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Barton Gellman and Dafna Linzer, of the Washington Post, write on April 9, 2006 that A 'Concerted Effort' to Discredit Bush Critic: Prosecutor Describes Cheney, Libby as Key Voices Pitching Iraq-Niger Story.  As investigative journalists analyze Fitzgerald's filings of court documents more closely, Vice President Dick Cheney seems to be emerging as the central Kingpin of a concerted effort to discredit critic Joseph Wilson.  

As he drew back the curtain this week on the evidence against Vice President Cheney's former top aide, Special Counsel Patrick J. Fitzgerald for the first time described a "concerted action" by "multiple people in the White House" -- using classified information -- to "discredit, punish or seek revenge against" a critic of President Bush's war in Iraq.

Fitzgerald's court filing confirms the many previous accounts that describe Dick Cheney as the agressive ring leader of the White House Iraq Group. And Cheney was a hands on micro-manager, involving himself in every aspect of the day to day activities. His lawyers will have a difficult time denying this.

Bluntly and repeatedly, Fitzgerald placed Cheney at the center of that campaign. Citing grand jury testimony from the vice president's former chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Fitzgerald fingered Cheney as the first to voice a line of attack that at least three White House officials would soon deploy against former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV.

Declassified Evidence Cheney and Libby Used To "Discredit Wilson" Had Already Been Disproven

One striking feature of that decision -- unremarked until now, in part because Fitzgerald did not mention it -- is that the evidence Cheney and Libby selected to share with reporters had been disproved months before.

United Nations inspectors had exposed the main evidence for the uranium charge as crude forgeries in March 2003, but the Bush administration and British Prime Minister Tony Blair maintained they had additional, secret evidence they could not disclose. In June, a British parliamentary inquiry concluded otherwise, delivering a scathing critique of Blair's role in promoting the story. With no ally left, the White House debated whether to abandon the uranium claim and became embroiled in bitter finger-pointing about whom to fault for the error. A legal brief filed for Libby last month said that "certain officials at the CIA, the White House, and the State Department each sought to avoid or assign blame for intelligence failures relating to Iraq's weapons of mass destruction."

It was at that moment that Libby, allegedly at Cheney's direction, sought out at least three reporters to bolster the discredited uranium allegation. Libby made careful selections of language from the 2002 estimate, quoting a passage that said Iraq was "vigorously trying to procure uranium" in Africa.

So let's get this straight.  Libby, Cheney, and Bush secretly declassify information they know is wrong, so they can convince reporters to use it to discredit Joseph Wilson whom is saying correctly that it's wrong.

But, ironically, this plan has ended up causing unprecedented damage to the to the credibility of  Bush, Cheney, Libby, the White House, and the American government.

Now, it becomes clear why neither Bush, Cheney, or Libby informed anyone else in the intelligence community about this selective "declassification,"  It's ridiculous.  Now that we know this information is false, let's declassify it and tell reporters that its true, they can help discredit Joseph Wilson who correctly says it false.  And now that the truth about it this comes out, it ends up discrediting the Bush administration.

More Shameful News Of Bob Woodward's Role As GOP Apologist

And in another revelation illustrating how far former heroes can fall, Bob Woodward shows up again in the testimony.  During this time, and well after he also denied any knowledge or role and appeared on many news shows denigrating administration critics and assuring the public that the administration would be vindicated.  Has he acknowledged and apologized for this yet?

The first of those conversations, according to the evidence made known thus far, came when Libby met with Bob Woodward, an assistant managing editor of The Washington Post, on June 27, 2003. In sworn testimony for Fitzgerald, according to a statement Woodward released on Nov. 14, 2005, Woodward said Libby told him of the intelligence estimate's description of Iraqi efforts to obtain "yellowcake," a processed form of natural uranium ore, in Africa. In an interview Friday, Woodward said his notes showed that Libby described those efforts as "vigorous."

Libby Plants Stories With Judy Miller Of The New York Times

When I read the famous "intertwined Aspen roots" note from Libby to Miller while she was in jail to protect him, I assumed they were loyal fellow teammates. But this next passage shows Libby, Bush, and Cheney lying to Miller and using her to achieve their nefarious goals. They show this repeated pattern of behavior of being willing to lie to anyone at anytime to achieve their goals. I wonder how many of their "friends and allies" trust them now?

Libby's next known meeting with a reporter, according to Fitzgerald's legal filing, was with Judith Miller, then of the New York Times, on July 8, 2003. He spoke again to Miller, and to Time magazine's Matt Cooper, on July 12.

At Cheney's instruction, Libby testified, he told Miller that the uranium story was a "key judgment" of the intelligence estimate, a term of art indicating there was consensus on a question of central importance.

In fact, the alleged effort to buy uranium was not among the estimate's key judgments, which were identified by a headline and bold type and set out in bullet form in the first five pages of the 96-page document.

Unknown to the reporters, the uranium claim lay deeper inside the estimate, where it said a fresh supply of uranium ore would "shorten the time Baghdad needs to produce nuclear weapons." But it also said U.S. intelligence did not know the status of Iraq's procurement efforts, "cannot confirm" any success and had "inconclusive" evidence about Iraq's domestic uranium operations.

I wonder how all these reporters like Judy Miller feel now, that it is clear their close and trusted friend Scooter Libby was lying to them as well and playing them for saps.  This is another whole level of this scandal that I hadn't really noticed before.

George Tenet Disputes Niger Uranium Story in September of 2002 Before Secret Senate Session Four Months Before Bush's Uses Them In the 2003 SOTU Speech

This might be one of the most striking passages of this whole article for me.  Allegations that Dick Cheney was the real Mr Big behind this, and that this "conspiracy" was conceived, authorized, and managed by him do not really surprise me.  It's encouraging to see Fitzgerald get this evidence on the grand jury, and out in public now, but not surprising.

What could be a significant development, however, is further evidence and proof that the top most Bush Administration officials were well aware that the Niger Documents were false.  Previously, Fitzgerald revealed that a Stephen Hadley emails exists that describes an October 2002 NIE daily presidential briefing informing President Bush, of these doubts about the Niger Documents.

Which substantially raises the possibility that Representatives Maurice Hinchey, Henry Waxman, and John Conyers can make their questions about President Bush's possible violation of USC 18 Section 1001 and Section 371 during his January 2003 State of the Union address stick.

Section 1001 makes it a felony to knowingly, and intentionally deceive the Congress in the exercise of its oversight function of the Executive Branch.  In his September 2005 letter to Prosecutor Fitzgerald asking him to expand his investigation, Hinchey argues that the SOTU is legally governed by these laws, and that the President's deception was material.  

The challenge has been to prove Bush and Hadley had foreknowledge and that their representations were to intentionally mislead.

Hinchey and Waxman have filed over 12 motions between the two of them,  to subpoena the multiple drafts where Hadley et. al. changed the language of the 16 words back and forth before settling on "the British learned."

Allegedly, because they knew full well our own CIA as well as the British and other intelligence communities had later learned the the first learning were incorrect.

But there was greater plausible deniability in claiming to be unaware that the British intelligence had reversed this learning.

Tap Dancing Around The Truth Is Still Misleading And Still Illegal

But here is where the Bush administration sees to have made a serious blunder.  Because Hinchey argues that the intention to mislead still makes this a felony regardless of how they word it.  Technically, it might be true that at some time the British falsely learned that about the Niger Uranium claims.  This makes no difference.

UPDATE: Zwoof has alerted us to that fact that Fitzgerald makes no mention of what Bush and Cheney represented about their involvement or knowlege of the Plamegate affair. Until I can get some other confirmation that they denied any of either I must retract the following paragraphs.

And curiously, this is the same error both Bush and Cheney appear to have made in their interview with Fitzgerald.  I need to double check this, but do I remember correctly, that the Fitzgerald court filings imply that both Cheney and Bush denied having any involvement or  knowledge of their staff's involvement in the Plame-Gate leaks?

If so, and these other reports of full knowledge and active participation are true, then it appear they have both committed obstruction of justice felonies.  Leveymg has told us that the fact they were not under oath, does not matter.  If they had, their crime would instead be called perjury.  But both are felonies, and constituted the "high crimes and misdemeanors" threshold for impeachment.

But with this in mind consider the following passages from the Washington Post.

Iraq's alleged uranium shopping had been strongly disputed in the intelligence community from the start. In a closed Senate hearing in late September 2002, shortly before the October NIE was completed, then-director of central intelligence George J. Tenet and his top weapons analyst, Robert Walpole, expressed strong doubts about the uranium story, which had recently been unveiled publicly by the British government.

The State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research, likewise, called the claim "highly dubious." For those reasons, the uranium story was relegated to a brief inside passage in the October estimate.

But the White House Iraq Group, formed in August 2002 to foster "public education" about Iraq's "grave and gathering danger" to the United States, repeatedly pitched the uranium story. The alleged procurement was a minor issue for most U.S. analysts -- the hard part for Iraq would be enriching uranium, not obtaining the ore, and Niger's controlled market made it an unlikely seller -- but the Niger story proved irresistible to speechwriters. Most nuclear arguments were highly technical, but the public could easily grasp the link between uranium and a bomb.

Tenet interceded to keep the claim out of a speech Bush gave in Cincinnati on Oct. 7, 2002, but by Dec. 19 it reappeared in a State Department "fact sheet." After that, the Pentagon asked for an authoritative judgment from the National Intelligence Council, the senior coordinating body for the 15 agencies that then constituted the U.S. intelligence community. Did Iraq and Niger discuss a uranium sale, or not? If they had, the Pentagon would need to reconsider its ties with Niger.

The council's reply, drafted in a January 2003 memo by the national intelligence officer for Africa, was unequivocal: The Niger story was baseless and should be laid to rest. Four U.S. officials with firsthand knowledge said in interviews that the memo, which has not been reported before, arrived at the White House as Bush and his highest-ranking advisers made the uranium story a centerpiece of their case for the rapidly approaching war against Iraq.

Bush put his prestige behind the uranium story in his Jan. 28, 2003, State of the Union address. Less than two months later, the International Atomic Energy Agency exposed the principal U.S. evidence as bogus. A Bush-appointed commission later concluded that the evidence, a set of contracts and correspondence sold by an Italian informant, was "transparently forged."

Cheney Saw Joseph Wilson As A Threat To His Credibility

Fitzgerald wrote that Cheney and his aides saw Wilson as a threat to "the credibility of the Vice President (and the President) on a matter of signal importance: the rationale for the war in Iraq." They decided to respond by implying that Wilson got his CIA assignment by "nepotism."

They were not alone. Fitzgerald reported for the first time this week that "multiple officials in the White House"-- not only Libby and White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove, who have previously been identified -- discussed Plame's CIA employment with reporters before and after publication of her name on July 14, 2003, in a column by Robert D. Novak. Fitzgerald said the grand jury has collected so much testimony and so many documents that "it is hard to conceive of what evidence there could be that would disprove the existence of White House efforts to 'punish' Wilson."

At the same time, top officials such as then-deputy national security adviser Stephen J. Hadley were pressing the CIA to declassify more documents in hopes of defending the president's use of the uranium claim in his State of the Union speech. It was a losing battle. A "senior Bush administration official," speaking on the condition of anonymity as the president departed for Africa on July 7, 2003, told The Post that "the reference to Iraq's attempt to acquire uranium from Africa should not have been included in the State of the Union speech." The comment appeared on the front page of the July 8 paper, the same morning that Libby met Miller at the St. Regis hotel.

Hadley Tries To Claim He Knew Off Tenant's Objections But Forgot Them When Working On State Of The Unions

Libby was still defending the uranium claim as the administration's internal battle burst into the open. White House officials tried to blame Tenet for the debacle, but Tenet made public his intervention to keep uranium out of Bush's speech a few months earlier. Hadley then acknowledged that he had known of Tenet's objections but forgot them as the State of the Union approached.

Hoping to lay the controversy to rest, Hadley claimed responsibility for the Niger remarks.

In a speech two days later, at the American Enterprise Institute, Cheney defended the war by saying that no responsible leader could ignore the evidence in the NIE. Before a roomful of conservative policymakers, Cheney listed four of the "key judgments" on Iraq's alleged weapons capabilities but made no mention of Niger or uranium.

On July 30, 2003, two senior intelligence officials said in an interview that Niger was never an important part of the CIA's analysis, and that the language of Iraq's vigorous pursuit of uranium came verbatim from a Defense Intelligence Agency report that had caught the vice president's attention. The same day, the CIA referred the Plame leak to the Justice Department for criminal prosecution, the fateful step that would eventually lead to Libby's indictment.


Therefore, I support and second HoundDog call for President Bush and Dick Cheney to resign or be impeached. Bush-Gate Scandal Passes Tipping Point: The Emperor Has No Clothes.

I recognize that this does not appear likely now. However, at the beginning of the Watergate scandal few could have imagined how much public opinion would change as a consequence of subsequant evidence and development.

My personal feeling is that even the evidence that has already surfaced is sufficient to warrant at least a House Subcommittee of the Judiciary Committee to start a formal collection of the evidence.

If these charges with this evidence is not sufficient what would it take?

But I am convinced what we know so far is only the tip of the iceberg.p> The Congress must demand that both Dick Cheney and President Bush now appear under oath and provide an immediate full explanation of their roles in these affairs as well as disclose all they know about the involvement of others.

And if as they now claim, these were not leaks it should be even more obvioius that such explanation is appropriate.

But remember, the long period of deception now requires that Bush and Cheney explain not only their original involvement and knowledge, but also, what now appears to be an additional coverup.

If these actions were indeed for the public good, then why was it necessary to lie about them.

And if Bush and Cheney have committed felonies in either the original affairs or in the coverup, they should not drag our country through the painful and humiliating impeachment process that Congressmen would be required to follow through with to uphold their own oaths.

We must have an immediate and quick investigation and resolution of this constitutional crisis.  

And very soon, any Congressperson who does not fulfill their oaths to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States will have to explain this to voters as well.

Originally posted to Lolligolli on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 01:45 AM PDT.


The most interesting or important idea in this story about Cheney's Involvement in the Plame-Gate scandal is that:

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Comment Preferences

    •  I would like to know this answer (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ahianne, kraant, HoundDog

      from anyone who is more attuned at this stuff than I.

      This question stems from a recent diary I wrote HERE.

      Vice President Cheney has publicly stated that he has the authority to "declassify" information.  When asked if he did so by Brit Hume in February, he declined to answer.  My guess is that it was Cheney himself that declassified this info -- not Bush.

      Does Cheney, in fact, have the authority to do so, under the recent executive order 13292?  Interestingly, this executive order took effect (get this!) March 25, 2003!!

      Can we wait even a SECOND longer? SEE GRAPHIC...

      by STOP George on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 02:56:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Great point STOP George. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Ahianne, kraant

        I read sooo many articles,blogs, and comments  on the Plame-Gate story in the last week they are all sort of blurring together.

        But somewhere recently I read a challenge to Cheney's claim.  The author suggested that this executive order gives him the right to classify things, and declassify anything he exclusively was responsible for previously classifying.

        However, if the material were classified by others some additional process steps were required including at least informing the classifier if not also getting their endorsement.

        But I'm not sure of this.

        We need to get to the bottom of this.

        But also, not let the administration use this detail as a way to change the subject and "kick up dust."

        If this were all legal and for the public good, why have they appeared to lie about it?

        And if they denied any knowledge or involvement in this affair to the Federal Prosecutor would this not constitute Obstruction of Justice?


        Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

        by HoundDog on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 03:43:50 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  John Dean (5+ / 0-)

          has stated that the protol was not followed wrt this particular declassification.  George Tenent should have been informed because it was his department which had classified this document.  He was not.

          Obstruction of justice?  Sounds reasonable to me if Fitzgerald asked about the NIE declassification when he interviewed Bush & Cheney (even though they were not under oath).

          Let's not forget, though, that "Leaking classified information" (which may be the case here, given the uncertainty of Cheney's powers) is far more serious.

          Some of the media has already concluded that no legalities have been broken here since they assume that Bush is the leaker (taking Libby at face-value).  But what if either Cheney or Libby is lying?  If that is the case, then the legalities are definitely in question here.

          Can we wait even a SECOND longer? SEE GRAPHIC...

          by STOP George on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 04:21:46 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yes, I remember it now. It was the John Dean (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Ahianne, irate, kraant

            article.  Which was excellent BTW, I recommend it to other's who might have missed it.

            This is getting to be such a complicated story, I'm a little concerned about it's sticking power.

            I only now see your point about the difference between Bush declassifying vs Cheney or Libby declassifying.

            So your suggesting, or at least raising the possibility that Cheney and/or Libby may have illegally leaked and now Bush is trying to provide cover with a false claim that he was involved earlier and declassified the material himself so Cheney and Libby will not be guilty of the original violation of the Espionage Act.

            Is this it?

            Thanks for explaining this.

            Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

            by HoundDog on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 05:02:36 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I don't think (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              3goldens, kraant, HoundDog

              Bush has made that claim, yet.

              Scotty McClellan merely stated that it had been declassified on July 18th.

              From the briefing:

              MR. McCLELLAN: Well, we always want to share as much information as we can. There is some classified information that -- well, there's some information that remains classified for national security reasons. But we felt that this information -- which is what the State of the Union statement was originally based on -- was important to share with the American people, because it could be declassified.

              Q When was it actually declassified?

              MR. McCLELLAN: It was officially declassified today.

              Q Just today?

              Is there further proof that THE PRESIDENT (and not Cheney) was the one who declassified this info on July 18th?  

              I think there's a strong possibility that the President was NOT the one who declassified this info on July 18th, 2003.  Notice that Scotty won't get any more detailed than what he said above.  It's part of "an ongoing investigation".

              Someone may prove me wrong, however.

              Can we wait even a SECOND longer? SEE GRAPHIC...

              by STOP George on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 05:23:12 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  The Senate and House should have full time staff (0+ / 0-)

                investigating this.  How can the Senate Intelligence Committee Members even show up in public knowing that they have stonewalled the long promised Phase 2 investigation of the political dimensions of the intelligence abuses?

                And is Harry Reid and the Democrats not embarrased that after the dramatic and promising day they shut down Senate and forced the Republicans to agree to to the six person task force that was supposed to report back on November 14, 2005.

                Whatever happened to that?

                Are Senate Democrats not concerned of an anti-incumbant backlash in November if we do not more aggressive pursue our responsibilities?

                Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

                by HoundDog on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 06:43:50 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  Whew! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kraant, HoundDog, Yellow Canary

    That's quite an opus there, thanks!

    Mr. Cheney, in the library, with a lead pipe.

    "Conservatism makes no poetry, breathes no prayer, has no invention; it is all memory." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

    by reef the dog on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 02:36:52 AM PDT

  •  Definitely not this one (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kraant, HoundDog

    Cheney considered Joseph Wilson such a threat to his credibility that he would go this far.

    This is simply standard operating procedure for the likes of Cheney. The surprise is that he got caught.

    •  But don't you think this goes a lot further than (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      most of the administrations other personal smear efforts.

      Like against Clark, Oneil and others. (BTW, if other knowledgable folks could help expand this list I'd appreciate it.  I want to make this point in an upcoming diary.)

      Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

      by HoundDog on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 03:46:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not really (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Ahianne, 3goldens, kraant, Yellow Canary

        I think there are 2 things that set this one apart. I don't think they fully did the math. If Plame's work wasn't in WMD, I doubt this story would have gotten near the traction it did - and that's on top of the general spy intrigue, which has a 'sexiness' of it's own.

        These guys are basic schoolyard variety bullies. They are not used to being challenged. They thought the routine quick slime would get rid of the problem. They underestimated Joe Wilson, both in terms of his credibility and his willingness to stand his ground.

        I honestly think they were stunned to even be questioned about it. The GOP mudslinging tactic requires the media to examine where the mud lands, not the hands of who slung it. It usually goes down like that. For the reasons mentioned above, it didn't play out like that this time.

  •  Great diary Lolligolli. Recommended n/t (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!

    by Torquemadog on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 03:50:21 AM PDT

  •  Lolligolli & HoundDog (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kraant, HoundDog

    Thanks for the comments on my (now deleted) diary on Executive Order 12958, as amended by 13292.

    In rereading 13292, I caught this at the very end:

    Sec. 6.3. Effective Date. This order is effective immediately, except for section 1.6, which shall become effective 180 days from the date of this order.

    The requirement I discussed in my diary about marking declassified documents before making them public is contained in section 1.6.  Thus, it was not operative at the time of the Libby leaks, which is why I deleted my diary.

    •  Darnn, that too bad QWQ, because you could tell (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      form my high praise I thought your diary was the best of the day.

      I still think you've identified some valuable and worthwhile points.  I sort of wish you'd have kept it up just with this amendment.  Even though this one detail needed modification, I think your notice of the timing of the whole think (was it March 25 is interesting evidence on its own.

      Just the fact that this declaration suddenly appears right at the time all of these other issue are swirling around.

      And do you not think it very curious that all the other sections conventiently allowing leaks are effective immediately, however, the tremendously inconvenient section is conveniently not effective for 180 days.

      This in and of itself is curious enough to preserve your excellent sleuthwork.

      Your are the first person just even to track all this down.

      If you don't wish to keep this as a diary, I wonder if I could convince you to post your work product in the commens here or in my diary.

      I know Lolligolli well enough to be confident that she would be delighted to have you post it here.

      As would I in my comments.

      Your basic research of just looking up and sharing with us the actual substance of this Executive order and interpretation of its significance may be an important future clue we don't fully understand yet.

      My intuition says something seems suspicious still.

      But I do congratulate you on you thoroughness.  

      It can happen to the best of us.

      Keep up the good work.


      Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

      by HoundDog on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 05:14:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Yellowcake importance (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Todd Johnston wrote the diary in the below link.

    I think it's time for a refresher on why the yellowcake was important or not.  Niger/Uranium: FACTS everyone NEEDS to know

  •  Recommended (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Thanks for putting all of this in a timeline format. When this broke, I couldn't keep it straight, new names, new faces everyday.

    A nice concise diary.

    "To lead an uninstructed people to war, is to throw them away." Confucius, K'ung-fu-tzu

    by Zwoof on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 06:14:58 AM PDT

    •  I love Photoshop (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      ..maybe you've noticed.

      "To lead an uninstructed people to war, is to throw them away." Confucius, K'ung-fu-tzu

      by Zwoof on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 06:29:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Cpol. I love color graphics. MaryScott O'Conner (0+ / 0-)

        invited my to crosspost one of my diaries over on her MLW blogsite and the first thing I noticed is how many colorful and eyecatching graphics they have over there.

        I wish we cold liven up this place.  But I did also notice that MLW seems to have a much slower respone time.  Maybe this is the hidden price they have to pay.

        Before my computer crashed I had a courtesy copy of Photoshop given to me by one of the top programmers at Adobe.  She actually won the Gordon Bell award for most creative software programmer of the world.

        But any it's been taking a long time to learn how to use, but I have been trying to create a photo that I believe could have an enormous political impact.  

        Perhaps you could help or we could do it togather.

        I notice your rows of coffins draped in the American flag which is the part I'm missing now.

        The title of the Photo is "Invisiable Coffins."

        You no-doubt you remember that Bush, Rusfeld, and the Pentagon have chosen to forbid pictures and media coverage of our returning dead soldier from Iraq.  The learned the lesson in Vietnam these kind of photos depress public support for the war.

        So I thought what if we have a photo of the long avenue of the Washington mall that runs from the White House to the Capital Building.

        I want to arrange 2300+ coffins in as many rows that will fit.  I'm still working on the math.  

        Due to perspective foreshortening the four columns of confirn (or whatever number add up) converge on the horizen at in the front of the White House.

        This might be enough.  But one alternative is to have a mother and child holding hands looking out over the rows at the bottom (closest to the Capital builing, with a caption saying "Mommy, which one is Daddy?"   (or vice versa Daddy which one is Mommy.

        But it must be done with tremendous dignity,sombernesss, and classiness, Not rough or sloppy.  

        The goal would be to acheive similar impact to the Life Magzine Cover photo back in the 60s during the times of racial tensions.

        Remember the one of a poor black man being beaten in the Boston Common with a massive flagpole with an American flag attached.

        How poignant a message given that the Boston Common has some historic significance as one of the cruciples and bithplaces of the American constitution.

        What do you think?

        An award winning photo,  

        Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

        by HoundDog on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 07:53:07 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Doc 80 (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    abw, HoundDog

    And curiously, this is the same error both Bush and Cheney appear to have made in their interview with Fitzgerald.  I need to double check this, but do I remember correctly, that the Fitzgerald court filings imply that both Cheney and Bush denied having any involvement or  knowledge of their staff's involvement in the Plame-Gate leaks?

    I just read the entire 39 pages of Fitz Doc 80, and it does not implicate Bush or Cheney specifically in the leak of Plame's identity in any way. It only says that Bush via Cheney authorized Libby to release the specifically declassified information from the NIE.

    "Why can't you and the idea of separation of powers just hug it out, bitch?" Wonkette

    by Hollywood Liberal on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 07:21:02 AM PDT

    •  Yikes, I wonder where I read this? I may have (0+ / 0-)

      made an error here.  

      Perhaps we've only pressumed Bush and Cheney gave the same story to Fitz in the interview that he gave to the American public.  

      I think Leveymg said this too.

      This is such a crucial assumption to the allegations that Bush and Cheney may have committed obstruction of justice violations in the Fitzgerald interview.

      Can anyone help us out here?

      If Bush and Cheney were completely honest with Fitgerald and explained to him that the Libby and Rove disclosures were not leaks because Bush and Cheney had secretly declassified this information and had instructed Libby and Rove to carry out these orders then Bush and Libby might be off the hook with regard to the OOJ charges at least.

      I must figure this out immediately, as this could change my whole prediction and strategy.

      I've been assuming that the declassification details and debate really isn't that critical because Bush and Cheney already seemed cornered by the easier to proove OOJ charges.

      Sorry if I made an error here.  This would be a serious one.  

      Helping to bring justice back to the White House, one indictment at a time.

      by HoundDog on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 08:01:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  You could have read it anywhere (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        It's pervasive and, so far as we know at this point, inaccurate.

        As Hollywood Liberal wrote above:

        It only says that Bush via Cheney authorized Libby to release the specifically declassified information from the NIE.

        To which I'd add that the "specifically declassified information" they ordered Libby to release included at least one huge, calculated lie. From today's NYT (emphasis added):

        The court filing asserts that Mr. Bush authorized the disclosure of the intelligence in part to rebut claims that Mr. Wilson was making, including those in a television appearance and in an Op-Ed article in The New York Times on July 6, 2003. The filing revealed for the first time testimony by Mr. Libby saying that Mr. Bush, through Mr. Cheney, had authorized Mr. Libby to tell reporters that "a key judgment of the N.I.E. held that Iraq was 'vigorously trying to procure' uranium."

        In fact, that was not one of the "key judgments" of the document. Instead, it was the subject of several paragraphs on Page 24 of the document, which also acknowledged that Mr. Hussein had long possessed 500 tons of uranium that was under seal by international inspectors, and that no intelligence agencies had ever confirmed whether he had obtained any more of the material from Africa.

        See also War and Piece, "Proof That The White House Knowingly Lied About the NIE."

        Speaking as a scientist, etc.
        12,390+ days without shooting anybody in the face.

        by abw on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 08:51:58 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  certainly (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          abw, Lolligolli

          it's not insignificant what WAS authorized to be leaked, but it's not the same as saying they authorized the leak of Plame's identity.

          "Why can't you and the idea of separation of powers just hug it out, bitch?" Wonkette

          by Hollywood Liberal on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 09:25:10 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Important distinctions. I was also struck buy (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            abw, 3goldens

            the report in the WaPo article this morning that Libby and Cheney had already been informed that the information they purportedly declassified had already been debunked by our own intelligence community.

            So the information Libby was feeding to Judy Miller was already known to be false.

            I wonder how Judy Miller feels now about the linked roots of turning Aspens.

            Libby was playing her for a fool.

            •  totally totally informed (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              sez Murray Waas

              As many as six to eight agencies, foremost among them the CIA, the Pentagon's Defense Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency, and the INR, contribute to the drafting of an NIE. If any one of those intelligence agencies disagrees with the majority view on major conclusions, the NIE includes the dissenting view.


              The one-page summary for the president allows intelligence agencies to emphasize what they believe to be the conclusions from the broader NIE that are the most important to communicate to the commander-in-chief.


              The summaries stated that both the Energy and State departments dissented on the aluminum tubes question. This is the first evidence that Bush was aware of the intense debate within the government during the time that he, Cheney, and members of the Cabinet were citing the procurement of the tubes as evidence of an Iraqi nuclear program.

              The one-page October 2002 President's Summary specifically told Bush that although "most agencies judge" that the use of the aluminum tubes was "related to a uranium enrichment effort... INR and DOE believe that the tubes more likely are intended for conventional weapons uses.

              But the one-page summary, several senior government officials said in interviews, was written specifically for Bush, was handed to the president by then-CIA Director George Tenet, and was read in Tenet's presence.


              According to interviews and records, Bush personally read the one-page summary in Tenet's presence during the morning intelligence briefing, and the two spoke about it at some length. Sources familiar with the summary said it was highly significant that the president was informed that it was the unanimous conclusion of the intelligence agencies participating in the production of the January 2003 NIE that Saddam was unlikely to consider attacking the U.S. unless Iraq was attacked first.

              Cheney received virtually the same intelligence information, according to the same records and interviews. The president's summaries have been shared with the vice president as a matter of course during the Bush presidency.

              "Why can't you and the idea of separation of powers just hug it out, bitch?" Wonkette

              by Hollywood Liberal on Sun Apr 09, 2006 at 09:44:57 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Most significant aspect of the story (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Is that revelation that the National Intelligence Council specifically concluded (at the Pentagon's request) that the Niger-uranium story was "baseless and should be laid to rest" -- in January of 2003, just before the President of the United States went out and trumpteted his reliance upon it in his State of the Union speech!  Not only did they know that the story was "not of the quality worth of inclusion in a SOTU speech," as Condi has already muttered when officially backing off of it in response to Joe Wilson's op-ed, but they knew that it was complete bullsh*t in the considered judgment of the intelligence community BEFORE they had the President mouth it in the SOTU.
        This whole thing is unraveling for them.
        And it's about damned time.

  •  good posting! (0+ / 0-)

    I hadn't seen before I made mine.  It's hard to read the tea-leaves, but there is at least the possibility that Cheney is being prepared to take the blame for this.  (Resign for health reasons, get full pardon if any charges are leveled -- wouldn't get to trial before Nov '08 anyway.)  

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