micah holmquist's irregular thoughts and links
Welcome to the musings and notes of a Cadillac, Michigan based writer named Micah Holmquist, who is bothered by his own sarcasm.
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Sunday, July 13, 2003
More on the Iraq/Niger/Uranium/Whitehouse scandal
Reading the Q&A between Tony Snow and National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice on today's Fox News Sunday, I'm struck by how Rice is slightly harder on the White House than Snow is. Of course Rice trys to have it several ways with explanations that are idiotic and which would be taken apart by any credible journalist. I did find this section interesting:
SNOW: All right, just to follow up, was Iraq trying to procure uranium elsewhere in Africa?Translation: We believe the British intelligence on the same basis that we have asked the American public to believe us when we talk about Iraq.
Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld was on Meet the Press this morning and Tim Russert gave a similarly bad performance and appeared like he was not interested in anything that that could make Team Bush bad, save for one notable exception. For instance, there was no follow-up when, during a discussion of determining what has happened to Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, Rumsfeld said:
We do need to find him. We do need to get closure, and it’s quite different from Osama bin Laden, for example. The fact that he has not been found isn’t causing that kind of a problem. The fact that Saddam Hussein has not been found does cause a problem.You could be excused for wondering why finding Saddam was of such importance since Rumsfeld has himself given a different impression. In a May 27 interview Rumsfeld said:
Well, the fact is that Saddam Hussein may or may not be alive. He clearly is not running Iraq. So, the fact that he is not locatable at the moment if he is alive is too bad but it certainly isn’t determinative, it doesn’t have anything to do with who is running Iraq.I guess the importance has changed and it would be nice if Rumsfeld had taken the time to explain why, but that dream didn't come true.
Russert did as good of a job on the intelligence controversy as can be expected from a journalist with a network t.v. show, but that is a back-handed compliment if ever there was one.
" CIA Director George J. Tenet successfully intervened with White House officials to have a reference to Iraq seeking uranium from Niger removed from a presidential speech last October, three months before a less specific reference to the same intelligence appeared in the State of the Union address, according to senior administration officials," Walter Pincus and Mike Allen write in today's Washington Post.
The sources are of course unidentified. Assuming they are real, I really have to wonder about the mindset of someone who only comes forward to expose the Bush Administration when a controversy is brewing and still wants to work as a member of Team Bush. They could do a lot more good by just coming out and saying what they know. Of course I suppose doing that might result in them ending up dead.
Given how easily the Bush Administration was able to present Iraq-having-Weapons-of-mass-destruction-means-they-are-a-threat as a fact, it is notable that they are now catching any flak for any dishonesty that they might have engaged on a relatively small matter. I suspect that this has been made into a bigger deal actually because it is a smaller matter. The idea that that Bush Administration lied about Iraq being a threat is a matter more profound than the mainline media can likely deal with.