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'Downing Street' Memos Show Bush and Blair Administrations Lied watch

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    Although I had had doubts about the case for the Iraq war all along, I've been deeply disturbed after reading the 'Downing Street' memos today. If not for this report on the BBC News website, I would not have known about the memos as I have little spare time for browsing through weblogs like I used to due to work commitments. I think it is important to share this information as it appears to be highly credible.

    To quote from The Downing Street Memo website:

    The Downing Street "Memo" is actually a document containing meeting minutes transcribed during the British Prime Minister's meeting on July 23, 2002—eight months PRIOR to the invasion of Iraq in March 2003. The Times of London printed the text of this document on Sunday, May 1, 2005. Since then, several other leaked UK government documents have come to light.

    The contents of the memos are shocking. The July 23, 2002 minutes detail how our government did not believe Iraq was a greater threat than other nations; how intelligence was packaged to sell the case for war to both Congress and the American public; and how the Bush Administration’s public assurances of "war as a last resort" were at odds with their privately stated intentions.

    No one in the Bush or Blair administrations has denied the authenticity of any of these documents. Yet the President and those involved in building the case for war continue to simultaneously sidestep the issue while conspicuously avoiding any comment on the legitimacy of the documents.
    The Downing Street Memo website provides comprehensive information, including a comparison table 'Secret Realities vs. Public Comments'. The site was created on 13 May by bloggers from DailyKos.com who were concerned that the memo was not being covered by the US media.

    While left-wing bloggers tried to play up the memo and the right wing bloggers heaped scorn on their opponents, it failed to warrant much mention in the American mainstream media.

    "While the European media have covered the memo extensively, it has received scant attention by the mainstream media in America," wrote Terry Neal of the Washington Post this week.

    As blogger Juan Cole points out, the Times published the story on 1 May, and the first story in the Washington Post didn't appear until 13 May.
    I did a little research and found the following BBC News report dated 1 May, 2005 (during the UK election period) referring to the exact same leaked memo: Blair plays down new Iraq claims [Tony Blair has played down a leaked memo indicating he was looking at ways to justify war with Iraq in July 2002 - eight months before the conflict.]

    If you are appalled by this state of affairs like me, here is how you can make a difference. A related informative page on Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Downing_street_memo

    Please share your thoughts and views on this matter. To Labour supporters, will this revelation affect your political allegiance?
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    I've noticed that there are loads of Americans on TSR, and are active participants in the 'Debate and Discussion' forum. I find it very interesting that you have been keeping oddly quiet on this matter close to your own country and the Bush administration. As posted earlier, those devastating 'Downing Street' memos strongly suggest that Bush and those involved in building the case for the Iraq war were aware that the case for Iraq war was "thin" and intelligence and facts were fixed around the policy.

    As patriotic American citizens, surely you would find this discovery relating a wilful act of manipulation by your own president in your own country shocking and appalling..? Or perhaps, had you known this all along and so it didn't come as a surprise..?

    The BBC is not perfect; however, it is far better and balanced than the mainstream media in the United States in my opinion. More than a month after The Times of London printed the text of this 'Downing Street' memo on Sunday, May 1, 2005, the news media in the US had produced barely a trickle of reports on it (mostly coverage about the lack of coverage). Most of the news giants had ignored it entirely; some have belittled its significance while actually rebuffing citizens’ requests for serious news reporting. As for myself, I only knew about this after visiting the BBC News website just yesterday.

    I am sure you are aware that the FOX News in your own country has been consistently proven by FAIR and the film 'Outfoxed ' to be blatantly prejudiced in favour of the Republican party and probably played a significant role in engineering favourable publicity and propaganda for the Bush administration for the last US election. However I question your priorities in condemning the media in other people's countries when your own mainstream media show a disturbing reluctance in publishing important information which Americans have a right to know and when the United States is no doubt the most powerful country in the world and its influence on Blair's government in the UK, Howard's government in Australia and many other countries is immense and critical.
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    (Original post by vivado)
    I've noticed that there are loads of Americans on TSR, and are active participants in the 'Debate and Discussion' forum. I find it very interesting that you have been keeping oddly quiet on this matter close to your own country and the Bush administration. As posted earlier, those devastating 'Downing Street' memos strongly suggest that Bush and those involved in building the case for the Iraq war were aware that the case for Iraq war was "thin" and intelligence and facts were fixed around the policy.

    As patriotic American citizens, surely you would find this discovery relating a wilful act of manipulation by your own president in your own country shocking and appalling..? Or perhaps, had you known this all along and so it didn't come as a surprise..?

    The BBC is not perfect; however, it is far better and balanced than the mainstream media in the United States in my opinion. More than a month after The Times of London printed the text of this 'Downing Street' memo on Sunday, May 1, 2005, the news media in the US had produced barely a trickle of reports on it (mostly coverage about the lack of coverage). Most of the news giants had ignored it entirely; some have belittled its significance while actually rebuffing citizens’ requests for serious news reporting. As for myself, I only knew about this after visiting the BBC News website just yesterday.

    I am sure you are aware that the FOX News in your own country has been consistently proven by FAIR and the film 'Outfoxed ' to be blatantly prejudiced in favour of the Republican party and probably played a significant role in engineering favourable publicity and propaganda for the Bush administration for the last US election. However I question your priorities in condemning the media in other people's countries when your own mainstream media show a disturbing reluctance in publishing important information which Americans have a right to know and when the United States is no doubt the most powerful country in the world and its influence on Blair's government in the UK, Howard's government in Australia and many other countries is immense and critical.
    I certainly find it "shocking and appalling." But many of my countrymen are just lining up to stampede over whatever cliff W leads them to.
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    Interestingly, when the Times printed it, they at least showed some objectivity by suggesting that the personal opinion of a government minister may - surprisingly - not be an absolute fact, especially not in a meeting where vocal communication is far less perfect than written form - if we wrote down everything you have ever spoken, we could surely find some embarrassing accidents.
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    "But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy."
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    Interesting posts, I was only very vaguely aware of this memo until now.
    Perhaps one reason for it being ignored is that it is of unverifiable origin? However, the fact that neither Jack Straw, the British Embassy in Washington, Bush, Rice and others have called it a fake (merely refusing to comment), I would say this is good evidence that it could well be genuine.

    Having said that, is anyone surprised by its contents? I always assumed that Dubya wanted to get Saddam to save face after his daddy failed to do so in the Gulf war. WMDs, terrorism, I never believed any of it. Thoughts?
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    (Original post by Alewhey)
    However, the fact that neither Jack Straw, the British Embassy in Washington, Bush, Rice and others have called it a fake (merely refusing to comment), I would say this is good evidence that it could well be genuine.
    Yep, that's interesting. Though it's possible it wasn't high enough on their list of priorities for them to invest the time ensuring that it was fake - in which case, that's bound to change over the next few weeks.
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    (Original post by material breach)
    "But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy."
    Sounds reasonable. There was intelligence and facts and a policy, and the intelligence and facts had to justify the policy.
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    (Original post by vivado)
    As patriotic American citizens, surely you would find this discovery relating a wilful act of manipulation by your own president in your own country shocking and appalling..? Or perhaps, had you known this all along and so it didn't come as a surprise..?
    What manipulation?
    I think your suggestions here are beyond appalling and offensive.

    The BBC is not perfect; however, it is far better and balanced than the mainstream media in the United States in my opinion.
    i) Viewing both regularly, I can say that is utter rubbish.
    ii) How would you know?

    More than a month after The Times of London printed the text of this 'Downing Street' memo on Sunday, May 1, 2005, the news media in the US had produced barely a trickle of reports on it (mostly coverage about the lack of coverage). Most of the news giants had ignored it entirely; some have belittled its significance while actually rebuffing citizens’ requests for serious news reporting. As for myself, I only knew about this after visiting the BBC News website just yesterday.
    It isnt a news story, because it isnt news. It contains alot of what has already been suggested, proven, documented or disputed.

    I am sure you are aware that the FOX News in your own country has been consistently proven by FAIR and the film 'Outfoxed ' to be blatantly prejudiced in favour of the Republican party and probably played a significant role in engineering favourable publicity and propaganda for the Bush administration for the last US election.
    Its a conservative news channel, you arent forced by law to watch it.

    However I question your priorities in condemning the media in other people's countries when your own mainstream media show a disturbing reluctance in publishing important information which Americans have a right to know and when the United States is no doubt the most powerful country in the world and its influence on Blair's government in the UK, Howard's government in Australia and many other countries is immense and critical.
    Get over yourself, Ive never read anything so offensive, arrogant, naive and as a Briton, shameful in my entire life.
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    (Original post by Vienna)
    Sounds reasonable. There was intelligence and facts and a policy, and the intelligence and facts had to justify the policy.
    On the contrary, fixing the intelligence and facts around the policy is totally backward. Saying "The intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy" is like saying "The cart was being fixed in front of the horse."

    In other words, you don't base facts upon the policy: you base policy upon the facts.
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    (Original post by Vienna)
    What manipulation?
    I think your suggestions here are beyond appalling and offensive.


    i) Viewing both reguarly, I can say that is utter rubbish.
    ii) How would you know?


    It isnt a news story, because it isnt news. It contains alot of what has already been suggested, proven, documented or disputed.


    Its a conservative news channel, you arent forced by law to watch it.



    Get over yourself, Ive never read anything so offensive, arrogant, naive and as a Briton, shameful in my entire life.
    Amazing ... no matter how bad the news gets, you just continue to shoot the messenger.
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    (Original post by Iz the Wiz)
    On the contrary, fixing the intelligence and facts around the policy is totally backward. Saying "The intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy" is like saying "The cart was being fixed in front of the horse."

    In other words, you don't base facts upon the policy: you base policy upon the facts.
    There was already a policy and there were already facts. Its quite reasonable to assume they wanted to build the facts and intelligence around a policy. Its clear there was opposition to any action and that questions would be asked, thus intelligence and facts had to be able to justify the chosen policy. I would be taking exactly the same steps.
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    (Original post by Iz the Wiz)
    Amazing ... no matter how bad the news gets, you just continue to shoot the messenger.
    The post had nothing to do with the "news" but rather the integrity of Americans. It would be profitable to remember the same kind of arrogant and offensive approach that the Guardian took to 'advising' those dumb Americans to vote against Bush( http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/m...ixopinion.html) and how it hideously backfired to the embarassment of Britain and those who at least have the decency to credit America and its citizens with some respect.
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    (Original post by Vienna)
    The post had nothing to do with the "news" but rather the integrity of Americans. It would be profitable to remember the same kind of arrogant and offensive approach that the Guardian took to 'advising' those dumb Americans to vote against Bush and how it hideously backfired to the embarassment of Britain and those who at least have the decency to credit America and its citizens with some respect.
    Yeah, right, all those Red Staters were reading The Guardian. That's a good one.
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    (Original post by Vienna)
    There was already a policy and there were already facts. Its quite reasonable to assume they wanted to build the facts and intelligence around a policy. Its clear there was opposition to any action and that questions would be asked, thus intelligence and facts had to be able to justify the chosen policy. I would be taking exactly the same steps.
    Really? I'd be going after terrorists & in particular looking for Osama bin Laden. But that's just me.
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    (Original post by Iz the Wiz)
    Yeah, right, all those Red Staters were reading The Guardian. That's a good one.
    Sorry?
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    (Original post by Iz the Wiz)
    Really? I'd be going after terrorists & in particular looking for Osama bin Laden. But that's just me.
    I believe at the time they were, hence 75% of Al-Qaeda being unoperative and Bin Laden in hiding and all but useless.
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    (Original post by Vienna)
    I believe at the time they were
    Well, here's what I read just this morning (in the Guardian? No. In the Revolutionary Worker? No. I read it on Google & it came from the Associated Press):

    "LONDON - When Prime Minister Tony Blair's chief foreign policy adviser dined with Condoleezza Rice six months after Sept. 11, the then-U.S. national security adviser didn't want to discuss Osama bin Laden or al-Qaida. She wanted to talk about 'regime change' in Iraq, setting the stage for the U.S.-led invasion more than a year later.

    "President Bush wanted Blair's support, but British officials worried the White House was rushing to war, according to a series of leaked secret Downing Street memos that have renewed questions and debate about Washington's motives for ousting Saddam Hussein.

    "In one of the memos, British Foreign Office political director Peter Ricketts openly asks whether the Bush administration had a clear and compelling military reason for war.

    "'U.S. scrambling to establish a link between Iraq and al-Qaida is so far frankly unconvincing,' Ricketts says in the memo. 'For Iraq, "regime change" does not stack up. It sounds like a grudge between Bush and Saddam.'"
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    (Original post by Iz the Wiz)
    Well, here's what I read just this morning (in the Guardian? No. In the Revolutionary Worker? No. I read it on Google & it came from the Associated Press):

    "LONDON - When Prime Minister Tony Blair's chief foreign policy adviser dined with Condoleezza Rice six months after Sept. 11, the then-U.S. national security adviser didn't want to discuss Osama bin Laden or al-Qaida. She wanted to talk about 'regime change' in Iraq, setting the stage for the U.S.-led invasion more than a year later.

    "President Bush wanted Blair's support, but British officials worried the White House was rushing to war, according to a series of leaked secret Downing Street memos that have renewed questions and debate about Washington's motives for ousting Saddam Hussein.

    "In one of the memos, British Foreign Office political director Peter Ricketts openly asks whether the Bush administration had a clear and compelling military reason for war.

    "'U.S. scrambling to establish a link between Iraq and al-Qaida is so far frankly unconvincing,' Ricketts says in the memo. 'For Iraq, "regime change" does not stack up. It sounds like a grudge between Bush and Saddam.'"
    Thats certainly an opinion. Not one I hold and not one I will take as fact.
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    (Original post by Vienna)
    Sorry?
    You said that The Guardian's endorsement of Kerry "backfired" and resulted in the election of George W. Bush. I said: "Yeah, right, all those Red Staters were reading The Guardian. That's a good one." In other words: the vast majority of Bush voters (and Kerry voters, for that matter) don't read the Guardian & don't have any idea what it says. Nothing that the Guardian did "hideously backfired" (and by the way, why would you call this hideous? Isn't it the outcome you wanted?).
 
 
 
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