March 12, 2003
GOP: It's Okay to Lie to U.N., We're Leaving
BUZZFLASH NEWS ANALYSIS
As BuzzFlash pointed out in our editorial, "The U.N. 'Win-Win' for the Bush Cartel: Security Council Supports Iraq War Or U.N. Disbands," Bush doesn't care what the U.N. thinks, because he and his administration hawks want to end U.S. involvement in the U.N.
Further emphasizing this point, and ratcheting up this harmful dialogue, are columns today by conservatives William Kristol, "U.N. Has Gone From 'Useless' to 'Harmful'" and Charles Krauthammer, "Call the Vote. Walk Away." and the Crossfire excerpts below by Republican Congressman Tom Tancredo.
As BuzzFlash Reader Rosamond wrote, "GHP Rep. Tancredo: It's Ok To Bear False Witness And Forge Evidence If You Don't Respect The People You're Lying To -- (But If You Fudge About A Girlfriend - You're Toast)."
In their drive to destroy Iraq, the right-wing hawks and chickenhawks are maligning an international organization still respected throughout the world. The actions of Bush, his administration of New American Century hegemonists, and their conservative mouthpieces will certainly do nothing more than further discredit our democracy in the eyes of every other nation in the U.N. and dig a giant hole of disgust where once, following the 9/11 attacks, was a mountain of support.
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BEGALA: Thank you both for joining us. Congressman Tancredo, if I can start with you, sir.
REP. TOM TANCREDO (R), COLORADO: Sure.
BEGALA: One of the issues the president has raised repeatedly and I think sensibly is the credibility of the United Nations. Let me suggest that perhaps one of the reasons we're not doing very well there is the credibility of the president himself.
Case in post point: "The Washington Post" reported the other day and I'm reading from the "Post": "A key piece of evidence linking Iraq to a nuclear weapons program appears to have been fabricated, the United Nations chief nuclear inspector said yesterday, in a report that called into question U.S. and British claims about Iraq's secret nuclear ambitions. Documents that purportedly showed Iraqi officials shopping for uranium in Africa two years ago were deemed not authentic after careful scrutiny by U.N. and independent experts.
Why are we offering evidence that's fabricated?
TANCREDO: Well, first of all, I'll tell you there is -- if you can condense it -- I know that we have a very short time to talk about a very important topic, but there's really only one word that I can describe or use to describe the U.N.; It is, in fact, irrelevant. It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter that this information has been deemed to be fabricated or anything else because the U.N. doesn't matter. It is nothing but a debating society that has really taken now its lead in kicking the heck out of the United States. That's its main focus.
But in terms of what really happens in this world or whether or not we should care one way or the other about how it votes, that is ridiculous.
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Later . . .
BEGALA: Congressman Tancredo, let me come back to your earlier comment, because I was stunned about by it. I know you don't like the U.N.; I know you think it's a debating society. I got that.
But surely you're not saying that because you don't like the U.N., it's OK for the government of the United States, the good guys, to be spreading things that are false, for our president to be telling us, not just the U.N. to be telling the people who pay his salary -- just a second -- falsehoods like this argument he gave us that the International Atomic Energy said Saddam Hussein is six months away from a nuclear weapon. Not true, says the IAEA. Like this nonsense that these aluminum tubes can be used to make nuclear weapons. Not true, say the weapons experts. Like a whole lot of very false thongs. You don't think just because we don't like the U.N. it's OK to say falsehoods, do you?
TANCREDO: Well, I'm not willing to accept their protestations here. I'm not willing to accept their statements about it or whether or not -- in fact, whether or not it is true, you know?
BEGALA: Well, but he said the U.N. agency, the IAEA, had a report that they didn't have. That's just -- that's either true or false, right?
TANCREDO: OK. Let me tell you. It is -- that's a relatively insignificant issue. I don't know -- I don't think we did that -- I wouldn't say...
TANCREDO: It's insignificant in the total scheme of things here as to whether the U.N. is relevant in this debate.
BEGALA: Insignificant falsehoods about nuclear weapons are OK, but you voted to impeach President Clinton about lying about a girlfriend. Just so we can get your record there, Congressman.
BUZZFLASH NEWS ANALYSIS
otherwise noted, all original