Constant's pations

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Monday, August 15, 2005

Cindy Sheehan and the Downing Street Memo

What do you do when all the lifeboats are taken and you're on a sinking ship in the middle of the cold Atlantic?

In 2004, Sheehan met with the President. Some say in 2005, she doesn't deserve another meeting with the President.

Small problem. Between 2004 and now, the world learned about the Downing Street Memo. We learned how, despite the facts, the President already planned the war.

This throws everything in the air. Most of all, the meeting Sheehan had with the President was resolved only with a lie. The truth is out. A new meeting is warranted.

Bush created intelligence; you deserve to know what he created

Some say that Mrs Sheehan is bringing discredit or dishonor to her son's death. But the problem with this argument is that her son didn't know the truth. He didn't die for a lawful war.

Casey was only supposed to follow lawful orders. When the President lies to Congress, fixes facts, and smears those who speak out about the war, the troops were led to believe that the war was just. The Downing Street Memo shows otherwise.

Sheehan knows about the Downing Street Memo. That's why she is asking:

  • What real objective was Casey and others sent to fight for?

  • How did his death contribute to an outcome?

  • Why did you kill my son?

    Normally when leaders get new information they adjust. Cindy Sheehan has new information. She wants a follow-up meeting.

    The President would have us believe that there's no need. But he is incorrect. We have new information. The original meeting needs a follow-up. Just like the White House press corps deserves an update.

    This President has two standards. To those he lies to, he wants them to take what happens. To those who have been lied to, he wants them to continue to believe in fiction. What the President and others would like is for Sheehan to go away. But she's staying.

    Leaders lead and they hold meetings to lead. But this leader is different. Some information is not to be brought up. What kind of leaders attend meeting where there no updates? That's not how the NSC works. They have updates. The President gets a daily intelligence update.

    The President gets intelligence updates with new information. If there is new information the NSC covers that information.

    The President only wants some people to get an update: Himself. But he doesn't want to give an update to those he's already lied to. For him, the decision has been made. There is no reason to revisit the issue.

    The President is entitled to updates, but not America? No. It doesn't work that way.

    We were led to believe that this war was about freedom, democracy, and the goal to eliminate WMDs. In reality, we were told lies. We were told that all the options had been exhausted. The Downing Street Memo shows us otherwise. We now know the "noble cause" was nothing but an excuse.

    The President has a problem. He would like the world to "not ask questions" and "consider the issue over". That was in 2004. Now, in 2005, we have new information. We know the war was fixed, the intelligence was catered to the war menu.

    Leaders lead. And they adjust. When there's new information on the table, they consider it. Not this President. Once he's made his decision, the discussion is over. When he lies about war, he doesn't want to hear about the Downing Street Memo.

    This was a war of choice. Now that we know about the Downing Street Memo we also know the war was not only unlawful, but the President knew it was unlawful. He ordered is troops to follow unlawful orders for unlawful military objectives. But they continue to volunteer.

    To stay up to date, the President attends meetings, receives updates, and listens to briefings. America has been kept up to date. We have the Downing Street Memo.

    In theory, when a leader gets new information, they're supposed to adjust, consider it, to achieve their goal. But when the original goal is unlawful, the only "adjustment" is how we avoid accountability for the "new information."

    The idea of information is so that there is feedback. But this President doesn't want to hear it. He ignores the Government Accountability Office audit reports; Halliburton still gets the contract, even if the missing money was supposed to pay for an unlawful war.

    Others like to tell him what he wants to hear, and discredit those who dare speak out. To silence the unfavorable information, this President targets RNC demonstrators. The videos were falsified and CIA agents names leaked to smear, intimidate, and discredit those with different views.

    Some are entitled to updates. Others, are not. Casey's mom got the update with the Downing street Memo. The President doesn't want to be reminded. The President made a poor choice.

    The contrast is striking: The President wants updates, but he wants to ignore those who have been updated. When the update is consistent with what the President wants to hear, it is desired. But when the information is not consistent with what he wants, or it not favorable feedback, the President doesn't want to hear about it.

    Someone didn't learn from Pearl Harbor

    Leaders lead and adjust, but not this one. We had no mobilization after 9-11: We still have equipment problems, and manpower is wanting.

    After Pearl Harbor, WWII ended four years later. Here we are in 2005, with no end in sight. That is unacceptable.

    The new information is that the RNC continues to see their President for what he is: Unreliable, unresponsive, and a troubled man with double standards. He launched an illegal war and Casey's mom knows. The President knows that the world knows about the Downing Street Memo.

    Some in the Republican party throw up their hands. They turn to the Democrats saying, "OK, what's your plan?" This is the RNC's mess and they should ask their "leader" that question. He has no new information.

    Lesson from Iraq: Plans need to be based on facts

    Democrats should not fall for the trap of answering the RNC's plea, "What is your plan?" The RNC admits that their plans are worthless.

    The DNC approach and plan? It is simple: Have a full inquiry into the Downing Street Memo, and plan for an impeachment. In the meantime, it is foolish to offer any plan to assist the RNC -- we have no facts to credibly develop any plan.

    When they scream for assistance, throw the question back on the RNC and remind them, "Our plan is to have an inquiry, find the facts, and clean up this cess pool in the White House. When we know the facts, we can get a plan together."

    Cindy Sheehan has the facts: The Downing Street Memo tells the world that Bush sent her son Casey to his death for only one thing: Bush wanted revenge on Saddam. But Bush didn't think about the details. He's not a leader. The RNC is stuck with him.

    America is not stuck with tyranny. We have a constitution--the shield to tyranny, and the sword to tyrants.

    Hiding information means citizens cannot provide informed assistance

    Bush brought this on himself. All the information the citizens might be able to use to help him are classified not because of national security, but because Bush doesn't want the truth to be known.

    Free citizens cannot possibly help any leader when they are not given the information to provide inputs. That is why we need an inquiry into the Downing Street Memo, to

  • Find the facts;

  • Assign responsibility;

  • Impose justice; and then, and only then

  • Move forward with a new plan.

    When the smoke clears and the facts are known, we can move forward and chart a new course. One that is aligned with the rule of law, the Constitution, and the lessons of 1776, not the path of tyranny. Thanks to the real patriots in GCHQ [not the NSA], the world knows a little more. But there is much more to be known.

    The lies are pervasive. Casey died in vain. This leadership is no different than what we had during Vietnam. We hear cries of, "We want to contain the problem in Iraq." That claim is hollow. The problem wasn't there until we stirred up the problem, which continues to get worse.

    Bush has exhausted his political capital. His own party members are unwilling to blindly trust him, more worried about their own political futures than that of the party.

    It is decision time for the RNC. Are they going to stick by their captain and go down with the Titanic; or are they going to jump ship? The RNC has a problem. The DNC already has all the lifeboats. It's very cold water.


    The inquiry needs to understand how the Congress let this happen.

  • Why is there a double standard; why are some meetings and information and updates "better" than other updates.

  • When the President gets new information, does he remind the briefer that "he already made that decision" and he doesn't want to hear any more?

  • What is to be done when a President makes decisions without reviewing the facts or the laws?

  • Has Bush "made a decision" about 9-11 in that the problem was "supposed to go away" but there was no plan?

  • Why the difference with Sheehan -- why doesn't the "new information" in the Downing Street Memo not deserve a follow-up or update to the 2004 meeting?

  • Or are we to believe the opposite: That the CIA only briefs the President on "new things"; and anything that is "old" is never brought up again?

  • What is to be done when a President has the statutory duty to make informed national security decisions but her refuses to remain informed or ignores?

    The President didn't respond to the 52 FAA warnings prior to 9-11. He didn't respond to the first alert; it is clear he decided there was no reason to respond to the subsequent information: He had already made his decision to do nothing.

    Cindy Sheehan has new information. She deserves an answer. America has new information and we deserve updates and new information on the President's poor choices:

  • What happened with the Geneva Conventions? By ignoring the laws of war, we have committed torture on POWs, but this lawless nation held no leaders to account and ignores the laws of war.

  • Where was the imminent threat? Without an imminent threat, the invasion is unlawful and a high crime.

  • Why was the planning so abysmal? Without allocating resources to objectives, they have shown they cannot plan and continue to squander our scarce human can capital resources.

  • Why was the Congress lied to with false evidence? When war is the foregone conclusion, we need to ask what will be the circuit breaker so these deceptions do not happen again under our constitution.

  • All that planning before 9-11, and we still don't have enough equipment or troops. What will it take for an adjustment? ]

    It would be appropriate for America to have an update: Unlike the 2004 Presidential election, you will be in a position to make an informed decision.

    If you want to know why more are asked to fight and die; or what the President's real plans are, you need to ask your Congressional representatives to vote for an inquiry into the Downing Street Memo.

    When we have the facts, we can develop a credible plan and way forward. We're not there yet. Soon we will be.

    Links of interest

  • Why the DSM is a problem for Bush.

  • Cindy's testimony at the Downing Street Memo hearings.

  • Cindy's article 15 Aug 2005.