The embedded video below captures George Bush recounting what he knew and when he knew it regarding the attack on the Twin Trade Towers on September 11, 2001.
Bush states, while appearing in public at a speaking event almost three months after the attack, that he saw an attack on the World Trade Center on television while standing outside of the elementary school he was appearing at. Yes, Virginia there just happened to be a television close at hand at that very moment for our former "Dear Leader" to witness the momentous event in New York City.
The only problem with this scenario is that the official White House version has it that Bush was unaware of any such attacks on the World Trade Towers until he was told of the "2nd" attack while sitting down in one of the school's classrooms. In addition, no one saw the "1st" attack on television on September 11, 2001. The videotape of that "1st" attack was not available for viewing until the next day.
So how in the hell did George Bush know that there was an attack - BEFORE he was even told about ANY such attacks?
We're just starting out on the long road that lies ahead to bring Bush - as happened with Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet - to ultimate justice and a date with a tribunal for crimes against humanity.
If we just stick with War Crimes that would be enough to bring George W. Bush to the Bar of International Justice. We're way beyond Impeachment, folks!
Launching an illegal war against Iraq (he did not go back and get the consent of the United Nation's Security Council as required in the October 2002 Authorization for the Use of Force) under false pretenses (the White House lied outright about the certitude of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq) and then wreaking torture and havoc on any and all detainees/enemy combatants (Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo Bay, Black Sites around the globe) and awarding billions of dollars in no-bid contracts to U.S. contractors to squeeze out every single dollar of profit on the backs of U.S. soldiers and Iraqi citizens alike.
We have only scratched the surface here and perhaps the best place to start would be with former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld who personally gave the order to authorize torture at Guantanmo Bay, no doubt basing his directive on John Yoo's infamous 2003 memo on torture which legally sanctioned such practice by using twisted or "tortured" logic.
Apparently John Yoo wrote the March 14, 2003 memo wherein he stated that the Geneva Conventions do not apply to al-Qaeda and the Taliban. He went on to say that the 5th and 8th amendments do not apply to alien enemy combatants held abroad. Going still further the memo states that federal criminal statutes covering bodily and physical assaults against detainees do not apply to authorized military interrogations overseas and that statutes that do apply to such conduct impose only a limited obligation on interrogators to not use bodily harm.
I stand corrected, before we deal with Rumsfeld perhaps we should instead haul John Yoo before an International Tribunal. Currently he is a professor at the University of California at Berkeley. Yoo wrote the key torture memo for William Haynes who was himself the Pentagon's general counsel at the time. Haynes, himself, said that there could be no acquittals in the military commission trials. It was Mr. Haynes who in turn brought the memo to Rumsfeld's attention.
To summarize - Bush "misdirected" completely on September 11, 2001. He saw the plane crash into the World Trade Center as it happened. Or, if not, he fully expected such an occurrence to happen and allowed it to happen.
John Yoo paved the way for torture and the degradation of our foreign policy and standing in the world with his infamous torture memo.
William Haynes - as general counsel of the Pentagon and acting directly underneath Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld - gave Rumsfeld exactly what he needed, the green light for torture on detainees.
Finally, we return to Rumsfeld himself. He gave the actual order to authorize torture. A case in point involves Mohammed al-Qahtani (Kahtani), the so-called 20th hijacker. According to a sworn statement by Lt. Gen. Randall M. Schmidt, Secretary Rumsfeld was "personally involved" in the interrogation of al-Qahtani (Kahtani) who was forced to endure privations such as 48 days of severe sleep deprivation, 20-hour interrogations, forced nudity, sexual humiliation, threats with military dogs and prolonged stress positions.
Gitanjali S. Gutierrez of the Center for Constitutional Rights, the organization defending al-Kahtani (Qahtani) said in a sworn statement that his client was subject to months of torture authorized directly from Rumsfeld either through verbal or written communication.
Last but not least, we now know that Bush himself recently admitted that he did in fact support torture and gave his full support to its implementation. In a January 11, 2009 interview with Brit Hume of Fox (Faux) News Bush stated that he personally sanctioned the torture of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and sought authorization for the use of water boarding on Mr. Mohammed.
Mr. Bush you have been misunderestimated for the last time, you will no longer misinform, misdirect or misinterpret. Your water boarding days are over. To quote from Martin Luther King's "I Have A Dream" speech - "... we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream."
That would be the ultimate water boarding - true justice meted out to the most heinous president in the history of this republic from an international court of law that would seal his fate in the eyes of history for all eternity.
Mr. Bush, you will ultimately be held accountable. You can run, but you can't hide.
Friday, January 23, 2009
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Bush Shoe Game - video powered by Metacafe
Okay, I'll keep this short and sweet, after my previous blog - which covered some 18 points highlighting (or low-lighting) the disastrous 8 years of the Bushed Administration.
As the lead title suggests, George Bush is departing office at historic low levels of popularity (22 percent approval rating - CBS News/New York Times poll). The embedded video pretty much tells the story for future generations as to why this man could be so reviled by his own countrymen!
Enjoy the video - an animated recap of the infamous Baghdad shoe throwing incident while Bush was giving a press conference alongside Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki on December 14, 2008.
Sometimes, pictures/animation make the point much more powerfully than any blogger could possibly come up with.
Posted by Pete Newcome at 8:27 PM
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
As this is being written - the "Great One" will be smirking back at us on all three TV-networks. Kind of a Swan Song for Mr. Misunderestimated - aka George W. Bushed.
The networks should tell this pretender to pound sand and take his finger (and the rest of his carcass) back to Tobacco Road! What could Bush possibly invoke on Thursday before the American public to salvage his tattered presidential tenure? Some things are best left unsaid and this is such a time. If George W. had any class he would have left D.C. by now and volunteered for a Mother Theresa soup kitchen in Calcutta, India to redeem what is left of his soul.
Let's just go through the litany of Bush disasters starting in January 2001:
1. Presidential Daily Brief in late January, 2001 - the schedule includes among other things to be discussed - IRAQ - the case for invasion.
2. No Child Left Behind - (or no Child's Behind Left). This is generally conceded to have been a colossal failure in every respect.
3. Tax cuts - (originally intended to be made permanent) for capital gains and for the uber-wealthy. We went from a $300 billion surplus upon Clinton's departure from the Oval Office to an astronomical figure at present - in large part because of these mindless measures.
4. Presidential Daily Brief, dated August 6, 2001 - states that Bin Laden is determined to strike in the U.S. Bush completely ignores this and goes on clearing brush at his Hollywood-set ranch in Crawford, Texas.
5. September 10, 2001 - a message intercepted by the NSA with the code words - ‘The Match Begins Tomorrow’ and ‘Tomorrow Is Zero Hour'. Unfortunately no one was available to translate it from Arabic on September 11, 2001. The NSA claimed that the message was not translated until September 12th.
6. September 11, 2001 - Curious George continues to read "My Pet Goat" at a small elementary school in Florida after getting word that the second tower of the World Trade Center has been attacked.
7. The White House spends all of 2002 sending surrogates (Cheney, Rice, Rumsfeld, Rove, Libby) out on the Rubber-Chicken Circuit to beat the drums of war against Iraq.
8. In late October 2002 Bush rams through his U.N. Resolution for the Authorization of the Use of Force against Iraq. The understanding on this resolution is that it is not to be implemented until FINAL APPROVAL by the U.N. based upon the results of the weapons inspection in Iraq. Unfortunately, Bush had other plans and on March 20, 2003 the invasion of Iraq began.
9. Then there is the State of the Union speech on January 28, 2003 wherein Bush proclaims - in those famous "sixteen words" - that Saddam Hussein was attempting to buy uranium yellowcake from an African nation (Niger) in order to procure a nuclear weapon.
10. Former ambassador Joe Wilson (Valerie Plame's husband) published an op-ed piece in the New York Times on July 6, 2003 rebutting this fallacious claim by pointing out that he had been to Niger and that no such event ever took place.
11. Cheney unleashes the "Dogs of War" - i.e., I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby & Karl Rove against Joe Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame - a non-official cover (NOC) officer on the clandestine side of the CIA in the Directorate of Operations. She just happened to be tasked with dealing with Iran and its quest to acquire weapons of mass destruction, i.e. nuclear capability.
12. Valerie Plame's career is torn to shreds, Joe Wilson is pilloried by the Bush White House and the press just does a shrinking violet act.
13. Fast forward to Fall 2004 and Bush & Co. simply eviscerate any potential Democratic voter, especially in Ohio where some 350,000 votes are just plain "lost." Bush's main enforcer, Karl Rove, roams the country and ensures that full-throttled voter suppression is carried out from Coast-to-Coast. Michael Connell, the GOP IT Guru who just died this past December, was Karl Rove's right-hand fixer - just ask fellow GOP IT computer security expert, Stephen Spoonamore.
14. Of course, I can't leave out the Bush Administration's attempt to gut Social Security or its end-run around Medicare (the ill-fated prescription drug bill for senior citizens).
15. One of the worst transgressions on our national honor was Bush's choice to pack the Supreme Court with a bunch of original intent goons - Alito and Roberts. I just can't even work up the energy to include their first names, why bother - they're interchangeable. They both have steel trap minds and would just as well strangle any reasonable interpretation of the Constitution, a document that is supposed to be a living, breathing written instrument as opposed to something carved in stone.
And the price paid for the elevation of these right-wing Nazis was the capitulation by the Democrats not to ever threaten to wage a filibuster again in the future. Basically the Republicans agreed to retain the right of the judicial filibuster of judicial nominees but it was only to be exercised in "extraordinary circumstances". In essence, the Democrats spared this parliamentary weapon from extinction but only if they agreed never to really use it.
16. November 2006 and the Democrats, thanks to Howard Dean, actually cleaned house - literally - by taking back control of the House of Representatives and working to a virtual tie with the Repugs in the Senate. Joe Lieberman did his best to try and push the Dems back over the cliff.
17. In January 2007 Barack Obama is off and running. The next 18-months are a blur as both the Bush Administration and John McCain as its stand-in wage all out war against Democrats - even questioning whether they are really bonafide citizens of this country or some Fifth Column subversive wave of "fellow travelers". Even Obama's own citizenship came into question. Something to do with his birth certificate.
18. Last but not least, on December 14, 2008 Bush is attacked by a shoe-throwing Iraqi journalist while appearing alongside Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki in Baghdad. How fitting this turned out to be as the irate journalist called Bush a "Dog" - the vilest insult in the Arabic language.
All's well that ends well. On November 4, 2008 Barack Obama reclaims the country from the Bush Thugocracy and, at least temporarily, gives our nation a badly-needed respite from the Bush nightmare and a chance to recapture its democratic footing.
God, I sure hope so.
Posted by Pete Newcome at 8:34 AM