BULLY BOY PRESS & CEDRIC'S BIG MIX -- THE KOOL-AID TABLE
CELEBRITY IN CHIEF BARACK O'BRYANT THINKS HE CAN SQUAT OVER A GLASS AND SQUEEZE OUT A LOAD AND THEN TELL US ALL THAT IT'S ORANGE JUICE.
AFTER NOT ONLY ALLOWING HIS JUSTICE DEPARTMENT TO FILE A BRIEF DEFENDING DOMA BUT ALSO ALLOWING THE BRIEF TO COMPARE SAME-SEX RELATIONSHIPS TO INCEST AND THAT GAYS DESERVE LESS PRIVACY AND THAT DOMA DOESN'T HURT ANY REAL CITIZENS OF THE COUNTRY, THE WHITE HOUSE WANTED TO INSIST TODAY, "THE PRESIDENT REMAINS STRONGLY COMMITTED TO SIGNING A LEGISLATIVE REPEAL OF DOMA INTO LAW."
SQUEEZE OUT ANOTHER ONE, BARRY O, BUT DRINK IT DOWN ALL BY YOURSELF.
FROM THE TCI WIRE:
Starting with England. Military Families Against the War's Rose Gentle told the BBC earlier today of the speculation of an inquiry into the Iraq War, "It ought to be held in public. It can't be held behind closed doors. It's the families and people that have to know the truth. It was our sons that were sent and our sons that were killed." The Daily Mirror quotes Rose stating, "What's the point of an inquiry behind closed doors? No family would be happy with that. We don't want any more lies." Gordon Brown, aka Tony Blair Junior, presented his non-plan today and it managed to be just as big a disappointment as Gordon himself. Before we get to his nonsense, let's go to Rose Gentle's pronouncement on Gordo's nonsense from UTV News, "I think we all know what it will say. I think it is going to be a whitewash. They tell you what they want you to know and that's it. Families are not going to find out the truth. The families and the country have a right to know why they did go. If there were any mistakes, lessons should be learned. I think those that have lost someone have a right to know."
Now on to Gordo. The Prime Minister yammered away like a Loony Bird for 2190 words, many of them lies. You'd think with 2190 words, he might have found time for a hey-hey to Amara but there was no mention there of how the British were run off their own basein Amara (August 24, 2006) how the British fled and the thing was dismantled by looters almost immediately.
Gordon Brown: Mr Speaker, I am today announcing the establishment of an independent, privy-counsellor Committee of Inquiry. It will consider the period from summer 2001 before military operations began in March 2003, and our subsequent involvement in Iraq until the end of July this year. The inquiry is essential so that, by learning lessons, we will strengthen the health of our democracy, our diplomacy and our military.
The inquiry will, I stress, be fully independent of government.
The scope of the inquiry is unprecedented -- covering an eight year period, including the run-up to the conflict and the full period of conflict and reconstruction.
The Committee of Inquiry will have access to the fullest range of information, including secret information. In other words their investigation can range across all papers all documents and all material. So the inquiry can ask for any British document to come before it and any British citizen to appear. No British document and no British witness will be beyond the scope of the inquiry.
And I have asked the members of the inquiry that the final report of the inquiry will be able to disclose all but the most sensitive information, that is, all information except that which is essential to our national security.
He announced that Sir John Chilcot would chair the committee composed of Baroness Usha Prashar, Sir Roderick Lyne, Sir Lawrence Freedman and Sir Martin Gilbert. The immediate response came in Parliament. The Liberal Democrats' Nick Clegg offered a response which included:
Everyone knows that the invasion of Iraq was the biggest foreign policy mistake this country has made in generations; the single most controversial decision taken by government since Suez.
So Mr Speaker, I am staggered that the prime minister is today seeking to compound that error, fatal for so many of Britain's sons and daughters, by covering up the path that led to it.
Liberal Democrats have called for an inquiry into the build-up and conduct of the Iraq war for many years, and we can be grateful that finally, the prime minister has acceded to that demand.
But, as so often, he has taken a step in the right direction but missed the fundamental point. A secret inquiry will not deliver what Britain needs.
Does the prime minister not understand that the purpose of an inquiry is not just to produce a set of dry conclusions, but to allow the people of Britain to come to terms with a mistake made in our name?
To allow veterans, and the families and friends of those who gave their lives in this disastrous war, to come to understand how it happened?
I have met the families of these soldiers.
And just an hour ago I was asked to speak in their name and tell you that nothing short of a fully public inquiry - held in the open - will satisfy them.
Will the prime minister not listen to what they need?
He says it the inquiry has to be in private to protect national security.
But it looks suspiciously like he wants to protect his reputation and that of his predecessor, not Britain. Why else would he want it to report after the general election?
The Conservative Party's David Cemeron offered a response to Brown which included the following:
Now we welcome an Inquiry, indeed we've been calling for it for many, many months. But I have to say I'm far from convinced that the Prime Minister has got it right.
The whole point of having an Inquiry is that it has got to be able to make clear recommendations, go wherever the evidence leads, establish the full truth, and to make sure the right lessons are learned. And it's got to do so in a way that builds public confidence. Isn't there a danger that what the Prime Minister has announced today won't achieve those objectives?
The membership looks quite limited. The Terms of Reference seem restricted. And the Inquiry isn't specifically tasked to make recommendations. And none of it will be held in public.
So will the Prime Minister answer questions about the following four areas: the timing, the membership, the coverage and content, and the openness?
First, timing. This Inquiry should have started earlier. How can anyone argue that an Inquiry starting say six months ago would somehow have undermined British troops?
Indeed the argument that you can't have an Inquiry while troops are still in Iraq has been blown away today by the Prime Minister saying that some troops will indeed be staying there even as the Inquiry gets underway.
In terms of how long the Inquiry takes, the Franks Inquiry reported in just six months. And yet this Inquiry is due to take, surprise surprise, until July or August 2010.
By delaying the start of the Inquiry, and prolonging the publication until after the next election, won't everyone conclude that this Inquiry has been fixed to make sure that the Government avoids having to face up to any inconvenient conclusions?
At the very least, will the Prime Minister look at the possibility of an interim report early next year?
Second, the people conducting the Inquiry. What is required for an Inquiry like this is a mixture of diplomatic, military and political experience.
Now we welcome the diplomatic experience . There has to be a question mark over the military expertise - no former chiefs of staff or people with that sort of expertise. But also isn't it necessary - as the Franks Inquiry did - to include senior politicians from all sides of the political divide, to look at the political judgements?
The Inquiry needs to be, and needs to be seen to be, truly independent - and not an establishment stitch-up.So will he look at widening the membership in the way that we have suggested?
Third, the coverage and content of the Inquiry. Yes, it is welcome that it will cover the whole period in the run-up to the War, as well as the conduct of the War.
But isn't it wrong to try to confine the Inquiry to an arbitrary period of time? Shouldn't it be free to pursue any points which it judges to be relevant?
Looking specifically at the issue of Terms of Reference: isn't it extraordinary that the Prime Minister said it should try to avoid apportioning blame. Shouldn't the Inquiry have the ability to apportion blame?
If mistakes were made, we need to know who made them and why they were made.
The Scottish National Party's Angus Robertson decried Gordon Brown's non-plan as "totally inadequate" and stated:
As he reinvented himself last week, Gordon Brown told us he was comitted to transparency in government. Today, the doors he was so keen to open have been slammed shut in the faces of our service personnel, the families who lost loved ones in Iraq, those people who protested against the war, and all of us who are paying for it.
The claim that the war was about weapons of mass destruction was a blatant lie, a mere cover story unsupported by the facts, which has the lives of thousands of civilians and hundreds of our brave soldiers. The timing and scope of this inquiry all point to a desperate Government and a Prime Minister making a cynical attempt to boost his faltering leadership.
We must learn the lessons from the worst UK Foreign Policy decisions in living memory and this can only be done through a full and open investigation -- that this can only be done through a full and open investigation -- that this inquiry will take place in private is totally outrageous and entirely inadequate.
The SNP have been pressing for years on this issue and will continue to push until the full story about the events which led to the war in Iraq and the conflicts itself are known.
Al Jazeera quotes Stop the War Coalition's Lindsey German stating, "There is no reason this shouldn't be a public inquiry. It's carried out by the privy council which is part of the establishment and therefore won't be geniunely independent of the government. We have to have an inquiry which asks what Tony Blair and George Bush discussed a year before they took us to war when they met at Bush's ranch in Crawford, Texas." Philip Webster (Times of London -- link has a one minute and a few second snippet of Gordo's lenthy speech) quotes Rose Gentle stating, "We have fought and fought for this but it will be no use and it could all be for nothing behind closed doors. We will be lobbying Parliament to make sure this is all transparent." Deborah Summers and Nicholas Watt (Guardian -- link also has a video snippet of Brown's speech) report on the protest at Parliament Square following Brown's announcement and quotes 19-year-old architercture student Ben Beach stating, "We're here today because they have announced the inquiries will be in secret, which I think is an affront to democracy in this country, and it's an affront to British democracy that this war went ahead despite the overwhelming majority of people being against it." Richard Norton-Taylor (Guardian) observes:
There really is no legitimate reason now for any of the inquiry into the invasion of Iraq to be held in private. Extremely sensitive information, intelligence material in particular, has already been disclosed, either here or in the US, by official inquiries or leaks.
The reason why the government wants it to be held behind closed doors -- a weapon allowing Whitehall to control proceedings -- is to enable it to protect itself, and individuals, from embarrassment. To drive home the point, the members of the inquiry, led by Sir John Chilcot, the epitome of a Whitehall mandarin, will be made privy counsellors, told to swear an ancient oath of secrecy.
We already know a great deal about how the Iraqi banned weapons dossier was manipulated by Whitehall officials and intelligence chiefs, at the behest of their political masters -- most notably, Tony Blair. We know from a leaked Dowing Street memo, marked " secret and strictly personal -- UK eyes only", that, at a meeting Blair chaired on 23 July 2002, nearly a year before the invasion, Sir Richard Dearlove, then head of MI6, warned that in Washington "the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy"; and Jack Straw, then foreign secretary, said "it seemed clear that Bush had made up his mind to take military action ... But the case was thin."
Lord Butler told the Guardian that his committee set up to investigate the use and abuse of intelligence in the build-up to the invasion had seen the document. He said his report did not refer to its contents on the grounds that they related to US use of intelligence, which was outside his terms of reference. The explanation is one reason why a fresh inquiry needs to be held in public. That Chilcot himself sat on the Butler committee hardly inspires confidence that this new inquiry will be any more penetrating.
It's amazing that Gordon Brown wanted to talk of the bravery of the British forces while showing nothing but cowardice when it came to an inquiry. If he indeed feels British forces fought bravely and since the Iraq War was conducted in public, the inquiry should be as well.
RECOMMENDED: "Iraq snapshot"
"Gordon Brown to announce inquiry, NYT attacks workers"
"War Spending expected to be voted on this week"
Isaiah's The World Today Just Nuts "CIA Diva"
"And the war drags on . . ."
"The US military announces another death"
"State funeral in Iraq"Truest statement of the week
A note to our readers
Editorial: The deafening silence
TV: He never looked so old
Barry O, 21st Century Anita Bryant
The Political Closet
Politically driven assassinations
Congressional snapshot (Ava, C.I., Kat and Wally)
Jeremiah was a bull. . .
Kimberly Wilder on Redistricting
"Michelle and Barry have a sit-down"
"THIS JUST IN! THE NEW DAN & MARILYN!"