sheepishly: “Sir, I don’t know, actually.”
    Yet isn’t that the mission of the U.S. military – to make us safer? To protect us from our enemies, here in the “homeland” (as they now call America)?
    It most certainly is not,
    at least not in the Bizarro World we fell into after the 9/11 attacks blasted
    a hole in the space-time continuum and rocketed us into
    an alternate universe
    – where up is down, right is wrong, and “security” means placing us all in imminent danger of yet another terrorist assault.
    Our camarilla of would-be conquistadors could care less about the security and safety of the American people: all that matters to them is their vision of
    “benevolent global hegemony” – and, of course, the security of Israel.
    That’s why the Lobby is moving full-bore into propaganda mode
    and we’re hearing the drumbeat of yet another council of war rising and drowning out the peoples’ plea for peace.
    Democracy? Forget it. The two wings of the War Party, known as the Democrats and the Republicans, have a monopoly on the political process here in the cradle of liberty, and, what’s more, they know it. No need to pay attention to the polls when both parties are committed to war.

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  5. Carroll says:

    Sic Semper Tyrannis 2007
    A daily journal of thoughts and messages from the “muffled zone” that media management has made of our country.« Petraeus and Crocker – Interesting | Main
    Advice for the Democratic Party
    Today I heard Senator Christopher Dodd say that the US should begin to withdraw its forces next month at the rate of two and a half brigades a month, drawing down to a level of zero troops by some date next year (do the arithmetic). Speaker Pelosi and Senator Harry Reid made similar statements reflecting similar views today.
    Some blognik remarked today that it was “interesting” that I have listened to Petraeus sympathetically. He found that curious because, in his words, “Lang has been a staunch opponent of this war.” It is true that I thought and think that the Iraq war was “sold” to the American people in a propaganda driven systematic campaign of lies and exaggeration by the Bush Administration driven by lunatic nationalists and people of ambiguous loyalty to this country. I also think that the “kinetic” generals, often men and women of limited imagination and little real ability did a blind and terribly inept job of running the war. Often they seemed more concerned with self, career and the perquisites of rank than anything else.
    Nevertheless, we are stuck on the flypaper of Iraq. In my opinion a rapid withdrawal from Iraq, abandoning the protean mess that is the Iraqi government would result in such a disastrous situation that we can not afford to do that.
    Some of the consequences?
    – A rump state of Iraq in the south in which whichever Shia faction wins will become a satellite of the Iranian government. That government, if not dealt with through a prolonged and aggressive combination of diplomacy and potential military force will continue to act as a major sponsor of Islamic zealot movements and their terrorist manifestations. Iran will also take up a major role as arbiter of alignments and activity in the region.
    – Kurdistan will become one of the saddest of experiments in national popular sovereignty that I know of. Would Turkey and Iran continue to tolerate the Kurdish aspiration to achieving something as close to independence as they can manage? I doubt it.
    – Would the wide variety of Sunni Arab groups that are revolting against the takfiri jihadis coalesce into a integrated part of a renewed Iraq? Probably not, and among all the little de facto city states, sheikhdoms, etc, the surreptitious support and participation of the Sunni “neighbors” would continue. This means continued war indefinitely in Sunnistan.
    – Would the jihadis find a way to re-establish themselves somewhere in Sunnistan? Probably.
    What does that add up to in terms of the ultimate political effect of the war on the Democratic Party?
    I predict that If you are seen to be the instruments of such a collapse, then you will be blamed for a catastrophe in which thousands of American soldiers will have died. The public will wrongly think that they died for nothing. The public will not blame Bush, Cheney, the AEI crowd. No. They will blame you. You will carry that can for many years.
    Petraeus recommends a gradual withdrawal from this disaster. You don’t want that? Have you really thought this through?
    If you want to do something useful, pass resolutions tying up the president’s freedom of action in regard to Iran. Make him come to you for permission to strike them. Show some real courage. pl
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    I usually agree with most of what Col. Lang says but not all because he is naturally slanted in his views by his military profession.
    I post this only because I want to scream…WHAT IS THE END PLAN?….HUH?. DO YOU HAVE ANY FRICKING PLAN BESIDES THE US MILITARY OCCUPYING IRAQ FOREVER?
    Every Tom, Dick and Harry can tell us about what will happen if we leave NOW…none of them can tell us how it will be any DIFFERENT if we leave LATER.
    Iraq is all about Iran. For some in congress staying in Iraq gives them a opportunity to make a move against Iran…for others leaving Iraq opens up the opportunity to attack Iran without harming US forces in Iraq.
    If the Dem neo’s actually DO anything besides talk and whine to get us out of Iraq or prevent an attack on Iran I will print out this post and eat every shred of it.

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  6. JohnH says:

    Ron Paul gets it right on Iran: http://rawstory.com//news/2007/Ron_Paul_debates_OReilly_over_preemptive_0911.html
    If the US attackes Iran it will not only be a pre-emptive attack but also one without justification–the pretenses will be widely understood to be false in advance.
    Pretense #1: Nuclear program. Mohammed el Baradei has worked diligently to bring the program into international compliance.
    Pretense #2: Support for Iraqi insurgents. The primary Iranian supported insurgency is the Mahdi Army, which has stood down for six months.
    Nonetheless BuSh and his hired pens will hype these known false pretenses, Fox viewers will believe them, and the Democraps will follow along, nodding like the bobbleheads they are.
    The real goal–regime change–will never get mentioned and will probably not be accomplished. The second best outcome for the Bushies–a failed state that still pumps oil (the Iraq model)–has a better chance of success, if, that is, the Iranians don’t take out the entire Gulf oil industry on their way down.

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  7. Carroll says:

    I would say the odds for the US attacking more countries in the ME go up every day. Poke the snake hole, poke the snake hole till you make it mad enough to bite.
    September 11, 2007
    CNN’s Christiane Amanpour: Sources confirm Israeli strike on Syria.
    Posted by Laura at 05:21 PM
    http://www.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/meast/09/11/israel.syria/

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  8. pauline says:

    9/11 and Bush/Cheney’s Fraudulent Bait and Switch
    By Scarecrow
    on Wed Sep 12, 2007 at 06:30 am
    Six years to the day after we were attacked by crazed religious zealots and murderers, I would have thought that remembrances of those events would be the major news topic. But they weren’t. Instead we witnessed yet another blatant propaganda effort, followed by a fraudulent bait and switch about phony troop reductions, pulled off by an Administration whose defining characteristic has been in perpetrating fraud and deception on the American public.
    The progressive blogosphere has rightly focused on what might charitably be called the selective rosiness of the reports provided by General Petraeus and Ambassador Crocker. But though correcting the record is essential, the focus on these two men is not.
    The General’s ribbons and the Ambassador’s diplomatic phrasing were just the lastest bright shiny objects, manipulated by an Administration that excels in distractions and propaganda. They were sent to divert our attention from those who created this unending foreign policy disaster.
    George Bush and Dick Cheney, the authors of that catastrophe, unapologetic perpetrators of six years of fraudulent bait and switch, remained hidden in the White House, hoping to take credit for whatever propaganda gain his general and ambassador might provide them, while avoiding any blame or loss of credibility. They, along with the neocon warmongers who still surround and cheer on the foolhardy misdirection into Iraq, will, if left unchecked, lead us into another catastrophe in Iran. But these reckless and cowardly men did not appear before Congress yesterday, and we’re still waiting to see if Congress can muster the institutional self respect to demand that they answer to them and the American people.
    Yesterday should have been devoted to remembering September 11, 2001 and how we responded. But instead, Congressional hearings on Iraq dominated the media and demanded our attention. The witnesses were a general and a diplomat, but it was just another bait and switch from George Bush and Dick Cheney.
    http://www.firedoglake.com/

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  9. pauline says:

    September 12, 2007
    Tribute
    by emptywheel
    Omar Mora and Yance Gray have died in Iraq, just weeks after they contributed to a powerful op-ed in the NYT. In tribute to their lives, I think it only appropriate to return to their op-ed, which offers a far more honest assessment of progress in Iraq than the Petraeus and Crocker dog-and-pony show. Mora, Gray, and their colleagues call for an assessment of progress in Iraq from the perspective of Iraqi civilians, not from an American-centered perspective.
    Given the situation, it is important not to assess security from an American-centered perspective. The ability of, say, American observers to safely walk down the streets of formerly violent towns is not a resounding indicator of security. What matters is the experience of the local citizenry and the future of our counterinsurgency. When we take this view, we see that a vast majority of Iraqis feel increasingly insecure and view us as an occupation force that has failed to produce normalcy after four years and is increasingly unlikely to do so as we continue to arm each warring side.
    They point out that the foundation of recent successes in Anbar Province–alliances with Sunni tribes–does not guarantee enduring loyalty.
    However, while creating proxies is essential in winning a counterinsurgency, it requires that the proxies are loyal to the center that we claim to support. Armed Sunni tribes have indeed become effective surrogates, but the enduring question is where their loyalties would lie in our absence. The Iraqi government finds itself working at cross purposes with us on this issue because it is justifiably fearful that Sunni militias will turn on it should the Americans leave.
    And they point out that the whole purpose of the surge–to bring out a political solution–has failed and will fail.
    Political reconciliation in Iraq will occur, but not at our insistence or in ways that meet our benchmarks. It will happen on Iraqi terms when the reality on the battlefield is congruent with that in the political sphere. There will be no magnanimous solutions that please every party the way we expect, and there will be winners and losers. The choice we have left is to decide which side we will take. Trying to please every party in the conflict — as we do now — will only ensure we are hated by all in the long run.
    This op-ed is powerful refutation to the Petraeus fog. May the voices of Mora and Gray resonate even after their death. RIP.
    http://thenexthurrah.typepad.com/the_next_hurrah/contributoremptywheel/index.html

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  10. Carroll says:

    BTW…Steve better write fast or his article could be out of date.
    A few days ago I read that Israel’s IAF dropped some “munitions” or something on Syria. Syria threatened to respond, all the Arab countries condemned Israel, so on and so forth.
    Just now on the news the story is Israel and the US think that Syria is…(drum roll please)…”developing nuclear weapons inside their boarder”! Yep, another axis of evil is baking up nukes.
    How exactly this is an excuse, reason or explaination for dumping a bomb or whatever on Syria escapes me….
    The press never, ever mentions anything about Israel unless it is about “terriers” attacking Israel, so I can only guess that this mention of Israel’s actions was to let us all know that Syria is working on nukes.
    Since we have never attacked any country that actually DOES have nukes does this mean that if we attack Iran and Syria we know they don’t have nukes?

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  11. Ed Nashton says:

    Steve,
    While you’re finishing up this article, you might want to take a look at this fox news story that appeared today:
    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,296450,00.html
    The key thing to take from this is that a fallout with the Europeans could have been avoided had the United States considered negotiating in good faith (that is to say, offering security guarantees and full diplomatic recognition). Indeed there were a few efforts in town to put together Track II plans with the Germans to avoid exactly what happened in Berlin. This is an enormously important point to consider with respect to the fallout that any military strike (or even act of war) would cause.

    Reply

  12. Carroll says:

    Posted by JohnH at September 12, 2007 12:06 AM
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Ditto. Exactly.
    Who do these people think they are? They are OUR employees, answerable to us.
    Yet no citizen can see his employee or question him/her or make themselves heard unless they come with a pot full of campaign money for their politican. And this we call a democracy?
    I say Bravo for Code Pink and all the others who get in their faces. We need more of it. If more people didn’t have such fawning, servile attitudes toward authority we wouldn’t have these out of control politicans.

    Reply

  13. Kathleen says:

    JohnH.. Democraps… love it… can I use that, too?

    Reply

  14. pauline says:

    THE ARCHITECTS OF WAR: WHERE ARE THEY NOW?
    President Bush has not fired any of the architects of the Iraq war. In fact, a review of the key planners of the conflict reveals that they have been rewarded – not blamed – for their incompetence.
    PAUL WOLFOWITZ
    Role In Going To War: Wolfowitz said the U.S. would be greeted as liberators, that Iraqi oil money would pay for the reconstruction, and that Gen. Eric Shinseki’s estimate that several hundred thousand troops would be needed was “wildly off the mark.” [Washington Post, 12/8/05; Wolfowitz, 3/27/03]
    Where He Is Now: Bush promoted Wolfowitz to head the World Bank in March 2005. Two years into his five-year term, Wolfowitz was rebuked by the World Bank investigative committee for engineering an unethical pay and promotion package for his girlfriend and, after repeated calls for his resignation, stepped down on May 17, 2007. Wolfowitz is now a visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, a right-wing think tank that “has the President’s ear” on national security issues. [Washington Post, 3/17/05, 5/18/07; Financial Times, 6/28/07]
    Key Quote: “The truth is that for reasons that have a lot to do with the U.S. government bureaucracy, we settled on the one issue that everyone could agree on which was weapons of mass destruction as the core reason [for going to war].” [USA Today, 5/30/03]
    DOUGLAS FEITH
    Role In Going To War: As Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, Feith spearheaded two secretive groups at the Pentagon – the Counter Terrorism Evaluation Group and the Office of Special Plans – that were instrumental in drawing up documents that explained the supposed ties between Saddam and al Qaeda. The groups were “created in order to find evidence of what Wolfowitz and his boss, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, believed to be true.” Colin Powell referred to Feith’s operation as the Gestapo. In Bob Woodward’s “Plan of Attack”, former CentCom Commander Gen. Tommy Franks called Feith the “f***ing stupidest guy on the face of the earth.” [LAT, 1/27/05; NYT, 4/28/04; New Yorker, 5/12/03; Plan of Attack, p.281]
    Where He Is Now: Feith voluntarily resigned from the Defense Department shortly after Bush’s reelection. He is currently writing a memoir of his Pentagon work and teaching a course at Georgetown University “on the Bush Administration’s strategy behind the war on terrorism.” The Defense Department’s Inspector General found that Feith’s secretive groups at the Pentagon “developed, produced, and then disseminated” deceptive intelligence that contradicted “the consensus of the Intelligence Community.” These groups are still under investigation by the Senate Intelligence Committee. [Washington Post, 1/27/05;Georgetown press release, 5/1/06; NYT, 2/9/07]
    Key Quote: “I am not asserting to you that I know that the answer is ‘we did it right’. What I am saying is it’s an extremely complex judgment to know whether the course that we chose with its pros and cons was more sensible.” [Washington Post, 7/13/05]
    STEPHEN HADLEY
    Role In Going To War: As then-Deputy National Security Advisor, Hadley disregarded memos from the CIA and a personal phone call from Director George Tenet warning that references to Iraq’s pursuit of uranium be dropped from Bush’s speeches. The false information ended up in Bush’s 2003 State of the Union address. [Washington Post, 7/23/03]
    Where He Is Now: On January 26, 2005, Stephen Hadley was promoted to National Security Advisor. [White House bio]
    Key Quote: “I should have recalled at the time of the State of the Union speech that there was controversy associated with the uranium issue. And it is now clear to me that I failed in that responsibility in connection with the inclusion of these 16 words in the speech that he gave on the 28th of January.” [Hadley, 7/22/03]
    RICHARD PERLE
    Role In Going To War: Richard Perle, the so-called “Prince of Darkness,” was the chairman of Defense Policy Board during the run-up to the Iraq war. He suggested Iraq had a hand in 9-11. In 1996, he authored “Clean Break,” a paper that was co-signed by Douglas Feith, David Wurmser, and others that argued for regime change in Iraq. Shortly after the war began, Perle resigned from the Board because he came under fire for having relationships with businesses that stood to profit from the war. [Guardian, 9/3/02, 3/28/03; AFP, 8/9/02]
    Where He Is Now: Currently, Perle is a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute where he specializes in national security and defense issues. He has been investigated for ethical violations concerning war profiteering and other conflicts of interest. [Washington Post, 9/1/04]
    Key Quote: “And a year from now, I’ll be very surprised if there is not some grand square in Baghdad that is named after President Bush. There is no doubt that, with the exception of a very small number of people close to a vicious regime, the people of Iraq have been liberated and they understand that they’ve been liberated. And it is getting easier every day for Iraqis to express that sense of liberation.” [Perle, 9/22/03]
    ELLIOT ABRAMS
    Role In Going To War: Abrams was one of the defendants in the Iran-Contra Affair, and he pled guilty to two misdemeanor counts of withholding information from Congress. He was appointed Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director on the National Security Council for Near East and North African Affairs during Bush’s first term, where he served as Bush’s chief advisor on the Middle East. His name surfaced as part of the investigation into who leaked the name of a undercover CIA operative Valerie Plame. [Washington Post, 5/27/03, 2/3/05]
    Where He Is Now: Abrams was promoted to deputy national security adviser in February of 2005. In that position, he has led a smear campaign to attack Speaker Nancy Pelosi for visiting Syria. [Slate, 2/17/05; IPS, 4/9/07; Washington Post, 2/15/07]
    Key Quote: “We recognize that military action in Iraq, if necessary, will have adverse humanitarian consequences. We have been planning over the last several months, across all relevant agencies, to limit any such consequences and provide relief quickly.” [CNN, 2/25/03]
    SCOOTER LIBBY
    Role In Going To War: As Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff, Libby repeatedly pressured CIA analysts to report that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and links to al Qaeda. He also provided classified government information to New York Times reporter Judith Miller that formed the basis of a series of articles highlighting Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction that were later entirely discredited. Along with Hannah, Libby was a principal author of the discredited draft UN presentation. [Washington Post, 6/5/03; National Journal, 4/6/06; FAIR, 3/19/07; NYT, 10/30/05]
    Where He Is Now: On June 5, 2007, Libby was sentenced to 2.5 years in prison and a fine of $250,000 for perjury and obstruction of justice for his role in the CIA leak case. On July 2, 2007, Bush commuted Libby’s prison sentence, ensuring he would serve no time in jail. [NYT, 6/5/07; Bush, 7/2/07]
    Key Quote: “I’m a great fan of the Vice President,” Libby told Larry King in 2002. “I think he’s one of the smartest, most honorable people I’ve ever met.” [Time, 10/28/05]
    more at —
    http://thinkprogress.org/the-architects-where-are-they-now/

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  15. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Yeah but….
    It is a crying shame that the war is being protested by people that are so easily discounted as fringe looneys or senile old bats. These gals that are parading artound in outrageous pink outfits are not doing the antiwar movement much good. The press has a field day belittling them, and the right wing talk show hosts have a cakewalk portraying them as fringe irritants.

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  16. Bill R. says:

    Grannies carry the experience of transmitting life and civilization. They carry more wisdom and more common sense than you or I ever will, Steve. A world that dismisses them as irrelevant sentimentality does so at its own peril.

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  17. JohnH says:

    When you see what Pelosi’s security folks did to Rev. Yearwood, and that Armed Services Committe Chair Skelton publicly called the protesters a**holes, and that Skelton had Ray McGovern tossed out of the hearings for having the audacity to suggest that Petraeus should be put under oath to get him to tell the truth, you have enough data points to connect the dots and conclude whose side the Democraps are really on. They got this nice little gig going, a joint venture with the Republiscum. The Dems play act at being outraged at Bush’s policy, but soon they’ll roll over and deliver more of the same.
    If they were an authentic opposition, they’d never even introduce an Iraq funding bill that Bush might remotely like. Forget about 60-67 votes and overriding vetos. The House and Senate leadership determine what gets introduced. The House doesn’t even have to allow the opposition to speak (Republiscum didn’t when they had the majority.) If they weren’t colluding, the Dems would put the onus firmly on Bush for any vetoes that resulted in the troops being defunded.
    But as I said, Democraps are not an authentic opposition and are terrified of fulfilling their constitutional obligations.

    Reply

  18. rich says:

    Chris Dodd recounted something a soldier told him:
    “The people in this town know where every IED is buried, they know where every weapons and ammo cache is–and they’re not telling us.”
    Vietnam. Same thing. To the letter.
    Every strategic and military and political blunder made in Vietnam has been repeated in Iraq.
    The huge, classic lessons of Vietnam were, each one, ignored. And repeated in Iraq.
    To whine that one’s dry and one’s wet, one’s Muslim and the other’s not–just plain misses the obvious commonalities (obtusely, I might add).
    1. Seal off the borders. Nothing like teh Ho Chi Minh Trail to resupply local nationalist guerillas. Yet a giant pipeline of cash and weapons and shaped IEDs flows across the Saudi border. With no attempt at all to close off traffic. Another remarkably long, indefensible border, too.
    2. Get a Declaration of War.
    3. No Gulf of Tonkin incident occurred; no WMDs.
    4. Can’t understand the local language? Good! Then it doesn’t matter if it’s Vietnamese or Arabic.
    5. Household sacred? No 4th Amendment on the Iraqi books? Then win over the local populace by torching a hooch (Vietnam) or ‘dozing an Anbar compound.
    5. Strategic hamlets = Walled-off neighborhoods
    6. Green Zone = Saigon
    7. Soldiers live within sandbagged compounds and can’t operate normally/openly b/c the don’t control the country.
    8. I can’t tell the enemy the local population! Why, they blend right in! Somebody’s grandmother–or that 10-year-old boy could be a fighter. So unfair; don’t they know we’re here to help them?
    9. VIP Dog-&-Pony Shows! Helicoptering in from posh Kuwaiti hotels since 2003. I kid you not. Planes corkscrew into Baghdad International Airport just as they did into Saigon, corkscrew in to evade hostile fire.
    10. 535 Hamlets were too weak to find the Constitution on the way into Iraq; none able to act on the single basic data point: you can’t win a political contest by military means. You can’t bomb a village to save it. Self-immolation of an entire nation is just as effective as self-immolation of a few Buddhist monks, even if Americans miss the message entirely.
    11. Neither war confined to legal authority/boundaries of conflict/nation under occupation. Bombing/war and covert ops extended to neighbors, whether neutral, noncombatant, or understandably assisting local brethren.
    12. Fractured political lanscape.
    13. False presumption the US can substitute Khanh for Diem; Allawi for Maliki, at will, and back again if necessary.
    13. Warring factions of all kinds have more in common with each other than with us.
    14. Osama bin Laden worked with US/CIA against USSR in Afghanistan; “1943-1945 Ho Chih Minh worked for American intelligence during this time rescuing downed American pilots and reporting on Japanese troop movements. His story was later told in the 1998 book: “Our Ho: Fact and Fiction” by Alan Trustman.”
    15. Phoenix Program = Salvador Option.
    16. Ask our loyal American soldiers to fight for .. for .. . something.. Don’t tell them what.
    17. Escalation = Surge.
    18. Vietnamization = Iraq Stands Up. Iraqization of Iraq.
    19. Westmoreland = Petraeus.
    20. COINTELPRO doesn’t hurt this time. It’s warrantless.
    21. The Iraqi Army isn’t ready, the same way the South Vietnamese Army ‘couldn’t run up that hill’ to the satisfaction of US ‘advisors.’ (See Neil Sheehan’s A Bright Shining Lie)
    22. Lies. More Lies.
    23. US soldiers put in the always-already-untenable position of fighting a war not against an army, but against a populace; and merely because the US Congress didn’t rise and embrace its obligation to debate the merits, assess the cause, and declare war–if warranted. Not capitulate to a usurping petulance.
    24. False assertion “inalienable” liberties ‘can be suspended’ rises like the undead, or the syphilitic wraith of King George III.
    25. Returnof “interrogation”/ torture techniques.
    26. Surge in the drug trade: Afghanistan = the Golden Triangle. (See Al McCoy’s The Politics of Heroin in SouthEast Asia, for CIA role.)

    Reply

  19. Jon Stopa says:

    It has been my suspicion for a long time now that the surge was meant to reenforce our troops against blow-back during an attack on Iran, and not necessarily to provide a pause in the civil war. Is there any way to get that question asked during questioning, and using the answer to ask about an attack on Iran?

    Reply

  20. Ben Rosengart says:

    Wow, selise. Thanks for bringing that video to my attention. Horrifying stuff. Has anyone made progress getting any answers out of the Capitol security staff?

    Reply

  21. Erica says:

    If General Petraeus cannot fully agree that the effort in Iraq makes the United States safer, then we have not fufilled any of our objectives for engaging in this war. Ignoring real humanitarian problems in the world where 1.2 billion people on earth live on less that 1$ a day, the issue of poverty is completely ignored.

    Reply

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