Archive for June 22nd, 2005

The Downing Street Memos: Just another link in the chain

Jun 22, 2005 in Current Events

This past week, the infamous Downing Street Memos have finally started to get some serious attention from the mainstream media. Many news reports and opinion pieces dismiss the importance of the documents, stating that the memos’ revelations are “old news,” and that anyone paying attention would have come to the same conclusions already.

This may be true, but the elephant in the room that many people are ignoring is the sheer amount of evidence suggesting that Bush was planning an invasion of Iraq all along — even before he was elected into office. 9/11 and the war on terrorism provided the perfect opportunity to sell this war to a wary and vengeful public, and the White House purposely manipulated the intelligence to support their case for war. Several credible and high-level sources have already emerged to reveal Bush’s long-standing intentions:

  • Mickey Herskowitz, an author and journalist who was originally chosen to ghostwrite George W’s biography, recalls that as early as 1999, Bush told him that he was thinking about invading Iraq. Investigative journalist Russ Baker details these charges in this recent article.
  • In his book Against All Enemies, Richard Clarke, the former counterterrorism chief under Clinton and Bush recalls that a discussion of Iraq came up at the first Security Council meeting — ten days after Bush took office, and eight months before 9/11. He further recalls that on the evening of 9/11, a discussion took place at the White House about Iraq — instead of al-Qaeda and Afghanistan. In a widely publicized incident from his book, Clarke recalls that the president took him aside and demanded he find a link between Iraq and 9/11. The report that Clarke produced as a result, which found no link between Iraq and 9/11, was rejected by the White House.
  • Paul O’Neill, Bush’s former Treasury Secretary, also substantiates the incidents of the first Security Council meeting where an impending invasion of Iraq was being discussed. O’Neill was the primary source behind the book The Price of Loyalty, written by former WSJ reporter Ron Susskind.
  • The Downing Street Memos are just another high-level source supporting the case that the White House was determined to push for the war in Iraq, despite the lack of strong evidence supporting it. The White House dropped the ball on al-Qaeda before 9/11 because of their insistance that Saddam was the real threat, and they diverted needed resources from the fight against terrorism afterwards with the war on Iraq.

    The right wing pushed for Clinton’s impeachment in 1999 because he received a blowjob from a White House intern. Somehow I think that deceiving Congress and the public about the case for the Iraq war is far worse. Untold thousands have died, our reputation with the rest of the world has declined to new lows, and our soldiers and tax dollars will be tied up in Iraq for years to come.