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Guest Deuces Wild

George, can you 'sex' that up an re-post it please.

You should contact the BBC for that Andy. They seem to have a pretty good handle on how to do that. :mrgreen::lol:

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Th bottom line is thatthe executive branch has the sole duty and responsibility for reviewing intelligence. The Oversight committe is responsible for reviewing mthods and means. they may request information to assist in that persuit. Such information is conveyed by executive branch members. But civics lessons aside let me get to the Kylie's question.

 

I would have wanted an honest discussion of justification for going to war in Iraq. I thought at the time we had one. In retrospect we did not. Not only because the "imminent danger/gathering threat" is inaccurate but because all of these other justifications were barely mentioned. I know the argument is that when you are selling a house you talk about the nice kitchen and don't talk about the average sized bedrooms bu a war is more than a house sale & we had a right to hear all of the arguments not the best argument. I personally would not have supported a war. Saddam was a brutal dictator but that is not justification for attacking his country. Are the Iraqis better off without him almost certanly. Will they continue to be? we don't know. Could they end up worse off? Yes. Are we safer with him gone? I doubt it? Was his departure worth 1 American, australian, british, Fijian , etc life? I would say no.

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Chris Matthews interviewed Howard Dean after last nights S.C. debate on Cheneys visits to the CIA.

 

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4106985/

 

 

 

MATTHEWS: Let‘s go to Howard Dean, the former Vermont governor, who is at that debate site in Greenville, South Carolina.

 

Governor Dean, you made your point tonight.

 

HOWARD DEAN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Yes, sir.

 

MATTHEWS: I want to you expand on it. You said that Dick Cheney pushed the CIA to give us bad info on the weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. Do you want to expand on that, please?

 

DEAN: Well, that‘s not exactly what I said.

 

What I said was that Dick Cheney met with middle levels of the CIA and was reported by a retired CIA agent to have berated them because he didn‘t like the tone of their reports, encouraging them to change their intelligence reports. That is what I—that is what we have from a retired CIA agent.

 

MATTHEWS: Do you believe that person?

 

DEAN: Yes, I do.

 

I believe that—I believe that the vice—well, we—I think it has been published that the vice president met with middle-level operatives of the CIA to go over their reports. And from what we understand is, those.

 

The vice president himself berated them because he didn‘t think—he like the contents of those reports. That is cooking the books of the intelligence.

 

And I think there‘s ample evidence to suggest that the president of the United States did not give us the facts when we went to war in Iraq.

 

MATTHEWS: Why is David Kay refusing to say that in public? Because he‘s been studying this. He went over there and found that the weapons report of our intelligence agencies as presented to us by the administration were not supported by the evidence in Iraq. Why doesn‘t he come out and say what you said? He has studied this issue.

 

DEAN: I don‘t know—we don‘t know for sure where the breakdown was.

 

I mean, I can‘t prove that Dick Cheney forced those guys to alter the reports. We do know he certainly put pressure on them. And we also don‘t know exactly what he put pressure on them to say. So I don‘t know Mr. Kay. I assume he is a very careful person. And I think he is being careful right now. I think—he suggested himself we ought to have an independent inquiry, like the Kean commission, into the circumstances which got us into Iraq. And I think that‘s exactly what we should do as well.

 

MATTHEWS: Well, we have public information, at least David Kay is asserting, that the misinformation, the bad intelligence, can be traced, he says, to middle-level people, as you say, at the CIA. He also—we also know, as you‘ve attested tonight again, that Dick Cheney met on several times. He and his chief of staff, Scooter Libby, went over to CIA headquarters in Langley and argued, talked to them.

 

Are you sure tonight, since you made this point in the debate tonight, that he put the pressure on these agents to come up with—to come up with an argument for us going to Iraq?

 

DEAN: What we do know is that he put pressure on the agents. Now, we don‘t exactly know what he said. And I don‘t expect we‘re going to know that for a long, long time.

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Sir t

It seems that those now calling Saddam's use of chem & bio weapons 'monstrous' (which they were) sanctioned, aided and assisted him back then  The hypocrisy is incredible isn't it. The major coalition members also use depleted uranium weapons which can also be labelled as bio weapons. These things cause major increases in cancer related deaths and birth defects for years after they are used. Depleted Uranium

From this link

The ammunition was first used in combat during the Gulf War. Maj. Rokke was theater senior health physicist with the 330th Army Medical Brigade during the war. He was part of a team directed to clean up U.S. tanks and armored personnel carriers struck by friendly fire with depleted-uranium ammunition during the war.

 

"I took us three months to clean up 24 vehicles for shipment back to the United States," he said. The team had to decontaminate the vehicles and recover the remains of U.S. soldiers inside them. "There was only one thing I could say when I saw the depleted uranium mess, 'Oh my God,'" Maj. Rooke said. "We started finding stuff and it scared us completely."

 

The team had to bury three Bradley Fighting Vehicles because they couldn't be decontaminated enough to be sent back to the United States, he said.

 

The ammunition is used in rapid-fire cannons mounted on jets, such as the A-10 Warthog, helicopters and armored vehicles. Maj. Rokke said when fired in gun barrels, the ammunition sheds radioactive dust, filling the air and infecting troops. The effect is worse when the ammunition strikes a metal target. The round melts, shooting geysers of radioactive flame and smoke into the air, saturating the battlefield.

 

Tests have found that one round of depleted uranium ammunition can spread radioactive material over a 437-yard radius. Maj. Rokke said most vehicles hit with the ammunition were struck three and four times.

Also DU weapons are not the only problem

Cluster bombs

The Guardian

 

Cluster bomletts look s like tins from Red Cross aid packages .... A child's favourite

 

Under Article 85 of the Geneva Conventions, it is a war crime to launch "an indiscriminate attack affecting the civilian population in the knowledge that such an attack will cause an excessive loss of life or injury to civilians." Under the Hague Conventions, Article 22 and 23, "The right of belligerents to adopt means of injuring the enemy is not unlimited," and "It is especially forbidden to kill treacherously individuals belonging to the hostile nation or army."

War crimes ?

 

But then ...legally was it a war ...?

Edited by Tankus

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At the risk of continuing to change the topic. I don't think that depleted uranium is qualitatively different than any other weapon of war and i include biological and chemical weapons in that. Lead poisons the soil it is deposited on the skin absorbed through the skin, can be ingested by getting your hands near your mouth etc. It seems to me that that if you are going to have a war the goal is to wound as many people as possible with the least risk to you. All weapons have lasting direct and indirect effects apart from the direct and indirect damage from the wound.

 

I don't think the prohibition against chemical and biological weapons serves anyone well. I would much prefer have a war where you give everybody diahrea so they can't fight and then capture them than have a war where you kill and mame thousands.

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george_b, interesting post and also very good replies by Dr. Dean because they were devoid of the kind of hype we tend to see in political arguments, even the ones here.

 

It wouldn't surprise me if Cheney was pressuring the intelligence community. I can see him saying something like "come on guys, the facts are right in front of you, be more aggressive in your interpretations and don't be so wimpy about making statements!" It reminds me of business forecasting in companies I've worked in before. The execs are pressuring lower management to come up with rosier forecasts for the next period, without regard for HOW those forecasts could be achieved! It also reminds me of the Challenger and Columbia disasters, where management had a goal, thought they understood the risks, and better-informed subordinates were not going to get in the way of the goal.

 

But my point is that Cheney didn't necessarily have an evil intent. For example, he may have had an honest belief ("Saddam must have WMD") and thought that the intelligence community must not be working hard enough to find the irrefutable evidence of WMD that must be there. In retrospect, though, the intelligence was wrong or misinterpreted, the sales forecast was bogus, the o-rings were too cold, and the heat shield had a big hole in it. Just one difference, though, in the first case nobody has yet admitted a mistake. Perhaps we'll see Bush or Cheney come clean when they write their memoirs years from now.

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I don't know if Chaney had evil intent or not. I suspect Bush did if he was involved. Why do I suspect bush? Because there have been reports from Bush's 1st days in office that he wanted Saddam out. This was recently coroborated by his former Sec of Treasury. In my book when you say "get me a reason to do what I want to do" that is evil. In the business example given I would say that is evil if it is beyond what the data supports. It is not evil to put the most favorable light on an argument/position/what have you but to seek confirmatory data and exclude exculpatory data is wrong and evil (IMO). I think it is at least dishonest and is clearly dangerous (you might go to war without cause).

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Hmm...

 

 

This is my take...

 

Clinton and his Buttheads:

 

A: Almost impeached because of his purgury about his affair with Monica Lewinski. An issue that wasn't the publics business (for the most part), and should have been settled between him and his wife. Basically impeached over his affair.

 

B: Held two terms in office, made quite a few mistakes, but overall as president didn't do that bad, or atleast not as bad as most expected or seem to believe.

 

 

Bush and his minions:

 

A: Have lied continuously throughout the Iraqi war and/or War on terror. Have lied about his past and his objectives/Intentions throughout his presidency. (Alot of his supporters would like to call this small fibs or "Recieving the wrong facts / misinterperating the facts". His campaign has lead to the deaths of thousands on the pretense of false facts.

 

B: Is still in office, no impeachment procedings, no current charges filed. High hopes of Entering his second term. Continuing his misleading/one sided campaign.

 

 

 

Bill Clinton: Adulterer/womanizer

 

 

George Bush: Liar/Murderer

 

Now, who really deserve(d)s an impeachment??

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Bill Clinton was impeached. But you have to remember that an affair is a greater crime than going to war under false pretenses as long as the end is justified (i.e., Saddam is mean)

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Here's more fuel for the fire. It seems that Colin Powell fed mis-information to the U.N. Here's a link to a transcript from CNN's Newsnight. A little more than half way down the page there is an interview between Aaron Brown and Greg Thielmann who is the director of Strategic Proliferation and Military Affairs at the State Department's Intelligence Bureau.

 

http://www.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0401/30/asb.00.html

 

You can find the conversation on that page by using the (Edit-Find function on the toolbar to find) Back now to one of the big stories of the week,

Edited by george_b

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Much esier to find and read this way.

 

Quoted from http://www.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0401/30/asb.00.html

 

BROWN: Was Secretary Powell a part of this?

 

THIELMANN: I have said, from my point of view, as the director of the office that was responsible for monitoring all of the intelligence for the secretary of state and interpreting it, that we certainly had the impression at the time that the secretary of state wanted our best information and our honest explanation of what was going on.

 

So, our assumption at the time was that, at least in the case of Secretary Powell, there was someone in the inner circle of the administration that did represent the truth as we understood it. I have since revised my opinion a little bit, partly because of what Secretary Powell was willing to say to the world community during his February 5, 2003, address to the United Nations.

 

BROWN: And when you watched that, that talk to the U.N. that day, did you say to yourself and to others, that's not true?

 

THIELMANN: Well, what I said to myself was -- and I was already retired at that point -- that Secretary Powell was saying things to the world community and to the American nation that we certainly had not agreed with. And, in some cases, he was saying things that were exactly the opposite of some of the facts that I think that he was well aware of.

 

BROWN: These are enormously, I think, serious accusations to make. Beyond -- I guess what I'm wanting from you is to know that this is something more than a hunch. How do you know this?

 

THIELMANN: I was responsible professionally for following the intelligence for two years prior to the October national intelligence estimate.

 

And I know what my office wrote in analyzing these issues for the secretary of state. And I also have a pretty good idea of what others in the intelligence community were saying, because we would participate in interagency discussions about the evidence. And I know, on things like the uranium from Niger, on things like the aluminum tubes issue, that what was being said to the public did not represent accurately what the intelligence community was saying.

 

There should have at least been an acknowledgement on issues like the aluminum tubes allegedly going into the nuclear weapons program that there was an enormous disagreement within the intelligence community on this issue and that some of the most logical and distinguished experts on this issue had the opposite opinions.

 

(CROSSTALK)

 

BROWN: I'm sorry.

 

THIELMANN: There was no clue given by the White House that there was any dissent on this issue, when the president essentially declassified top-secret information and announced to the United Nations in September of 2002 that Iraq was obtaining aluminum tubes for the nuclear weapons program.

 

BROWN: Right.

 

Just finally, the president said -- and this is pretty close to a quote, what difference does it make whether it was exactly right or not, because Saddam was a bad guy? He killed lots of people. He was a danger in the region. The world is better off without him. Iraqis are better off without him. Americans are better off without him. What difference does it make?

 

What difference does it make?

 

THIELMANN: The implications of that statement astound me.

 

For the president of the United States to say that the reason that he gave for the nation going to war, a war which has cost us 500 dead already, thousands of Americans maimed, and has so tarnished America's credibility and reputation in the world, that he would say, essentially, that it does not matter if the reasons that we convinced the American people to go to war for are no longer applicable or were not true or were exaggerated or misstated, that is an astounding statement.

 

BROWN: Mr. Thielmann, we appreciate very much your time today. Thank you for joining us. Have a good weekend, sir.

 

THIELMANN: You're welcome.

 

BROWN: Thank you, sir.

 

(END VIDEOTAPE)

 

 

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None of this surprises me anymore. At this point, I just chalk it all up to the nature of politics. The reality is that we made a mistake. Actually, a horrible mistake. We waged an unpopular war based on false information. Bush will never admit that he made a mistake. That would make him look weak and incompetent. His only option is to say that WMD was not truly the reason that we went to war.

 

Bush Republican supporters will quickly embrace the new message. Bush detractors will call it after the fact rationalizations. The key are the people on the fence. Do they feel that ends justifies the mean? The ends are pretty severe. Lost credibility in the international community. Thousands maimed and dead. And a huge deficit.

 

Only time will tell whether Bush's spin strategy will play well with the American public.

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Why not just go get Osama and kill the sorry #%^*! slowly? :angry: ... that i'm sure will go over well and make it a legitimate "war on terrorism". Right now it seems to be a war on Iraq and nothing more.

Edited by Intratech

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I think some of the disagreement is whether Bush made a mistake or whether he intentionally released aggravating information while withholding exculpatory information. I would say that the evidence suggests the latter rather than the former. This is one of the reasons he does not want an independent investigation.

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I think some of the disagreement is whether Bush made a mistake or whether he intentionally released aggravating information while withholding exculpatory information. I would say that the evidence suggests the latter rather than the former. This is one of the reasons he does not want an independent investigation.

i wholeheartedly agree though would be tempted to go a step further and say that "most of the disagreement is whether....." :unsure:

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What possible good could come from an independent investigation? An independent organization will just shine more light on an issue that is clearly an annoying issue for Bush and his administration. There are most likely many little pieces of intelligence that were most likely ignored in order to justify the war. Certainly the comments of Kay who has seen the intelligence, makes one feel that only bad things can happen from an independent organization.

 

Bush's interest are best served by blocking the investigation and spinning the situation. I think they are doing a very good job of reiterating that Saddam had this coming, and the American attack had little to do with WMD. Saddam was a bad guy that was acting suspiciously and had used WMD on his own people.

 

This investigation seems to be a no brainer for Bush. It has all downside and no upside. Just block it.

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Guest Deuces Wild

I think some of the disagreement is whether Bush made a mistake or whether he intentionally released aggravating information while withholding exculpatory information. I would say that the evidence suggests the latter rather than the former. This is one of the reasons he does not want an independent investigation.

That is indeed a frightening thought. I am not yet convinced of it however as it comes from just one person who may or may not have had an agenda. If proved true though, it is a total shame and would certainly cause me to rethink my vote.

 

As far as the investigation goes I also wonder why Bush does not want one. I would think it is the best thing for the Country to get this matter settled before the elections.

 

Edit: I forgot to add:

 

I previously did a search on "Thielmann Powell" to see if there were any stories since the allegations by Thielmann last year. All I could find was a Powell interview with Tony Snow of FoxNews last October. Some of what Powell said is disturbing as it has been proved wrong:

 

MR. SNOW: Secretary, there is continuing controversy about the justification used for the war. I'm going to ask you once again about Greg Thielmann, a former State Department employee, who has said that the testimony you presented to the United Nations Security Council exaggerated intelligence on a host of issues ranging from aluminum tubes with possible nuclear use, to the range and capability of missiles within Iraq. I know you've answered the question before, but I want to get your response to the repeated charges of Greg Thielmann.

 

SECRETARY POWELL: Well, Mr. Thielmann has his opinion. But what I presented on the fifth of February to the United Nations wasn't something I pulled out of the air and it wasn't something given to me by a group of political mentors. I sat for days with the Central Intelligence Agency, with the actual analysts as well as the top leadership of the CIA: George Tenet, John McLaughlin -- the Deputy Director of Central Intelligence -- and we went over every single word in my presentation and every single exhibit. And what I presented represented the best judgment of the intelligence community. Nothing was juiced, nothing was exaggerated; it was what they believed. And they stood firmly behind that presentation and they do to this day.

 

And as Dr. Kay goes about his work -- he's in charge of our effort to exploit all of the documents and view all of the sites that we have discovered in Iraq -- we will see more information coming forward, and he has validated some of the information we've presented already, with respect to the fact that there were programs kept intact by Saddam Hussein for chemical, biological and even nuclear development when circumstances permitted, to go even further than they had been able to go under the presence of inspectors and sanctions --

 

MR. SNOW: So you expect to be vindicated by David --

 

SECRETARY POWELL: -- so I think the case is still out --

 

MR. SNOW: I'm sorry, go ahead.

 

SECRETARY POWELL: I stand by the presentation because it was a presentation that was put together by the intelligence community and it represented the best judgment of the intelligence community, not the best judgment of any political leaders.

 

MR. SNOW: Do you expect to be vindicated by David Kay?

 

SECRETARY POWELL: Yes.

http://www.usa.or.th/apec2003/interviewpow...llfox101903.htm

Edited by Deuces Wild

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