Mainstream Media Take a Stab at Blair Memo Story

It appears that the nerve impulses have finally made it all the way from the stegasaurus’ spinal ganglion to the walnut in its head. Or at least, some of the mainstream media in the US are giving some coverage to the Conyers letter asking Bush to come clean about the revelations in the previously secret Tony Blair memo on Iraq:

Also, Media Matters has an interesting item on the uncharacteristically terse response by the Washington Post’s ombudsman to reader complaints on the issue: Readers complain, but Wash. Post ombudsman mum on lack of coverage of UK-Iraq memo.

There’s still not a lot of hard-hitting investigative reporting going on; it’s more “well, Conyers and some other congressmen have complained. White House hasn’t responded.” But I guess that’s better than nothing.

15 Responses to “Mainstream Media Take a Stab at Blair Memo Story”

  1. Craig Says:

    The tepid response is likely due to this being another attempt to build up a major revelation out of an anecdotal memo. Didn’t we just have a bipartisan committee decree that there was no realistic evidence to indicate a purposeful effort by Bush to falsify intel regarding Iraq’s WMD capacity? And why would a memo describe a meeting about having to make up WMD proof and then have those same people discuss concerns about what would happen if Saddam used his WMD? Is this a high-level war planning meeting or a skit on people with short-term memory loss? There is much more to this counter-argument on the “Power Line” blog, in their May 6th entries (I’m too lazy to link to it).

    Suffice to say, I’ll need a lot more “facts” than this, to question whether this dead horse is really dead.

  2. Sven Says:

    You’re right, Craig. It’s shouldn’t be a major revelation to anyone that Bush lied to the world to enter into his war in Iraq. Half the country has known this for a long time. The other half will never admit to it for lack of “realistic evidence.” If Bush repeats his lies long enough and loud enough, the sheep on the right will believe him and follow him over a cliff if he asked.

  3. Craig Says:

    Instead of repeating tired cliches, please present all the bombshell evidence that the committee somehow overlooked and that the worldwide press has covered up, that blows away all doubt so I can see things as crystal clearly as you, without all these stubborn facts getting in my way!

  4. Sven Says:

    I’m simply agreeing with you that it shouldn’t be a major revelation to anyone. I could remind you how the Bush administration claimed before the war that there was no doubt Saddam was hiding WMD, but why beat a dead horse? No doubt you’ve forgiven this lie as a convenient mistake in “intelligence.” Now that the WMD justification has been laid to rest as bogus, Bush has changed his reasoning for the war to being about spreading democracy and freedom. Perhaps this is not a lie, but a lapse in memory?

    I do recall at one point after the U.S. occupation of Iraq, Bush stated that we had to invade because “Saddam wouldn’t let the inspectors in.” Clearly this was a lie, although I guess you could argue he misspoke. In reality, there were inspectors in Iraq in the weeks before the invasion. It was the United States who had the inspectors leave, not Saddam. Yet Bush and the Republicans seem to forget this in their rewrite of history. If it wasn’t Bush’s intention to invade all along, then why not let the inspections continue?

  5. Craig Says:

    It’s all the same arguments that I keep hearing.

    So, if a friend of yours tells you something that he believes to be true, and you believe it and repeat it to others, are you comfortable with being called a “liar” if someone proves that what you had accepted as true was actually wrong? Or would you plead that you were misled or misinformed? A very simplistic analogy, I know, but the same basic line of logic that Bush is being called out on.

    Now, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Administration downplayed some contrary information, or assumed the worst when assessing some unclear data. Especially if their own intelligence agencies as well as many other credible agencies around the world were all confident of some level of WMD within Iraq. And of course Bush emphasized the democracy/freedom aspect of the war once it was obvious that the WMD evidence was not available. How dumb would it look to keep saying the war was vital due to the immediate WMD danger when it wasn’t producible? The intelligence lapse has been scrutinized and debated endlessly. The democracy/freedom issue was an important justification before the war and is even more important now, obviously. (Yes, I know, not the biggest justification.)

    Lastly, the whole inspection farce was laughable. It was a game by Saddam’s rules and the UN was a willing stooge. How many times did the UN go in circles with him to get inspectors into the country, have some initial cooperation while Saddam moved any incriminating material around ahead of time, then have inspectors get stonewalled and get called US spies. Then the inspectors get pulled and the game starts again? It was a charade that the UN and some key members (France, Germany, Russia) were content with playing indefinitety (for reasons that were revealed later). The issue wasn’t whether inspectors could come into the country, it was having the power and the confidentiality to go whereever they pleased, without prior Iraqi knowledge.

    These points will likely be picked over with the usual counter-claims, as we continue to go nowhere with this whole issue. But when I ask for specific evidence and I get the same time-worn accusations, I had to respond.

    Just as others likely will now……and so it goes.

  6. Sven Says:

    The main difference in our views seems that I see Bush as a typical politician (Democrat or Republican), and I assume he is lying 90% of the time. Every bit of evidence against him I see as another piece to the puzzle, justifying my belief. It seems you’d rather give him the benefit of the doubt over each bit of “proof” that might be presented. No, I don’t have any new evidence or proof that I’m sure you haven’t picked over yourself a dozen times before.

    And yes, I’ll agree that the whole inspection process in Iraq was a farce, but from both sides. Saddam did manipulate the inspectors for years. But in the end it was Bush who used the inspectors in an attempt to justify his war in Iraq. Bush insisted that the inspectors be allowed to return, apparently hoping Saddam would flatly refuse. Then when they were finally allowed back in, our president went ahead with his plans anyway. In the weeks before the war, the inspectors had unfettered access in Iraq like never before, but that didn’t matter. What was the point in getting the inspectors back in if only to almost immediately kick them out?

    And as to the new memo, even Tony Blair hasn’t disputed it’s authenticity. The British government has mearly dismissed it as “nothing new” — something we seem to agree on.

  7. stewartski Says:

    From the few posts that I have been reading on this site so far there is only one thing that bothers me. Craig keeps saying “show me the facts” and that no one is presenting any actual facts. Well it appears to me that other people on here are presenting actual facts, it’s just that you offer the typical bush supporter answer that, they aren’t true. how about doing a little research for yourself on these so called lies, and i’m not talking strictly from probush sites, including anything from fox. how about you show the the solid facts supporting your side instead of that the administration says that they are lies. god forbid if it was clinton in this whole iraq mess. oh wait! he did something so much worse than getting tens of thousand people killed, he got a blow job!

  8. stewartski Says:

    Just one other thing, Craig, I don’t want it to seem like I am attacking you. Hey you are giving me and others something to talk about. I just think that your arguements can be directed right back at you. I do agree with you on one thing though, most people are, sadly, too set in their ways and aren’t going to change their beliefs no matter what.

  9. Rise Against Says:

    Yes, this memo and this story simply confirm what many of us had suspected along time ago. For example, I have debated on many topics involving president Bush on this blog, Even if only a tiny percentage of all of the allegations over the years are true, this president should be booted out of office immediately.

  10. Robert Says:

    No He Rules !!!!

    You are merley a person on the other side of a computer trying to make your self feel good, no ones listening, You wont change anything, so go back to Bed!!!!

  11. Craig Says:

    Stewartski, the onus is really on the accuser to prove the criminal acts of the President. Typically many facts, presumptions and conclusions are given, but they simply don’t add up to actual proof that Bush PURPOSELY and DELIBERATELY altered the facts and conclusions being brought to him by his trusted sources of the CIA as well as comparable agencies from other countries.

    In ANY version of the Government commission’s official report on the pre-war WMD assessment, the fingers are very clearly pointed at the CIA and its inadeqate methods of collecting accurate data and in making analytical assessments of the data at hand. Other countries have made similar determinations of their own agency’s failures ( such as the UK, who had their own investigation which failed to show that Blair’s administration delibrately changed or distorted the assessments and analysis they received).

    The problem is that Bush haters are so impaired by their rage that they see the President acting on this regular communication of deeply flawed data from multiple sources, which is later shown to be wrong, as PROOF that Bush deliberately DISTORTED the truth and LIED to the world. A lie is taking what you know to be untrue and claiming it as true; not what you were told, and believed, to be true, which turned out to not be the case.

    No doubt Bush’s own pre-conceived beliefs about Iraq made him more willing to accept this flawed information without much questioning.

    There is plenty of blame to go around to various members and ex-members of this administration and its agencies regarding the way the pre-war analysis of Iraq’s imminent WMD capability was handled. But Bush haters aren’t apparently satisfied until they can place as much singular responsibility as humanly possible on the direct illegal and immoral manipulations made and orchestrated by Bush himself, regardless of how the actual FACTS end up.

    Everyone is better off by simply chalking this argument up to “agreeing to disagree” and just move on. Let the historians and archivists have the final word. There is plenty more of interest to be discussed in the “present world”.

  12. Rise Against Says:

    “No He Rules !!!”

    You’re right Robert. I beleive he does rule, a place called hell.

  13. Robert Says:

    Very Good Craig,

    sounds like a well researched Non bias account of things.
    Rise Against, I notice how you totally bipassed commenting on Craigs message and went straight for mine !!!

    The Truth hurt hey? ….and Havn’t you heard the song “Imagine” ? …….’No Hell below us, above us only sky….’

    Cheers…..Sir Dr. Robert

  14. Rise Against Says:

    If you are so concerned with the truth Robert, you have a very funny way of showing it. You completely disregard facts on all other topics and merely lash out at people with vulgar language. But keep it up, you’re doing wonders for the republican cause.

  15. Robert Says:

    Hello again Rise,

    You should be a back bencher for Satan !!!!!!!!!

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