Monty Python Explains The Cheney Waterboarding Scandal and Ongoing Pelosi Smokescreen
Update: apparently others also see this as a smokescreen technique to cover Cheney and Bushco’s tracks.
As my pal QScribe has pointed out repeatedly, the Pythons understood every situation…
Anyways, here’s the thing. As I suspected would happen has indeed occurred: Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is now being portrayed as the “despicable, dishonest, vicious
villian politician” in the ongoing waterboarding story.
For the first time, Pelosi (D-Calif.) acknowledged that in 2003 she was informed by an aide that the CIA had told others in Congress that officials had used waterboarding during interrogations. But she insisted, contrary to CIA accounts, that she was not told about waterboarding during a September 2002 briefing by agency officials. Asked whether she was accusing the CIA of lying, she replied, “Yes, misleading the Congress of the United States.”
The speaker’s discomfort was evident yesterday as she was grilled by reporters for the first time since the CIA issued information suggesting that she and others were told about the use of the techniques, including waterboarding, at a classified briefing on Sept. 4, 2002. Pelosi was then the ranking Democrat on the House intelligence committee.
The CIA said the briefing included Pelosi and then-Rep. Porter J. Goss (Fla.), who was the committee chairman at the time and who later became CIA director. Two House aides also attended. The CIA’s account said the subject was enhanced interrogation techniques and the particular methods used on Zayn al-Abidin Muhammed Hussein, better known by the nom de guerre Abu Zubaida.
An op-ed article by senior Bush White House adviser Karl Rove in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal asked directly: “So is the speaker of the House lying about what she knew and when? And, if so, what will Democrats do about it?”
Pelosi gave some ground on the question of whether she had been informed that waterboarding was being used — though by her account she did not learn about it until February 2003, rather than in 2002, and then only from her aide. Instead of registering her protest to the administration, she said, she set out to help Democrats win control of Congress and elect a Democrat as president.
But in attempting to defend herself, Pelosi took the remarkable step of trying to shift the focus of blame to the CIA and the Bush administration, claiming that the CIA accounts represented a diversionary tactic in the real debate over the interrogation policies.
House Republican Leader John A. Boehner (Ohio) was quick to challenge Pelosi. Within minutes of her contentious news conference, he emerged to question her accusations. He left no doubt that Republicans believe that the speaker has made a major misstep that will hurt her and perhaps her party as this controversy plays out.
Much more below the fold, including how Pelosi turned John Cleese into a Newt (Gingrich)!
Spoiler: He (Cleese) got better… Among Pelosi’s crimes is this offering of evidence that she turned John Cleese into a Newt!
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich today offered a blistering critique of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s handling of oversight on harsh interrogation tactics, in a major escalation of partisan attacks being aimed at Pelosi.
In an interview with ABC News Radio’s Marcus Wilson, Gingrich, R-Ga., said Pelosi, D-Calif., “has lied to the House” in claiming that she was never briefed by the CIA about the Bush administration’s use of waterboarding and other harsh tactics.
“I think she has lied to the House, and I think that the House has an absolute obligation to open an inquiry, and I hope there will be a resolution to investigate her. And I think this is a big deal. I don’t think the Speaker of the House can lie to the country on national security matters,” Gingrich said.
He continued: “I think this is the most despicable, dishonest and vicious political effort I’ve seen in my lifetime.”
“She is a trivial politician, viciously using partisanship for the narrowist of purposes, and she dishonors the Congress by her behavior.”
“Speaker Pelosi’s the big loser, because she either comes across as incompetent, or dishonest. Those are the only two defenses,” Gingrich said. “The fact is she either didn’t do her job, or she did do her job and she’s now afraid to tell the truth.”
Whoa-whoa-whoa. Back up here… Newt, you might want to review a few pertinent facts regarding who should be the focus of the investigations.
2. WHO else authorized waterboarding? RICE.
3. Do we have FILM on our 3rd and most talkative guilty part, CHENEY? Why, yes- yes, we do.
Not only that, but why was waterboarding employed? Were interrogators under orders to establish a connection between the 9/11 attacks and Al-Qaeda?
Big stuff- seems we got into a war that is still ongoing in part because of THIS one!
The substance of the intelligence that was being sought from him (KSM) has been an object of some speculation, with several defenders of the interrogation practice arguing that the goal was to prevent an impending attack on America. But a line buried on page 353 of the July 2004 Select Committee on Intelligence report on pre-Iraq war intelligence strongly suggests that the interrogation was just as centered on a possible Iraq-al-Qaeda link as terrorist activity.
“CTC [Counter Terrorist Center] noted that the questions regarding al-Qaida’s ties to the Iraqi regime were among the first presented to senior al-Qaida operational planner Khalid Shaikh Muhammad following his capture.”
Revelations that KSM was questioned about possible al Qaeda ties to Iraq at roughly the same time that he was undergoing waterboarding provides some key insight into the purpose of the CIA interrogations. A recently de-classified Senate Armed Services Committee report quoted army psychologist Maj. Paul Burney as saying that a large part of his time on a Behavioral Science Consultation Team was “focused on trying to establish a link between Al Qaeda and Iraq.” McClatchy newspapers, meanwhile, published an article last month citing a former intelligence official acknowledging that the Bush administration had pressured interrogators to use harsh techniques to produce evidence connecting the terrorist organization and Iraq’s regime.
The efforts at establishing a link never bore fruit. Burney went on to note that “we were not being successful in establishing a link between Al Qaeda and Iraq.” Meanwhile, earlier in the July 2004 Select Committee on Intelligence report, it is noted that KSM was “unaware of any collaborative relationship between al-Qaida and the former Iraqi regime, citing ideological disagreements as an impediment to closer ties.”
C’mon; who do the GOP and BushCo think they are KIDDING?
Nancy Pelosi is not the witch or the villain here. Everyone knows it, even John Boener. But the media continuing to pound on what she knew and when helps BushCo and allies mislead the extraordinarily short-memoried sheeple into refocusing away from their own admitted guilty status.
America- WAKE UP. Do not continue down this slippery slope, as appealing as it may seem. It’s okay to look behind the curtain and see that you were and continue to be manipulated by the previous administration. It’s okay to admit you were wrong to re-elect them and continue to give them carte blanche; they deceived you!
But enough is enough- stop buying into the tricks, the smoke and mirrors, the deceptions. Let’s end this farce- investigate and prosecute the guilty- and work to establish our nation as a LAWFUL nation.