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By U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) and U.S. Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA)

Was the White House truthful with the American people and with Congress in making their case to go to war in Iraq? This is a critical question that demands a clear answer and it is long past time for the United States Congress to properly ask it and investigate the matter.

A group of top White House advisors, including Karl Rove, Condoleezza Rice and Lewis "Scooter" Libby, the now-indicted former chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney, formed the White House Iraq Group(WHIG) in August 2002 with the task to make the case for going to war in Iraq and to convince Congress and the American public to support that policy.

It appears that the WHIG misled Congress and the American people about prewar intelligence. Americans must know whether their activities were an organized effort of deceit. Yet, this Congress has done nothing to examine this critically important matter.

In an effort to get Congress to exercise its oversight last week, we co-sponsored a resolution of inquiry calling for the White House to turn over to Congress all information involving the White House Iraq Group (WHIG). Congress has a clear role to play in this issue, as we received much of the potentially incorrect information being put out by the Bush Administration on Iraq. Unfortunately, last week the Republican-led House International Relations Committee killed this important resolution.

It is unacceptable for a House Committee to block key information that is so important. As Members of Congress, we have the right and the obligation to know what these officials knew about the validity of these claims. It's not enough to throw our hands up and say that the intelligence was faulty. We must take steps to gain all of the facts.

For example, we now know that it appears that the government knew that the aluminum tubes that Iraq had acquired from China were not suitable for nuclear weapons. Even so, the WHIG asserted those tubes could be used to further an Iraqi nuclear program. They also made the claim that Iraq had sought uranium from Niger, despite warnings from the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) that the information was not reliable. Also, in February 2002, the Defense Intelligence Agency submitted a report to the National Security Council that questioned the reliability of a captured top al Qaeda operative whom the Bush Administration had cited to make claims that terrorists had been trained to use chemical and biological weapons in Iraq. Nevertheless, between September 2002 and March 2003, top Bush Administration officials, including the President himself all cited this faulty intelligence in speeches and public appearances to gather support for the war. Were these deceptions purposely orchestrated by the WHIG? We must know the facts.

The activities of the WHIG are central to our understanding of how the White House used pre-war intelligence. The WHIG launched a public information campaign and media blitz citing so-called intelligence that we now know to be false. Unlike the National Intelligence Estimate of 2002, the WHIG's white papers took literary license with intelligence and vastly overstated Iraq's nuclear capabilities. These
white papers served as the basis for talking points for President Bush and his top officials. Iraq's nuclear threat was a highly prominent theme of these white papers.

The WHIG also organized a media blitz in September 2002 in which Bush and his top advisors appeared in numerous interviews and all provided gripping images about the possibility of nuclear attack by Iraq. This was a critical time where many important decisions were made, including what to demand of the United Nations in a September 12th address by President Bush and how to present intelligence to Congress.

Many in the Bush Administration and its supporters often have dismissed the need for an investigation by arguing that everybody thought Hussein had weapons of mass destruction - including the French and Germans. They seem to mistakenly believe that this assertion makes it irrelevant whether the Administration lied.

The gaping holes that have appeared in the Bush Administration's case for war have done deep and lasting damage to our standing in the world, and have undermined the confidence the American people have in their government as well. The claim that "we cannot allow the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud" appears to be the height of a deceitful policy to convince a questioning American public and Congress to go to war in Iraq.  The credibility of not only the Bush Administration, but the credibility of the entire U.S.government, indeed Members of Congress, from both sides of the aisle, is now at stake.

Congress can begin to repair this damage by getting to the bottom of the Administration's actions during the build up to the Iraq War. We have a responsibility to the American people, as does the Bush Administration, for telling the truth and letting all of the facts be known in this case.

Originally posted to US Rep Adam Smith on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:06 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Now that the Phase II report has visibility (4.00)
    is there a way to tie these two items together? I would think that any reasonable and objective review on the use of intelligence would include how WHIG orchestrated opinion using this data?
    •  well.... (2.50)
      mister american congressperson why don't you hold a news conference in front of the white house and state that you are going to draw up "articles of impeachment" against pres. bush.

      and even if you don't have the constitutional authority to do this, do it anyway. you won't be imprisoned or burned at the stake. show some balls, man!  

      if you are you afaid that you'll be voted out of office, i sure there will be a nice lobbyist gig for you to retire into.    

      •  Rep Smith Is Very Much Loved In His District (4.00)
        His district is full of the working poor of many nationalities and races, and they know the price they have already been expected to pay.  He has earned their respect because he actually listens and he really cares about his constituents.  

        Cat In Seattle

        •  Do not obstruct justice (none)
          There is an ongoing investigation, if you Ollie North a trial from the Fitzgerald procedures and open immunity for those crooks we'll throw the dirt over your political future.

          Let the procedure go through, there is Justice to be done first. Committees at this point will get nothing with a Republican majority.

          Save it for a majority, with no waivers of prosecution or immunity clause deals.

          •  Reps. Smith and Kucinich... (none)
            ...knew that this would be voted down but they need to, and I applaud them for speaking out on this issue loud and clear. The conversation MUST begin. Any serious inquiry into WHIG and the deception of this White House will ultimately lead to, and result in Impeachment. This bill introduction was a good opening for what will become a long road home. These two are smart and honest. I, for one, appreciate their noting that truth must be told regardless of political orientation. (My 2 cents only.)
      •  Next prez = Cheney (none)
        Think about it = is impeachment our best move?

        (I am not suggesting that it is not deserved)

        •  Perhaps When Time Comes (none)
          Let's get a majority in Congress, so that real hearings can commence, instead of what, at best, would be a GOP dog and pony show whose sole purposes would be obfuscation and a whitewash of the entire affair.

          Examined closely at this point, it seems far more likely that the most proximate target of impeachment would be Cheney rather than Dubya, who seems to have a load of plausible deniability available.

          BushIsWeak.com ... somebody really ought to register this domain name ...

          by wystler on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 11:43:09 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  okay (none)
            "Let's get a majority in Congress....," so that real hearings can commence,

            and by that time how many more americans and iraqis will be dead?

            face it americans, you are not in any way shape or form serious about stopping this mass murder.

            •  bullfeathers (none)
              we're procedurally handcuffed, unless you mean taking the streets by force and starting a bloody revolution here ...

              the happenings today in committee (see further comments) clearly illustrates that the Democrats cannot beat lockstep republicanism until it's time to vote next fall ... until then, we'll all have to live with our shame ...

              no, i don't much like it ...

              BushIsWeak.com ... somebody really ought to register this domain name ...

              by wystler on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 12:28:32 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  oh! (none)
                "we're procedurally handcuffed, unless you mean taking the streets by force and starting a bloody revolution here...."

                thank god for your explanation. procedural handcuffing is infinitely worse than an actual handcuffing and being hooded then renditioned to romania where you'll be worked over with a lead pipe.

                the horror of it all!  

                •  i'm trying my damnedest ... (none)
                  ... to avoid putting words in your mouth.

                  What's your solution? Try to make it something that can actually be done now ...

                  BushIsWeak.com ... somebody really ought to register this domain name ...

                  by wystler on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 01:53:45 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                •  So what do you 'suggest'? (none)

                  Tell us what to do, oh oracle. How exactly should we stop all this? Tell us exactly what to do, preferably with diagrams so that our poor feeble brains can get a handle on it.

                  -fred

                  •  Start with this (none)
                    Participate in the Great American Sickout on December 7.  We need a mass direct action, something that will inspire the soldiers who do the killing to have some courage and refuse to obey illegal orders, something that will show the evildoers that we are not a bunch of feeble sheep.  

                    December 7.  Tell ten people.  

                    In every stage of these Oppressions...: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated Injury." DoI, TJ

                    by ChuckLin on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 05:54:31 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  What keeps getting lost is... (none)
                      that while yes, many previous folks had the SAME intelligence...NONE thought it rose to the level of needing to invade!! Bush needs to explain why HE did! Not only that, but he didn't have MORE information than Clinton?? Especially when contemplating sending Americans into war??

                      There is a BIG difference between saying 'they seen the SAME intelligence as me'...and they 'saw ALL the intelligence I did.' It's subtle...but it's not the same.

                      And how do they reconcile the fact that in early 2001...both Rice and Powell are on record as stating that Iraq had no capability to attack it's neighbors (let alone the US)and that Saddam was 'in a box.'??

                      Americans are tired of attacks in place of answers. And rhetoric over truthfulness. Democrats..don't just wag your finger and pontificate...you have the FACTS on your side!! USE THEM!!!

                      Now watch what you say, they'll be calling you a radical, a liberal, fanatical, criminal...-Supertramp, Logical song

                      by mammalicious on Wed Nov 16, 2005 at 06:30:34 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

          •  hmmm (none)
            Let's get a majority in Congress, so that real hearings can commence, instead of what, at best, would be a GOP dog and pony show whose sole purposes would be obfuscation and a whitewash of the entire affair.

            Are you suggesting that a Democratic majority can impeach him where an even or Republican controlled congress could not?  And that's a good thing?  It's not a good thing to impeach a President because of party affiliation, and that's basically what you are saying.  If you can't prove he broke the law without having a partisan hearing, then that's not a fair hearing.  

            •  what i'm saying: (none)
              The current Congress has shown no desire to do any honest factfinding or other oversight activities. It's very clear that the GOP would treat Articles of Impeachment (which are not timely, since no factfinding or other oversight has occurred) with a tabling in committee.

              Would you believe our current Congress would consider impeaching Dubya if a dead body was found in the oval office, and George was found holding a smoking revolver? No? Didn't think so ...

              BushIsWeak.com ... somebody really ought to register this domain name ...

              by wystler on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 02:07:08 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Of course (none)
                If there was evidence that he murdered someone, of course they would impeach him.  People are not so blindly partisan that they would overlook something like that.  Likewise, I would expect a Democratic controlled Congress would not seek impeachment on a President with no evidence.
          •  How are you going to get a majority (none)
            when Diebold and the other emachines have the elections fixed?  Don't you get it yet?  The Republicans are going so far off the deep end with the tortures, the treason, the blatant contempt towards America because they know they will ALWAYS have the majority now that they OWN the elections.
        •  Yes, (none)
          Cheney's going to jail.  Followed by Hastert.
        •  No... (4.00)
          Cheney must also be impeached simultaneously.  There is enough evidence of "high crimes and misdemeanors" available from the Plame/Niger affair.  There's a great post on this by, I believe, Booman, on European Tribune blog.  Read it and see what can happen if we really work at it between now and Nov 2006.  

          The further we look into the past, the further we see into the future...

          by tomathawl on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 06:23:30 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Probably because.... (none)
        ...he's not some moronic blogger?

        That's probably my guess since as a Congressman he would know that he can't draw up articles of impeachment as a member of the minority.

        I also don't think you should confuse "balls" with "stupidity" which is what would drive someone to use their office for a partisan publicity stunt that would harm us as a party going nto 2006 and undermine the case we are trying to make between now and those elections.

        Thank God Rep. Smith is that dumb.  We have to get the EVIDENCE before we can start talking impeachment and to do that we've got to have subpeona powers.  We'll get there and even if we don't impeach him we'll take away "national security" as their election baseball bat for a good decade.

        Clark-Warner : The Experience to Lead. The Courage to Unite.

        by alexm on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 05:25:20 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  It will take a full investigation (4.00)
    to find any actual evidence of intelligence in the White House policy about Iraq.

    I wish you luck, sir.

    Also, Congressman Smith, when do you suppose we can break politicians of the annoying habit of using the term , "the American people"?  It does nothing to elevate either rhetoric or discourse and is functionally redundant.  It is also irritating, in the extreme, to the listener.

    In closing, I will, as I have for what seems like forever, do all I can to support you both in your call for this investigation.

    Let's make some noise, folks.

    •  Its not the investigation its the call (none)
      One thing the public notices is how someone reacts when they have something to hide. In the case of this white house they are getting boxed in on every side. So what if the outcome is a white wash? We'll be onto something else by then.
      I for one would like to go back to 9/11. And by the way gentlemen, could you find out exactly when the president became such an authority on terrorists? He admittedly didn't know that flying airplanes into buildings was possible then, so exactly when did he recieve his enlightenment? He still says the terrorists have no concept of right or wrong. People that don't know right from wrong aren't the ones who deliberately blow themselves up in the process.
      Anyway I support your call completely. What were the inteligence failings, and how were they manipulated by the administration? Frame the issue and keep it on the burner. Maybe we can keep this bunch of bad apples on simmer until next November and on to '08.
      •  There were no "intelligence failings". (none)
        If your intelligence agencies tell you that they give no credence to the stories being passed around by the WHIG, where have they failed?  They didn't confirm them... then said they were suspect.  I would think that is good intelligence, since that's the way it turned out to be.  

        The failings were in the upper echelon of the White House and their hangers-on, who began with the conclusion that Iraq must be invaded and conquered and then invented the evidence to lead in that direction.  

         

        The further we look into the past, the further we see into the future...

        by tomathawl on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 06:30:43 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  It's about time Democrats got some balls (4.00)
    Our soldiers die, day in and day out. The least we can do is stick up for those who volunteered to give their lives in defense of this country, yet were lied into war.

    I don't have the courage to fight and die, but I can't let others fight and die for lies and do nothing.

    Elected Dems need to remember that 100% of the country was lied to. While 55% know Bush and the administration lied, the 45% who don't yet realize the truth (mostly Republicans) also deserve justice. Just because they don't know the truth (yet) doesn't mean they don't deserve justice.

    Elected Republicans who shill for Bush's Iraq lies represent the 0% of Americans that were told the truth.

    Elected Democrats who confront Bush's lies will represent the 100% who were lied to.

    It's that simple.

    I Supported the War When I Believed the Lies

    by bejammin075 on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:19:39 AM PST

  •  Absolutely (3.92)
    BUT, please make sure you are not crossing up Fitzgerald's investigation by doing so. Taking this group down is of grave importance.  When you go after them, you have to make sure it is done effectively and with finality.  Democrats and Fitzgerald must enhance each other, with each element doing its part.  Fitzgerald won everyone's trust by doing the work quietly and throughly.  Grandstanding will not get the job done, it will only muddy the water.  There is enough time for crowing when the WHIG is out of power and some of its members (it is to be hoped) in jail.
    •  That's a good point - (none)
      The White House Iraq Group is a major mover.  They've been with Bush since the early days of his rise to power.  If you're trying to pin something on them, it's going to take a very large pin.  Part of the problem right now is that it's easy to see the conspiracy, but very hard to see the crime.

      Fitzgerald already has something on Rove.  He's waiting to see what kinds of beans Scooter will spill.  No bet that he already knows quite a bit about this cabal.

      Also look at the Perle-Wolfowitz connection.  And read 'Where The Right Went Wrong' by Pat Buchanan.  Yeah, I know it's Pat Buchanan, but it's a good book.  At least for the first ten chapters.  He talks extensively about the WHIG, and how they tried to get Clinton to invade Iraq back in his presidency.

      What's your direction? Take the test! Economic Left/Right: -8.00 Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.05

      by Jensequitur on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 11:00:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Blame game (none)
        They are now (neocons) blaming Clinton, saying that he led them into war with his legacy of CIA intelligence about Saddam.  They will not take the blame for anything.  There is not a man among them that will stand up and say that they screwed up.  I would respect them if they did, but they sneak and hide an cover up and slime around and lie and blame everyone else for their own stupidity.  Step Down you Neocons!  You have begun the ruin of America, the actual downfall.  Bush is Nero incarnate.
        •  I think it's hilarious... (none)
          Whatever the problem, they find a way to blame Democrats and/or liberals.  If the economy's doing poorly, it's because of bad policies in the previous administration.  Pat Buchanan blames liberals for everything.  He used to blame hippies, but he stopped - I guess because people were laughing at him.

          What's your direction? Take the test! Economic Left/Right: -8.00 Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.05

          by Jensequitur on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 05:29:25 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  "Screwed up" implies a mistake. (none)
          This was no mistake... the rush to war was intentional, sort of like getting the next play started in a football game before the other side can challenge the call.

          The further we look into the past, the further we see into the future...

          by tomathawl on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 06:33:49 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  One Caveat (none)
      I agree with your view that Dems and Fitzgerald must each do their part but I disagree on the grandstanding.

      Fitzgerald is conducting a 'Legal' investigation in which grandstanding is appropriately left out.

      The Dems on the other hand want to conduct a 'Non-Legal' investigation within a political framework. Unfortunate as it might be, Grandstanding is part of the game - Especially when your opponents main M.O. is grandstanding.

      Case in point, Rule 21. Yeah there was some grandstanding there - and it worked, it got the nations attention - as it was intended to do.

      Let Fitz do his thing within his framework and the Dems should do their thing within their framework.

      Once we uncover the right information we can then turn it over to the appropriate authorities - the justice department, if a law has been broken - or congress for impeachment if the public trust has been broken.

  •  A note on strategy... (4.00)
    I'm reluctant to get "strategic" on how to capitalize on Bush's lies, but you should take this into consideration:

    The issue of whether Bush lied is independent of whether you want to pull out of Iraq or not. If some Dems don't want to argue for immediate (or soon) withdrawal, fine. But everybody needs to be on the same page about Bush's lies. Bush lied, about the whole policy, and we can't let that pass.

    I don't see any reason not to push for impeachment in the House and conviction in the Senate. Bush, Cheney, and everyone who lied. Condi, Rumsfeld, etc. It's time to exterminate the neocons.

    I Supported the War When I Believed the Lies

    by bejammin075 on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:24:42 AM PST

  •  Heh... (4.00)
    When I saw the diary title 'White House Iraq Group Must be Investigated', I thought yeah, no kidding... must be a dkos newbie.  Then I saw the little part about US Rep... and, um, Welcome Sir!

    I'm really happy to see these words coming from Democratic representatives, and support an investigation 100%.  What can we do to help you?

    That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it

    by johnny71 on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:30:42 AM PST

    •  maybe the call for a Congressional investigation (4.00)
      will permit the New York Times to write its first article about WHIG and its operations.

      Sure, WHIG was mentioned last month by Frank Rich in several columns. But Rich was merely paraphrasing a Washington Post article from August 2003, more than two years ago. The New York Times has still not contributed a single word of original reporting on the subject. Not a single word...

      Hm... Maybe it's because WHIG was Judy Miller's beat, and out of respect for her, uh, 'entanglement' with at least one of WHIG's leading figures (and Pinch and Judy's all important non-disclosure agreement), the newspaper still can't write about WHIG....

      "[I]n all due respect to your profession [journalism], you do a very good job of protecting the leakers." -- George W. Bush on Oct 7, 2003

      by QuickSilver on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 11:06:06 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Office of Special Plans (4.00)
    The WHIG needs to be investigated...  but they were only  the marketers.
    The creative writing exercises came from the Office of Special Plans.
    BOTH must be investigated.
    •  yes (4.00)
      Special Plans...that is where the lying came from.

      "Fitz, don't fail me now !!" ~~Mantan Moreland, bug-eyed actor in "King of the Zombies", 1941

      by seesdifferent on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:56:25 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Must investigate OSP (none)
      Is this not an organization that should have been overseen by the Senate Intel Committee and yet wasn't?  because it didn't exist?  

      When the very existence of an org within the Pentagon (or any other department) is denied, you're on the right trail!  They don't lie about something to Congress (visions of IranContra) without reason.  (At least this is was I've read on the internet.)

      I agree with the other poster, the WHIG was the marketing faction ..... someone had to produce a product.  Official Intel were not producing an acceptable product, so SOMEONE authorized the FORMATION OF THE OSP and authorized OSP access to classified information.  Rummy? Wolfowitz? Cheney?  Where's the paperwork?  I'm an ex-govie; there has to be paperwork!

    •  Taxpaper $ Paid for OSP (4.00)
      The "products" of the OSP were paid for by the taxpayers.  It is NOT the exclusive property of the administration - we, the people, have a right to KNOW what our money was spent on.  Were they not utilizing gov't paid-for office space?  equipment?  How about salaries, PC&B, contract dollars?  There IS A PAPERTRAIL!

      We HAVE THE RIGHT to know!

    •  And the SSS (none)
      Better known as the Strategic Support Branch.  WHIG, OSP and SSS go hand-in-hand.

      The Pentagon, expanding into the CIA's historic bailiwick, has created a new espionage arm and is reinterpreting U.S. law to give Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld broad authority over clandestine operations abroad, according to interviews with participants and documents obtained by The Washington Post.

      The previously undisclosed organization, called the Strategic Support Branch, arose from Rumsfeld's written order to end his "near total dependence on CIA" for what is known as human intelligence. Designed to operate without detection and under the defense secretary's direct control, the Strategic Support Branch deploys small teams of case officers, linguists, interrogators and technical specialists alongside newly empowered special operations forces.

      Military and civilian participants said in interviews that the new unit has been operating in secret for two years -- in Iraq, Afghanistan and other places they declined to name. According to an early planning memorandum to Rumsfeld from Gen. Richard B. Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the focus of the intelligence initiative is on "emerging target countries such as Somalia, Yemen, Indonesia, Philippines and Georgia." Myers and his staff declined to be interviewed.

      The Strategic Support Branch was created to provide Rumsfeld with independent tools for the "full spectrum of humint operations," according to an internal account of its origin and mission. Human intelligence operations, a term used in counterpoint to technical means such as satellite photography, range from interrogation of prisoners and scouting of targets in wartime to the peacetime recruitment of foreign spies. A recent Pentagon memo states that recruited agents may include "notorious figures" whose links to the U.S. government would be embarrassing if disclosed.

  •  Doesn't the Waxman report ... (4.00)
     ... state clearly and conclusively that

     President George W. Bush
     Vice President Dick Cheney
     Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld
     Then-Secretary of State Colin Powell
     Then-National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice

    lied and lied and lied some more?

    I've posted this in another comment here.  Can't we stop talking around this issue and address it directly?  They lied.  On the record.  Repeatedly.  With planning.

    Yes, we should investigate WHIG -- eradicate that poison root down it's last NeoCon tendril -- and bring charges!

    -5.13;-6.92 Bu$hit! Impeach the liars. Jail the criminals. Hang the traitors.

    by Yellow Canary on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:38:21 AM PST

    •  Waxman should be on talk show (none)
      write to him and encourage him to do so.

      "Fitz, don't fail me now !!" ~~Mantan Moreland, bug-eyed actor in "King of the Zombies", 1941

      by seesdifferent on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:58:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Chalabi (4.00)
      agrees that Waxman is the man with the truth;

      From Arianna Huffington

      Another thing made clear through the night was how much Chalabi hates Paul Bremer and what the Coalition Provision Authority did in Iraq. So much so that he's willing to praise Henry Waxman, who has criticized him harshly, but who, according to Chalabi, has done the most thorough work on what he regards as "the tragic waste and abuse of billions of dollars that belonged to the Iraqi people."

      "The administration wants to cover this up," he told me. "Let's hope Waxman won't let them."

      -7.75 -6.46 ...be grateful every day for the brief but magnificent opportunity that life provides. ~ Carl Sagan

      by andrewinscotland on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 09:44:03 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Congressman (none)
    keep the story on the front pages.  We want to know the truth, and it appears that any ever growing majority wants to know it too!

    "Mommy, did people know that Bush was stupid when they voted for him?" (-3.00, -5.49)

    by litigatormom on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:40:24 AM PST

  •  Yes. Now is the Time! (none)
    It is getting harder and harder for the Republicans congress to refuse oversight of the administration. Now is the time to push oversight relentlessly.

    I just hope nobody gets immunity.

    This is CLASS WAR, and the other side is winning.

    by Mr X on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:49:24 AM PST

  •  "Friends" in the media (4.00)
    Why does it seem that the Dems find it so hard to find any friendly voices in the MSM to help them make their case to the general public about issues like this one?

    Shouldn't there be some sort of in-depth coverage about who the Iraq Group are, their agenda, their connections to other players and investigations, and the policies that they've been able to implement or influence?

    One of the reasons that the Neocons have been so successful in pushing their agenda on this country has been through the involvement of their "friends" in the media.  Nobody is suggesting that the Dems sink to the level of trying to buy off these supposed journalists, but considering the general level of laziness in the media, both physical and intellectual, wouldn't it be a good idea to package the story for them in a way that is easy for them to understand, to enable them to do their job?

    There has to be a way to let people know what is going on in this corrupt administration, or all of this talk engaged in by us political "junkies" becomes just an intellectual excercise with no influence in the real world.  

    "One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors." -Plato

    by Bcre8ve on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:55:54 AM PST

    •  What you say/ponder over X 1,000 nt (none)

      . . . religion is not a syllogism, but a poem. H.L. Mencken

      by BenGoshi on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 10:28:08 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Because The Media Worry (4.00)
      That exposing these bastards risks exposing the degree to which the Israeli lobby warps America foreign policy - now to the point of dragging us into crazy illegal wars of aggression in the Middle East.

      Their strategy at this point seems to be to plug their ears, shut their eyes and hope it all goes away.

      "Why would Iraq attack America or use nuclear weapons against us? I'll tell you what I think the real threat (is) and actually has been since 1990 -- it's the threat against Israel, and this is the threat that dare not speak its name, because the Europeans don't care deeply about that threat, I will tell you frankly. And the American government doesn't want to lean too hard on it rhetorically, because it is not a popular sell."- Philip Zelikow

      http://www.commondreams.org/...

  •  How are us regular Joes (none)
    supposed to get diaries onto the recommended list with all of these Representatives and Senators posting here.

    :P

    Actually, it's nice to hear from our elected officials in this format. A chance to hear something more substantial than a 6-second soundbite, or a poorly moderated he-said-she-said discussion.

    congratulations on your foreskin -- osteriser

    by bartman on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:58:22 AM PST

  •  A ;Million Thanks Congressman (none)
  •  My questions are: (4.00)
    How many Democrats in the House are prepared to support your efforts and force this issue into the posture of a major confrontation; and how would it be possible to do so under House Rules?

    Thank you.

  •  Is the resolution that's dead (4.00)
    in the water, H.RES.505?

    Unfortunately, last week the Republican-led House International Relations Committee killed this important resolution.
    I didn't read anything in your diary specifically asking what you want us to do or what you, and your colleagues our Reps, plan to do next?

    As an aside, I'm disappointed that my Rep. Earl Blumenauer didn't co-sponsor the resolution.  Very strange, since he's normally always on board with these things.

    •  Found this in Google. Disappointing! (4.00)
      I guess I need to talk to Eni Faleomavaega and Howard Berman...  What the heck?

      "H Res 505, introduced by Rep. Dennis Kucinich to require the Bush administration to turn over all documents relating to the White House Iraq Group, failed to be reported out of the House International Relations Committee on a 23-25 vote this morning.

      H Res 505, which was co-sponsored by 104 House members, picked up two Republican votes from Rep. Jim Leach and Rep. Ron Paul. Two Democratic committee members failed to appear for the vote: Rep. Eni Faleomavaega of American Samoa and Rep. Howard Berman of California's 28th district.

      Please contact the following House members to thank them for their extremely hard work on this resolution:
      Rep. Dennis Kucinich, (202) 225-5871
      Rep. Adam Smith (WA-9th CD), (202) 225-8901
      Rep. Barbara Lee, (202) 225-2661 Please ALSO contact the two Democrats on the committee who failed even to show up for the vote, and ask why this happened: Rep. Eni Faleomavaega, (202) 225-8577 Rep. Howard Berman, (202) 225-4695 Information about H. Res. 505 and the WHIG here." -from AfterDowningStreet.org. David Sirota says, "Senate Candidates Ahead of Their Party on Iraq."

      What's your direction? Take the test! Economic Left/Right: -8.00 Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.05

      by Jensequitur on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 11:07:05 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Procedural Question (none)
        Does Mr. Faleomavaega have a vote? My guess would be that he does not.

        BushIsWeak.com ... somebody really ought to register this domain name ...

        by wystler on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 11:47:51 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  additional thought (none)
        since the GOP could count, and knew that even if Berman showed up, there were only 21 Dem votes, they could release up to two (really, likely only 1, since Ron Paul is a GOP maverick), and allowed Leach to make a "vote of conscience" that would not impact the result ...

        Best is to make the GOoPers on this committee own their vote. Not a whole lot of 'em from up-for-grabs districts, but any leverage will help next year.

        BushIsWeak.com ... somebody really ought to register this domain name ...

        by wystler on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 12:19:33 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  He Supported It (none)
      All Democrats on the International Relations Committee voted for this resolution. Because of the special rules that require a vote, cosponsorship doesn't impact the outcome, only if someone votes for it. Blumenauer and every other Democrat who was there supported it. That's what confuses me about everyone who things that Democratic Congressmen don't support getting at the full truth.

      "Be radical, be radical, be not too damned radical." - Whitman

      by DemHillStaffer on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 03:33:05 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I didn't mean to imply (none)
        that Mr. Blumenauer didn't support the resolution, just that I was surprised when I didn't see his name on the list of co-sponsors.  Who knows, it could have been that he was unavailable.

        That's what confuses me about everyone who things that Democratic Congressmen don't support getting at the full truth.
        And who is this everyone that thinks that Dem Congresspeople don't support the truth?  I don't think I've ever met one.
  •  Glad to see Kucinich is still kicking it (4.00)
    I remember being at an underground hip hop club well past 2am and seeing this older white dude with wild eyes and trying desperately talking to people, which wasn't going well with the loud as shit music.

    Drawn to him, because it's not often you find 40+ 'cracker' in an underground club like this, I found out if was no less than the then Presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich. I can still remember distinctly what our conversation was:

    "Dude, who the hell are you?"

    "I'm Dennis Kucinich, trying to see what is on the minds of the people."

    "Are you serious, you are THE Dennis Kucinich?"

    Quick show of ID confirms.

    "So, what are you doing here?"

    "Gotta find the pulse of the people, I want to represent all of America so I figured this is a great place to find out."

    At this point a MC battle started and we could no longer talk, I tried to buy him a drink, he refused. But he will always have my respect, because there he was, white bread as shit, hanging at hip hop club after hours, without any security detail, trying to find out what was in the heart of America.

    You keep on shining Kucinich, you crazy diamond.

    PS. You got my vote in 2004. Had to write it in.

    "It is the duty of the patriot to protect his country from its government." -- Thomas Paine

    by pinche tejano on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 09:22:41 AM PST

  •  And one last thing (4.00)
    [besides wishing I could edit for clarity my post above]

    I sincerely hope you'll come back to this diary and address some of the comments.

    •  Yeah (none)
      I bet they don't though...I don't care for that. I hope I am proved wrong.

      Stop saying that blue state people are out of touch with the morals and values of the red states. I'm not out of touch with them, I just don't share them.

      by missreporter on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 12:46:13 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Congressman (none)
      YES!  Read this site thoroughly.  http://www.downingstreetmemo.com/...

      I think everything you need is on this site.  Read EVERY document in the timeline section AND keep your eyes on what is going on with the investigation of Tony Blair.  His downfall will have all of the information we need on this side to find the truth.

      Don't forget the Freedom of Inforamtion Act, the Defense Contracting Office.  They have the info you need on all of these crazies.

      Also, I agree with the post about the government not wanting to see how our policy and our EVERY ACTION is about protecting and supporting Isreal.  Look at the people involved in this:  Wolfowitz, Pearle and the rest... SCARY.

      You will get to the truth!

  •  Congressmen (none)
    You write:

    Congress can begin to repair this damage by getting to the bottom of the Administration's actions during the build up to the Iraq War. We have a responsibility to the American people, as does the Bush Administration, for telling the truth and letting all of the facts be known in this case.

    You have a responsibility to the American people, yes. But your responsibility doesn't stop there. You have an arguably greater responsibility towards the citizens of Iraq and the citizens of your bribed and bought Coalition members.

    Until you also recognize that greater responsibility I don't know how much good any attempted repair will do.

    Restore Democracy! Denounce the GOP (George Orwell's Party)!

    by high5 on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 09:26:52 AM PST

    •  great point... (none)
      too often the responsibility of our leaders stops at our own borders... or the borders of their own state. and that proves how much of it's all just politics.

      the u.s. has responsibilities to the rest of the world... many of them.

      and we've failed... our representatives have failed the world... failed iraqis.

      great point.

      U.S. blue collar vs. CEO income in 1992 was 1:80; in 1998 it was 1:418.

      by Lode Runner on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 09:32:50 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well, (none)
        I didn't mean it like 'it is the US resposibility to solve the problems of the world'.

        Rather, the US having destroyed much of Iraq and dragged the Coalition members into becoming accomplices in that, it would seam to me that your first and foremost obligation is to make amends for that.

        Restore Democracy! Denounce the GOP (George Orwell's Party)!

        by high5 on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 09:42:12 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  it certainly is NOT (none)
          the U.S. responsibility to solve problems... because first we need to admit we aren't smart enough.

          We should give our money to people that are though... locals.

          and yes, our responsibility now is for every american man, woman, and child to give up their already paltry income so that iraqis can get back to where they were.

          we all deserve to suffer for electing and permitting bush to remain in power. the rich most of all... but all of us need to now pay for bush's crimes.

          that's the tragedy of america... and the tragedy of  having bigoted psychopaths running the country. eventually, if we want to show personal responsibility, we need to turn over funds so the Iraqis can rebuild their own country... probly with help from europe instead of the u.s.

          U.S. blue collar vs. CEO income in 1992 was 1:80; in 1998 it was 1:418.

          by Lode Runner on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 09:50:49 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  That's why Kucinich (none)
          advocated turning Iraq over to the UN and providing funds for rebuilding. I don't know that we can still do that at this point but he still advocates for that.
  •  The smoking gun (none)
    may not be a mushroom cloud - but this investigation just might uncover what many have long believed - that the PNAC came to power in 2000 and immediately began to exert their influence on the nation's foreign policy.

    When it came out that "the intelligence is being fixed to fit the policy" and George Tenet was given the medal of freedom for keeping is mouth shut, and Hans Blix was vindicated in his assertions that there simply were no WMD's in Iraq, and the VP was implicated in PlameGate, and now the President is claiming his critics are trying to "rewrite history", it just affirmed my long held suspicions.

    Everything you need to show the president lied is in the public record. Go get 'em boys.

    "Sir, I have found you an argument; but I am not obliged to find you an understanding." from Boswell's Life of Johnson

    by Patriot4peace on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 09:31:04 AM PST

    •  No, the PNAC were merely (none)
      continuing a project that began two decades ago--to position American military bases on the southern fringe of the Asian land-mass in order to "contain" China and Russia.
      That was the object in Vietnam.  Nixon nixed it by pulling all the military out and leaving the bases behind.  So, he had to be gotten rid of.
      That was the object throughout the 80s effort to bribe Saddam Hussein and then the 90s effort to "persuade" him through the use of force.
      The "axis of evil" is a diversion.  The real object is China.  But that can't be admitted.
      Why was the Pentagon planning on fourteen permanent bases in Iraq?  Surely not to counter the one or two nuclear warheads Iran might develop.
      Why have they scaled back the missile bases to four?  Because it's unlikely they are going to be able to keep even that many secure.
      Why does a defeated country need to build up its military?  Because they are supposed to secure the area around the American bases--four green zones whose inhabitants won't be able to access the rest of the country.
      Why do we have to talk about these bases?  Because they're classified and until they become common knowledge people in the know can't tell the truth.

      Forget "GOD, GUNS, GAYS, GIRLS & GETS"

      by hannah on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 11:20:32 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I'm in Rep Smith's district (none)
    and am more than glad that I voted for him. Thanks to both of you for going to the public (at least the kos public) about your position on this issue. Someone earlier asked what we can do to help move such an investigation forward. Are either of you doing petitions from your website?
    •  Me too (none)
      Seconded.  I'm proud of my congressman, Rep. Smith, and his willingness to stand up for his district, which includes Fort Lewis army base and has suffered disproportionately from the lies of this administration.
    •  We should protest again (none)
      and bill it as 'the big one'. we can definitely get 1,000,000 people to DC. we just need to get the grassroots activist organizations to agree on a date, and then we swarm into washington for a weekend, in numbers that they can't ignore.

      I Supported the War When I Believed the Lies

      by bejammin075 on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:42:29 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Congressmen (none)
    Congressman,
    Keep up the fight, and take it to the right. Please sirs, hit back, hit back hard, call the right on their lies and bluffs.
     Such crap as "we all thought", "they all voted" for the war power, the iraq war, being spewed currently by the president must be repudiated. I know for a FACT that Mr. Kucinich spoke against the pres and Iraq from day one. Rep Kucinich warned of exactly the the crisis in Iraq we now find ourselves.
     Many of us, regular old citizens,warneed of the same thing, please sir sometimes saying " I told you so", is not a bad thing especially when those who comitted to terrible acts as if no one did warn him.
     Please call the Pres and the right on all the actions, the time is right to clean the scourge of the right out of the halls of washington. Grab your broom sirs, the time is at hand.
  •  Well done Congressman Smith (none)
    Thank you.

    Bob

  •  We the People (4.00)
    As was mentioned upstream, 100% of the people were given false information that took us to war. The Constitution clearly provides for separation of pwer, yet many republicans in Congress have clearly acted to obstruct the oversight duties of the Congress.

    Those individuals who acted to block the Constitutional oversight by the representatives of the people should be recalled by their constituents immediately.

  •  Thank you (none)
    As a constituent in your district Mr. Kucinich, (Fairview Park, OH),it is very gratifying to see you take whatever action you can in this case. We know we were lied to, and from my take on your letter here, you do too. Thank you for taking the time to post here and keep up the pressure. It is much to important to marginalize the effects this administration has taken(away) on our democracy.

    I know we will all be watching very closely the outcomes of this arduous process. Whatever we can do to help, just ask.

  •  1. Yes; 2. Losing Media War (4.00)

     Dear Congressman Smith:

     Yes, to what you say.

     Second, this morning the willing puppets of Karl Rove over at NPR's Morning Edition did a piece on Bush's speech in Alaska yesterday that went utterly unchallanged by fact or opinion.  Just Bush doing a typical hissy fit and lying that the only one who deceived anybody re:  WMDs was Saddam -- which, as has been noted on Daily Kos early today, is a rather strange assertion for Bush to make, given that Saddam said he did not have WMDs and invited UN Inspectors to continue looking, while BUSH said that Saddam did have WMD stockpiles and didn't want any more inspections before warring on Iraq.

     My point:  you and your Democratic colleagues on the Hill (in both the House and Senate) need to be heading this crap off at the pass and rapidly responding when you miss 'em at the pass (as in this morning).

     I hope that some Dems on the Hill will take NPR to task for this horrid and dishonest piece of propagandic drek with which it assaulted listeners' ears this morning.

     Thank you.

     BenGoshi
    _________________
     

    . . . religion is not a syllogism, but a poem. H.L. Mencken

    by BenGoshi on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 10:24:29 AM PST

  •  Dear Congressman Smith (4.00)
    and Congressman Kucinich, What you have said here sorely needs to be said. Our country has a gigantic problem. What is obvious to all here is that lies were told and people have died. Probably over 100,000 people have died as a direct result. Our nation's standing and credibility have been trashed. Not tarnished but damn near destroyed. The WHIG group and the administration should all be convicted of treason. This is no time to mince words....Oh,
    Hadley is piece of shit. Arrest him first.
  •  Miller? (none)
    Was Judith Miller, in fact, part of the WHIG group? If so, who else (nominally) outside the Administration was part of that group?

    A perpetrator list would be useful to try to get a handle on just what kind of power we're talking about. It's one thing for a bunch of Administration cronies to get together and dream of a full-fledged Propaganda Ministry, but how many Estates does this reach into from the core?

    Thanks Kucinich and Smith. I'm proud to share a web space with you.

    "He's a REAL cowboy, with his makeup on..." --Blaze Foley

    by since1969 on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 10:45:52 AM PST

    •  Here's the full list of members (none)
      Besides Rove and Libby, the group included senior White House aides Karen Hughes, Mary Matalin, James Wilkinson, Nicholas Calio, Condoleezza Rice and Stephen Hadley. WHIG also was doing more than just public relations, said a second former intel officer.

      "They were funneling information to [New York Times reporter] Judy Miller. Judy was a charter member," the source said.

      Taken from
      http://www.nydailynews.com/...

  •  Thank you for posting this - (4.00)
    - you're preaching to the choir here, sirs, but remember you have 60,000 plus very vocal and active supporters behind you at DKos.

    "The responsibility of government for the public safety is absolute and requires no mandate." -Winston Churchill

    by hopesprings on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 10:56:49 AM PST

  •  Bush presents the US as a democracy (none)
    but info damaging to BushCo isn't allowed out of committee.
    And the middle east laughs at Bush.

    Support the Troops - demand the Truth!

    by annefrank on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 11:12:12 AM PST

  •  Go for it, Congress people (4.00)
    It's good to see Rep. Kucinich in this battle.  As a voice for peace in the last election, he can claim authority to keep up the pressure on this issue.

    What do members of the Repub. leadership say when they bump into Pres. Bush? "Pardon me."

    by mungley on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 11:18:40 AM PST

  •  The Committee killed it? (4.00)
    I read it as reported adversely, and placed on the Calendar.

    They didn't kill it, they just stuck it in limbo.

    What's the plan for rescuing it? Is someone preparing a strategy for gaining it privileged recognition?

    •  In other words... (4.00)
      This is another in a long-running series of missed opportunities for Congressional Democrats to impart invaluable lessons in parliamentary procedure to the Daily Kos community.

      I certainly can't hold it against anyone for coming here and letting us know the score on a certain piece of legislation, but if it's killed, let's say so and say why and how. But if it's not killed, let's not say so, even if the odds against it are long.

      It's time for all of us to learn what really makes this government tick, and Congressional Democrats are in a unique position to do this. So please don't skimp on procedural details. We want to learn, and we know that the more we do learn, the more effective we can be, and help you be. If we don't understand some of the finer points, don't worry. We love to ask questions, and Google solves almost any problem, anyway.

      So count this as a request for more education for the community. Let us inside.

      •  Reporting it adversely (none)
        Means its killed and Democrats can't bring it up on the floor.

        "Be radical, be radical, be not too damned radical." - Whitman

        by DemHillStaffer on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 03:35:17 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Adverse reporting can mean a lot of things.,, (none)
          only one of which is the de facto death of the bill.

          Why not tell us a little something about why the bill would be adversely reported, or even reported at all, if the Republicans are interested in killing it. What were their other options? Why consider the bill at all? Why report it at all?

          You and I may be aware of what it usually means for the vote scheduling prospects of a bill that's adversely reported, but why not explain it? Why not head Republicans off at the pass before they tell interested constituents that the bill was "reported out of committee and awaits a floor vote?" Instead, we'd all know what really happened and why. Then that'd potentially be one less parliamentary trick Republicans can use to sweep things under the rug without anybody knowing.

  •  Funds supported criminal acts (none)
    that in its self is criminal, but they collectively went after Wilson and committed TREASON against America.

    Let's hang these criminals in public. NOW!

  •  When Col. Kwiatkowski testifies in Congress... (none)
    ...I will start believing that someone is actually trying to investigate the "lie factory" at the Office of Special Plans and the WHIG.

    http://www.dailykos.com/...

    Dailykos.com; an oasis of truth. -1.75 -7.23

    by Shockwave on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 11:44:37 AM PST

  •  Rep. Smith, (4.00)
    The seriousness of Patrick Fitzgerald's investigation must be considered before you involve Congress in this.  Mr. Fitzgerald has been looking at the WHIG involvement in his investigation for nearly 2 years.

    "On Jan. 22, 2004, just three weeks after his appointment, independent counsel Patrick Fitzgerald issued a wide-ranging subpoena to the Bush White House, demanding telephone records from Air Force One, and all documents pertaining to the July 2003 activities of a little-known but high-powered Administration unit called the White House Iraq Group (WHIG)."

    I support Congressional investigation of WHIG activities, which were clearly central to selling the false intelligence to the public.   But  please make sure a Congressional effort adds to, not interferes with, Fitzgerald's prosecution.

  •  Thank You Congressman... (none)
    Do whatever it takes and let us know here how we can help.

    And this needs to go...

    THE WHITE HOUSE
    Office of the Press Secretary
    For Immediate Release
    December 28, 2001
    STATEMENT BY THE PRESIDENT
    Today, I have signed into law H.R. 2883, the "Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2002." The Act authorizes appropriations to fund United States intelligence activities, including activities essential to success in the war against global terrorism. Regrettably, one provision of the Act falls short of the standards of comity and flexibility that should govern the relationship between the executive and legislative branches on sensitive intelligence matters and, in some circumstances, would fall short of constitutional standards.

    Section 305 of the Act amends section 502 of the National Security Act of 1947, which relates to executive branch reports to the Congress under the intelligence oversight provisions of the National Security Act. Section 305 purports to require that reports submitted to the congressional intelligence committees by the executive branch on significant anticipated intelligence activities or significant intelligence failures always be in written form, with a concise statement of facts pertinent to the report and an explanation of the significance of the activity or failure.

    Section 502 of the National Security Act as amended by section 305 of the Act shall be construed for all purposes, specifically including for the purpose of the establishment of standards and procedures under section 502(c) of the National Security Act by the Director of Central Intelligence, in a manner consistent with the President's constitutional authority to withhold information the disclosure of which could impair foreign relations, the national security, the deliberative processes of the Executive, or the performance of the Executive's constitutional duties. Section 502 shall also be construed in a manner consistent with the statutory responsibility of the Director of Central Intelligence to protect intelligence sources and methods and other exceptionally sensitive matters.


    If only God would give me some clear sign! Like making a large deposit in my name at a Swiss Bank. (Woody Allen)

    by seashell5 on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 12:08:20 PM PST

  •  Thank you-Excellent diary-important-recommended (none)
  •  We have been waiting. (none)
    we're fully behind you.
  •  Republican's Culture of Deceit (none)
    In Troy Sookdeo's Diamondback(University of Maryland independent newspaper) commentary on November 14, he gave a list of major talking points that the Bush Administration has been repeating as a part of a media spin to deflect attention from the President's troubles with Iraq, and with the scandals with surrounding his Vice President and the Bush Administration. It is a carefully molded list of misrepresentations constantly being reiterated by Republican talking heads. The current events clearly show that this administration has not been truthful to the country and that they are sponsoring a "culture of dishonesty".

    Right now on Capitol Hill, congressional Republicans, led by the Bush administration, are trying to cut many social programs like Medicaid/Medicare, financial aid to college students, food stamp programs, and even health benefits for veterans. This is a blatant attack on our country's most vulnerable (the poor), our countries most valuable asset (students), and our country's most courageous men and women (veterans). These attacks in the budget bill can be attributed to a spend-and-borrow mentality held by Republicans, and of course to pay for numerous tax cuts for the wealthiest in our society.

    Sookdeo claims that Democrats are "anti-military," while Republicans support national defense. The fact that Republicans are currently attempting to cut Veterans programs, and that they have constantly offered budgets with far less appropriations to the department of Veteran's Affairs than the Democrats, would suggest that the opposite is true of Republicans. The criticism that the Democrats are "anti-military" is simply baseless. In 2004, during the now infamous Swiftboat controversy, Republicans made inaccurate claims denigrating John Kerry's service to his country and the medals he was awarded for that service. This from the campaign of a man who had friends of his father arrange for him to be drafted to a regiment that wouldn't see combat during the Vietnam War.

    The Bush Administration has repeatedly misled the military and the citizens about this ongoing war in Iraq. In selling the case for war, the Administration claimed that Iraq tried repeatedly to buy weapons grade uranium from Niger. After being sent to investigate this claim, Ambassador Joseph Wilson concluded no such purchase was ever made or attempted. Ambassador Wilson, who will be speaking in the Memorial Chapel on Wednesday night, will be addressing this issue. The Bush Administration, specifically Karl Rove and the Vice President's chief of staff I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, have allegedly revealed Wilson's wife's name (Wilson's wife is an undercover CIA agent) to media sources. This event shows that the administration is actively engaging in a systematic suppression of the truth. Ambassador Wilson will be speaking at the University of Maryland on Wednesday Nov. 16th at 730pm in the Memorial Chapel.

    The Democrats do not support this new "culture of dishonesty" the Republican leadership has cultivated. Republicans believe the government needs to cut essential programs to fund an endless war based on fabricated claims. Republicans have been caught red handed engaging in creating repercussions against those whose facts do not support an administration's politics. Republicans have at least risked the life of one loyal CIA agent, while at worst endangering our entire national security- all for the purpose of protecting their own lies.

  •  what is your plan of action/ (none)
    we know all this and more. it's time to stop preaching to the choir and kick some butt.
  •  It's ALL In WHIG! (none)
    Everything pertaining to the Crimes Committed Will Be Found within the Bowels of the WHIG!

    Even with the time they have had to Destroy Evidence, everything has BackFired So Bad that there's Absolutely No Way they managed to get it All, there has been Too Much Breaking that they've had to Spin!

    Vanity itself will be found to have been played, just like Nixon as to what was going on, Remember the NEO-CONS thought everything Would be Rosy, they would have needed Records to Record the History Of Their Greatness!!

    What has been going on since Last Week is not to Lay Blame on Dems, so called siding with the Want To Go To War, but to Move talk of a WHIG Investigation Off the Media scrolls!

    The 'Conspiracy' is All within the Administration, Congressional Repubs [Moderates Included as they Follow the Herder's], and the GOP!!

    They Aren't Worried About 'Impeachment', that's a Slap on the Wrist to the Crimes Committed, not only This Countries but on the World Stage as well!!!!

    IF YOU DON'T LIKE THE RESISTANCE
    END THE OCCUPATION

    "The only place you and I disagree . . . is with regard to the bombing. You're so goddamned concerned about the civilians, and I (in contrast) don't give a damn. I don't care.". . . "I'd rather use the nuclear bomb. . . Does that bother you? I just want you to think big." :
    Richard Nixon to Secretary of State Henry Kissinger on the Watergate tapes


    Please Give and Help This Orginization Grow

  •  iraq has 22 million NOT 50 million population (none)
    A non-sequiter because I haven't figured out how to start a diary..... gay not technoliterate.....

    just say clips of bush's vat day rant. AGAIN he states that 'democracy was brought to 50 million' people.....   uhhhh..... WHY doesn't someone point out once and for all in the MSM - the liberal MSM that Iraq only has 22 million people. This is the 'leader' of the free world and he can't manage Wikpedia much less hire people that can??!!

  •  Target Roberts? (none)
    It seems to me that a Congressman or Senator could work full days just telling the truth to the public/press about Senator Pat Roberts irresponsibly blocking a multitude of investigations into the Bush Administration: regarding WMD fearmongering before the Iraq war, the real damage caused by the Plame leak, inattention to Al Qaeda before 911, prisoner abuse in Guantanamo/Iraq and elsewhere (and probably much more).

    Bonus: for example, here's a link discussing how the US military can't account for TRILLIONS in spending:

    http://www.onlinejournal.com/...

  •  Veterans (none)
    Flash Video: Veterans

    PEACE TAKES COURAGE

    IF YOU DON'T LIKE THE RESISTANCE
    END THE OCCUPATION


    Please Give and Help This Orginization Grow

  •  Thanks for the Feedback (4.00)
    First of all, let me say that I was excited to hear from you - as someone who is kind of new to this, I'm really impressed by the response.  I also want you to know that I'm committed to continuing to engage on Kos.  I'm going on a Congressional trip to Iraq in a few weeks and I'm hoping to be able to submit daily updates on what I'm seeing and hearing on the ground.  So I hope you'll check back with my US Rep Adam Smith diary.
    You all made great points and asked a lot of interesting questions.  I'd like to take a minute to respond.

    Resolutions of Inquiry (ROI) are "privileged resolutions" that can be used by House Members to compel specific information from the Administration.  It only applies to facts that the Administration has, not to opinions or investigations.  While it may sound kind of obscure, it can be a powerful tool for members of the minority party to focus public attention and exercise some congressional oversight on an important issue - in this case the WHIG.  Here's some information about the process from the Congressional Research Service:

    Under House Rule XIII, Clause 7, a Member may address a resolution of inquiry "to the head of an executive department."  The resolution is privileged and may be considered at any time after it is properly reported or discharged from committee.  If the resolution is not reported to the House within 14 legislative days after its introduction, a motion to discharge the committee from its consideration is privileged.  

    While waiting for information from the executive branch, the committee may decide to act on the resolution in the form in which it was referred or consider amendments to it.  The committee then votes to report the resolution favorably or adversely.  It may also decide to not report at all, forcing the Member who introduced the resolution to make a motion to discharge the petition.  In most cases the committee reports, either positively or negatively.  

    If the committee fails to act on the ROI within 14 days, then a motion to discharge the petition from committee is "privileged" and the sponsor and his or her ROI are granted access to the House Floor.  At that point, the full House would debate the resolution on the Floor.  To get this done, we must have Republican votes. As you can imagine, the Republicans who chair Committees will never fail to act on one of these Resolutions of Inquiry, so unfortunately it's hard to imagine an ROI will gain floor time. They are currently in the majority.

    Some of you asked whether a discharge petition could be used to force a resolution to the Floor.  I am inquiring with the House Parliamentarian to confirm this, but my understanding is that if a resolution of inquiry is reported adversely by committee, the discharge petition option isn't available to us.  

    As policy leaders in this country, Members of Congress, including myself, must possess the bold vision for going forward. We must have a plan of action. I am looking into a number of possibilities for continuing this fight, including working with the Democrats on the Intelligence Committee to push for a real investigation of the WHIG. Some have suggested calling for an Independent Commission, similar to the 9'11 Commission. As we work to formulate ideas, I'd like to hear your thoughts on this issue. Please feel free to continue to post here.  What the Senate did today in passing a bill that requires regular updates on the War in Iraq from the Administration and explain to Congress and the American people its strategy for the successful completion of the mission in Iraq is a good first step.  We need benchmarks of success and we need to define what success looks like.

    I look forward to hearing your comments and sharing my thoughts with you.

    Let's keep the dialogue going...

  •  We need to share (none)
    this with the American people.

    The ...Bushies... don't make policies to deal with problems. ...It's all about how can we spin what's happening out there to do what we want to do. Krugman

    by mikepridmore on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 04:47:16 PM PST

    •  I think that forcing Cheney to resign... (none)
      ..is a strategic blunder.  It allows the blame to roll off the back of Bush and gives them the opportunity to repeat the successfull Reagan model post-Iran Contra and clean house and rebound but this time they could install the heir-apparent.

      I think if we take back one of the houses he could retire for health reason and they'll do just that.  If they put McCain into the VP slot we're screwed in 2008.  I'm not even going to think about how screwed we would be if they put Rice (Not as remote as people think) or Powell (Remote) in there.

      Clark-Warner : The Experience to Lead. The Courage to Unite.

      by alexm on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 05:38:48 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm not necessarily (none)
        interested in forcing Cheney to resign.  I just want everyone to know what he did.

        The ...Bushies... don't make policies to deal with problems. ...It's all about how can we spin what's happening out there to do what we want to do. Krugman

        by mikepridmore on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 07:48:45 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  You are preaching to the choir (none)
    No disrespect intended, I appreciate your message and posting it here, however I would like to make an observation and an assertion that it has been blogs like DK that have been demanding that WHIG be investigated. In fact, much of what is known today about WHIG and its rather undemocratic role in selling the Iraq War is known only due to the persistent and diligent efforts of a handful of patriotic bloggers.

    We certainly did not read it in the MSCM or hear about it in interviews or press releases by those elected officials who SHOULD have been speaking out about WHIG at EVERY media opp they could find.

    What is Rep. Pelosi doing about pushing this issue? What is the Dem Leadership in Congress doing to hold WHIG accountable?

    Saying that this GOP won't allow an investigation is not good enough. And I take it from your post that you know this as well.

    There is a very simple answer to the GOP lockout of any investigation into the activities of this WH:

    No more business as usual.

    They already attack the Dems as "obstructionist" and all the Dem Party has done in 5+ years is rubberstamp the GOP agenda without so much as a whimper.

    Fight back.

    Hard.

    Refuse to play ball with this GOP leadership.

    You won't alienate voters, you will inspire and invigorate them.

    And let's face it, after the last two national elections, your party has NOTHING to lose and everything to gain by taking a new approach.

  •  Has this statement been read (none)
    into the Congressional record?

    Thank you, Sir, for posting this diary.  I hope you will both be holding press conferences & appearing on CSpan & other venues to get the word out.  We know about  WHIG here on dkos, but the rest of America needs to know.  

    The Congressional Republicans also need to feel the heat for their stonewalling & rubberstamping over the past 5 years.

    Thanks again.   It's an honor to fight on your side.

    The future ain't what it used to be. Yogi Berra

    by x on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 08:44:00 PM PST

  •  Thanks Rep. Smith!!! (none)
    Please rid Congress of all neoconservative shills. Sending back your AIPAC campaign monies would be a good first step.

    Joe Lieberman's performance puts him on the side of land theft.

    by Joe Lebensrauman on Tue Nov 15, 2005 at 10:29:37 PM PST

  •  Here is your answer, RIGHT HERE (none)
    read The Rules of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence

    pay special attention to this part:

    Rule 6. Investigations

              No investigation shall be initiated by the Committee unless at least five members of the Committee have specifically requested the Chairman or the Vice Chairman to authorize such an investigation. Authorized investigations may be conducted by members of the Committee and/or designated Committee staff members.

    if I can figure out what that means, you should be able to figure it out TOO

    but let me make this easy for you, the Democrats have 7 MEMBERS; John Rockefeller (WV), Carl Levin (Mi), Dianne Feinstein (Ca), Ron Wyden (Or), Evan Bayh (In), Barbra Milulski (Ma), and Jon Corzine (NJ)

    all we need is a little demonstration of SPINE from these people

    are we Democrats or are we SHEEP

    you know what needs to be done ...

  •  How shall the choir sing for you? (none)
    Thank you, Sirs, for the job you do and the continued good faith you show.  It is deeply appreciated.
    Now - you know that here you are generally "preaching to the choir".  I think that logic dictates that these players must be challenged on as many fronts as possible, and frankly the largest front available to you, specifically, is the American people (I presume that's why you refer to us frequently...).  WE are the majority, no matter what the partisan balance architecturally.
    SO - how can we sing for you?
    What would you like us to do? What specifically would you like us to say and to whom, besides our local reps?
    Please direct us, the voices, the permanent majority.
  •  No disrespect intended... (none)
    ..but we could have had many of these questions put on the table during Karen Hughes' confirmation this summer.  Instead.. what happened....?  Not a SINGLE Dem showed up for her confirmation hearing (What were you doing Obama??)  I think there is HUGE potential to uncover "bad-doers" here but I question the dems commitment to really get to the bottom of this.  They have had there eye off the ball for far too long!

    Bill Frist WAS in a persistent, vegetative state.. until he had to call his stock broker.

    by Voxbear on Wed Nov 16, 2005 at 12:03:58 AM PST

  •  Nine Is a Good Number (none)
    Ninth Circuit, Ninth District, either way, as a constituent of Rep. Smith who has had several beefs with my rep in the past (cofcoftryingtobanflagburningcof), I'm happy that my rep is taking the initiative on this issue. Could be I vote democrat in 2006 after all.
  •  Accountability (none)
    In 1997 a group of Republican lawmakers made speeches about the need for truth in government. I single out Bob Barr because his rhetoric against President Clinton was so vicious:
    Bob Barr (R-GA), 3/11/97
    "The cumulative effect of such a series of systemic abuses of the political process... points precisely toward theories of impeachment law invoked by this committee nearly 25 years ago in the matter of President Nixon. Those same theories were then, as they must be now, based on clear historical precedent, considered explicitly by our Founding Fathers, that alone among remedies to correct abuses of power or improper conduct by high public officials, stands impeachment."

    --Rep. Bob Barr, Georgia Republican and chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, concerning impeachment inquiries against President Clinton and Vice President Gore. Washington Times for March 14, 1997. Front page.

    Bob Barr (R-GA), 11/5/97

    "...I believe in several fundamental premises. First, this is a rogue administration; consciously and systematically operating outside the bounds of the laws of this land, and outside the common and historical norms of political conduct for our country. Second, this President and his Administration must be held accountable for their misdeeds. If we in the House of Representatives, as the body charged with oversight of the executive branch, do not hold him accountable, then we have no legitimate claim to governing this country. [this] President ...enjoys a relatively high approval rating because he has not yet been held accountable for his misdeeds. Fourth, this is a most serious matter for consideration which must be approached knowingly, deliberatively, with an eye toward both past and future history, with each step weighed very carefully....

    "...More important, we see a clear pattern of activity that establishes an intent or scheme to defraud the citizens of the United States of the honest and faithful services of their President; converting the Office of the President and the attributes thereof to the personal (i.e., campaign) use of the President; circumvention of our federal election laws; laundering of campaign and labor funds; violation of tax laws;... bribery; obstruction of justice in failing to respond to lawful congressional subpoenas and withholding evidence; and tampering with evidence. This is but a partial list....

    "...Whereas, considerable evidence has been developed from a broad array of credible sources that... President of The United States, has engaged in a systematic effort to obstruct, undermine and compromise the legitimate and proper functions and processes of the Executive Branch:..."

    http://www.inetresults.com/...

    I can find quotes from Henry Hyde, Asa Hutchinson, Lindsey Graham, James Sensenbrenner, Steve Chabot.... the gang was all morally aghast that the president would lie about something so important as who was under his desk.

    Where are these truthsayers now? Where is Diogenis when we need him?

    I don't understand being pro-life as well as pro-war.

    by Patriot4peace on Wed Nov 16, 2005 at 04:32:15 AM PST

  •  Beware of a government committee with an agenda (none)
    I think we American people should always be skeptical of government committee with an agenda.  The WHIG was intended to make sure the U.S. started the Iraq war.  This committee originated at the highest level of government and none of these were elected officials, mind you.  Emanating from that level of government with a specific objective, can there be any doubt that the WHIG was going to use everything at its disposal (and wouldn't that mean everything) go "convince" the American people that the U.S. should start this war?  I mean, they are operating in a feed-back free environment that basically acts like an echo chamber.  Add the mainstream media wonks who are all excited about who they have access to and you've got a sure-fire recipe for instant war with little or at least ineffective dissent.  Not a mystery to me.
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