Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Thom Hartmann on Bush's Big Lie

Common Dreams
Extracts:

Re Kerry's 'global test' remark:

Perhaps the real reason Bush is willing to lie about Kerry's comments is because Bush himself has failed the moral and legal test that has guided nations in times of war since the beginning of civilization. And, in doing so intentionally, Bush committed a crime against both the American people and against the world community.

In giving the President the authority to use force against Iraq - the fateful authorization that Kerry voted for - Congress laid out with absolute clarity the test Bush would have to pass before he could wage war against Iraq.

"In connection with the exercise of the authority granted in subsection (a) to use force," the congressional resolution states, "the President shall, prior to such exercise or as soon there after as may be feasible, but no later than 48 hours after exercising such authority, make available to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President pro tempore of the Senate his determination that:

"(1) reliance by the United States on further diplomatic or other peaceful means alone either (A) will not adequately protect the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq or (B) is not likely to lead to enforcement of all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq, and

"(2) acting pursuant to this resolution is consistent with the United States and other countries continuing to take the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations or persons who planned, authorized, committed or aided the terrorists attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001."

Bush claimed to have passed the test, submitting over his signature, on March 18, 2003, a letter to Congress in which he wrote,

"Consistent with section 3(b) of the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 (Public Law 107-243), and based on information available to me, including that in the enclosed document, I determine that:

"(1) reliance by the United States on further diplomatic and other peaceful means alone will neither (A) adequately protect the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq nor (B) likely lead to enforcement of all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq; and

"(2) acting pursuant to the Constitution and Public Law 107-243 is consistent with the United States and other countries continuing to take the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations, or persons who planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001."

Both were clear lies, and he knew it at the time. Bush betrayed our trust, and the trust of the international community.

...
...Commentators in the media, noting Bush's distortion of Kerry's words, and how that distortion is now being used so aggressively in Bush campaign ads, glibly quote prizefighter Jack Dempsey's famous line, "The best defense is a good offense."

But the quote more likely on the minds of Bush and his handlers comes from the last leader of a major industrial power who led his nation to war on a pretense based in lies.

"Thus we may explain the fact that since 1918 the men who have held the reins of government adopted an entirely negative attitude towards foreign affairs and the business of the State," noted Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf. This was possible, he said, because at least a third of "the masses of our people, whose sheepish docility corresponds to their want of intelligence...just submit to it because they are too stupid to understand."

Confident that a cowed media won't call him on it, and that with enough fog about "French permission" that the American people won't remember Kerry's actual words or the text of Bush's war letter to Congress, the Bush campaign continues their Big Lie strategy...

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