Gas Prices: Bush and Oil Companies Bad-Obama Good

3 of 280 – NewsBusters:

The average price for a gallon of unleaded gasoline hit $3.86 on April 25, more than $1-a-gallon higher than a year earlier and less than 25 cents away from the record high price of gasoline set in July 2008.

In fact, per gallon prices are more than $2 higher than when Obama took office Jan. 20, 2009. Yet the president has been nearly exempt from criticism on the issue of rising prices, despite a six-month drilling moratorium and more regulatory hurdles for industry.

The Business & Media Institute found that out of the 280 oil price stories the network evening shows have aired since the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, only 1 percent (3 stories) mentioned Obama’s drilling ban or other anti-oil actions in connection with gasoline prices.

Instead of asking whether Obama’s anti-oil policies could be increasing the cost of gas, the networks blamed other factors such as Mideast turmoil or the “money game” played by speculators. Certainly, the turmoil in Libya, Egypt and surrounding nations has increased worries about oil production and can influence the price. But the networks also should have looked for explanations much closer to home, like Obama’s many regulatory actions taken against the oil industry.

…(read more)…

Salons Joan Walsh Conveniently Forgets About BDS: Bush Derangement Syndrome

Via NewsBusters:

[….]

Really?

I guess Walsh has forgotten the term “Bush Derangement Syndrome” which was originally coined by Charles Krauthammer in December 2003:

Bush Derangement Syndrome: the acute onset of paranoia in otherwise normal people in reaction to the policies, the presidency — nay — the very existence of George W. Bush.

Now, I cannot testify to Howard Dean’s sanity before this campaign, but five terms as governor by a man with no visible tics and no history of involuntary confinement is pretty good evidence of a normal mental status. When he avers, however, that “the most interesting” theory as to why the president is “suppressing” the 9/11 report is that Bush knew about 9/11 in advance, it’s time to check on thorazine supplies.

When Rep. Cynthia McKinney first broached this idea before the 2002 primary election, it was considered so nutty it helped make her former Rep. McKinney. Today the Democratic presidential front-runner professes agnosticism as to whether the president of the United States was tipped off about 9/11 by the Saudis, and it goes unnoticed. The virus is spreading.

The virus indeed spread. Let’s recall that folks on the Left blamed Bush for among other things:

  • A recession that began less than two months after he took office as a result of the explosion of the tech bubble the year before
  • The attacks on 9/11 despite them taking years to plan
  • The Enron scandal
  • “Outing” Valerie Plame
  • Rising oil and gas prices
  • Hurricane Katrina including poorly maintained dikes
  • Tornado response in Kansas
  • The 2008 financial crisis despite the major culprits being the Financial Service Modernization Act of 1999 and the Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000 both enacted before he was inaugurated
  • Our current budget deficit despite the last budget he created with a Republican Congress in 2007 having produced a relatively tiny $160 billion shortfall and him being out of office for 26 months.

Of course, this is only a short list. So pervasive was BDS that there’s even a Wikipedia page devoted to it.

Sadly, this malady continues today as Matthews himself in January blamed the Egypt riots on Bush. New York Times columnist Frank Rich blamed last year’s BP oil spill on the former President as well.

I guess this is what Walsh would consider “coherent.”

Election of Bush Irks My Son’s Art Teacher (Retro Democratic History)

(This is imported from my old blog for inclusion in my .com’s posting)

Introduction

This paper is in response to a conversation about voting in my son’s Visual Arts class that climaxed with the teacher saying that the only reason that President Bush won the 2000 election in Florida was that he had a brother as governor and that some votes were not counted. (I am assuming that because the teacher mentioned the two together – that is, disenfranchisement and Governor Jeb Bush – that she believes in a conspiracy through all levels of the Florida government and Supreme Court to make sure that then Governor George W. Bush would win the election. This is the clear implication of what was said in the classroom.) The Military vote, point-in-fact, is the only provable vote that was withheld.

I wish to say here that any teacher has the right to own her or his opinion. We all have that right, you, me, anyone. However, one cannot own his or her own facts. And this is where the teacher may have crossed the line when she said (mind you I am going off what my son told me, as I was not there in the classroom at the time), “the only reason Bush won…”, you see, this goes beyond opinion within the realm of impressionable seventh-graders. Unchallenged in this environment, teachers in many classrooms in this valley and elsewhere get away with bringing a point of view that is unfounded by the facts of a reasonable investigation of “what did happen” in Florida. It isn’t nearly as infamous as the teacher put it.

I will use a partial excerpt from a paper I wrote to my son’s sixth-grade computer teacher (who was really a parent volunteer). Obviously this incomplete outlook on the election is widespread enough for me to respond to it almost every year since. I will explain some of the reasoning behind this apparent acceptance of something so easily explained away once the panorama of facts about the Florida recount are brought together rather than isolated, such as in Fahrenheit 911.

Recount ~ The Skinny

Eight counties were recounting ballots in Florida. All eight counties were using different standards to determine which ballots were to be allocated to Gore and which were to be allocated to Bush. First and foremost, all eight counties were Democratic counties, they had Democrats who were in charge of that counties election, and democrats devised the ballots themselves years before. Republicans were in the minority in these districts. This is rarely addressed. This aside, what would have been the outcome if the counts were allowed to continue? I want to answer this with an example (used in a prior letter to a teacher) from a poli-sci class I took at C.O.C.:

… last week I went to visit the professor at C.O.C. to give him a paper I wrote for his amusement, when I walked in the classroom the students were discussing the fact that President Bush went before the 911 Commission with Dick Cheney, one girl asked if Cheney had to hold Bush’s hand – sarcastically of course. Another student mentioned that Bush was not under oath or in a public setting for his hearing. I asked to interject; the professor gave me the green light, so I mentioned that President Clinton was not under oath, nor was his hearing public, and that he took along Bruce Lindsey and Sandy Burger. I then turned to the girl and asked if Bruce had one hand while Sandy had the other – sarcastically of course. Laughs abounded again.

Another student blurted out that Bush stole the election in the Florida debacle – so called. I responded simply to him that the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Associated Press, CNN, the Los Angeles Times, the Wall Street Journal and four Florida newspapers: the Orlando Sentinel, the Palm Beach Post, the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel and the St. Petersburg Times all recounted the votes multiple times, and each time Bush came out the winner. (In fact, they recounted the votes for the entire state eight-times and Bush won all eight-times. They did it eight-times so they could try each of the different counting “techniques” that each of the eight counties were using in their recounting efforts due to Gore bringing the matter into our courts.)[1] This is not including the military vote that Gore successfully withheld a part of, which would have even widened Bush’s lead considerably. This student had never heard a good response to this objection that he had been blurting out for four years to conservative classmates, friends and family…

This answers one aspect of the problem in regards to what would have happened. However, I want to explain why Florida was so “close.” I have a documentary that shows the actual graphics displayed by ABC, NBC, etc, during the original counting of the Florida ballots, what did their numbers show? At no time during the entire period of ballot counting in Florida was Bush ever behind in actual hard votes cast! One vote tally showed a 100,000-vote lead, another showed 150,000 lead prior to its drop.

Time Zones

The real problem lies in Florida being in two time zones. So when the polls closed in the eastern side of the state, ABC, NBC, CBS, MSNBC, and the like (except FOXNews), all said the polls had closed in Florida. Then CBS called Florida for Gore even though the hard tally count said otherwise, the other media moguls followed. The voters in the western part of Florida turned away from the polls in droves.

These voters who were told that Florida had already been called for Gore, and that the polls were closed, lived in a part of the state that is predominately Republican. Three groups did separate investigations into what type of voters decided not to go to the polls. All three came to the separate conclusion that anywhere between 5,000 to 10,000 Republican votes over the “disparaged” total [which included voters from both parties] were lost to this miscall by the media. So, if one were to add the military vote kept out by Gore and the lost votes from the western part of Florida, the gap in Bush’s lead would have been beyond the state recount minimum.

In fact, no news organization put Florida back into Bush’s column until after the polls closed across the country. The media outlets up to this point all mentioned that without Florida, Bush would lose the election, even FOX. The amount of Republicans deciding it useless to go to the polls in other time zones has not been calculated. I believe, though, it would mirror the three separate organizations that tallied western Florida’s disparaged voters, but on a grander scale. In fact, I believe that the popular vote would also be in Bush’s hands in 2000 if the media had not so egregiously miscalled the state of Florida. (Keep in mind this is my “opinion” based on the voters reactions, both Democratic and Republican, tallied by scientific means from three organizations investigations in western Florida. You see, this is opinion based on logic and science, not un-founded paranoia and suppositions alluded to by my son’s teacher.)

Again, though, even with all the above put aside, Bush won all the recounts, and the New York Times simply states that if the recount was allowed to continue by the U. S. Supreme Court that Bush would have been the clear winner.

Why The Bad Call?

Part of the miscall in the 2000 election can be tied directly to the early miscall in the 2004 election, in way of example. “Exit Polling” is the main culprit in this aspect of the problem. MSNBC and FOXNews had computer models of who was winning this time around that included the Exit Polling information. This skewed the election as going strongly to John Kerry. In fact, Kerry was gearing his thinking to a win. However, when MSNBC, FOXNews, ABC, CBS, and the like, dropped the Exit Polling info from their computer models half-way through the day, Bush surged about 5-percentage points.

These statistics were even worse during the 2000 election, allowing for the early and thus incorrect call for Florida. Let me state once again unequivocally, in the hard tallying of actual votes minus Exit Polling data, both in the 2004 election as a whole, and specifically in the 2000 debacle, Bush was never behind in the count.

5 to 4, or 7 to 9

Some are under the impression that the U.S. Supreme Court was split on the final decision along party divisions that had the five “conservative” Judges voting along demagogic lines for Bush, and the four “liberal” Judges for Gore. This is in fact untrue. On the heart of the case (that is, equal protection for the voter as well as for Bush and Gore) the U.S. Supreme Court was almost unanimous. A seven/two split! The most liberal Supreme Court Judge agreeing that the eight differing standards in what is and is not acceptable for a Gore/Bush ballot allocation shouldn’t be allowed to continue.

These seven Judges took into consideration the Constitutional aspects of the problem, as well as the Florida Constitution’s limitations to time in regards to a recount. All seven agreed that there was insufficient time to bring a fair and homologous procedure to all these eight (and possibly more) counties.

Conspiracy Theories

So why all the “hub bub, bub?” Partisan politics, period! I can speak from experience, using in fact, an example from my own past. When Clinton became president, there were documentaries released by the “right” that had all kinds of conspiracy theories as to all the “misdealings” within the history of the Clintons political road to the Whitehouse. The most popular of them being The Clinton Chronicles. This montage of clippings, newspaper headlines, testimonies, and video shown in this documentary is quite convincing at first glance. And I was convinced. However, as I am one to poke and prod (which is why my home library has ballooned to over 3,000 books and hundreds of video/DVD documentaries), the conspiracies revolving around the Clintons have been shown quite baseless. What are, if any, the equivalent to the Clinton based documentaries? Michael Moore!

Fahrenheit 911

While space here is limited to the subject at hand, that is, the Florida recount, I am open to discussion about any “fact” thought to be authoritative that was presented in any of Moore’s documentaries.[2]

Near the beginning of Fahrenheit 911 we are shown a newspaper headline that states Gore won one of the recounts in Florida. Yes, an actual photo of a newspaper headline, or so we are led to believe. What isn’t shown is the original article. In fact, this wasn’t an article at all!

What it was, was a letter to the editor from a reader of a newspaper who wrote in responding to the recounts all going Bush’s way. This person was a private citizen whose letter was placed in the “Letters to the Editor” section of the opinion part of the newspaper. What Moore did was take this column-and-a-half letter to the editor, expand and enlarge the headline to stretch across the entire top of the “page,” even going so far as changing the font, and then spreading out and enlarging the letter portion to more columns, thus making it look like a newspaper headline. In other words, Michael Moore used deception to tweak information to legitimize his view that Gore won the election. Which ALL investigations have shown to be false.

And I do mean all. For instance, all the examples of people being stopped from voting by force in Florida have proven vacuous. One example:

Police Roadblocks

One story still mentioned by partisans today, and mentioned by Moore is that of a roadblock by police officers stopping black voters from making it to the polls. When a civil rights group went down to Florida and held hearings on this (and other) matter[s], they found that there was a robbery nearby, and the police were setting up a perimeter to catch the suspect.

In fact, the possible[3] irony of all this is that most likely, taking into consideration the racial population in the area where this crime was committed, and that a disproportionate number of crimes committed by said racial group that populates this area of Florida all point to the disenfranchisement of these minority voters by a fellow minority resident. Irony at its best… if proven true that is.

To Conclude

So the point of this long, drawn-out response to a statement made as a fact in my son’s seventh-grade Visual Arts class, is this:

When statements like these are made as de-facto-truth – de-facto because when the teacher is in a position of authority over these malleable young minds and are given the benefit of the doubt by the students thinking that these adults have researched what they state as fact within the realm of the classroom in a fashion deserving that of an adult mind – when in fact they are easily dismissed as “other-than,” then we as parents must not allow such misstatements to be made without challenge.

The matter of who won the Florida recount has been put to rest, almost four years ago. Partisan politics keeps it alive however. And to engender students to look upon their President, no matter what political affiliation that President finds himself or herself to be aligned with, with suspicion is a serious matter. This is not the place for a teacher to steer their students towards unfounded opinions based on unsupported suspicions that would cause or call into question the respect due a President in the classroom setting.

While a parent has the right to engender whatever they wish with their own children, the teacher must be diligent to keep such misgivings about such matters to themselves and their own children, teachers lounge, or wherever such opinions are relevant or warranted. I am not angered by such an opinion stated within the classroom, in fact, I have come to expect it. I only wish that the teacher[s] understand that when they speak on such matters, that they do so in a manner that engenders our sons and daughters understanding of government, rather than the political opinions of said teacher[s].

I hope to hear back from the school on this matter. I also invite those teachers on the Heart Team who enjoy political discussion as much as I do to feel free to open up lines of communication with me. I don’t bite. Sometimes within the limited time people have and the demographic they find themselves in, their opinions are passed unchallenged or without taking into consideration another point of view. I understand this.

“Thank You! ~ Much Thought, Sean G”

Thank you for you patience in reading this parent’s rebuttal and concern about something said in the classroom. I hope this letter will engender positive discussion among the teachers on my son’s team, and a greater understanding of an excitable topic.

Footnotes

[1] In fact, there is no newspaper headline in the entire United States that showed Gore ahead in any of the recounts. I will deal with the only headline produced that showed gore ahead, it can be found in Michael Moore’s movie, Fahrenheit 911.

[2] My e-mail address is at the top of the page. I will discuss these matters as I have here: in a calm, logical manner that takes the sociological extremisms (e.g., The Clinton Chronicles on one side versus Fahrenheit 911 on the other) from both sides into consideration. For instance: in a recent poll, 29% of Democrats polled believe Bush stole the 2004 election. No evidence of foul play, just paranoia that any sociologist could do a doctoral thesis on.

[3] I am only guessing here and do not know all the parameters of the case – more of a thought experiment.

If Gas Prices Were W`s Fault When He Was Pres-Does That Mean Obama Is To Blame Now?

Here is a great story from BigJournalism on the hypocrisy in the media about the blame game:

Take those pesky little ol gas prices that have now skyrocketed to more than $3.00 a gallon. For months the media had just omitted the story altogether like they hadn’t even noticed, while during the Bush administration they couldn’t stop doing stories on “Pain At The Pump” and they worked overtime to point the nozzle directly at the White House.

Here are a couple of examples, there are many others.

This story from 2006 on MSNBC blasts Bush for doing little to stop the rising gas prices.

This story from 2008 talks about how Bush and Evil Big Oil were conspiring against us all to raise prices and how Dear Leader Obama was going to come in and save us all from high gas prices and our dependence on foreign oil.

Whoops.

The media has finally figured out that gas prices are going up, but most stories in 2010 that deal with Pain At The Pump ignore Obama like they don’t even know he’s president. Mr. Teflon can’t be touched by this messy little inflation thing going on right now (of course, it’s not just gas prices either.)

When Obama entered the White House gas prices averaged $1.81 per gallon. Evil Bush/Oil must’ve done something to make those prices fall – but there’s no time in the 10 hours a day that local TV stations do in their newscasts to mention this little fact. They’re out of space in the New York Times to provide context for this story.

Of course, Obama’s reaction has been to close off-shore drilling and restrict more US land to drilling. The Bush actions of allowing more drilling and increasing US independence led to those low prices of 2008. Yes, policies in the White House can make a difference and are making a difference today to the rising prices.

Gas prices have nearly doubled under Barack Obama, meanwhile the media watches from the sidelines and complains without pointing out where this problem lies.

…(read more)…

I had to explain to people so often that gas prices are based on the dollar, policies in opening or closing up areas to drill our own resources, taxes, and environmental mixes of gasoline. I finally would link to an article in all these kinds of stories. In fact, this topic made me join and upload my first video at YouTube. The point is is that when President Bush was in office, all my Democrat friends would incessantly bitch about gas prices as being Bush’s fault somehow. I think I will bitch about Obama and the gas prices… even though I know he really has nothing to do with it… except the Democrats typically do not want to use our own resources but would rather strip other countries of theirs (← turning the tables on their thinking).


I Broke the Law Because Bush Is A Racist!~Rep. Maxine Waters Follows Example of Rangel

Facing Ethics Charges, Rep. Waters Points Finger at Bush Administration

Embattled Rep. Maxine Waters on Friday blamed the Bush administration for her ethics problems — saying she had to intervene with the Treasury Department on behalf of minority-owned banks seeking federal bailout funds — including one tied to her husband — because the Treasury Department wouldn’t schedule its own appointments.

The California Democrat said in a Capitol Hill news conference — an event rarely held during a congressional recess — that she reached out to then-Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson in late 2008 when his department failed to respond to the National Bank Association’s request for a meeting.

“The question at this point should not be why I called Secretary Paulson, but why I had to,” she said. “The question at this point should be why a trade association representing over 100 minority banks could not get a meeting at the height of the crisis.”

But [*long drawn out emphasis added*] the House ethics committee, which is investigating Waters for allegedly improperly using her position for personal gain, says in its report of charges that when the meeting was held, the officers of only one bank came — OneUnited.

That’s a problem for Waters since her husband, Sidney Williams, served as a member of OneUnited’s board of directors from January 2004 until April 2008, and was a stockholder in the bank….

….Waters, who holds a senior position on the Financial Services Committee, is the second prominent Democrat lawmaker facing ethics charges during a fiery election season. New York Rep. Charles Rangel of New York is facing 13 charges, including failing to disclose assets and income and delayed payment of federal taxes.

…(read more)…

WMDs Big

(UPDATE 10-24-2010) Newsbusters explains how the “WikiLeaks” massive dump of classified documents show that WMDs were found:

WikiLeaks Show WMD Hunt Continued in Iraq – With Surprising Results

By late 2003, even the Bush White House’s staunchest defenders were starting to give up on the idea that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

But for years afterward, WikiLeaks’ newly-released Iraq war documents reveal, U.S. troops continued to find chemical weapons labs, encounter insurgent specialists in toxins, and uncover weapons of mass destruction.

An initial glance at the WikiLeaks war logs doesn’t reveal evidence of some massive WMD program by the Saddam Hussein regime — the Bush administration’s most (in)famous rationale for invading Iraq. But chemical weapons, especially, did not vanish from the Iraqi battlefield. Remnants of Saddam’s toxic arsenal, largely destroyed after the Gulf War, remained. Jihadists, insurgents and foreign (possibly Iranian) agitators turned to these stockpiles during the Iraq conflict — and may have brewed up their own deadly agents.

… The WMD diehards will likely find some comfort in these newly-WikiLeaked documents. Skeptics will note that these relatively small WMD stockpiles were hardly the kind of grave danger that the Bush administration presented in the run-up to the war.

Sorry, Mr. Shachtman, the “diehards” are those on the left who have never backed away from “no WMDs” claim, which has once again (previous examples hereherehere, and here, to identify just a few) been proven to be demonstrably false.

[….]

Gateway Pundit wonders: “Do you suppose this will make any headlines?” Prognosis: Doubtful. There’s too much at stake in protecting the left’s folklore.

…(read more)…

Quick Update Question: what was Faisal Shahzad (the “Time-Square Bomber”) and Umar Farouk AbdulMutallab (the “Dingaling Bomber”) charged with?

  1. (CBS Source) A Pakistani-born U.S. citizen admitted involvement in the failed Times Square car bombing and will face terrorism and weapons of mass destruction charges, Attorney General Eric Holder said.
  2. (CNN Source) The seven-page indictment charges AbdulMutallab with attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction

WMDs! If we found them in New York and Detroit, we surely found them in Iraq.

I have attempted here to join many posts and ideas into one to make an airtight case that WMDs did exist, maybe not in the form found in the movie Spies Like Us. Which had a Soviet soldier standing over a mobile nuclear tipped ICBM ready to “push the button.” I have even argued that the administration should have used the terms agents of mass destruction (AMDs). But this is neither here-nor-there since I feel the below case is sound for there being WMDs as well as AMDs. I will also point out a reason or two for us to enter Iraq even if WMDs were not part of the argument. Enjoy this revision… my last on this topic, it will be my last on WMDs and Iraq.

In this clip, a caller (a conspiratorial anti-Semite) to the Michael Medved Show tries to trip up Paul Wolfowitz on Iraq and Weapons of Mass Destruction. Throughout the video I will post some “factoids” and photos that support Wolfowitz and makes the caller look shallow in his knowledge about what he is calling about:

I wanted to rearrange previously posted information that may help the continuing politico in his refuting of “Bumper Sticker Mantras.”

Relief Web is the global hub for time-critical humanitarian information on Complex Emergencies and Natural Disasters connected with the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. They reported in an article, Iraq sends 20 planeloads of aid to Syrian victims of dam collapse,” the following on June 9th, 2002:

BAGHDAD, June 9 (AFP) – Iraq said Sunday it has sent 20 planeloads of humanitarian assistance to Syria to help victims of Tuesday’s Zeyzoun dam collapse in the north of the neighboring country.

“Iraqi Airways planes have made 20 flights to Damascus until today to take foodstuffs and pharmaceutical products to the victims,” Transport Minister Ahmad Murtada Ahmad told the official INA news agency.

Planes continued to take off from Baghdad’s international airport on Sunday in the airlift put in place on Thursday at the request of President Saddam Hussein, Ahmad said.

Iraq’s Health Minister Omid Medhat Mubarak added that the sanctions-hit country would also send teams of specialized doctors, surgeons and chemists to Syria….

I know this might be hard to believe, but… I call BS. Saddam Hussein said those 20 planeloads contained “humanitarian aid” while he was under U.N. Sanctions and he didn’t have enough food for his own people who dies of malnutrition and lack of medical assistance. But he had enough to send 20 planeloads of “humanitarian aid” to Syria?! Come on. Three news items support this theory/model that these “humanitarian flights” were something else:

1) A senior Syrian journalist reports Iraq’s WMD located in three Syrian sites:
(Debka) Nizar Nayuf is a Syrian journalist who recently defected from Syria to Western Europe and is known for bravely challenging the Syrian regime, said in a letter Monday, January 5, to Dutch newspaper “De Telegraaf,” that he knows the three sites where Iraq’s WMD are kept. The storage places are:

Tunnels dug under the town of al-Baida near the city of Hama in northern Syria. These tunnels are an integral part of an underground factory, built by the North Koreans, for producing Syrian Scud missiles. Iraqi chemical weapons and long-range missiles are stored in these tunnels.

The village of Tal Snan, north of the town of Salamija, where there is a big Syrian airforce camp. Vital parts of Iraq’s WMD are stored there.

The city of Sjinsjar on the Syrian border with the Lebanon, south of the city Homs.

Najoef writes that the transfer of Iraqi WMD to Syria was organized by the commanders of Saddam Hussein’s Special Republican Guard, including General Shalish, with the help of Assif Shoakat , Bashar Assad’s cousin. Shoakat is the CEO of Bhaha, an import/export company owned by the Assad family.

In February 2003, a month before America’s invasion in Iraq, DEBKAfile and DEBKA-Net-Weekly were the only media to report the movement of Iraqi WMD, the efforts to bring them from Iraq to Syria, and the personal involvement of Bashar Assad and his family in the operation.

Najoef, who has won prizes for journalistic integrity, says he wrote his letter because he has terminal cancer.

2) The man who served as the no. 2 official in Saddam

(The New York Sun) Hussein’s air force says Iraq moved weapons of mass destruction into Syria before the war by loading the weapons into civilian aircraft in which the passenger seats were removed.

The Iraqi general, Georges Sada, makes the charges in a new book, “Saddam’s Secrets,” released this week. He detailed the transfers in an interview yesterday with The New York Sun.

“There are weapons of mass destruction gone out from Iraq to Syria, and they must be found and returned to safe hands,” Mr. Sada said. “I am confident they were taken over.”

Mr. Sada’s comments come just more than a month after Israel’s top general during Operation Iraqi Freedom, Moshe Yaalon, told the Sun that Saddam “transferred the chemical agents from Iraq to Syria.”

Democrats have made the absence of stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq a theme in their criticism of the Bush administration’s decision to go to war in 2003….

Here is an interview with General Sada from the Hannity & Colmes show:

3) AMMAN, Jordan (CNN) — Jordanian authorities said Monday they have broken up an alleged al Qaeda plot that would have unleashed a deadly cloud of chemicals in the heart of Jordan’s capital, Amman.

(CNN) The plot would have been more deadly than anything al Qaeda has done before, including the September 11 attacks, according to the Jordanian government. Among the alleged targets were the U.S. Embassy, the Jordanian prime minister’s office and the headquarters of Jordanian intelligence.

U.S. intelligence officials expressed caution about whether the chemicals captured by Jordanian authorities were intended to create a “toxic cloud” chemical weapon, but they said the large quantities involved were at a minimum intended to create “massive explosions.” Officials said there is debate within the CIA and other U.S. agencies over whether the plotters were planning to kill innocent people using toxic chemicals.

At issue is the presence of a large quantity of sulfuric acid among the tons of chemicals seized by Jordanian authorities. Sulfuric acid can be used as a blister agent, but it more commonly can increase the size of conventional explosions, according to U.S. officials. Nevertheless, U.S. intelligence officials called the capture of tons of chemicals that together could create several large conventional explosions “a big deal.” The plot was within days of being carried out, Jordanian officials said, when security forces broke it up April 20.

In a nighttime raid in Amman, Jordanian security forces moved in on the terrorist cell. After the shooting stopped, four men were dead. Jordanian authorities said. They said at least three others were arrested, including Azmi Jayyousi, the cell’s suspected ringleader, whom Jordanian intelligence alleges was responsible for planning and recruiting. On a confession shown on state-run Jordanian television, Jayyousi said he took orders from Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a suspected terrorist leader who has been linked to al Qaeda and whom U.S. officials have said is behind some attacks in Iraq.

“I took explosives courses, poisons high level, then I pledged allegiance to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, to obey him without any questioning,” Jayyousi said. Jordanian intelligence suspects Jayyousi returned from Iraq in January after a meeting with al-Zarqawi in which they allegedly plotted to hit the three targets in Amman. In a series of raids, the Jordanians said, they seized 20 tons of chemicals and numerous explosives. Also seized were three trucks equipped with specially modified plows, apparently designed to crash through security barricades.

The first alleged target was the Jordanian intelligence headquarters. The alleged blast was intended to be a big one. “According to my experience as an explosives expert, the whole of the Intelligence Department will be destroyed, and nothing of it will remain, nor anything surrounding it,” Jayyousi said….

….A Jordanian government scientist said the plot had been carefully worked out, with just the right amount of explosives to spread the deadly cloud without diminishing the effects of the chemicals. The blast would not burn up the poisonous chemicals but instead produce a toxic cloud, the scientist said, possibly spreading for a mile, maybe more.

The Jordanian intelligence buildings are within a mile of a large medical center, a shopping mall and a residential area. “And there is no one combination of antidote to treat nerve agent, choking agent and blistering agent,” the scientist said. Al-Zarqawi, a Jordanian, has been accused of plotting chemical attacks before, and authorities said it would not be his first attempt to strike Jordan. In 2000, a Jordanian court charged him in absentia with planning to blow up a hotel and attack tourist destinations.

U.S. officials have said he was behind the 2002 assassination of American diplomat Lawrence Foley, who was gunned down outside his home in Amman. According to the televised confessions, $170,000 came from Zarqawi via messengers from Syria.

By-the-by Al-Zarqawi was killed by Coalition Forces June 7, 2006, in Iraq.

These news items show that Saddam was very busy on the Syrian border, and that some chemical weapons made it into Jordan from Syria via a network of Al Qaeda that led right to Iraq. Stephen Hayes compiled much of these connections in his book, The Connection: How al Qaeda’s Collaboration with Saddam Hussein Has Endangered America. Almost two years after his writing it, some more information came out that supported his position. I will first post here the appearance of Stephen Hayes from Hannity and Colmes, after this video there will come an extended interview with National Review the week his book came out, good stuff for the politico.
NRO: Your new book is on connections between Saddam Hussein and al Qaeda. Isn’t that all a neocon myth? Isn’t bin Laden on record dissing Saddam? Secular Saddam, meanwhile, was no Islamic fundamentalist or extremist? Did anti-American hatred trump all?

Stephen F. Hayes: If the Iraq-al Qaeda connection is a neocon myth, those neocons are even more resourceful than the conspiracy theorists suggest and they sure have got a lot of unlikely people making their arguments. Evan Bayh, Democrat from Indiana, has described the Iraq-al Qaeda connection as a relationship of “mutual exploitation.” Joe Lieberman said, “There are extensive contacts between Saddam Hussein’s government and al Qaeda.” George Tenet, too, has spoken of those contacts and goes further, claiming Iraqi “training” of al Qaeda terrorists on WMDs and provision of “safe haven” for al Qaeda in Baghdad. Richard Clarke once said the U.S. government was “sure” Iraq had provided a chemical-weapons precursor to an al Qaeda-linked pharmaceutical plant in Sudan. Even Hillary Clinton cited the Iraq-al Qaeda connection as one reason she voted for the Iraq War.

Saddam was, for a time, an avowed secularist. He began to use Islamist language during the Iran-Iraq War (1980-1988) and stepped it up during the first Gulf War. By the mid-1990s, when his son-in-law Hussein Kamel defected (and was later killed when he foolishly returned to Iraq), Saddam was interrupting Baath-party meetings for prayers.

Bin Laden has dissed Saddam several times. And I would certainly never argue that they were buddies. It was an on-again, off-again relationship based, as Bayh says, on mutual exploitation and a common enemy.

NRO: Who is Ahmed Hikmat Shakir?

Hayes: Shakir is one of the most intriguing and puzzling potential links between Iraq and al Qaeda. He was present at the January 2000 al Qaeda meeting in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where U.S. intelligence officials believe the planning for the attacks on the U.S.S. Cole and September 11 took place. Shakir was working, ostensibly, for Malaysian Airlines as a VIP greeter. He told associates that he got the job through a contact at the Iraqi embassy and the same contact determined his schedule. Shakir escorted one of the 9/11 hijackers (Khalid al Mihdhar) to the meeting and left his airport “job” days after the meeting broke up. Making things even more interesting, Defense Department investigators recently found Shakir’s name — with a slight spelling discrepancy — on three separate lists of Saddam Fedayeen officers. He was captured twice after September 11 — once in Qatar, once in Jordan — and let go. The Iraqi government reportedly showed a keen interest in his release. What was he doing at the meeting? How did he know the hijackers? And what, exactly, was his relationship to the Iraqi regime? He may have been a bit player, but it sure would be nice to know more. I hope the 9/11 Commission includes a discussion of Shakir in its final report.

NRO: What is the Feith memo and how important is it?

Hayes: The Feith Memo is a report that Undersecretary of Defense Douglas Feith sent to the Senate Intelligence Committee last fall, in response to a request by that panel to see information the Pentagon gathered on Iraq-al Qaeda connections. Analysts in the DoD policy shop pored over old intelligence, gathered by U.S. intelligence agencies, and unearthed some interesting nuggets — some of them from raw intelligence reports and others from finished intelligence products. CIA Director George Tenet was asked about the Feith Memo at a Senate hearing in March and distanced his agency from the Pentagon analysis. He submitted another version of the document to the committee with some “corrections” to the Pentagon submission. My understanding is that there were but a few such adjustments and that they were relatively minor (although my book challenges two of the most interesting reports in the memo). Some of the stuff — telephone intercepts, foreign-government reporting, detainee debriefings, etc. — is pretty straightforward and most of the report tracks with what Tenet has said publicly; it just provides more detail. That said, there were two items that seemed to require more explanation and, when weighed against available evidence, seem questionable.

NRO: Mike Isikoff from Newsweek and others have tried to discredit some of your reporting on these connections. Do you concede any of their points?

Hayes: Well, Isikoff is a very good investigative reporter and I have long respected his work. We simply disagree on much of this. Intelligence reporting is quite subjective, of course, and lends itself to various interpretations. My problem with so much of the media reporting on this issue is that most journalists have chosen not to investigate the connection, and seem too eager to dismiss them. Why? This wasn’t the case in the late 1990s, when Iraq-al Qaeda connections were more widely reported in the establishment press.

After I first wrote about the Feith Memo, the Pentagon put out a statement designed to distance itself from any alleged leak of classified intelligence. It was a classic non-denial denial — virtually devoid of content. It was something any veteran Washington reporter would dismiss without a second thought. But reporters at the New York Times and Washington Post, typically quite cynical about anything that comes from the Pentagon’s public- affairs shop, suddenly found it a remarkably credible source.

NRO: It’s been suggested by Isikoff and others that some of the evidence turns up nowadays is forged, that you can’t take it on its face value. To what extent is the evidence you present corroborated by other evidence, other documented meetings, etc?

Hayes: I think they’re right on that point — and it’s almost never a good idea to take these things at face value. There was a report that surfaced in December 2003 that suggested that Mohammed Atta had been in Baghdad during the summer of 2001. And, a little too conveniently, the very same document claimed that the U.S. was seeking uranium from Niger. There’s little question that the three-page report was forged. (An interesting side note: That document came not from Ahmed Chalabi, but from CIA favorite Iyad Allawi, the new Iraqi interim prime minister. Allawi has long argued that there was a significant relationship between Saddam’s Mukhabarat and al Qaeda.)

Much of the evidence in the book comes from open sources — media reporting, court documents, interviews, etc. With respect to the information from the Feith Memo, many of the bullet points corroborate one another or previous intelligence on the relationship. For instance, the U.S. intelligence community has long believed that bin Laden met with the deputy director of Iraqi intelligence, Faruq Hijazi, in the mid-1990s. When we captured Hijazi, we asked him about the meeting. Bin Laden, he reported, asked for anti-ship limpet mines and training camps in Iraq.

NRO: Did Mohammed Atta meet with an Iraqi intelligence officer in Prague — multiple times?

Hayes: I wish we knew. Atta was in Prague under very strange circumstances in May 2000. What’s unclear is whether he returned, as initially reported, in April 2001. If he did, it wasn’t under his own name. But news reports claiming that the meeting couldn’t have taken place because U.S. intelligence has documentation placing him in the U.S. are not accurate. One of the things I report in the book is that both George Tenet and Condoleezza Rice say privately that they believe the April 2001 meeting took place.

NRO: What is the strongest evidence that Iraq was a collaborator in the Sept. 11 attacks?

Hayes: Probably the Shakir story, which is far from conclusive. But it seems to me that the presence of a suspected Saddam Fedayeen officer at a key 9/11-planning meeting can’t be dismissed. There have been additional recent developments in the Atta story reported by Edward Jay Epstein. If those turn out to be true, they would be significant. I’m trying, but as yet have been unable to prove or disprove them.

NRO: What’s the deal with Richard Clarke? Why is he so adamant to defend Iraq vis-à-vis al Qaeda?

Hayes: I put that question to a top Bush-administration official not long ago. This person said: “If Iraq was involved with al Qaeda, whether they were involved with 9/11 or not, the whole counterterrorism policy of the 1990s was a failure.” And we all know who was responsible for the counterterrorism policy of the 1990s. One thing that perplexes me about Clarke was his expressed certainty that there was an Iraqi hand in al Qaeda chemical weapons production in the Sudan in the late-1990s. (Top Clinton advisers — several of them now working for John Kerry — continue to believe that today.) And Clarke’s current views (no connection) certainly put him at odds with CIA Director George Tenet. …
From this we can see that the typical bumper sticker statements/mantras we heard projected from street corners in close proximity close to Whole Foods markets just never took into account much of anything, except their dislike of Cheney and Bush. An example comes from an almost elated exclamation about Kucinich’s “attempt” to start impeachment of Bush and friends:


(The World According to Kimba) Breathtaking in that I believe some, if not most of the charges to be true. Although certainly not all of the charges constitute or necessitate a call for impeachment (as was the case when [Kucinich] offered up articles of impeachment for Dick Cheney last year), they do add up to quite a record for a sitting administration, and I for one, am glad he got them on the record…. Obviously, the political climate these days in Washington are such that they will not touch this hot potato and let King George II serve out his full second term without incident. But, what does it say for our regard for the law, not to mention the constitution, when we refuse to prosecute for wrongs committed against the public good? (emphasis added)

Often times people don’t follow their logic to the end… for instance, on MSNBC Mike Barnicle simply repeated these “sentiments” (the feeling that he is right based off of his feelings). Sit back, grab some popcorn and enjoy the show:

Debate: On Dec. 30th on MSNBC’s ‘Morning Joe,’ one of Mika’s “Must-Read Op-Eds” included one from the New York Times (shocker), slamming the Bush administration for the Iraq war, Mika, Joe and Mike Barnicle sparred about the facts going into the war and all the surrounding facts known at that time.

==========================

One thing I have heard and gave an example of is the Left saying and truly believing that Bush lied about WMDs. If this is the case, what about these other politicians?

If Bush lied about WMDs, then what did Clinton do when he said:

“If Saddam rejects peace and we have to use force, our purpose is clear. We want to seriously diminish the threat posed by Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction program.” ~ President Bill Clinton, Feb. 17, 1998

Or how about Madeline Albright, John F. Kerry, Ted Kennedy, and the like?


a)
“Iraq is a long way from the USA but what happens there matters a great deal here. For the risks that the leaders of a rogue state will use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons against us or our allies is the greatest security threat we face.” ~ Madeline Albright, Clinton Secretary of State, Feb. 18, 1998


b)
“We know that he has stored secret supplies of biological and chemical weapons throughout his country.” ~ Former Vice President Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002


c)
“In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also
given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including al Qaeda members. It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons.” ~ Sen. Hillary Clinton (D, NY), Oct. 10, 2002

d)
“Without question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime. He presents a particularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation. And now he is miscalculating America’s response to his continued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction. So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real.” ~ Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Jan. 23, 2003


e)
“We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction.” ~ Sen. Ted Kennedy (D, MA), Sept. 27, 2002


f)
“The last UN weapons inspectors left Iraq in October of 1998. We are confident that Saddam Hussein retains some stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, and that he has since embarked on a crash course to build up his chemical and biological warfare capabilities. Intelligence reports indicate that he is seeking nuclear weapons…” ~ Sen. Robert Byrd (D, WV), Oct. 3, 2002


g)
“Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process.” ~ Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D, CA), Dec. 16, 1998


h)
“He will use those weapons of mass destruction again, as he has ten times since 1983.” ~ Sandy Berger, Clinton National Security Adviser, Feb, 18, 1998

So what are some of the examples that counter the Left’s claims and bolster the Bush administration as well as the intelligence agencies from Germany, Russia, France, Israel, Britain, China, Jordan, as well as others showing that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction (Saddam even saying he had them)? Well let’s see:


The following short list below is from the book, Disinformation: 22 Media Myths that Undermine the War on Terror, by Richard Minitar:


Found: 1.77 metric tons of enriched uranium;
Found: 1,500 gallons of chemical weapons;
Found: Roadside bomb loaded with sarin gas;
Found: 17 chemical warheads–some containing cyclosarin, a nerve agent five times more powerful than sarin.
Found: 1,000 radioactive materials–ideal for radioactive dirty bombs;


How about the fact that Mahdi Obeidi (Saddam’s head nuclear scientist) buried a prototype of his gas centrifuge, the most direct and efficient route to enriching uranium, in his backyard in Baghdad. Hence the name of his book, Bomb in My Garden.
This next section comes from a Daily News article found in their Sunday Viewpoint entitled, “Altered Reality: Look Past The Dogma and You’ll See the WMDs” (October 26, 2003, p. 3):

1)
A clandestine network of laboratories and safe houses within the Iraqi Intelligence Service that contained equipment subject to UN monitoring and suitable for continuing CBW research.



2)
A prison laboratory complex, possibly used in human testing of BW agents, that Iraqi officials working to prepare for UN inspections were explicitly ordered not to declare to the UN.



3)
Reference strains of biological organisms concealed in a scientist’s home, one of which can be used to produce biological weapons.

4)
New research on BW-applicable agents, Brucella and Congo Crimean Hemorrhagic Fever (CCHF), and continuing work on ricin and aflatoxin were not declared to the UN.

5)
Documents and equipment, hidden in scientists’ homes, that would have been useful in resuming uranium enrichment by centrifuge and electromagnetic isotope separation (EMIS).

6)
A line of UAVs not fully declared at an undeclared production facility and an admission that they had tested one of their declared UAVs out to a range of 500 km, 350 km beyond the permissible limit.

7)
Continuing covert capability to manufacture fuel propellant useful only for prohibited SCUD variant missiles, a capability that was maintained at least until the end of 2001 and that cooperating Iraqi scientists have said they were told to conceal from the UN.

8)
Plans and advanced design work for new long-range missiles with ranges up to at least 1000 km – well beyond the 150 km range limit imposed by the UN. Missiles of a 1000 km range would have allowed Iraq to threaten targets throughout the Middle East, including Ankara, Cairo, and Abu Dhabi.

9)
Clandestine attempts between late-1999 and 2002 to obtain from North Korea technology related to 1,300 km range ballistic missiles –probably the No Dong — 300 km range anti-ship cruise missiles, and other prohibited military equipment.

I can also add here that 750 shells with saran gas were found. Just 15 of these killed about 15,000 people. Only in the Left’s vernacular does this equal no WMDs. Scurrilous politics on display if there ever were. Two things come to my mind, and they are two slogans I heard all the time.
  1. Bush is an Idiot;
  2. and, Bush lied.

Apparently, Bush, while being called a dunce or ignoramus by the left is so intelligently diabolical that he got every intelligence agency – not to mention every Democrat – to lie for him as well. So is Bush still the “dunce of the class,” as the Left paints him; or is he so intelligent that he fooled the world, as the Left paints him. Which is it? Or are both views partisan? And if Bush lied, then he must have known there were no weapons in Iraq. There is no such thing as a lie unless you know the truth. Now, if you say you believe something to be true, and it ultimately becomes false, that’s not called a “lie,” that’s called a “mistake” – a mistake made by the CIA (and the world) that was beyond the Bush’s control. However, I have shown there was no mistake. I have yet for someone to show me that this cumulative case can be taken from its lofty place here at my blog. And may I say that I have not seen such a case made yet on this World Wide Web.

Let’s hear how the above issues play out in real conversation, and I would entreat the reader to listen to the entire call. One may not like the term “little girl,” but this gets explained near the end.

This broadcast below was made before we declared war on Saddam Hussein. The caller is an Iraqi who asks a anti-war organizer a pointed question about leaving Saddam in power. The clip is 6 minutes long and she never answers the question.

So Let Me Conclude
What was discovered in Iraq were dozens of WMD-related program activities and significant amounts of equipment, chemicals, and specialists to make it happen that Iraqi concealed from the United Nations during the inspections that began in late 2002 was the final straw in the U.S. military’s back. The discovery of these deliberate concealment efforts have come about both through the admissions of Iraqi scientists and officials concerning information they deliberately withheld and through physical evidence of equipment and activities that ISG ( Iraq Survey Group) has discovered that should have been declared to the UN. This caused the United States and a larger coalition than the First Gulf War to resume (not preempt) military operations. Just the fact alone that Iraq was firing on our Air Force jets in the no-fly zones was reason enough to resume (not preempt) operations based on the cease fire agreement brokered by the United Nations via the first war.

There are other peripheral issues that I have already dealt with that touch this issue in some way, like yellow cake uranium, or the cost of the war and contracts given to Halliburton. However, these issues are easily dismissed, at least for those that do not project their psychoses onto Bush and Cheney.

A quick refutation of another familiar “mantra” we hear, and one most at the rally in the video above most assuredly accept, is that the U.S. supplied the bulk of weapons that Iraq has and used. This just isn’t the case, the the graphic below points out (click it to enlarge it for better viewing):