Monday, April 24, 2006

When is enough, enough?

Newsweek reported last week that, "The number of American children who have lost parents in Afghanistan and Iraq now stands at more than 1,200 --- a figure roughly equal to the number of widows and widowers, according to the pentagon." I'm wondering if any of them saw 60 Minutes last night when Tyler Drumheller, a former top CIA official said the war in Iraq was based on intelligence twisted to fit the policy.

It really amazes me that there is so much information out there now that leaves absolutely no doubt whatsoever that this administration shamelessly manipulated people's fears of another 9/11for political advantage and repeatedly lied about the threat of Iraq's WMD to get us into a disastrous war and there's no apparent political consequence for this.

It's not that the president didn't know what was going on or was misled by underlings; he was bent on going to war no matter what and had a hand in every decision. Before the right wing attack machine starts Swiftboating Drumheller we should keep in mind that before this: there was the Downing Street memo, a smoking gun if there ever was one; then there was the memo from January of 2003 that said that the president wasn't expecting to find WMD so he was thinking about painting a spy plane in UN colors and hoping that Saddam would shoot it down; his vice-president's chief of staff is under indictment for lying to a grand jury in a case involving the leaking of national security secrets, that the president authorized, to try and discount evidence that he used phony intelligence in his state of the union address.

Where's the outrage? What's it going to take to get the other branches of the government to check this rogue executive? Congressional Republican's loyalty to their party leader is one thing, but when does political allegiance become national suicide? This administration is in office for another three years; can we really afford another war in the Middle East; can we really afford losing another American city?

This is to say nothing of the blunders Bush & CO. made before 9/11. As the Mousaoui trial has pointed out again, the FBI had ample evidence of an impending attack and did nothing. The CIA told the vacationing George Bush that OBL was "determined to attack inside the United States,” but he did nothing. His National Security Adviser totally failed to prevent the attacks and instead of being fired for her criminal negligence, she got a promotion! When the attacks actually occurred this president dithered for a crucial seven minutes reading "my favorite goat," as the military was desperately trying get their orders from him. And it's not like he immediately took the reigns of power and started issuing hours; no, he disappeared for the rest of the day and didn't wind up back at the White House until that evening.

I understand that people don't want to believe that the president is a serial liar whose repeated blunders have brought us to the brink of military and financial disaster. It would be better, though, that people wake up now before it's too late. We cannot afford to allow this administration to go along the way it has for another three years.

If nothing else, the fact that Bush hasn't come out and said unequivocally that he won't use nuclear weapons in a first strike against Iran should shake a somnambulant Congress out of its stupor. What kind of political prospects for the '06 midterms do the Republicans think they'll have if there's radioactive cloud wafting over the Middle East? Something that dangerously irresponsible being seriously considered by a White House that has such a track record ought to be enough to start an urgent effort to impeach this president.


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