It also quietly does its best to distance itself from those charges, saying in its lead paragraph that “Mr. Wilson offers no firm evidence to support his assertion, and the White House has denied it” and adding several passing details to subtly portray Wilson as a man prone to making unfounded, perhaps politically motivated accusations. Even so, at least the Times accurately conveys the substance of Wilson’s message and properly treats it as the heart of the story.
The essence of genius, though, is that it refuses to be bound by such mundane conventions, and precisely this kind of mastery is displayed by the Washington Post. How could the Post top breaking the first news of Wilson’s book near the end of its political gossip column(!), rather than on the front page? Easy — they hand the task to supreme spinmeister Susan Schmidt, best known lately for inventing the Jessica Lynch-as-Rambo fable but whose fame in biased reporting stretches at least as far back as the days of Bill Clinton and the Whitewater “scandal” in 1993.
Demonstrating her ability to think outside the box of standard reporting, Schmidt doesn’t bother trying to diminish Wilson’s accusations against Messrs. Libby, Rove, and Abrams — because she doesn’t mention them at all. Only journalistic amateurs like the New York Times think charges that White House officials broke the law are news, you see. Schmidt, though, digs deep into Wilson’s book to find the real scoop, as revealed in her opening paragraphs:
It was Saddam Hussein’s information minister, Mohammed Saeed Sahhaf, often referred to in the Western press as “Baghdad Bob,” who approached an official of the African nation of Niger in 1999 to discuss trade — an overture the official saw as a possible effort to buy uranium.Schmidt devotes five more paragraphs in her 660-word article to explaining the Sahhaf angle, the “odd bit of detail” that this irrelevant official had an inconsequential meeting in which the word “uranium” never came up, but hey, you never know … while the names of Lewis “Scooter” Libby, Eliott Abrams, and Karl Rove fail to appear even once.
That’s according to a new book by Joseph C. Wilson IV, a former ambassador who was sent to Niger by the CIA in 2002 to investigate reports that Iraq had been trying to buy enriched “yellowcake” uranium. . . .
For longtime fans of Schmidt’s artistic ouevre, this will bring back warm memories of the mid-1990s, when anti-Clinton crank Jean Lewis (a key source for Schmidt’s Whitewater stories) was testifying before Congress. Schmidt’s article for the Post the next day not only ignored the inconsistencies in her testimony uncovered during questioning, it failed to mention that she had responded to this unexpected cross-examination by fainting (or pretended to faint) and being carried out of the hearing room. The big news that had crowded out these meaningless details? Why, Lewis had mentioned the name of Gennifer Flowers at one point — and that was the focus of Schmidt’s coverage.
In that grand tradition, Schmidt has been all about protecting Karl Rove et al. since the start of the Valerie Plame controversy, and you can see that she’s carrying on with that heroic duty here. What’s that you say — the
Orwell Bush administration may have committed a crime?! Look over there — it’s Baghdad Bob!! . . .
Wasn’t it just a few weeks ago that we had a middle-aged, angry-but-articulate career civil servant on every single news show on TV, using the publication of a new book as a springboard for bashing Dubya?
Yes it was, but if John Kerry’s in the mood for taking another vacation, I suppose he can — because Joseph Wilson is preparing to make the rounds supporting his new book, The Politics of Truth.
Richard Leiby in the Washington Post today summarizes what Wilson has to say about who “outed” his wife as a CIA agent:
Wilson points to Vice President Cheney’s chief of staff, Lewis “Scooter” Libby, as “quite possibly the person who exposed my wife’s identity.”Thanks to a Daily Kos thread on the subject (and specifically commenter Michael D), here are some of Wilson’s scheduled TV appearances to discuss the book (and probably a lot more) this weekend:
. . . Citing unnamed sources, Wilson writes that a “workup” on his background was done by the White House in March 2003 after his public criticism of Iraq policy. “The other name that has most often been repeated to me in connection with the inquiry and disclosure into my background and Valerie’s is that of Elliott Abrams, who gained infamy in the Iran-Contra scandal during the first Bush administration.” (Abrams is on the staff of the National Security Council.)
But Wilson hasn’t given up entirely on his first suspect, Karl Rove, whom he said last summer should be “frog-marched” out of the White House in handcuffs. “The workup on me that turned up the information on Valerie was shared with Karl Rove, who then circulated it in administration and neoconservative circles,” Wilson alleges.
– Friday: Dateline NBC, 8pm ET/7pm CTFor more info, you can visit =http://www.politicsoftruth.comthe book’s website[/url], which is very comprehensive. As I wrote last October, Wilson is not a guy who responds half-heartedly when you mess with him.
– Sunday: Meet the Press (NBC)
– Monday: Today (NBC) and Larry King Live (CNN)
– Tuesday: American Morning (CNN), The O’Franken Factor (Air America radio), Charlie Rose (PBS), and The Daily Show (Comedy Channel)
“”By fostering competitive wholesale and retail electricity markets that are properly monitored by regulators, California can begin to lower electricity bills and once again become the job creation machine.”
Fortunately, Swopa isn’t the only Californian who smells a rat. Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez had this to say:
The proposal “takes us down a path well-traveled before and one that created the energy crisis and left consumers vulnerable to profiteering by out- of-state power generators. It again trusts the so-called invisible hand of the marketplace that in the past has picked the pockets of California consumers and businesses alike.”
I think Bush put it best:
“Fool me once…uh…you don’t get fooled again!”
Gen. Mark Kimmitt, the spokesman for the U.S. Army in Baghdad, was quoted as saying this in Tuesday’s Washington Post:
“”We certainly hope that there is an epiphany on the part of the belligerents inside of Fallujah tonight to recognize that there are two tracks: There is a peaceful track, a peaceful settlement, or there is a settlement that is achieved by force of arms . . . It’s their choice.”As fubar wrote on Tuesday, the U.S also dropped leaflets on Fallujah that read:
“If you are a terrorist, beware, because your last day was yesterday. In order to spare your life end your actions and surrender to coalition forces now. We are coming to arrest you.”But, as the suddenly prolific Green Boy notes below, the rebels in Fallujah have apparently decided on an option they weren’t offered: a peaceful settlement on their terms.
There are at least 2,000 heavily armed insurgents in Fallujah, and this new army will be poorly trained, half the size of the forces they’re fighting against, commanded by a former Saddam loyalist, and possibly infiltrated by insurgents.Oh, and if that doesn’t sound enough like surrender, the U.S. has also released a Muslim cleric from Fallujah who was arrested in October for encouraging resistance to the occupation.
Somebody sure taught someone a lesson about “imposing their will” here, I guess . . .
(Note: For more on the military aspects of what happened in Fallujah, see Steve Gilliard.)
…I thought the squawking heads claimed we were ‘winning’ in Fallujah…
So why are we =http://www.globeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20040429.w2iraq0429/BNStory/Internationalpulling out now[/url]?
*Update * Maybe HQ was distracted by this?
*Update* Apparently, the fighting continues. Well, more like bombing, really.
*Update* In the comments, Mahigan points out that the U.S. will now experiment with Re-Baathifying Fallujah to bring it to heel.
…to send your Humvee to Iraq
Last summer I put out the call to red-blooded, Hummer-drivin’, flag-waving patriots to support the troops and donate their vehicles to our soldiers in Iraq. Well, if you haven’t done so yet, go ahead and do it today because it sure looks like they need ‘em! Did I mention that the ones consumers buy here are much safer than the ones we supply to the soldiers?
As in “Macam-macam orang dunia ini!” It’s about time I ‘rolled a blog covering the only Islamic country I really know anything about