Sunday, September 24, 2006

An October Surprise for Team Bush

Although Karl Rove may think the October surprise he has lined up will be the ultimate GOP Halloween kool-aid feast, Prissy thinks that pesky CIA Leak case is bound to get in his way...

From Prissy's Inbox:

The White House confirmed Bush will travel to Cincinnati on Monday for a private fundraiser for Sen. Mike DeWine. People are also invited to join Bush at a Sept. 28 fundraiser in New Albany, Ohio, for Rep. Deborah Pryce, according a copy of the invitation.

Recent polls show DeWine in a close race with Democratic Rep. Sherrod Brown, and Pryce, the fourth-ranking Republican in the House, has acknowledged her race against Franklin County Commissioner Mary Jo Kilroy is her toughest in 14 years in the House.

Both Republican candidates have emphasized their independence from their party in TV ads this year. That has been less of a focus in ads lately, however, as Bush's national approval ratings have crept back up around 40 percent.

Bush's visits will bracket one by his wife, Laura, who is to be in Granville, 26 miles east of Columbus, on Tuesday to raise money for state Sen. Joy Padgett, who replaced Rep. Bob Ney in another closely watched House race.

Hot Links

Chicago Suntimes- OpEd Bush seeks immunity for violating War Crimes Act by former Congresswoman, Attorney ELIZABETH HOLTZMAN September 23, 2006

Avoiding prosecution under the War Crimes Act has been an obsession of this administration since shortly after 9/11. In a January 2002 memorandum to the president, then-White House Counsel Alberto Gonzales pointed out the problem of prosecution for detainee mistreatment under the War Crimes Act. He notes that given the vague language of the statute, no one could predict what future ''prosecutors and independent counsels'' might do if they decided to bring charges under the act. As an author of the 1978 special prosecutor statute, I know that independent counsels (who used to be called ''special prosecutors'' prior to the statute's reauthorization in 1994) aren't for low-level government officials such as CIA interrogators, but for the president and his Cabinet. It is clear that Gonzales was concerned about top administration officials.

Gonzales also understood that the specter of prosecution could hang over top administration officials involved in detainee mistreatment throughout their lives. Because there is no statute of limitations in cases where death resulted from the mistreatment, prosecutors far into the future, not appointed by Bush or beholden to him, would be making the decisions whether to prosecute.

To ''reduce the threat of domestic criminal prosecution under the War Crimes Act,'' Gonzales recommended that Bush not apply the Geneva Conventions to al-Qaida and the Taliban. Since the War Crimes Act carried out the Geneva Conventions, Gonzales reasoned that if the Conventions didn't apply, neither did the War Crimes Act. Bush implemented the recommendation on Feb. 7, 2002.

When the Supreme Court recently decided that the Conventions did apply to al-Qaida and Taliban detainees, the possibility of criminal liability for high-level administration officials reared its ugly head again.

Project on Government Oversight POGO Disgusted by Reports of Retaliation Against Interior Department Auditors

MMS announced last month that STRAC, which has repeatedly highlighted shortcomings with MMS’ auditing standards, can no longer hold meetings unless an official from MMS is present. Members of Congress wrote to the Interior Department on August 31, 2006 , concluding that “MMS is retaliating against STRAC … for voicing its concerns to Congress about dysfunction in the royalty management program.” Follow the link to view a copy of the Members’ letter.

In the meantime, MMS has cut its auditing and staff by 26% since 2001 according to written testimony from the Project On Government Oversight last week. As a result, MMS audit collections are at an historic all-time low (follow this link to view testimony).

A story from today’s New York Times also describes how MMS auditors were ignored and retaliated against for trying to collect unpaid royalties from oil and gas companies.

“Apparently, the Interior Department is again trying to muzzle complaints about its poor track record instead of actually solving its problems,’ noted Beth Daley , POGO ’s director of investigations.

Scooter's Bad Memory Defense Shot Down by Fitz

Contrary to defendant’s contention, the proposed testimony would not assist the jury in understanding or determining the facts in issue in this case. As set forth above, the jury in this case will be charged with determining whether the information defendant provided to the investigators and the grand jury was accurate and, if not, whether defendant’s inaccurate statements and testimony were the product of innocent mistakes or deliberate lies. Neither the proposed testimony regarding the workings of memory, nor the proposed testimony regarding the absence of a correlation between confidence and accuracy, will assist the jury in distinguishing between accurate and inaccurate memories, or assessing the competing recollections of defendant and the government’s witnesses (see Mem.10).

More importantly, the proposed testimony will provide the jury with no assistance in distinguishing between inaccurate memories and deliberate lies. The proposed testimony merely provides a scientific explanation for the processes by which defendant misremembered – if he misremembered. However, details regarding how defendant may have misremembered do not make it “more plausible” that defendant innocently relayed incorrect information, rather than deliberately lied.

Accordingly, the proposed testimony does not “fit” the issues of the case, and would not be helpful to the trier of fact.

We must hand it to Scooter, his memory serves well to allow his lies to be so consistent...

Now we're talkin' OpEd News VT Cong Candidate Calls for Arrest of Bush & Cheney by U.S. Military

Former Army Lieutenant and a candidate for Congress in VT, Dennis Morrisseau of W. Pawlet, today called for the arrest of President Bush and Vice President Cheney by the American military "if necessary" to prevent an unauthorized attack upon the nation of Iran.

"American forces are apparently already active inside Iran, and Naval forces have received orders to deploy to that country," Morrisseau said. "The President has NO AUTHORITY to attack the nation of Iran whatsoever, in the absence of a full, formal Declaration of War on Iran by the sitting Congress," Morrisseau said. He said any order for an attack upon Iran or to deploy naval forces to its coastal waters is illegal, and called upon officers of the American military to "First, refuse to obey such an order. If the president persists and insists on ordering our forces into combat in or over Iran without a formal Declaration of War, then I call upon you, General Pace,as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, and upon such other military officers as clearly see their duty in these circumstances to detain both the President and Vice President, until such time as the Congress shall act."

Morrisseau, a Congressional candidate who was court-martialled for opposition to the Vietnam War in 1968, said he has written to General Pace to ask for the intervention of the military. "In spite of my opposition to the Vietnam War and the court-martial which we ultimately defeated, I was a good soldier who had the respect of my superior officers throughout the ordeal. And they had mine!" Morrisseau said. "There are many many, very, very decent people in the active duty military. I know this," he said "---people who love their country and democracy too, and hate war."

Prissy is no rocket scientist, but she'd say the neorepublicans have endangered themselves...more of this to come- and these are the non-violent folks.

Prissy will hazard a guess that the violent ones will be much better organized...they probably have no intention of being arrested, either. And no Uncle Sam, Prissy doesn't know them-she prefers to hang with the non-violent crowd. The food is better...GNN TVAntiwar Push Starts Near White House; 34 Arrested

A group of ministers, veterans and peace activists attempted to deliver a “declaration of peace” to the White House yesterday, kicking off a week of vigils and other activities in 350 communities across the country calling for the prompt withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq.

Thirty-four people were arrested here and charged with disorderly conduct after they demanded to speak with President Bush, then refused to leave the west gate of the White House. As part of an initiative of more than 400 groups, many of them religiously affiliated, the activists said they had to “bear moral witness” against the U.S. military role in Iraq.

(supporting war for gain since 1963)

Flashback- or "gee where do all those suicide bombers come from?" Cars stolen in US used in suicide attacks

Cracking the car-theft rings and tracing the cars could help identify insurgent leaders and shut down one of the means used to attack the US-led coalition and the Iraqi Government, the officials said.

The inquiry began after coalition troops raided a Falluja bomb factory last November and found a Texas-registered four-wheel-drive being prepared for a bombing mission. Investigators said there were several other cases where vehicles evidently stolen in the US wound up in Syria or other Middle Eastern countries and ultimately in the hands of Iraqi insurgent groups, including al-Qaeda in Iraq.

Investigators believed the cars were stolen by local car thieves in US cities, then smuggled to waiting ships at ports in Los Angeles, Seattle, and Houston, among other cities. Terrorism specialists said they believed Iraqi insurgents preferred American stolen cars because they tended to be larger, blended in more easily with US convoys, and were harder to identify as stolen.

Bullfeathers, as Granny says. Remember this article? Reuters already removed it...but Bellacaio has it: Iraq: American Contractor Arrested with Explosives in Car March Tuesday 14th 2006

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - An American described as a security contractor arrested by police in a northern Iraqi town was carrying weapons in his car, a provincial official said.

Abdullah Jebara, the Deputy Governor of Salahaddin province, told Reuters the man was arrested in Saddam Hussein’s hometown of Tikrit on Monday. He was removed from the provincial government building by U.S. forces on Tuesday, Jebara said.

The Joint Coordination Center between the U.S. and Iraqi military in Tikrit said the man, whom it described as a security contractor working for a private company, possessed explosives which were found in his car. It said he was arrested on Tuesday.

The man, driving a BMW, was stopped by police for violating a daytime curfew in Tikrit, a security source said. American security personnel rarely travel alone.

Let's not forget the two Brits dressed in Arab clothing, also driving a Toyota Cressida full of explosives. Not an American made-the Japanese last made the mid-size Cressida in 1992.

The two were arrested by Iraqi police-the ones coalition forces got out of the Iraqi jail using tanks...But Dubya said all our missions are in collusion with the Iraqi forces...

USA Media Monitors Caught red-handed :: British Undercover Operatives in Iraq

So, based on the methodology of their Regiment, the two British SAS operatives were in Iraq to “penetrate the enemy and be the enemy,” in order of course to “beat the enemy.” Instead of beating the enemy, however, they ended up fomenting massive chaos and killing innocent people, a familiar pattern for critical students of the British role in the Northern Ireland conflict.

In November 2004 [9], a joint statement was released on several Islamist websites on behalf of al-Qaeda’s man in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, and Saddam Hussein’s old Ba’ath Party loyalists. Zarqawi’s network had “joined other extremist Islamists and Saddam Hussein’s old Baath party to threaten increased attacks on US-led forces.” Zarqawi’s group said they signed “the statement written by the Iraqi Baath party, not because we support the party or Saddam, but because it expresses the demands of resistance groups in Iraq.” The statement formalized what had been known for a year already – that, as post-Saddam Iraqi intelligence and US military officials told the London Times (9/8/2003) [10], “Al Qaeda terrorists who have infiltrated Iraq from Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries have formed an alliance with former intelligence agents of Saddam Hussein to fight their common enemy, the American forces.” Al Qaeda leaders “recruit from the pool” of Saddam’s former “security and intelligence officers who are unemployed and embittered by their loss of status.” After vetting, “they begin Al-Qaeda-style training, such as how to make remote-controlled bombs.”

Yet Pakistani military sources [11] revealed in February 2005 that the US has “resolved to arm small militias backed by US troops and entrenched in the population”, consisting of “former members of the Ba’ath Party” – the same people already teamed up with Zarqawi’s al-Qaeda network. In a highly clandestine operation, the US procured “Pakistan-manufactured weapons, including rifles, rocket-propelled grenade launchers, ammunition, rockets and other light weaponry.” A Pakistani military analyst noted that the “arms could not be destined for the Iraqi security forces because US arms would be given to them.” Rather, the US is playing a double-game to “head off” the threat of a “Shi’ite clergy-driven religious movement” – in other words, to exacerbate the deterioration of security by penetrating, manipulating and arming the terrorist insurgency.

What could be the end-game of such a covert strategy? The view on-the-ground [12] in Iraq, among both Sunnis and Shi’ites, is worth noting. Sheikh Jawad al-Kalesi, the Shi’ite Imam of the al-Kadhimiyah mosque in Baghdad, told Le Monde: “I don’t think that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi exists as such. He’s simply an invention by the occupiers to divide the people.” Iraq’s most powerful Sunni Arab religious authority, the Association of Muslim Scholars, concurs, condemning the call to arms against Shi’ites as a “very dangerous” phenomenon that “plays into the hands of the occupier who wants to split up the country and spark a sectarian war.” In colonial terms, the strategy is known as “divide and rule.”

Nice going, Dubya...

Khaleej Times Iraq leaders take breathing space on regions row In other words, they agreed to put off any real decision making for another 18 months...meanwhile:

For the second day in a row, the Iraqi army announced the capture of a person it described as a leader of an insurgent group, in this case a leader of the western Baghdad wing of the nationalist group the 1920 Revolution Brigades.

The authorities did not identify the suspect and, as is often the case, it was not possible to verify whether he was as important as they said.

And...Washington has focused its security efforts on Baghdad, bringing in troops from other parts of the country for a six-week-old crackdown in the capital.

A division of 15,000 American troops have swept through scattered neighbourhoods and say they have reduced killings in those areas. However, the military acknowledges that killings in the city as a whole have “spiked” in the past two weeks and attacks on US forces have increased.

RAW Story Senator Majority Leader Frist refuses to discuss specific CIA interrogation techniques

Appearing on ABC's This Week with George Stephanopoulos on Sunday, Republican Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist refused to talk about specific CIA interrogation techniques, claiming that it would "help the terrorists."

Frist fancies himself a southern gentleman, but he surely is not...

Glenn Greewald flashback (updated) Bill Frist threatens to re-structure the Intelligence Committee in order to block NSA hearings

Marvel at the desperate and truly radical means which Frist is invoking in order to block an investigation into the Administration's warrantless eavesdropping program. To threaten to abolish the 30-year-old consensus for how the Senate Intelligence Committee functions – all in order to protect the Bush Administration from scrutiny and oversight – is truly extraordinary, and is unquestionably the conduct of individuals who are seeking to prevent scrutiny in order to conceal wrongdoing. Such threats are particularly unfathomable in light of the fact that the motion for hearings will pass only if it has the support of Republicans on the Committee.

This should be used in the Bush/Cheney indictment-this says it ALL. Please get this around the net. Military Veterans for 911 Truth Sergeant Lauro "LJ" Chavez, 9/11 Whistle Blower Speaks Out to the Editor of the Cincinnati Post. Note to Post: Prissy will add you to the lawsuit if you fail to tell the truth-yet AGAIN. A must read for Prissy's Dearest Readers.

I felt it necessary to follow up to a recent story that was published in Cincinnati Post. It was the 1 in 3 believe 9-11 conspiracy theory. I must admit that at first I was overwhelmed with joy that our local paper was actually starting to have real journalism and talk about real issues. Then I read the story and it was a total debunk to make the actual people around the world who feel there was something not right about 9-11, to look like over reacting conspiracy theorists.

Honestly I could care less what is done with this letter, but I feel that I should speak my mind and Ill tell you some things that I have not told many people at all. From 1995 till 2002 I was a Sergeant in the United States Army. Not only this, but I was stationed at United States Central Command, which is located at MacDill AFB in Tampa Florida. I was on active duty when 9-11 happened. In the days prior to the tragedies, we were involved in many exercises. Some of these exercises included the scenarios of hijacked planes crashing into, our building the world trade center, the White House, Sears Tower, and the Pentagon. These drills or exercises as we called them, where classified Top Secret. Having a Top Secret rated clearance I was dumbfounded that they would ever push a training exercise above the level of Secret. Over my 8 years in the Army, I had participated in many exercises around the world, none of which were ever classified over the Secret level.

I'll start by saying a few months prior it was announced by President Bush that Dick Cheney would be heading up operations over NORAD our North American Aerospace Defense Command. Along with many of my peers, we were shocked. Over the years, if you research NORAD, it has always been under the command of a Military officer. It was done this way because the defense of this country has always been in the hands of such. Prior to the months before 9-11 this was all of the sudden changed. Like I said, if you research NORAD and the command structure you will find that it was imposed long ago that the military should be in control of the order to scramble planes in the defense of American air space. For some strange reason, Bush changed this and gave that power to a civilian person on his Staff team yes I know, very interesting.

Back to the morning of 9-11; the command was busy with this training exercise. We were instructed to bring all our gear in to prep for a mock (staged) deployment to the Middle East. On the morning of 9-11 I had been on base prepped and ready to go since about 0400am. During my time at the base that morning, they were setting up barriers around the command and placing gun posts on the roofs. When I questioned one of the security officers about the machine gun and shoulder fired rockets on the roof I was given the answer its a precaution for a plane attempting to crash into this building.

The Age Exhausted British troops 'reduced to tears'

British troops in Afghanistan are exhausted and desperately short of helicopters, and there is no sign the casualty rate will fall, according to accounts from officers on the front line.

The reports, including a leaked email describing the Royal Air Force as "useless", put the UK Government under fresh pressure over whether it adequately prepared troops for the hostile south of the country.

It was revealed yesterday that a paratroop major, James Loden, described British forces as desperately short of reinforcements and helicopters and berated the RAF for being "utterly, utterly useless". In leaked emails, he referred to an attack when the pilot of a Harrier fighter bomber fired rockets closer to British troops on the ground than the enemy. "A female Harrier pilot 'couldn't identify the target', fired two phosphorus rockets that just missed our own compound so that we thought they were incoming RPGs (rocket-propelled grenades), and then strafed our perimeter, missing the enemy by 200 metres," Major Loden said.

Quotes of the Day

“Could I have but a line a century hence crediting a contribution to the advance of peace, I would gladly yield every honor which has been accorded me in war”--Douglas MacArthur,American General who commanded the Southwest Pacific Theatre in World War II, 1880-1964

“One cannot wage war under present conditions without the support of public opinion, which is tremendously molded by the press and other forms of propaganda.” --Douglas MacArthur

“I have known war as few men now living know it. It's very destructiveness on both friend and foe has rendered it useless as a means of settling international disputes.”--Douglas MacArthur

“Part of the American dream is to live long and die young. Only those Americans who are willing to die for their country are fit to live.”--Douglas MacArthur quote

What would MacArthur say about this "president?"

“Rules are mostly made to be broken and are too often for the lazy to hide behind” --Douglas MacArthur