Saturday, April 05, 2008

Countdown: N.I.E. or L.I.E.?

Nicole Belle, Crooks and Liars: The surge is working, so sayeth the latest NIE.

Or at least, that’s what the White House says it says. Unfortunately, since the White House refuses to declassify it, they’re just expecting us to take their word for it (and we all know how well that’s worked out for us in the past). The Congressional Democrats have issued a strongly worded letter to express their dissatisfaction. (Ironically, Russ Feingold has issued a strongly worded letter to the Congressional Democrats, asking to think for once about not enabling Bush’s plan).

Rachel Maddow, doing a fantastic job of subbing for Keith Olbermann on Friday’s Countdown, speaks to VoteVets Jon Soltz about the politicization and incomplete picture of what’s happening in Iraq that the White House is trying to paint in preparation for Gen. Petraeus’s testimony next week. (Click pic for vid.)

MADDOW: And in a democracy, the idea is that when a democracy goes to war, the citizenry is informed about why and how it’s going and what the point is. Jon, do you expect that the testimony from Gen. Petraeus and Amb. Crocker is going to be substantive and frank, or are you expecting White House P.R.?

SOLTZ: Well, obviously it’s White House P.R., because it is Gen. Petraeus and Amb. Crocker. Now that’s not to say they’re going to lie, they’re two very honorable men who deserve Americans’ respect. But this is not about a couple of streets in Baghdad, this is not about troops and tactics. The question for Democrats next week and organizations like ours, and VoteVets, is we’re going to broaden this debate. The fact of the matter is that Adm. Fallon retired because he was being undermined by a direct channel that the Iraq commander had to the White House. And so the fact of the matter is that Adm. Fallon, who was concerned about Afghanistan you know, had to retire. So where is the Centcom commander? Where is the Secretary of Defense? Where is the Chief of Staff for the Army, Gen. Casey, to say the Army can’t hack this, this troop deployment any more? So they’re giving you a very limited scope and that limited scope will be honest, but we’re not…they’re not going to tell you that George Bush and John McCain have our country in a policy of retreat and people who served in the military, we’re tired of it.

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