Sand gets in your eyes
I don’t suppose that any of us should find it surprising that Mr. Ole 60 Grit was the Warden of Poltical Reliability for PNAC on the Tigris. These sorts of rich old white men have been using the public’s money as hog slop for the Friends and Family of the Politically Well Connected since
just days after 9/11, the Reagan era, Viet Nam, Teapot Dome, ah… um… well, since like, forever.
I had my own thoughts about how the NeoCons were using the CPA as a resume builder for their poltical proteges and as a nepotism dump for former college republicans and other operatives who weren’t finding useful work at, say, Pajamas Media.
Particularly brazen and galling to me was the gaming of the Washington Post by the Ledeen Clan, particularly about the very nature of the "grab" aspect of the "smash and grab" of Baghdad.
Did anyone else catch this? Here we have the WaPo presenting Simone Ledeen as the sensitive but spunky accidental tourist working in Iraq, almost, gosh, by pure coincidence….
Ledeen’s journey to Baghdad began two weeks earlier when she received an e-mail out of the blue from the Pentagon’s White House liaison office. The Sept. 16 message informed her that the occupation government in Iraq needed employees to prepare for an international conference. “This is an amazing opportunity to move forward on the global war on terror,” the e-mail read.
For Ledeen, the offer seemed like fate. One of her family friends had been killed in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, and it had affected her family deeply. Without hesitation, she responded “Sure” to the e-mail and waited — for an interview, a background check or some other follow-up. Apparently none was necessary. A week later, she got a second e-mail telling her to look for a packet in the mail regarding her move to Baghdad.
Er….Randomly selected young republican? “out of the blue”? How about…."daughter of the man who quite possibly forged the Niger-Uranium documents and handed them over to SISMI "?
In early 2002 Hadley was tasked with shutting down the unauthorized meetings Harold Rhode, Larry Franklin and Michael Ledeen were holding with Iraqi and Iranian exiles, and Italian intelligence figures including the head of SISMI, Nicolo Pollari, in Rome in late 2001.
On September 9th, 2002, Hadley met with Pollari in Washington. According to the Italian daily La Repubblica Pollari was there to press the details of the Niger-uranium story. The NSC has now confirmed that the meeting took place but claims it was a brief meeting and that no one present remembers the yellowcake story coming up.
In other words, it’s a quite hazy denial if it’s even a denial at all.
The 2004 WaPo article mentions Michael Ledeen in passing:
“The 28-year-old daughter of neoconservative pundit Michael Ledeen…” but fails to mention that Papa Mike is armpit deep in the administrations propaganda blitz in the runup to the war.
Last night, fortunate circumstance found me watching REM’s induction into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame. The man who presented their award to them was Senator Max Cleland .
REM’s Michael Stipe was exceptionally gracious in his acceptance speech, a good third of which was about being humbled and honored to share the stage with Cleland, a great American who had given so much for his country. I found myself reflecting upon Cleland’s defeat by the odious and oily Saxby "I’d rather be golfing" Chambliss .
(In the 1960s, during the Vietnam War, Chambliss was given a student deferment so he could attend law school. After that, he received a medical deferment (4-F) because of a bad knee.)
I was reminded of the war cry of the NeoCon "realists" as they dry humped the country into the war in Iraq: "Now the grownups are in charge!" Looking at the people who were maligned by the puerile "Path to 9/11"- Bill Clinton, Sandy Berger, Madeleine Albright, Richard Clarke, et al- and contrasting them to the current pack of ideologues, cronies and snake oil salesmen- The O’Biernes, the Ledeens, Barbara "The" Comstock "Load", Victoria Toensing, Douglas "The Stupidest Fucking Guy in the Universe" Feith…
It looks less and less like the grownups are in charge, and more like we’re all trapped on the NeoCon version of Pinocchio’s "Pleasure Island"…