S/SW blog philosophy -

I credit favorite writers and public opinion makers.

A lifelong Democrat, my comments on Congress, the judiciary and the presidency are regular features.

My observations and commentary are on people and events in politics that affect the USA or the rest of the world, and stand for the interests of peace, security and justice.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Fact Checking

Don't believe it -
What the Bush administration reports about Iraq in September - for Congress - must be about fact checking . Thankfully bloggers are playing an increasingly important role in getting the truth out to leaders and to the public. "Bush’s Baghdad Shell Game" is what award winning writer, Joe Conason called it at Truthdig (9/5/07). To quote,
As the deadline approaches for official assessments of American policy in Iraq, the Bush administration is maintaining a steady barrage of diversions, obfuscations and manipulations. These great clouds of smoke, emanating from Washington’s think tanks and the mainstream media as well as the press offices of the White House and the Pentagon, have a single purpose: to blind us to objective realities so that the war can continue indefinitely.

The arguments change but the underlying style remains the same. Since they’re losing the debate, they want to change the subject. When congressional leaders sought to schedule hearings on two important Iraq reports—one from the Government Accountability Office and another by an independent commission of military experts—they invited U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker and Gen. David Petraeus, the commander of American forces, to testify. The Pentagon flacks tried to schedule those appearances for Sept. 11—a ridiculous maneuver properly rejected by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Fact checking is at the heart of each of these currently important stories:

  1. Don't believe it. Both General Petraeus and our current president (OCP) are hinting that there may fewer troops in Iraq before too long, "if the security situation is improved."
  2. You can believe General James Jones, who headed an independent military panel created by Congress that says it won't be anytime soon, as reported by the New York Times.
  3. The Iraqis have made very "little progress" according to the testimony of the GAO Comptroller, David Walker to Congress. DailyKos reports on the related statement of Majority Leader Harry Reid.
  4. The last of the British troops have left Basra in Iraq. The facts speak for themselves, though the British say it was not a defeat.

Who to believe? Bremer said/Bush said - The former (Iraq Czar) envoy's letter counters Bush on who ordered the initial dismantling of Iraq's Baathist army, according to a recent New York Times story detailing the U.S. foul-up leading to so many of today's difficulties for the government of Iraq..

Believe it - According to London's Financial Times, the Chinese military hacked into the Pentagon in June. Of course China denied it. . . . OCP - says he might talk to The Chinese president about it today when they meet in Sidney, Australia. What on earth can he say - Don't do it again?

Can you believe it! The BBC News has this story about a US B-52 getting into a very big nuclear cargo blunder. In military parlance this is known as a SNAFU. This quote says it all,

The US Air Force has launched an investigation after a B-52 bomber flew across the US last week mistakenly loaded with nuclear-armed missiles. It follows reports in the Army Times that five missiles were unaccounted for during the three-hour flight from North Dakota to Louisiana. The air force said the cruise missiles were safe at all times. Army Times said the missiles were to be decommissioned but were mistakenly mounted on the bomber's wing.

Believe it or not! We used to report "Riverbend is back!" Now someone says that Riverbend left Baghdad for Syria. I only found this out by accident on Juan Cole's blog. I am ashamed to say that I had given her up for dead and removed her Baghdad Burning blog from my daily checking. Her fans are very grateful to have heard from her today for the first time since April 26.

And finally, you can believe these good resources -

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The Future Was Yesterday said...

What the Bush administration reports about Iraq in September - for Congress - must be about fact checking .
"Bush?" "Facts?" In the same sentence?:) You're a brave lady!:)

I think all of us already know what that report is going to say, and the compliant MSM will help spin it. He's stated clearly several times, that the war is going to last after he's gone.

Anything he says prior to that....well, call it "factual lying."

Carol Gee said...

Howdy Future, Thanks so much for all your thoughtful comments, to which I will reply all at once:
Yes, facts are important. The freedom and magic of the internet allows all of us to check facts as well as have opinions. I just love this country, don't you?

Yes, NAFTA has had pretty awful repercussions, particularly on working families. As a result, U.S. workers are now the most productive of all, just because they must work so long and hard just to feed their families.

Congress, at least raised the minimum wage. Now this "clueless" group had better get to work again. I haven't given up hope.
We just have to keep on truckin'!