Domestic Dis-Information: Our Most Serious Threat
Short on time? Read the last quote offered in this piece. You'll see there is crucial information offered here.
As I offered in the post below, the mainstream media does not tend to give us all the information we need to adequately analyze the happenings of the day to make well reasoned assessments, information that is crucial to the exercise of Democracy. This lack of real information coupled with the lack of context we are offered with the facts we do get make accurately understanding our world a difficult endeavor, one that takes will and work.
The internet is a great tool for seeking understanding as well as for getting pertinent information out quickly. My best guess though, to effect the larger body of citizenry we need to also be active in the real world, in day-to-day life to make this tool really effective.
My thought is, that since you have stopped by, you must be looking into "the news" already; odds are you already see the Emperor has no clothes. Getting the truth out to our fellow Americans is crucial right now. A good place to start is to nip the thought that Mr Bush and his administration were merely the victims of "bad intelligence" in the bud.
My reading shows that this is not true. But you will not hear the truth on the evening news. This is where we come in.
I'd like to ask you to read up on the falsehood being reported that the intelligence community is to blame for the rush to
attack Iraq. The Center for American Progress is a great resource, I'd urge you to give it a look about this "intelligence matter". We were told that Iraq under Hussein was an imminent threat:
This is about imminent threat." -- White House spokesman Scott McClellan, 2/10/03
"Saddam Hussein is no longer a threat to the United States because we removed him, but he was a threat...He was a threat. He's not a threat now."-- President Bush, 7/2/03
Iraq "threatens the United States of America."-- Vice President Cheney, 1/30/03
The Iraqi regime is a threat of unique urgency."-- President Bush, 10/2/02
No terrorist state poses a greater or more immediate threat to the security of our people and the stability of the world than the regime of Saddam Hussein in Iraq." -- Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, 9/19/02
Iraq is "a serious threat to our country, to our friends and to our allies." -- Vice President Dick Cheney, 1/31/03
On January 26, 2003, CNN television asked White House communications director Dan Bartlett "is he (Saddam) an imminent threat to US interests, either in that part of the world or to Americans right here at home?"
"Well, of course he is," Bartlett replied.
On May 7, 2003, a reporter asked then White House spokesman Ari Fleischer: "We went to war, didn't we, to find these ? because we said that these weapons were a direct and imminent threat to the United States? Isn't that true?"
Here is a Whitehouse press briefing transcript from spokesman Scott McCllen ( who himself used the phrase "imminent threat")
MR. McCLELLAN: I think we've said all along that it was a grave and gathering threat. And that in a post-September 11th world, you must confront gathering threats before it's too late.
I think some in the media have chosen to use the word "imminent." Those were not words --
Q The President himself never used that word?
MR. McCLELLAN: Those were not words we used. We used "grave and gathering threat." We made it very clear that it was a gathering threat, that it's important to confront gathering threats in this post-September 11th world, because of the new dangers and new threats that we face.
You'll note that the quote cited above where Mr McCllellan himself uses the phrase "imminent threat"is from a White House news release.
As the Center for American Progress points out, the words "immediate" and "grave" are both direct synonymns for the word imminent.
So the blame will be placed on the intelligence community to get the heat off the Bush administration.
Saddam Hussein's bottled up, at this point, but clearly, we continue to have a fairly tough policy where the Iraqis are concerned. --Dick Cheney on Meet the Press, 9.16.01
As I have pointed out earlier there is a great deal of evidence that Dick Cheney did all he could to set up a backchannel
intelligence conduit that would help circumvent the use of conventional US intelligence sources such as the CIA and DIA.
As though this were normal! I mean the repeated visits Vice President Dick Cheney made to the CIA before the war in Iraq. The visits were, in fact, unprecedented. During my 27-year career at the Central Intelligence Agency, no vice president ever came to us for a working visit.
further into the article
Thus, there was never any need for policy-makers to visit us. And the very thought of a vice president dropping by to help us with our analysis is extraordinary. We preferred to do that work without the pressure that inevitably comes from policy-makers at the table.
That telling excerpt from former CIA analyst Ray McGovern's article "Cheney, Forgery and the CIA: Not Business as Usual gives us a sense of how intelligence can be "cooked" to please an administration with a particular aim.
Seymour Hersh in his New Yorker article about pre-war intelligence "The Stovepipe" reinforces this fact. There seems to have been a willing effort
by members of this administration yo get unvetted, that is, unverified intelligence into the White House. Unverified intelligence that you and I would hear in speeches and repeatedly on the news. Unverified intelligence that would cause the American public to support the Bush rush to war.
How did the American intelligence community get it so wrong?
Part of the answer lies in decisions made early in the Bush Administration, before the events of September 11, 2001. In interviews with present and former intelligence officials, I was told that some senior Administration people, soon after coming to power, had bypassed the government?s customary procedures for vetting intelligence.
Further on in the article
Kenneth Pollack, a former National Security Council expert on Iraq, whose book ?The Threatening Storm? generally supported the use of force to remove Saddam Hussein, told me that what the Bush people did was ?dismantle the existing filtering process that for fifty years had been preventing the policymakers from getting bad information. They created stovepipes to get the information they wanted directly to the top leadership. Their position is that the professional bureaucracy is deliberately and maliciously keeping information from them.
"They always had information to back up their public claims, but it was often very bad information," Pollack continued. "They were forcing the intelligence community to defend its good information and good analysis so aggressively that the intelligence analysts didn?t have the time or the energy to go after the bad information."
Take the time to read the article. You'll note that the names you read, Cheney, Bolton, Feith, Perle, Wolfowitz are all involved with the PNAC, Neocons in the Bush administration with an agenda for dominance of both the world and space that began nearly a decade before the 911 tragedy.
Jay Bookman of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution says, "In essence it's a call for an American empire, for what they call Pax Americana ... it's basically saying that the United States has to take responsibility and to enforce peace around the world and enforce what they call American principles and American interests."
The founding members included Vice-President Dick Cheney; Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld; Paul Wolfowitz of the Defence Department; Richard Perle, head of the defence advisory board; Louis Libby, Cheney's chief of staff; John Bolton, undersecretary of state for arms control; and Elliot Cohen of the defence policy board.
This is what you need to know, straight from the PNAC itself, a paper dated September 2000 (pg 63):
A transformation strategy that solely pursued capabilities for projecting force from the United States, for example, and sacrificed forward basing and presence, would be at odds with larger American policy goals and would trouble American allies.
Further, the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event like a new Pearl Harbor.
Where we come in is to get this information public. Letters to the editor, talk to your friends, mail out links. The computer is a tool. A tool is only as useful as it is employed. Do you hear/see this sort of substantive information in the mainstream media?
Be the media. Truth will enliven our Democracy and get our nation a new and elected President