Saturday, January 29, 2005

Tweedledum and Tweedledee

Condoleezza Rice is the perfect replacement for Secretary Of State Colin Powell because she was equally adept at deception and lies in taking us to war in Iraq. That is old news. The new "news" is that after going belly up and handing Bush a blank check to invade Iraq, Senate Democrats finally found their balls and actually confronted Rice with her own words during her confirmation hearing. Something akin to closing the barn door after the mule is long gone. Better late than never, I suppose.

What intrigues me more than the Rice hearing is why democrats, television’s (so called) pundits and reporters give Colin Powell a pass on his role in the deception and lies that facilitated the neocon’s Pax-Americana ambitions. The general consensus one kept hearing was that Powell was a noble voice of dissent among the inner circle of the Bush administration--- but after his voice in the wilderness found no takers, he courageously stood by his commander-in-chief as a good soldier.

Sorry, but that doesn’t tug at my heart strings.

Here was a Secretary of State and facilitator who declared it "outrageous" to question the justification for the war. Here was a person who squandered whatever reputable capital he had by laying out fictitious "proof"of Saddam Hussein’s WMD programs. Iraq has "500 tons of chemical agents"!

Colin Powell alleged Iraq to have "mobile labs"--- that turned out to be food testing trucks.

Colin Powell made allegations that Iraq "still" possesses vast amount of anthrax , and at the same time made obscure references to dry powder anthrax contained in envelops and sent through the U.S. Postal system in the fall of 2001, which killed two people. Powell was aware (or if not, should have been)that Iraq was only known to have had liquid bulk anthrax –which, incidentally, was the descendant of the seven strains given to Hussein in the 80s by the United States. The last known bulk anthrax was produced in 1991 at a state owned factory that was blown up in 1996.

On February 24, 2001, Colin Powell said, "He (Saddam Hussein) has not developed any significant capability with respect to weapons of mass destruction. He is unable to project conventional power against his neighbors. So in effect our (sanctions and containment)policies have strengthened the security of the neighbors of Iraq and these are the policies that we are going to keep in place...". So, more than a year before his speech at the U.N., Powell knew that Iraq didn’t have WMDs and knew that Iraq wasn’t a threat to its neighbors.

In the 70s, Attorney-General Eliot Richardson refused to comply with President Richard Nixon’s order to fire the Watergate Special Prosecutor, Archibald Cox --and resigned on the spot. His deputy, William Ruckelshaus, also refused to carry out the order and was fired. These are men who would not put their personal and professional ambition above the best interests of our country. Men who would not be Nixon’s "good soldiers". Their refusal was the price they were willing to pay for an effort to alert this nation to the impending corruption of our constitutional government.

Powell knew full well the impending human cost of invading and occupying Iraq. He also knew full well the shallow and deceptive justification for the war but apparently his conscience was not sufficiently troubled to resign in protest. It is too bad that the profile in courage attributed to Powell was not sufficient for him to share his doubts and protestations with the American parents and spouses who’s loved ones are now dying in an unnecessary war.

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