Home > Political Ranting > Secrets as Weapons

Secrets as Weapons

March 30th, 2004

I can honestly tell you that I had concerns about the Bush administration and the GOP saying they want to declassify documents in the hope of showing contradictions in Richard Clarke’s testimony and prior statements. Because they feel so vulnerable on the issue of 9/11, because this was supposed to be their strength and because Clarke is such a credible witness, they have gone completely rabid in attacking him in every way imaginable. They’ve called him greedy, backstabbing, partisan, and most of all contradictory–a charge that was raised when they realized that they made him spin a background briefing in August 2002. That briefing by Clarke, meant to represent Rice, Fleischer and Bush, was the result of them telling him to stretch the truth as far as it would go before breaking it, which he refused to do–and now they use the fact that they made him spin for them in trying to make him look dishonest.

But that’s not even what is most disturbing–it’s the willingness, the almost ferocious intent of the Republicans to use classified material to their advantage. With echoes of the Valerie Plame affair (where senior officials in the White House made public a CIA operative’s identity as a way to attack her husband, who had publicly noted a lie by Bush), the administration is now having the CIA go through all the classified material on Clarke, to see what they can declassify. My own first reaction was, “I’ll bet the do a lot of cherry-picking and taking out of context to support their case as best they can, and suppress any and all materials that prove Clarke right, claiming that material cannot be declassified.”

Of course, I never expected that anyone would be able to prove it. But lo, just one day later, official sources told NBC News that they were doing exactly that:

U.S. officials told NBC News that the full record of Clarke’s testimony two years ago would not be declassified. They said that at the request of the White House, however, the CIA was going through the transcript to see what could be declassified, with an eye toward pointing out contradictions. [emphasis mine]

Amazing. Utterly amazing. You can probably expect “corrections” soon, that is if anyone in the press happens to notice it–it is buried at the bottom of the linked article.

Meanwhile, the Bush smear machine is going full-blast in accusing Kerry of raising every tax in sight. Kerry’s official stand is that he would repeal the Bush tax cuts for people making over $200,000 a year, and would cut taxes for people making less with targeted needs, and for businesses that keep jobs in the U.S.

Categories: Political Ranting Tags: by
Comments are closed.