Cheney Leaves The Wicked With No Peace On Sunday

Cheney Leaves The Wicked With No Peace On Sunday

February 14th, 2010 Posted By Pat Dollard.


ABC News:

Former vice president Dick Cheney, in an exclusive appearance on ABC News’ “This Week,” offered a sharp critique of the Obama administration’s handling of national security and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, saying any achievements over the past year largely stemmed from policies implemented under President George W. Bush.

“If [the administration is] going to take credit for [Iraq’s success], fair enough … but it ought to come with a healthy dose of ‘Thank you, George Bush’ up front and a recognition that some of their early recommendations with respect to prosecuting that war were just dead wrong,” Cheney told ABC’s Jonathan Karl.

Earlier Sunday, Vice President Joe Biden said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that Cheney “either is misinformed or he is misinformaing” about what policies have been most effective in combating terrorists.

Biden has also suggested that Iraq may end up being one of the Obama administration’s greatest successes.

“Obama and Biden campaigned from one end of the country to the other for two years criticizing our Iraq policy,” Cheney said. “If they had had their way, if we’d followed the policies they’d pursued from the outset or advocated from the outset, Saddam Hussein would still be in power in Baghdad today.”

On Afghanistan, Cheney said he is a “complete supporter” of President Obama’s decision to send more troops to region and praised the selection of Gen. Stanley McChrystal to head the effort.

But the former vice president repeated his rebuke of the administration’s handling of suspected terrorists, including would-be Christmas Day bomber Umar Abdulmutallab.

Following the attempted attack on Dec. 25, Abdulmuttallab was interrogated for 50 minutes, read his Miranda rights, and has been arraigned in U.S. federal court. The Obama administration also has promised to close the detention center at Guantanamo Bay, try several high-profile suspected terrorists in U.S. federal courts and repatriate others abroad.

Cheney said the Mirandizing and detention of convicted shoe-bomber Richard Reid by law enforcement officials in December 2001 was appropriate at the time because military commissions were not yet operational.

“We hadn’t had all the Supreme Court decisions handed down about what we could and couldn’t do with the commissions,” he said.

Reid was arraigned in U.S. federal court but never faced a trial because he plead guilty.

“I do see repeatedly examples that there are key members in the administration — like Eric Holder, for example, the attorney general — that still insist upon thinking of terror attacks against the United States as criminal acts of war,” Cheney told Karl.

Cheney: Biden ‘Dead Wrong’ On Chances of Another Attack

Cheney said the Obama administration’s “mindset” is putting the country at risk of a terrorist attack and cited as an example Vice President Biden’s recent statement that another attack on the scale of 9/11 is “unlikely.”

“I just think that’s just dead wrong,” Cheney said. “I think the biggest threat the United States faces today is the possibility of another 9/11 with a nuclear weapon or a biological agent of some kind. And I think al Qaeda is out there — even as we meet — trying to do that.

“You have to consider it as a war,” Cheney said. “You have to consider it as something we may have to deal with tomorrow. You don’t want the vice president of the United States running around saying, ‘Oh, it’s not likely going to happen.’”

The former vice president acknowledged that the debate over whether to treat threats to national security as criminal or wartime acts was waged within the Bush administration, too.

“We had a major shootout over how this was going to be handled between the Justice Department that advocated that approach and the rest of us that wanted to treat it as an act of war,” he said.

Cheney said he disagrees with Obama administration’s decision not to use so-called enhanced interrogation techniques and said he argued for them within the administration during the Bush years.

“I was a big supporter of waterboarding,” Cheney said. “I was a big supporter of the enhanced interrogation techniques…I think you ought to have all of those capabilities on the table.”

Cheney, who said he has not seen former president George W. Bush since they left office over one year ago, may be the previous administration’s most outspoken member.

Cheney said he was “deeply offended” by attempts to investigate and prosecute Bush administration and CIA officials who helped construct and justify their counterterrorism policy.

“I thought it was important for some senior person in the administration to stand up and defend those people who’d done what we asked them to do,” he said.

Cheney Undecided on Palin for President

When asked about former Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaksa’s presidential qualifications, Cheney said, “I haven’t made a decision yet on who I’m going to support.”

“I think all of the prospective candidates out there have got a lot of work to do if in fact they are going to persuade a majority of Americans that they are ready to take on the world’s toughest job,” Cheney said.

An ABC News/Washington Post poll released this week found 71 percent say “no” when asked if Palin is qualified to serve as President. Among Republicans polled, approximately 52 percent think she’s not qualified to be commander in chief.

Cheney took issue with Palin’s suggestion that President Obama could help himself politically if he declared war on Iran.

“I don’t think a president can make a judgment like that on the basis of politics,” Cheney said. “The stakes are too high, the consequences too significant to be treating those as simple political calculations,” Cheney said. “When you begin to talk about war, talk about crossing international borders, you talk about committing American men and women to combat, that takes place on a plane clear above any political consideration.”

In an interview last week on “Fox News Sunday,” Palin said that if Obama “toughen[ed] up” and “secured our nation,” people might think differently about him.

“Say he decided to declare war on Iran or decide to really come out and do whatever he could to support Israel, which I would like him to do,” Palin said. “[I]f he decided to toughen up … I think people would perhaps shift their thinking a little bit and decide, ‘Well, maybe he’s tougher than we think he’s, than he is today.’”

Reconsider ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,’ Cheney Says

Cheney said he thinks it’s time to “reconsider” the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy that prohibits gays and lesbians from serving openly in the U.S. military.

“Twenty years ago, the military were strong advocates of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ when I was secretary of defense,” Cheney said. “I think things have changed significantly since then.”

Cheney served as the secretary of defense from 1989 to 1993 in the first Bush administration.

“I’m reluctant to second-guess the military in this regard,” Cheney said. “When the chiefs come forward and say, ‘We think we can do it,’ then it strikes me that it’s time to reconsider the policy.

Cheney Penning Memoir

The former vice president plans to see his former boss, President George W. Bush, at an administration reunion in the coming weeks, he said.

Cheney has been keeping busy by penning his memoir, which is due on bookshelves next year.

Cheney Has Serious Doubt about Obama

Cheney Has Serious Doubt about Obama

August 31st, 2009


Calling it a “terrible decision” that undermines national security and devastates CIA morale, former Vice President Dick Cheney slammed the Obama administration’s probe of aggressive interrogation of terrorists.

“It’s an outrageous political act that will do great damage, long-term, to our capacity to be able to have people take on difficult jobs, make difficult decisions, without having to worry about what the next administration is going to say,” Cheney told “FOX News Sunday” in a no-holds-barred interview.

In blunt, unsparing language, Cheney accused President Obama of setting a “terrible precedent” by allowing an “intensely partisan, politicized look back at the prior administration.”

He said the decision by Attorney General Eric Holder to launch a probe into alleged abuse of prisoners under the prior administration “offends the hell out of me,” as he seemed to question Obama’s fitness as commander-in-chief.

“I have serious doubts about his policies,” Cheney told FOX News’ Chris Wallace in Jackson Hole, Wyo. “Serious doubts, especially, about the extent to which he understands and is prepared to do what needs to be done to defend the nation.”

Read More:

Cheney Statement on CIA Documents/Investigation

Cheney Statement on CIA Documents/Investigation

Former Vice President Dick Cheney gave The Weekly Standard a statement Monday night about the CIA documents and the coming Justice Department investigation.

The documents released Monday clearly demonstrate that the individuals subjected to Enhanced Interrogation Techniques provided the bulk of intelligence we gained about al Qaeda. This intelligence saved lives and prevented terrorist attacks. These detainees also, according to the documents, played a role in nearly every capture of al Qaeda members and associates since 2002. The activities of the CIA in carrying out the policies of the Bush Administration were directly responsible for defeating all efforts by al Qaeda to launch further mass casualty attacks against the United States. The people involved deserve our gratitude. They do not deserve to be the targets of political investigations or prosecutions. President Obama’s decision to allow the Justice Department to investigate and possibly prosecute CIA personnel, and his decision to remove authority for interrogation from the CIA to the White House, serves as a reminder, if any were needed, of why so many Americans have doubts about this Administration’s ability to be responsible for our nation’s security

Cheney Lands 10 Solid Punches to Obama’s Jaw

Telegraph:Cheney Lands 10 Solid Punches to Obama’s Jaw
Clarice Feldman

Conceding that pugilistic terms best suit the comparison of the Cheney and Obama dueling speeches on defense, Toby Harnden of the Telegraph reports that former Vice President Cheney landed 10 solid punches on Obama’s jaw:

Cheney’s speech wasn’t stylish, there were no rhetorical flourishes and the tone was bitingly sarcastic and disdainful at times. But it was effective in many respects and Cheney showed that Obama is not invulnerable. Here are 10 of the punches he landed on the President’s jaw:

1. “I’ve heard occasional speculation that I’m a different man after 9/11. I wouldn’t say that, but I’ll freely admit that watching a coordinated, devastating attack on our country from an underground bunker at the White House can affect how you view your responsibilities.”

Anyone who was in New York or Washington on 9/11 (I was here in DC) was profoundly affected and most Americans understand this. Obama was, as far as I can tell, in Chicago. His response – he was then a mere state senator for liberal Hyde Park – was startlingly hand-wringing and out of step with how most Americans were felling. This statement by Cheney reminds people of the tough decisions he and Bush had to make – ones that Obama has not yet faced.
It is something to read a major press piece by someone not beset by Obama fever.

Page Printed from: at May 22, 2009 – 10:27:57 AM EDT

Cheney: Obama endangers the nation

Cheney: Obama endangers the nation

Former Vice President Dick Cheney on Sunday continued his verbal attack against President Obama, saying that the country is more vulnerable to a potential terrorist attack since the Obama administration took power.

Mr. Cheney said that administration’s dismantling of many of the policies and protections instituted by President George W. Bush after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks — including the planned closing of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp in Cuba and halting controversial prisoner interrogation techniques — have made the country more vulnerable to future attacks.

“That’s my belief,” Mr. Cheney said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.” “I think to the extent that those [Bush-era] policies were responsible for saving lives, that the administration is now trying to cancel those policies … means in the future we’re not going to have the same safeguards we’ve had for the last eight years.”

The former vice president defended controversial interrogation techniques such as waterboarding, saying that it had been an effective tool in extracting useful information from suspected terrorists such as Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, who is accused of helping carry out the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks Washington and New York.

“He did not cooperate fully in terms of interrogations until after waterboarding,” Mr. Cheney said. “Once we went through that process, he produced vast quantities of invaluable information about al Qaida.”

Mr. Obama in January banned the practice on prisoners by U.S. interrogators.

Mr. Cheney said he believes it’s his duty to speak out against the Obama administration “because I think the issues that are at stake here are so important.”

Mr. Cheney also took a shot at former Bush administration Secretary of State Colin Powell, saying that the conservative broadcaster Rush Limbaugh is a more loyal Republican than the former Army commander.

“If I had to choose in terms of being a Republican, I’d go with Rush Limbaugh,” Mr. Cheney said.

Mr. Powell recently said that Republicans need to more move to the center politically and that Mr. Limbaugh’s polarizing far-right rhetoric hurts the party’s image.

Mr. Limbaugh retaliated by accusing Mr. Powell of being “just another liberal” and that he should become a Democrat.

“I think my take on it was Colin had already left the party,” Mr. Cheney said. “I didn’t know he was still a Republican.”

Cheney to GOP: “It would be a mistake for us to moderate”

Cheney to GOP: ‘It would be a mistake for us to moderate’


Dick Cheney did an interview today with Scott Hennen, a North Dakota radio host, whose staff sent over a transcript (after the jump), defending the Bush administration and advising the Republican Party to stay with its roots.

“I think it would be a mistake for us to moderate,” Cheney said. “This is about fundamental beliefs and values and ideas … what the role of government should be in our society, and our commitment to the Constitution and constitutional principles. You know, when you add all those things up, the idea that we ought to moderate basically means we ought to fundamentally change our philosophy. I for one am not prepared to do that, and I think most of us aren’t. Most Republicans have a pretty good idea of values, and aren’t eager to have someone come along and say, ‘Well, the only way you can win is if you start to act more like a Democrat.'”

Cheney did, however, say it was probably time for his fellow Republicans to shove him off the stage.

“I think periodically we have to go through one these sessions. It helps clear away some of the underbrush … some of the older folks who’ve been around a long time — like yours truly — need to move on and make room for that young talent that’s coming along,” he said.

Cheney also defended the Bush administration’s national security policies, and advised President Obama to fight any effort to prosecute Bush officials.

He responded to a question about interrogation by saying harsh means were a last resort.

“That assumes that we didn’t try other ways, and in fact we did. We resorted, for example, to waterboarding, which is the source of much of the controversy … with only three individuals,” Cheney said. “In those cases, it was only after we’d gone through all the other steps of the process. The way the whole program was set up was very careful to use other methods and only to resort to the enhanced techniques in those special circumstances.”

Full transcript after the jump.



Hennen: Let’s talk a little bit about the state of the Republican Party these days. Arlen Specter obviously has created a big fuss with his defection over the last week. Does that surprise you?

Cheney: Not really. You know, we’d gone through the exercise here right after we got elected in 2000, and controlled the Senate just by virtue of my ability to cast a tie vote. It was 50-50, and then my vote gave us control of the Senate. They worked hard to switch Jeffords then — and they did — they promised him a committee chairmanship and so he went over to the other side and changed control of the Congress. I always had the feeling though that people looked at that and didn’t really like it. One of the things I thought it did was to build support for the Republican side in the next election in ’02, and we had an extraordinary outcome there where the Administration actually gained seats in the Senate in an off-year election (which almost never happens). So there are often times lasting consequences from these kinds of switches…and they’re not always positive from the side that receives the individual doing the switching.

Hennen: Some people are wringing their hands saying, “This is an example of why the party needs to change, to hear the message of Specter,” that, as Colin Powell said, the Republican Party needs to moderate. Do you think the Republican Party needs to moderate? Is that the message of the Specter defection, or the state of the party these days?

Cheney: No I don’t. I think it would be a mistake for us to moderate. This is about fundamental beliefs and values and ideas … what the role of government should be in our society, and our commitment to the Constitution and Constitutional principles. You know, when you add all those things up the idea that we ought to moderate basically means we ought to fundamentally change our philosophy. I for one am not prepared to do that, and I think most us aren’t. Most Republicans have a pretty good idea of values, and aren’t eager to have someone come along and say, “Well, the only way you can win is if you start to act more like a Democrat.” I really think we go through these cycles periodically Scott, and I’ve been through them before. I remember campaigning across the country with Gerald Ford in 1974 when I was his Chief of Staff. This was the Watergate Election, the first one since Nixon had to resign. It was a train wreck; I mean, we got blown away in every part of the country. In 1976 we lost the presidency. By 1980 Ronald Reagan was president, we’d had a major resurgence in the party and we’d captured control of the Senate, and obviously embarked upon the Reagan Era in American politics. So I think periodically we have to go through one these sessions. It helps clear away some of the underbrush…some of the older folks who’ve been around a long time (like yours truly) need to move on, and make room for that young talent that’s coming along. But I think it’s basically healthy. I don’t spend a lot of time or lose a lot of sleep over it. I just think now is the time for people who are committed to get out there and find candidates they like and go to work for them.

Hennen: Is the Obama administration helping the resurgence or the “renaissance” of the conservative cause by overreaching very early on?

Cheney: I think it will. I watch what he is doing, especially in the National Security area which is sort of my first interest. This whole question of detainees and interrogation of detainees and the Terrorist Surveillance Program and so forth, closing Guantanamo…I don’t think the vast majority of Americans support what he wants to do. I think in fact most Americans are pleased — when they think about it — that we were able to go nearly eight years without another major attack on the United States. They think we handled that pretty well. We were not a perfect administration (none ever is), but I think what we did in the counter-terrorist area was extremely effective. I think Obama needs to be careful because he appears to want to cancel out some of those most important policies. Then you get into this whole thing of closing Guantanamo and of course the bottom line there is “What are you going to do with all these terrorists that are in Guantanamo?”

Hennen: Do you believe the President, the Vice President, this current administration — really believes those things did not work and have not worked, or this is all political? Is this basically pandering to the far left?

Cheney: Well, I think what’s motivated them from the outset has been — as you say — trying to appeal to the far-left in their party. I think that was an issue for them in the primaries on the Democratic side during the last election. I think the situation is that if anybody (who obviously has to have clearances) takes a look at the record, they’ll find that we had significant success as a result of these policies. One way to nail that down is that there are two documents in particular that I personally have read and know about that are still classified in that National Archives. I’d ask that they be de-classified, I made that request over a month ago on March 31st. What those documents show is the success, especially of the interrogation program in terms of what it produced by way of intelligence that let us track down members of Al-Qaeda and disrupt their plans and plots to strike the United States. It’s all there in black and white. It is work that was done by the Central Intelligence Agency after several years of experience with these programs. It demonstrates conclusively the worth of those programs. As I say, I’ve asked the Administration to de-classify them and so far they have not.

Hennen: Yeah, they have selectively have released these memos (which is very interesting, given their past criticisms as well about politicizing intelligence) because clearly, that is what they are doing here. Now they have said, “the President was asked about this during the 100 Day Press Conference the other day, and he said that basically he had read the memos, and basically that he believes we could have gotten this information in other ways, in ways that were consistent with our values and ways that were consistent with who we are.” What is your response to that?

Cheney: Well, I don’t believe that’s true. That assumes that we didn’t try other ways, and in fact we did. We resorted, for example, to waterboarding, which is the source of much of the controversy … with only three individuals. In those cases, it was only after we’d gone through all the other steps of the process. The way the whole program was set up was very careful, to use other methods and only to resort to the enhanced techniques in those special circumstances.

Hennen: Three individuals, right?

Cheney: In the waterboarding in particular — which has been the most controversial — was a total of three individuals. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed being the number one. Of course he was the guy who planned and carried out the attacks on 9/11, which killed 3,000 Americans.

Hennen: I’m sure this is driving the media crazy today, but a CNN story today suggests half the public in a new poll approves of the Bush administration decision to use those techniques during the questioning of suspected terrorists. It also indicates that most Americans don’t want to see an investigation of Bush Administration officials who authorized the interrogation techniques on these suspected terrorists. That can’t be doing the Obama folks any good, because they seem to kind of want to perpetuate this.

Cheney: Well, and they are especially sensitive to polls, I think. Just think about it for a minute: the idea that one administration is going to come in and take power — and then they’re going to turn around and prosecute, (or if not prosecute sanction, lawyers who gave advice that they disagreed with) — to their predecessors. I’ve never heard of such a thing. And talk about putting a wet blanket on anybody in government’s willingness to be bold in their recommendations and so forth. Just forget that. Anybody who sees that kind of thing happen is going to pull their head in and they’ll be reluctant to take responsibility for anything. They’ll be reluctant to recommend the kind of actions that were necessary to defend the country over the last eight years. I hear this talk that there is going to be some kind of foreign prosecution of our guys, and I think they ought to do everything they can to fight that.

Hennen: Our guest, former Vice President Dick Cheney on the Scott Hennen Show and The Common Sense Club today. By the way, there is an incredible double standard here in the media coverage. Is that frustrating to you at all? I look at the recent flap over the photo opportunity for Air Force One above New York City, and I imagine had that happened — not that it ever would — in the Bush administration, how the media would have hyperventilated over that forever! And it’s been forgotten. We’re led to believe somehow the President was mad about it. Is it possible for the White House Military Office now under a political appointee, different from your administration when it was a military officer that held that post, that the White House or some high-level staff didn’t know about that?

Cheney: I would assume that some senior staffer signed off on that. Especially a mission with, with in effect what is the backup for Air Force One, there are two of those planes, big 747’s. Either one can function as Air Force One anytime the President is on it. I used them a couple of times during our administration for special trips. You know, they don’t turn a wheel without a lot of people knowing about it and signing off and approving it. A pilot can’t just go out there and get on board and take it for a spin.

Hennen: These are the kind of things that I think worry people, that essentially you have an ”amateur hour” going on at the White House. There is a lot of angst amongst our audience, amongst our listeners about all of these things … about the apology tour that’s happening all across the world … what’s happening politicizing intelligence … all the way down to Air Force One. Are you worried?

Cheney: Well I think people need to be engaged and making their points as you know them, and talking to their members of Congress. For a while there was this talk out there that we ought to cut these guys some slack and that they shouldn’t be criticized in the early days of their administration. I haven’t spent a lot of time operating according to that proposition. The fact is that I think these are very important issues and it’s vital they be debated and I think they need to be held to account just like any other administration.

Hennen: One example, we got this reach out effort to Iran and these rogue dictators — Ahmadinejad and these individuals like that. We’ve got Roxana Saberi — happens to be a Fargo North grad, a Concordia College graduate — so she’s a hometown gal who’s been a journalist over there, imprisoned right now. The Administration, after all their touchy-feely reach out effort has said, “no success” on getting her released. It doesn’t work to talk nice to these guys does it?

Cheney: It doesn’t seem to.

Hennen: I also wanted to ask you about the economic situation a little bit. Do you look back at all and regret the waning days of the administration and following Hank Paulson’s lead on some of the bailouts that, (now as we look at them) do not seem to be performing in the way we’d hoped?

Cheney: Well I think the jury is still out on where the economy is going to go over the next year or two, but clearly those were some tough decisions. As somebody who’s got a conservative record as I do, and for example worked in the wage price control program back in the ’70s, and not exactly a fan of expanding the size and role of government in our society. What we ended up with that last year of the Bush Administration was a situation in which the experts were telling us that the financial system is near collapse, and that was very worrisome, because the ultimate responsibility for our financial institutions resides with the federal government. It’s been the role of the Federal Reserve Board, the Treasury, the FDIC, all of those regulatory bodies. If the financial system is broken, the government’s got to fix it. There isn’t anybody else that can do that. So that’s why I think a lot of us with a more conservative bent were willing to support or go along with the proposition that set up the programs that were used during the last few months we were in office — in effect to try and shore up the financial system — to get the credit markets working again and so forth. The thing I worry about is when that rationale is used in other parts of the economy that aren’t central to the functioning of our economy. If you’re in agriculture, you need access to financial institutions that work. If you’ve got a car dealership or you’re a babysitter or a homeowner — whatever it is — all of us rely on that financial system for whatever we’re doing. When we get over, for example, into the industrial side and automobiles, and the debate about the future of General Motors and Chrysler in particular, then I think government’s role there is different, and that you don’t automatically think that somehow the government needs to step in or should step in. Maybe Chapter 11 Bankruptcy is exactly the right response to restructure the company and make the changes that are needed so it becomes a viable enterprise … but government doesn’t need to be on that stand set to bail them out.



By Ben Smith 05:17 PM

Land of the Free

Land of the Free

Lord who grants salvation to kings and dominion to rulers, Whose kingdom is a kingdom spanning all eternities; Who places a road in the sea and a path in the mighty waters – may you bless the President, the Vice President, and all the constituted officers of government of this land. May they execute their responsibilities with intelligence, honor and compassion. And may these United States continue to be the land of the free and the home of the brave

Cheney is Absolutely Correct

Cheney is Absolutely Correct

By Ray Robison

On the Rush Limbaugh radio program, VP Cheney restated his position that Saddam had ties to al Qaeda. The Vice President is completely correct. Specifically, he spoke of Abu Mus’ab al Zarqawi’s presence in Iraq before the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom. As much as a year earlier, al Qaeda affiliated jihadists lead by Zarqawi began aggressive attacks on the Kurdish regions in the north of Iraq. Why would this committed jihadist leader bring his fighters to Iraq to attack Saddam’s enemies?  

While researching for our new eBook Both In One Trench we realized that there seems to be a confluence of prominent terrorists emanating from Kuwait after it was occupied by Saddam’s armies. Many of these men are of Palestinian ethnicity. The Palestinians living in Kuwait had favored Saddam because he was a prominent proponent of the Palestinian cause. Their allegiance to Saddam was so thorough that the Kuwaiti government kicked out its Palestinian population after liberation because they collaborated with Saddam. Saddam’s support of Palestinian terrorism is incontrovertible.
A large number of these Palestinians, over a hundred thousand, made their way to Jordan where they began to radicalize the moderate Jordanian population. One of these Palestinians – part of the Palestinian migration from Kuwait which has been  termed the “returnees from Kuwait” – was Sheik Abu-Mohammed al-Maqdisi (or Isam Mohammad Taher al-Barqawi). He would later become a major al Qaeda leader.
Barqawi became the spiritual leader for the newly radicalized Jordanians like Abu Mus’ab Al Zarqawi. Zarqawi would organize a group of radicalized Jordanians and other “returnees from Kuwait” called tawhid, which would align itself with al Qaeda for the Millennium Plot (or before).
Barqawi, a Palestinian-Jordanian, a “returnee from Kuwait” sympathized with Saddam. Barqawi sent Zarqawi to Iraq with other Palestinian-Jordanian “returnees” to fight jihad against Saddam’s enemies, not to fight Saddam. It may very well be that Zarqawi had no personal love for the Ba’athists. But Osama bin Laden himself has called for the jihadists in Iraq to work with the Ba’athists to defeat the Christian crusaders.  
A study  reported by the Middle East Media Research Institute explains what happened next:
 The Jihad fighters “related that Abu Mus’ab [Al-Zarqawi] used the experience of the [Iraqi] Ba’th[ists] in his war on the Americans and Iraqis, including regarding the security issue. [A man named] Ahmad clarified that this was particularly true regarding the city of Al-Fallujah, which contained hundreds of former Iraqi military intelligence officers with great experience in the security sphere.
According to one of Zarqawi’s own followers, Zarqawi traveled to Iraq where he joined with Saddam’s intelligence agents – with great experience – not new recruits but senior level intelligence officials, loyal men who would only have been there if they had been sent by Saddam.
The evidence of this alliance is the insurgency itself. The Iraqi government has many times tried to inform the American public that the leaders of the insurgency are Ba’athists working with al Qaeda. Such reports are ignored or criticized by the US media. Typically, the US media trots out a retired, senior CIA official who made rank under President Clinton to deny these reports because they don’t want the American public to know that Ba’athists and Islamic terrorists were working together before the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom. To acknowledge such a connection would be to demonstrate that certain intelligence officials who said that this type of combined operation could not happen – in fact made careers off the theory after the 1993 WTC attack – were wrong.
Some time after the Saddam regime fell and Zarqawi began to slaughter Iraqis, Barqawi (Maqdisi) got cold feet. He tried to rein-in Zarqawi which caused a split in the Palestinian-Jordanian branch of al Qaeda. In late 2004, Zarqawi distanced himself from the Jordanian branch of al Qaeda by swearing allegiance directly to al Qaeda. In other words, he quit the Barqawi branch of al Qaeda and went to the Ayman al Zawahiri branch because he still needed jihad recruits to fight in Iraq.
Upon breaking away from his mentor, he began to set himself up as the Islamic authority in Iraq (the pupil became the teacher). Those Iraqi intelligence agents who had worked with him since before OIF had themselves become radicalized, realized the Ba’athist regime wasn’t coming back, and began to swear loyalty to Zarqawi. Thus, Zarkawi, who had come to Iraq to support the Saddam regime would abandon his directives from his mentor and attempt to take direct control of Iraq.
But why would Saddam send senior IIS agents to work with jihadists? Because they were already working with Islamic jihadists long before the start of OIF. This Dar al Hayat article, “The Resistance In The “Sunni Triangle”,  makes clear that because the Iraqi economy was strangled by UN sanctions. Saddam’s senior military officials, many of them with land grants in Fallujah – where Zarqawi teamed up with them – had smuggled oil in cooperation with Islamic extremists. These Islamic extremists were joined to Anbar province by religious and tribal affiliation.
These extremists, already living under the radar in places like Jordan, were the perfect smuggling partners. Thus, as the sanctions dragged on, senior Iraqi military leaders and even a few close advisors to Saddam began to adhere to the extremists’ Islamic teachings. Initially, Saddam tried to shut it down. But because these Iraqi officials were Saddam’s support base, he eventually had to come to terms with them to protect his power. These Islamic extremists and smugglers were from places like the Palestinian “returnee” camps in Jordan. They were feeding Saddam’s support base.
Our research points to these Palestinian-Jordanian “returnees” as one of many portals of influence between Saddam and the global Islamic jihad movement. Other portals of influence to the movement include Gulbuddin Hekmatyar (Islamic Party) and Mulla Omar (Taliban) in Afghanistan, Maulana Fazlur Rahman and his jihad political parties in Pakistan, Hassan al Turabi and his National Islamic Front followers in Sudan, and Ayman al Zawahiri himself with the Egyptian Islamic Jihad, and later when it became al Qaeda along with Bin Laden’s followers.
To not see the portals means averting the eyes. Too many people who should know better have done so.
Ray Robison is co-author of the forthcoming book Both in One Trench, and a frequent contributor to American Thinker

Battling Templates: Whitewater versus Plame

Battling Templates: Whitewater versus Plame
By Christopher Alleva

The liberal media make it too easy to expose their bias. Thanks to the internet, it is almost child’s play to find the same behavior treated very differently, depending on whether Democrats or Republicans are responsible.

Fishing in the Washington Post archive I caught a nice essay written by the former ombudsmen Richard Harwood on March 19, 1994 that attempted to contextualize the legion of scandals that beset the first years of the Clinton Administration.

Taking the trusty template tool out of my journalistic toolbox, I adapted the essay by substituting “Plame” for “Whitewater” and “Dick Cheney” for the “Clintons.” Several other minor changes were made to bring it up to date, such as moving Joe Klein from Newsweek to Time and substituting the number of Post Plame stories (398) for the number of Whitewater stories (209). Other than that, the quotes and narrative remain largely intact. Several of the journalists quoted are still working.

It’s amusing to imagine the likes of Joe Klein, David Gregory and Jonathan Alter writing giving quotable phrases like these about Dick Cheney. The following represents what coverage of Plame might look like if the MSM liked the Bush Administration as much as it liked the Clintons.


The Plame affair divides the country. It is also dividing the American press.

Columnist Robert Samuelson says, “The purported scandal is so far a political vendetta draped in legal trappings. The trappings are essential, because it is the mere possibility of wrongdoing that justifies the ongoing media attention.”

Joe Klein of Time magazine speculates on the possibility that Dick Cheney will emerge from his present trials as innocent victims of press hysteria. In that event, he asks, “Do we, the righteous guardians of the truth, admit that we blew this all out of proportion – or do we continue to puff motes into dust storms in order to justify our investment? Dick Cheney has earned his isolation. But he deserves a more sober hearing than this lunatic caldron.”

“Here we go,” writes Washington Post columnist Jonathan Yardley, “hurtling down the rapids of the Plame affair into a furious eddy of political opportunism and journalistic exhibitionism. The government of the United States will grind to a halt for a year or more, thank God, and the high-octane newsfolk of the nation’s capital will bore us all to tears with interminable recitations of imaginary outrages, but who cares? It’s going to be one hell of a ride.”

Russell Baker of the New York Times satirizes the media torrent and explains it: “The reason this rickety construction of innuendo and circumstance occupies the media so intensely is that Vice Presidents are central to the American need to be entertained. … the Plame affair is the best news in Washington now that Barbra Streisand no longer guests at the White House.”

From Harvard, Marvin Kalb, director of a media program at Harvard University, told The Post: “There is a rushing to judgment that is unprofessional and distasteful. The press is going to have a lot to answer for when this is over.” The gulf between what these critics are saying and what the press is doing reflects, among other things, confusion about our function in American life. The critics put forth an ethical view of journalism in which we should not act as detectives, prosecutors or judges but should allow our system of justice and its institutions to deal with matters of innocence or guilt. There should be, as Kalb said, no rush to judgment nor, as Klein put it, no “ridiculous hyperinflation” of small peccadilloes.

That is essentially the posture taken by the press during the Watergate scandal. It was first seen – by me, among others – as a “two bit break-in” and, with the exception of The Post and a few isolated journalists, it was largely ignored by the media. Nevertheless, justice ultimately was served. A president was brought down and others were punished, not by the press, as myth has it, but through the workings of the “system” – the judiciary, the FBI, a special prosecutor and Congress. I do not mean to equate Watergate and the Plame affair but merely to make the point that with or without the press, justice can and usually does prevail.

This is not the majoritarian operating premise of the press. Underlying our approach to potential public scandals is a general distrust of the “system.” We assume it can be manipulated by presidents, that “coverups” are both possible and likely from the White House down to city hall. Thus, at the hint of any scandal, it is our duty to dispatch investigative teams to dig out the truth as archaeologists do, piece by piece until the whole picture is revealed. In this process we monitor the “system’s institutions of justice for foot-dragging and coverup” and, as William Safire of the New York Times has said, “light fires” under the investigators.

That may have happened several times in the Plame affair. The first story about Ms. Plame by Robert Novak published in July 2003 had no visible impact. Several months later, however, the press and the Democrats were howling for a Special Prosecutor hence Patrick Fitzgerald the U.S. attorney in Chicago was named. Did Novak’s story “fire up” the CIA and the Department of Justice? No, it was not until Joe Wilson coordinatng with the Democrats began beating the drum did this get any traction.

We will never be able to establish beyond any doubt that the press has “lit fires” in the Plame or has played a “constructive” or “destructive” role in the pursuit of justice. We will never be able to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the press will have had any effect at all when this affair finally comes to an end.

George Church, a columnist for Time magazine, suggests that the real danger here is that the veracity and credibility of the Dick Cheney could be so damaged that he will be unable to see Iraq and other critical national security matters through to success.

The Plame affair news as of mid-March – 398 stories in The Post alone – doubtless has affected the political standing and reputation of Dick Cheney. We know that from the polls.

But as in the case of Plame affair, public interest in these abstract scandals is shallow and intermittent. Our affections for vice presidents vary almost by the hour and the day. So there is no reason to believe that whatever has been written or broadcast thus far will have any lasting effect on Dick Cheny’s place in history or in the hearts of his countrymen. Ask the ghost of Harry Truman.

What about the ghost of Bill Clinton?

Latest Scandal Exposed: Link Discovered Between Vice President of the United States and President of the United States!


Latest Scandal Exposed: Link Discovered Between Vice President of the United States and President of the United States!

This exchange between reporter John Roberts and Jim VandeHei of The Politico was lifted from a transcript of Roberts’s hit piece on Dick Cheney, which aired the other night on CNN’s Paula Zahn Now. The transcript was posted at NewsBusters. (“CNN’s John Roberts Defends His ‘Very Narrowly Sliced’ Cheney Attack Piece to Ingraham”).

ROBERTS: No question, Cheney is the most powerful vice president in recent memory, perhaps ever, intimately involved in policy development, national security. He has repeatedly frustrated Democratic attempts to peel back the veil of secrecy that surrounds his office. Will the Libby verdict force him to change his ways? Not likely, says VandeHei.

VANDEHEI: Dick Cheney is Dick Cheney. He’s certainly not going to change. And I — I don’t think that his critics will ever force him into changing. I mean, he has a modus operandi that’s well established. He does things behind the scenes. He works with the president very closely. He’s the president’s right-hand man. There’s no way that, suddenly, he’s going to become a lovable, huggable figure on the public stage.

My God, it just gets worse and worse. How will the Republic survive exposure of the VP actually being “intimately involved in policy development, national security,” rather than just fulfilling the role intended by the Founders of “a lovable, huggable figure on the public stage.”

Undoubtedly the House will soon be conducting hearings to get to the bottom of how the Vice President of the United States, for years now as far as we know, has been getting away with working with the President closely, even rising to the level of being the President’s “right-hand man.”

May God help us and our Constitution.