October 25, 2005
The BuzzFlash Mailbag
The opinions expressed in the Mailbag are not necessarily those of BuzzFlash. Read the BuzzFlash FAQ for info on submitting to the Mailbag.
Subject: News Under The Radar...
Whatever happened to the FBI investigation of the Niger forgeries...?
In re-reading published news articles about the Plame/Novak/Miller/Rove/Libby affair during the last two years, tiny flashes of what might be on the mind of Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald began to form in my mind.
Of special interest was one article by the Washington Post in February 2004. The Post reported of a separate “parallel investigation” by the FBI into bogus intelligence used by the president during his State of the Union speech in January 2003.
At the time, President Bush breathlessly told a nation British intelligence had "learned" Iraqis were trying to buy yellowcake from Niger to enrich uranium, a process to make weapons of mass destruction.
However, the United Nations soon informed the US government that documents used by British intelligence making the link were bogus; and in the spring of 2003, the FBI “launched an investigation” to find out who was responsible for the forgeries.
Members of the White House staff were henceforth questioned; and the Post article noted that FBI counterintelligence agents had interviewed Karl Rove, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Scott McClellan; Mary Matalin; White House communications director Dan Bartlett; former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer; Adam Levine, a former White House press official; and Cathie Martin, a Cheney aide.
A couple of months before elections last year, the Washington Post once again reported on the FBI yellowcake investigation; one of the most interesting aspects of the story was how Rep. Conyers of Michigan had recommended that "either a special counsel” be appointed, or Fitzgerald, who was doing making progress in the Plame leak, take over.
Conyers said "the role of U.S. Attorney Paul J. McNulty [had] 'obvious political implications' in an election year" and went on to cite "anonymous allegations in a news report that McNulty had 'put the brakes on' the probe."
"While I have no reason to question Mr. McNulty's integrity," the congressman said, "he is not a career prosecutor, but instead is a political appointee whose previous employment was principally with Republican politicians."
Reports of an early 2001 Niger embassy break-in fueled talk about stolen blank forms later used to forge the yellowcake documents. At the time, the Niger embassy in Rome reported nothing was stolen.
According to The New York Times, "in December 2001, a few months after the CIA first heard the Niger claims," Michael Ledeen, "an American specialist...with a long-standing commitment to Israel...flew to Rome...and [met with] two officials" from a group set up by Cheney crony, neocon Douglas Feith, called the Office of Special Plans (OSP). One of the OSP members was Larry Franklin.
Yep, the very same Larry Franklin recently indicted, convicted and then offered a plea deal by ubiquitous and busier than a bee U.S. Attorney Paul J. McNulty. Earlier this month, Franklin pleaded guilty for "conspiring to channel classified Defense Department secrets to an Israeli Embassy official and a pro-Israel lobbying group."
Meanwhile, the chaps in Rome made nice and met with the Italian security service, Sismi; and lo and behold, only a few months later, fake documents proving Iraq was trying to build weapons of mass destruction showed up in Rome. It seems a "Roman businessman linked to Sismi" sold the concocted evidence to an Italian journalist.
Recent whispers of an expanded Fitzgerald investigation that includes the original FBI forgery inquiry may have been initially sparked because many of the players in the Plame leak are also persons of interest in the yellowcake case.
Just who "fabricated the Iraq evidence"remains unknown. But apparently McNulty did a heck of a job. President Bush announced Friday plans to nominate him for the number two spot in the Justice Department.
Where exactly the ongoing investigation that was said to be at a "critical stage" nearly one year ago is today no one knows. But maybe Fitzgerald was able to morph the two inquiries into one, and we will soon learn not only who outed a CIA operative, but also who forged documents to take the nation to war.
Subject: DeLay....and Powell
I agree totally with Shirley Smith's article on the big three of the lies. Powell was just as much at fault and should be always remembered as the one who testified in front of the UN...and lied through his teeth! I have heard him recently saying that "that speech" would always be a 'blot' on his record, and yes, it will.....No one who disagrees with this war, will ever forget that....never! As for Tom DeLay....it was only a matter of time. He is slime.....and will always be slime. Only Tom DeLay would grin like a possum in a mug shot. He really is arrogant!! And incidentally...why should anyone make special arrangements for him...get a different judge....because this judge has made political contributions....scream at Ronnie Earle because he is a democrat. Maybe the republicans do not remember....that Robert Fisk (an independent investigator) found Clinton completely legal in every manner. Oh, but, the rightwingers just could not have that....they got their own hard right-wing investigator....and if you don't think Ken Starr was, watch or read "The Hunting of the President"....the deal he was prepared to make to Susan McDougal....was nothing short of criminal! I hope no one gives in to this idiotic demand....Tom DeLay knew when he came back from either Spring or Summer break...that he would be indicted... He gathered his little troop of hard rightwingers into a session and tried to pass a deal...that if he was indicted, he would not lose his seats on committees. Sorry Tommy....you're dreaming!
Subject: Re: “Criminalizing Conservatives”
I know you addressed this "commentary" earlier, but I had to tweak their pinocchio noses again.
This manure reminds me of an old, old ditty:
...so that’s what scares the hell out of jeffy and billy here…
... their plan for total gummint takeover was thwarted by the greed and immorality of their colleagues….
... just listen to the weakest of weak arguments they throw at us: someone out there is trying to criminalize the conservatives….
... no evidence, no proof, nothing to back up their claims.
... could it just be that the people being investigated and indicted have committed criminal acts?
... could it be that jeffy and billy are close to the criminals?
... could it be that jeffy and billy are apologists for the criminals?
... could it be that jeffy and billy are criminals, too??
... could it be that jeffy and billy are afraid of losing their place at the right hand of power?
Many of us who truly love this Country sure hope so.
As is usually the case with these pseudo-republicans in Washington, they are political cannibals. They swore on a Bible to uphold the Constitution, but all had their fingers crossed and they can’t help but eat their young. With roots in the Nixon criminal years, they refined their methods during the Reagan years (we do remember Iran-Contra, don’t we?) and perfected their plans in 2000. By far the worst administration ever. By far.
Subject: Letter to Mr Calame [NY Times Public Editor], RE: The Miller Mess: Lingering Issues Among the Answers
Thank you for a breath of fresh air in an atmosphere of stagnant indignation. Perhaps now the NYT may once again live up to "All the news that's fit to print" tag. It has become as laughable as the tag "Fair and balanced" as used by another news source. While your editorial, taken along with Maureen Dowd's excellent op-ed piece (thank you Gail Collins), is a start, there is obviously a bigger house cleaning due before these baby steps lead to recovery.
I had ceased buying the NYT in 2003 specifically because Judy Miller's Iraq information was so easily debunked from facts in public sources. My anger increased as the NYT seemed to tote the ruling party line even as our government's house of cards was repeatedly knocked down. The lack of comment and oversight from the editors at the Times made it painful to read the paper, so I stopped. The prominent display of Miller's claims were not matched by the placement of corrections, or, corrections were not even published. In retrospect I have to wonder out loud "How much is the NYT and/or Judy Miller being paid?" (i.e. Armstrong Williams). The entire publication was, and still is suspect.
Additionally, and more troubling, the damage to the First Amendment by the lack of curiosity of Bill Keller and Arthur Sulzberger Jr in regards to Ms. Miller's involvement in the outing of a CIA secret operative, will be tough to undo. The NYT has essentially partaken in an action which turns the principle of the First Amendment upside down and backwards; instead of allowing the venerable Times to function as the check and balance on government, the First Amendment was used to have the NYT become the tool of the government without consequence, and this is the ultimate insult, which to me is criminal (and apparently the GAO). Ultimately, the resignation of Mr. Keller and the retirement of Mr. Sulzberger may dull that government tool. To destroy it would also take their open public admission that this actually happened.
I still have many questions. What is Miller's status in regards to her security clearance with the US government? If she had any, it is obviously a conflict. If she is a government operative, as I suspect, it is criminal as the GAO has so claimed in their timely report. Didn't anyone think it was strange to see Miller all decked out in US military battle uniform while in Iraq? Government shill written all over it. I for one would like to see Judy Miller's bank statements. I think the NYT has to spend a lot of time and money investigating this as their reputation relies on it.
Allen M. Abrahams
Subject: Theme song?
Getting a little ahead of things, but could this be the theme song?
Subject: The U.S. Power Elite
You might be interested in placing this flash video on the Power Elite in the US on your site, it is unique in giving a theoretical perspective on what is going on in the political, military and economic domains in the US, and how best to go about changing the direction of the country.
A BuzzFlash Reader
[BuzzFlash Note: Warning: This is a long piece, based on the academic writings of sociologist C. Wright Mills.]
Subject: Judith Miller - Who Does She Work For?
I am re-posting my letter to Judith Miller which you originally posted in April of 2003.
This was pre-Plamegate, and even then it was apparent that she was getting fed propaganda information and passing it off as news. I would guess she is employed (paid) in some way by the right wing junta.
Subject: Contempt for the Constitution
From the very beginning the Bush Cheney cabal signalled their contempt for the Constitution by nominating two men from the same state in clear violation of the 12th amendment to the Constitution.
Cheney's last minute voter registration in Wyoming couldn't have made it clearer that they regarded Constitutional requirements as nitpicky inconveniences to be circumvented with dispatch.
Although a few hardy souls called attention to this, including, I believe, BuzzFlash, the media (including The New York Times, what a shock) basically ignored it. No one even took them to court!
From getting away with this, it's a short step to torture, wholesale violations of the establishment clause and other amendments and a cavalier disregard for the requirements of a free society.
Many of us believe that national security does require some sacrifices. But who will entrust this bunch with safeguarding our lives or our constitution?
A BuzzFlash Reader
Why is there no mention of Novak amidst the firestorm? Is he sleeping with Fitzgerald? Has Sharon garnered him immunity? Like, didn't Novak ignite this whole campfire? Yet he is nowhere to be found...and NOBODY in the press has broached this rather bizarre aspect of the mess...why, I wonder,why...
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Ted Stevens of AK
Tried to contact his office of the PooBah here in AK. He does not like dissension, that is sure, 80 yrs old, and living in a dream world fueled by the Beltway wealth and connections, and spend millions on 60000 plus people? He and his criminal son Ben imagines he built Alaska just about by himself. I am reminded of the early stages of Nazi Germany-when it was dangerous to speak. Ted represents the out of country tourist industries, large fishing industries from out of state, and large construction industries-he does not represent the majority of us-just love it when he trots out the one native child he adopted even as he strangles the local villages to death financially. I am sick and old. Please carry on the fight. Most of this land belongs to America, look up the history-not some carpetbagger with a gun he slung around in Fairbanks along time ago.
Subject: The NYT Covers Up and Lies for the Powers That Be
That's nothing new, even though the NYT would have us believe that one reporter, Judith Miller, is the exception and not the rule. This is absurd, to say the least, since said newspaper, when it's a matter of tricking the public into supporting this or that war, has never failed to come through for the powers that be. Not just the NYT, of course, but the rest of the mainstream media as well. Nice try, NYT, but putting all the blame on one reporter ain't going to help you to regain the public's trust. What'll help? Try not lying nor covering up for the powers that be, that's what!
A BuzzFlash Reader
Subject: Let us pray!!!
Will This be the Week that the Bush Administration and Republican Party are judged by the Rule of Law? Hope the indictments go all the way to the top - and includes our imbecilic President. Also looking forward to the Wilson/Plame lawsuit against most top members of this Administration. Hallelujah!!
Subject: How Do I Loathe Thee, Let Me Count the Ways
1. I loathe thee for leading us into an illegal war with Iraq. killing 2000 of our American soldiers, maiming and crippling scores of others, and for the countless deaths of Iraqis for a crime they didn't commit.
2. I loathe thee for your torture and inhumane treatment of innocent detainees in Iraq, Afghanistan, Cuba and all the other unknown places where you hold them.
3. I loathe thee for raping our environment and pillaging our land.
4. I loathe thee for taking from the poor and giving to the rich.
5. I loathe thee for causing the deaths of our elderly, our children, and everyone in between due to a lack of healthcare.
6. I loathe the lies that spew from your mouth ceaselessly, when in the beginning you promised to always tell us the truth.
7. I loathe the fact that I can always count on you to be inefficient and incompetent no matter what you turn your hand to.
8. I loathe your cronyism which was responsible for the suffering and deaths of many due to 'Katrina,' who looked to you for help and deliverance, that arrived too late.
9. I loathe the fact that you call yourself a Christian, when it is people like you that give Christianity a bad name.
10. I loathe thee for shredding our constitution, and for making a mockery of our country around the world. Where we once stood tall and proud, we are now mired in the mud and the filth you have made of it.
Here stands this man, this President covered from head to toe with the blood of his victims.
If it's not already too late to cover our country in the mantle of greatness it once wore, we must impeach Bush NOW!
Subject: Point Taken
This is for Julie and Genie who are outraged that some of us say that Americans got the government they deserved. I know that I didn’t vote for Bush and will fight anyone who suggests that his criminal administration is my fault. It is the fault of those who voted for him however and it is them that I am addressing. If the shoe doesn’t fit ladies, don’t put it on.
The elections in 2000 and 2004 couldn’t have been stolen if they hadn’t been close. That means a whole lot of decent Americans voted for this bunch. A lot of idiots did too. We can’t reach the idiots, but if we don’t convince the decent people who just vote the party line then we are doomed to this kind of government forever. Do you think we can change anyone’s mind by telling them that everything is their fault? I use “us” and “we” when I speak of the problems of voting a strict party line because alienating people is not a strategy for success.
Many people in both parties seem to think they have done their patriotic duty just because they voted. If everyone just votes along a party line without finding out the truth about candidates they are no better than those who didn’t vote at all. Which is worse, ignorance or apathy?
Republican Paul Ryan is the Congressman from my district in Wisconsin. We’re mainly working class people yet Ryan is returned time and again in spite of the fact that he consistently, repeatedly and blatantly supports policies that are against the interests of the people he represents. He is a well spoken, nice looking wolf in sheep’s clothing. Chances are in 2006 the people in this district will return him to congress to continue voting against their interests. Folks say they are unhappy with their government but vote the same people back into power time after time. I vote against this mountebank but many of my friends and neighbors do not. Why?
So much as I would like to smack them up side their stupid heads I speak moderately and as politely as I can manage. I say “we” and “us” when I mean, “you, you ignorant blockhead. It ain’t easy being nice to folks you think helped to screw up our country. But I try, oh lord how I try.
Marjorie L. Swanson
Subject: Using Your Headlines....
Mea culpa! I have written and am using the following:
OUR BELOVED DUBYA NEEDS YOUR HELP!
According to the newsletter BuzzFlash (http://www.buzzflash.com), the week of August 24 promises to be particularly rough for our beloved Dubya. What will the week ahead bring?
Yes, send Dubya a bottle of booze. It doesn't have to be Jim Beam. At this point he drinks anything. And it doesn't have to be a fifth. One of those little airplane bottles will do just fine! You can rest assured that there will be no pretzels involved and Laura will be there to prevent his falling over....
Please send your whiskey to:
President George W. Bush
Yes, YOU can help!
Please send this plea to ten other sympathetic people and ask them to send it to ten other sympathetic people.
WE CAN HELP OUR BELOVED PRESIDENT IN HIS HOUR OF NEED!
I just finished reading the story about the soldier who got the brain injury while fighting in Iraq.....His family are holding car washes to pay his medical bills????? WHAT ????? I read in one of your articles that there are 100 congressmen in DC who are millionaires...These are men who work for US right...... and they are paid handsome salaries too boot.....Oh Yes....they get FREE hospital and medical care too.....am I right ? What is WRONG with this picture ?They get all of these perks besides ALREADY being millionaires and WE THE PEOPLE cant even get quality health care.......and They work for us........Me thinks.......That they are NOT worth the salary and all of the benefits that they are getting...and there should be some firing going on here....... My God the worst part of all of this is that the man really does have a brain injury,because he still supports the war.... the same war that brought him and his family all of these problems ..because it was all LIES that brought on this war....... God ! How can all of these people in DC live with themselves.......How do they ever sleep at night.......PLEASE Patrick Fitzgerald if you are reading this.......at least make some of them pay......
Subject: BuzzFlash Hypocrite of the Week
I hereby nominate Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, one of the many GOP hypocrites who couldn't wait to impeach Clinton for perjury, to be this week's GOP Hypocrite of the Week.
Here's the song Sen. Hutchison is singing now to protect her morally bankrupt GOP comrades: if there is an indictment, she hopes it will be for "a crime and not some perjury technicality where they couldn't indict on the crime."
Hey, Kay, what exactly is a "perjury technicality"? Does it depend on what your definition of "is" is? Or are you just trying to muddy the waters now to protect this corrupt administration later? Was there ever a time when your country meant more to you than your political allegiance?
CLICK HERE FOR PART 2 OF THE OCTOBER 25, 2005 BUZZFLASH MAILBAG
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