Evil Incarnate forced himself out of his undisclosed location to give a speech in which he threatens the US will take action against Iran.
Once again, the misAdministration proves that it only goes after o-i-l and countries that do not already have nuclear weapons. North Korea, anyone? China? Israel? Britain? Pakistan, where Mr. Bin Forgotten is getting his groove on and encouraging his Taliban buddies?
From the Associated Press:
The United States and other nations will not allow Iran to obtain a nuclear weapon, Vice President Dick Cheney said Sunday.
He said Iran’s efforts to pursue technology that would allow it to build a nuclear weapon are obvious and that “the regime continues to practice delay and deceit in an obvious effort to buy time.” [Not that the Big Dick would know anything about practicing delay and deceit ... - Jenn]
If Iran continues on its current course, Cheney said the U.S. and other nations are prepared to take action. The vice president made no specific reference to military action.
“We will not allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon,” he said.
Gee, Mr. Vice-President, wouldn’t that have been easier if you and your minions hadn’t decided that Valerie Plame was “fair game”?
PLAME: Our mission was to make sure that the bad guys, basically, did not get nuclear weapons.
COURIC: When senior administration officials leaked her name to reporters, they may have exposed other spies and damaged operations targeting Iran. CBS News has learned that she was involved in one highly classified mission to deliver fake nuclear weapons blueprints to Tehran. It was called Operation Merlin, and it was first revealed in a book by investigative reporter James Risen. [my emphasis]
Since I’m trying to be a good girl who doesn’t refresh too often during the Libby live-blogging going on over at FireDogLake, I’ve been keeping myself distracted by surfing the net.
From Newsweek, via The Blue Herald comes this little tidbit to induce nausea:
But the fact remains that the longstanding war of words between Washington and Tehran is edging toward something more dangerous. A second Navy carrier group is steaming toward the Persian Gulf, and NEWSWEEK has learned that a third carrier will likely follow. Iran shot off a few missiles in those same tense waters last week, in a highly publicized test. With Americans and Iranians jousting on the chaotic battleground of Iraq, the chances of a small incident’s spiraling into a crisis are higher than they’ve been in years.
As Question Girl says, “Someone sneezes, and we’re at war.”
I was feeling slightly better, but now I’m feeling nauseated and it has nothing to do with the stomach flu.
U.S.-led coalition forces in Iraq on Sunday presented what officials said was “a growing body” of evidence of Iranian weapons being used to kill coalition soldiers.
A senior defense official from the U.S.-led Multi-National Force in Baghdad, told a briefing that 170 coalition forces had been killed by roadside bombs known as explosively formed penetrators (EFPs) that he said were manufactured in Iran and smuggled into Iraq.
Where have we heard this stuff before? Oh, yeah…
The Bush administration religiously chanted the contention that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction as its basis for a war.
For example, in his address to the nation Bush said the intelligence “leaves no doubt that . . . Iraq . . . continues to possess and conceal some of the most lethal weapons ever devised.” Vice President Cheney also was part of the chorus and declared that “there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction.”
Also from BushLies.net:
“No terrorist state poses a greater or more immediate threat to the security of our people and the stability of the world than the regime of Saddam Hussein in Iraq.” Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld (09.19.02)
and Continue reading
At a time when nearly everyone is wondering just how the hell we’re going to get out of Iraq, new evidence comes to light that proves, once again, that we never should have gone there.
While American administration officials were using British intelligence claims to back up their war drums, the British knew – and had told the Americans – Saddam had no WMDs.
What a surprise.
From the Independent: [all emphasis mine]
The Government’s case for going to war in Iraq has been torn apart by the publication of previously suppressed evidence that Tony Blair lied over Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction.
A devastating attack on Mr Blair’s justification for military action by Carne Ross, Britain’s key negotiator at the UN, has been kept under wraps until now because he was threatened with being charged with breaching the Official Secrets Act.
In the testimony revealed today Mr Ross, 40, who helped negotiate several UN security resolutions on Iraq, makes it clear that Mr Blair must have known Saddam Hussein possessed no weapons of mass destruction. He said that during his posting to the UN, “at no time did HMG [Her Majesty's Government] assess that Iraq’s WMD (or any other capability) posed a threat to the UK or its interests.”
Mr Ross revealed it was a commonly held view among British officials dealing with Iraq that any threat by Saddam Hussein had been “effectively contained”.
He also reveals that British officials warned US diplomats that bringing down the Iraqi dictator would lead to the chaos the world has since witnessed. “I remember on several occasions the UK team stating this view in terms during our discussions with the US (who agreed),” he said.
“At the same time, we would frequently argue when the US raised the subject, that ‘regime change’ was inadvisable, primarily on the grounds that Iraq would collapse into chaos.”
Mr Ross says he questioned colleagues at the Foreign Office and the Ministry of Defence working on Iraq and none said that any new evidence had emerged to change their assessment.
“What had changed was the Government’s determination to present available evidence in a different light,” he added.
Read the full article here.
Read more at the Independent:
Full transcript of the evidence given by Carne Ross to the Butler inquiry.
I read the available UK and US intelligence on Iraq every working day for the four and a half years of my posting. This daily briefing would often comprise a thick folder of material, both humint and sigint. I also talked often and at length about Iraq’s WMD to the international experts who comprised the inspectors of UNSCOM/UNMOVIC, whose views I would report to London. In addition, I was on many occasions asked to offer views in contribution to Cabinet Office assessments, including the famous WMD dossier (whose preparation began some time before my departure in June 2002).
During my posting, at no time did HMG assess that Iraq’s WMD (or any other capability) posed a threat to the UK or its interests. On the contrary, it was the commonly-held view among the officials dealing with Iraq that any threat had been effectively contained. I remember on several occasions the UK team stating this view in terms during our discussions with the US (who agreed). (At the same time, we would frequently argue, when the US raised the subject, that “r¿gime change” was inadvisable, primarily on the grounds that Iraq would collapse into chaos.) [...]
Carne Ross wrestled with his conscience for three more months after he secretly submitted evidence to the Butler committee into the use of pre-war intelligence on Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction.
Beset by long-standing private doubts about the Government’s Iraq policy which he had implemented for four years in New York, he had previously drafted “about six” resignation letters in the past which he never sent.
But after emailing his testimony to the Butler committee from Kosovo where he was on secondment, Mr Ross realised that he had probably jeopardised his 15-year career. After agonising for another three months, he sent another email in September 2004, this time terminating his employment with the Foreign Office. He was 38. [...]
Commentary in the Independent by Anne Penketh: Saddam seen as no threat – then politicians got to work.
We have had the gossipy version on the run-up to the Iraq war from Tony Blair’s ambassador to Washington, Christopher Meyer, aka the “red-socked fop”. We have not, sadly, been able to read the account of Sir Jeremy Greenstock, the former UN ambassador whose memoirs have been blocked by the Foreign Office.
But with the publication of Carne Ross’s statement to the Butler committee we have an insider’s view as to the state of Britain’s Iraq policy before the politicians seized it by the scruff of the neck in 2002.
Mr Ross suggests that the Bush administration was not the only government which changed the intelligence and the facts to fit the policy before the Iraq invasion. Even though he left Britain’s UN mission in mid-2002 he confirms that the prevailing wisdom throughout his four years as first secretary in New York was that Iraq’s WMD did not represent a direct threat, and had been contained by sanctions.
But as we now know, thanks to a secret Downing Street memo dated 23 July 2002, military action was already seen as “inevitable” by Washington which wanted to overthrow Saddam Hussein. “The intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy,” the memo said. [...]
Posting early for reasons explained in Sunday Sermon – Part 2.
I want to urge everyone who reads this to visit Bloggers Against Torture and pass the word along to friends. If you're a blogger, join us and be a part of the movement. At my last count, 168 blogs have joined the effort to stop torture around the world.
Regardless of your opinions on the Iraq war, or your opinions on the Bush administration, whether you're red or blue, hawk or dove, Christian or atheist or Jew or Hindu or Pagan – we all have to raise our voices and stop the use of torture by our government and governments around the world.
Torture is wrong.
It violates against every moral and religious principle. It violates every person's right to humane treatment. Allowing our government to continue the use of torture - in our name – demeans every word of our Declaration of Independence, our Bill of Rights, our Constitution. Using torture makes us no better than any two-bit Third-World dictatorship.
If you are a person of faith, join the National Religious Campaign Against Torture!!
If you aren't wandering your home muttering, "3 W on a T?!" or "8 T on an O?!!" then you haven't tried the Intelligence Test yet.
I'm please to say I'm a freakin' genius on Part One of the test with 25/30 (on my second try) and 15/24 on Part Two. I'm still working on Part two and will hopefully improve my score.
Arthur has a great post that should be a must-read for everyone in the United States – especially lefty bloggers. He points out the fallacy of making comments like ‘getting the intelligence right’ on Iran, when the intelligence for Iraq was fixed to fit the goals of the Bush administration.
From Once Upon A Time:
I continue to see many references on political blogs to the “importance of getting the intelligence right.” At the moment, such comments obviously come up most often in discussions about “what to do about Iran.” It’s no surprise that this perspective shows up on conservative and rightwing blogs — but I continue to be astounded that so many liberal and progressive bloggers still fall for this line.
People don’t seem to grasp the necessary meaning of this approach. If you contend that it is crucial for the intelligence to be correct and given how the argument is almost always presented, you are assuming that major policy decisions are made on the basis of that intelligence, at least to a significant degree. This is buying into Bush’s defense entirely: “But everyone thought Iraq had WMD and was a serious and growing threat!” Never mind the lie about “everyone” having thought this, which everyone most certainly did not. The crucial point is that Bush is saying that he only launched the war on Iraq because of what the intelligence indicated. And even liberals still repeat this propaganda.
In fact, I have thought for a few years that the decision to attack to Iran was made some time ago. I am more convinced of that now than I ever was before. The constant stream of scare stories about Iran is designed only to terrify the American public sufficiently, so that when Bush holds a press conference to announce air strikes against Iran that have already begun, enough people will believe that the strikes were necessary — since Iran was about to launch nuclear weapons against us momentarily.
As with Iraq, all the major points will be lies. All of it will be war propaganda. And given our cowardly, inept, and fatally incompetent media and the lack of any significant political opposition — which opposition, if it existed, ought to be making itself known now and not after the press conference — and provided enough people are scared to the required degree, it will work. Again.
As summer approaches, the administration’s war-drumming will escalate. They’ve already declared a nuclear Iraq a threat to America – never mind the fact that the threat doesn’t exist as yet – and will not exist for ten years.
The incompetence of Bush’s foreign policy is obvious to everyone, and as Arthur says, if the left allows them to get away with it this time, we’re all culpable.
But let no one be heard to say that they were taken by surprise, or that they didn’t see it coming, or that they didn’t believe “they really meant it.” We all see it coming and we all know they do mean it, and almost no one is doing a damned thing to stop it. No one is off the hook this time.