Patterico's Pontifications

3/23/2008

L.A. Times Has Hit Piece on McCain — Which Resurrects the Old Canards About Ties Between Saddam and Al Qaeda

Filed under: Dog Trainer,General,War — Patterico @ 3:13 pm

The L.A. Times saves space on its Sunday front page for a hit piece on John McCain. The main thrust of the piece is to say, in essence, “Nyaah, nyaah, John McCain said that Iraq would be a cakewalk, but it wasn’t.”

A little context would be nice. Plenty of liberals were surprised at how easily we overran Baghdad and kicked Saddam out of power. Indeed, plenty of liberals — including Bill Richardson, a strong contender for the second spot on Obama’s ticket — were surprised at how quickly we overran Kabul. So yeah, like most of the rest of America, John McCain failed to predict the insurgency — but he reacted to it faster than just about anyone else out there, and in the right way.

But never mind that. I want to concentrate on the article’s revival of a set of hoary old howlers regarding ties between Saddam and Al Qaeda:

But McCain openly disputed Bush administration claims that Hussein appeared linked to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. “I doubt seriously if there’s this close relationship between Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein,” he told CBS News in September 2002.

Postwar investigations, including the 9/11 Commission Report and a report this month financed by the Pentagon, found no evidence of a “collaborative relationship” between Al Qaeda and the Iraqi regime.

Two paragraphs, three misstatements of fact. That’s a pretty impressive ratio, even for the L.A. Times. Let’s take them one at a time.

First, to my knowledge, the Bush administration did not claim that Saddam Hussein was (or appeared to be) linked to September 11. Bush and other administration officials have said that there were ties between Iraq and Al Qaeda — a claim that, as I explain below, is fully borne out by the 9/11 Commission Report and the Pentagon report. But, far from claiming that Iraq was behind 9/11, President Bush has said the exact opposite, as this Associated Press story from September 2003 shows:

President Bush said Wednesday there was no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved in the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 — disputing an idea held by many Americans.

“There’s no question that Saddam Hussein had al Qaeda ties,” the president said. But he also said, “We have no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved with the Sept. 11″ attacks. . . . The president’s comment on Saddam, the deposed Iraqi leader, was in line with a statement Tuesday by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, who said he not seen any evidence that Saddam was involved in the attacks. . . . Rumsfeld said, “I’ve not seen any indication that would lead me to believe that I could say that.”

Many liberals have argued that, by referring to (and allegedly exaggerating) the links between Al Qaeda and Iraq, the Bush administration has deliberately implied that Saddam was behind 9/11. But any such implication is in the eye of the beholder. There is absolutely no doubt that Saddam’s regime was a state sponsor of terrorism — as the more recent Pentagon report makes painfully clear — and after 9/11/01, the Bush Administration decided to go after state-sponsored terrorism in an aggressive way. Back when Americans cared about 9/11, a lot of us felt the same way. I know I did.

This naturally meant that Bush and Cheney sometimes justified the war in Iraq by referring to the fact that, after 9/11, America had decided to go after terrorists rather than wait for the terrorists to come to us. This explanation does not constitute “claims” that Iraq was linked to the 9/11 attacks.

Moving to the next misrepresentations, neither the 9/11 Commission report (misrepresentation #2) nor the Pentagon report (misrepresentation #3) uses the phrase “collaborative relationship” as the article claims.

Don’t believe me? Check for yourself. Here is a link to the 9/11 Commission Report, and here is a link to the Pentagon report. The phrase “collaborative relationship” appears in neither document.

Both reports provide evidence of links between Iraq and Al Qaeda, but emphasized that the links did not amount to an operational relationship in which in which Iraq participated in the 9/11 attacks, or other attacks on the U.S. This is entirely consistent with the assertions of the Bush Administration, which has repeatedly and accurately pointed to links between Iraq and Al Qaeda, while refusing to claim (and at times explicitly denying the existence of evidence to indicate) that Saddam was behind 9/11.

The 9/11 Commission Report took care to use the word “operational” when discussing the concept of a collaborative relationship. At page 66, the report details numerous links between Saddam’s Iraq and Al Qaeda, but explains that these links did not lead to an operational relationship with respect to attacks on the U.S.:

In March 1998, after Bin Ladin’s public fatwa against the United States, two al Qaeda members reportedly went to Iraq to meet with Iraqi intelligence. In July, an Iraqi delegation traveled to Afghanistan to meet first with the Taliban and then with Bin Ladin. Sources reported that one, or perhaps both, of these meetings was apparently arranged through Bin Ladin’s Egyptian deputy, Zawahiri, who had ties of his own to the Iraqis. . . . Similar meetings between Iraqi officials and Bin Ladin or his aides may have occurred in 1999 . . . The reports describe friendly contacts and indicate some common themes in both sides’ hatred of the United States. But to date we have seen no evidence that these or the earlier contacts ever developed into a collaborative operational relationship. Nor have we seen evidence indicating that Iraq cooperated with al Qaeda in developing or carrying out any attacks against the United States.”

(My emphasis.)

It is not splitting hairs to note that the L.A. Times asserted the use of the phrase “collaborative relationship” rather than “collaborative operational relationship.” As I repeatedly documented in posts from 2004, the 9/11 Commissioners made it abundantly clear that they saw a clear distinction between an “operational relationship” (which did not exist) and a “cooperative relationship” or “ties” or “links” in general (which they said did exist). The commissions repeatedly emphasized that Iraq and Al Qaeda had numerous ties — but that those ties did not amount to an operational relationship that resulted in 9/11.

For example, in one of those posts I quoted Lee Hamilton, the Democrat Vice Chairman of the 9/11 Commission, as follows:

I must say I have trouble understanding the flack over this. The Vice President is saying, I think, that there were connections between al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein’s government. We don’t disagree with that. What we have said is [that] we don’t have any evidence of a cooperative, or a corroborative relationship between Saddam Hussein’s government and these al Qaeda operatives with regard to the attacks on the United States. So it seems to me the sharp differences that the press has drawn, the media has drawn, are not that apparent to me.

Hamilton reinforced the point on Twitchy Chris Matthews’s “Hardball”:

There are all kinds of ties. There are all kinds of connections. And it may very well have been that Osama bin Laden or some of his lieutenants met at some time with Saddam Hussein lieutenants.

They had contacts, but what we did not find was any operational tie with respect to attacks on the United States.

As another example, after the issuance of the staff report (the findings of which were very similar to those of the final report), Commissioner Lehman said on “Meet the Press”:

MR. LEHMAN: There’s really very little difference between what our staff found, what the administration is saying today and what the Clinton administration said. The Clinton administration portrayed the relationship between al- Qaeda and Saddam’s intelligence services as one of cooperating in weapons development. There’s abundant evidence of that. . . . [I]t confirms the cooperative relationship, which were the words of the Clinton administration, between al-Qaeda and Iraqi intelligence.

The Bush administration has never said that they participated in the 9/11 attack. They’ve said, and our staff has confirmed, there have been numerous contacts between Iraqi intelligence and al-Qaeda over a period of 10 years, at least.

The Pentagon report also notably omits the phrase “collaborative relationship” that the L.A. Times puts between quotation marks.

Like the 9/11 Commission Report, the Pentagon report details numerous ties between Iraq and Al Qaeda, while disclaiming the existence of any “smoking gun” evidence in the reviewed documents that there was any “direct coordination and assistance” between the two. But this observation is 1) subject to several caveats evident elsewhere in the report, and 2) contradicted by other portions of the executive summary and report.

First, the caveats. The report does not purport to be an exhaustive summary of any potential contacts, because 1) “many potentially relevant documents were either inadvertently destroyed by Coalition forces during major combat actions or else were hidden or destroyed by members of the former regime”; and 2) the report concedes that it didn’t examine all of the documents that were captured.

Second, as Stephen Hayes explained here, the denial of evidence of a direct relationship is belied by numerous statements in the report, such as this: “Captured documents reveal that the regime was willing to co-opt or support organizations it knew to be part of al Qaeda — as long as that organization’s near-term goals supported Saddam’s long-term vision.” So Saddam supported Al Qaeda — but had no direct relationship with him? Hoo-kay then.

The confusion and self-contradiction inherent here is on display in the executive summary, which states in part:

While these documents do not reveal direct coordination and assistance between the Saddam regime and the al Qaeda network, they do indicate that Saddam was willing to use, albeit cautiously, operatives affiliated with al Qaeda as long as Saddam could have these terrorist-operatives monitored closely. Because Saddam’s security organizations and Osama bin Laden’s terrorist network operated with similar aims (at least in the short term), considerable overlap was inevitable when monitoring, contacting, financing, and training the same outside groups. This created both the appearance of and, in some way, a “de facto” link between the organizations. At times, these organizations would work together in pursuit of shared goals but still maintain their autonomy and independence because of innate caution and mutual distrust.

Got that? There was no direct coordination and assistance, but Saddam “was willing to use . . . operatives affiliated with al Qaeda” — and the Iraqi government and Al Qaeda “would work together in pursuit of shared goals” creating a “de facto link.” Makes perfect sense to me — how ’bout you?

Regardless of how one interprets the report as a whole, it is inaccurate to state that it denied a “collaborative relationship” — with those words inside quotation marks.

You might want to ask Readers’ Representative Jamie Gold where that “collaborative relationship” quote came from — as well as where the paper gets the idea that the Bush administration claimed that Saddam appeared to be linked to the 9/11 attacks. You can reach her at Readers.Rep@latimes.com. As always, be polite.

UPDATE: My letter to the Readers’ Representative is here. In it, I tell Ms. Gold where the phrase “collaborative relationship” comes from: a “staff statement” prepared by the staff for the Commission, as distinguished from the final report by the Commission itself. (H/t: Foo Bar.) As I explain in my letter to her, the distinction is meaningful. The New York Times quoted Commissioner Kean as saying of the staff statement: “This was a staff statement, and we’ve had commissioners who have disagreed occasionally with the staff statements, and this may be one of those occasions.”

And indeed, the conclusion regarding Iraq/Al Qaeda contacts was worded differently in the Commission’s final report, which took care to refer to an absence of “collaborative operational relationship” — while the report listed many contacts between Iraq and Al Qaeda.

The inclusion of the word “operational” in the 9/11 Commission Report was a critical difference, as the post above shows.

I don’t even raise the issue of the article’s claim that the Bush administration made claims that Iraq was tied to 9/11. In all the comments below, nobody has produced any evidence of that, but I’m sticking with the error that is cut and dried, rather than raising one where they can try to argue with me based on alleged implications and such.

260 Responses to “L.A. Times Has Hit Piece on McCain — Which Resurrects the Old Canards About Ties Between Saddam and Al Qaeda”

  1. Reaching Jamie Gold: Why bother?
    She acts like a meat grinder, except it’s BS that they feed into the hopper, and it comes out as finely ground guano.

    The LAT is a classical example of “don’t confuse me with facts, my mind is made up”.
    They look, but do not see.
    They listen, but do not comprehend.
    They are incapable of reason.
    They are the walking dead.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  2. Al Qaeda is given too much respect as an organization. Pretty much any bozo over there can call himself Al Qaeda – without membership dues, formal meetings, or uniforms, who’s to say who is Al Qaeda? If a leader decides to expel someone claiming to be Al Qaeda, but who does not live up to their code, the leader must risk exposing himself trying to get the word out. For that matter, any communication detected between any Al Qaeda members could result in immediate attack by the Iraq police forces.

    > two al Qaeda members reportedly went to Iraq to meet

    Wesson (e1c2e2)

  3. The Left has been lying about this for 6+ years now. Why in the world should we expect them to stop now?

    As for Gold @ the Times, calling her a “Readers Rep” is laughable. She just defends the blatant lies, and spins like a top, when she actually bothers to acknowledge that some people disagree with their “version of the facts”.

    JD (5f0e11)

  4. More from the L.A. SLIMES which is just the west coasts issue of the NEW YORK SLIMES a vile news rag not worth linning a birds cage with not worth wrapping a dead fish in

    krazy kagu (3e8790)

  5. First, to my knowledge, the Bush administration did not claim that Saddam Hussein was (or appeared to be) linked to September 11.

    Granted. They hardly disabused the public of the notion, though.

    In September, 2003, Dick Cheney said on NBC’s “Meet the Press”: “If we’re successful in Iraq . . . then we will have struck a major blow right at the heart of the base, if you will, the geographic base of the terrorists who had us under assault now for many years, but most especially on 9/11.”

    “We don’t know” was Cheney’s answer to Tim Russert’s question about whether Saddam had a role in 9/11, during the same television appearance.

    Bush contradicted him days later.

    In offering (and re-offering) the story of an Iraqi agent meeting Mohammed Atta in Prague, Cheney intentionally showcased an account the 9/11 commission flatly disputed: “We do not believe that such a meeting occurred.”

    Cheney had said it was “pretty well confirmed.”

    steve (fbae75)

  6. Steve, you know that the White House disclaimed the Prague / Atta story shortly thereafter too.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  7. SCHIEFFER: What, if any, is the connection between Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden?

    And do you feel — what do you feel is the most direct threat that he poses?

    Is it that, as he is able to manufacture these weapons of mass destruction and basically act as a wholesaler for these terrorist groups around the world that would be the retailers, or do you think he is planning some sort of an attack on the United States?

    MCCAIN: I think it’s primarily that he is developing these weapons and has shown a proclivity to use weapons of mass destruction against his enemies, against his own people, and we know who his number-one enemy is. He has also in the past funded, as well as assisted, other terrorist groups.

    I don’t know, Bob. I doubt seriously if there’s this close relationship between Al Qaida and Saddam Hussein. But, look, if this guy were simply a survivalist, long ago he would have said, “OK, come on in, you can have your inspections, I’ll destroy my weapons of mass destruction.” He could have remained in power.

    Jlaw (8c4db5)

  8. I was in LA last week. LA is a company town, ie the movies, and for the movers there, Obama is the man,only he.The LAT is in deep financial shit.The truth is irrelevant when survival is at stake. Sell the story, get the ad rev,what else to do? The memory hole is afire.

    mytralman (620909)

  9. Push a story ala Cheney then disclaiming it a couple of days later is a friggin joke.

    You put it out there the meme survies.

    In a March 18 letter to Congressional leaders, Bush said that his use of the Congressional authorization to wage war against Iraq is consistent with the international effort against terrorism, “including those nations, organizations, or persons who planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001.”

    March 18, 2003

    Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)

    Consistent with section 3(b) of the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002 (Public Law 107-243), and based on information available to me, including that in the enclosed document, I determine that:

    (1) reliance by the United States on further diplomatic and other peaceful means alone will neither (A) adequately protect the national security of the United States against the continuing threat posed by Iraq nor (B) likely lead to enforcement of all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions regarding Iraq; and

    (2) acting pursuant to the Constitution and Public Law 107-243 is consistent with the United States and other countries continuing to take the necessary actions against international terrorists and terrorist organizations, including those nations, organizations, or persons who planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001.

    Sincerely,

    George W. Bush

    Lies hurt Baby Jesus

    Jlaw (8c4db5)

  10. All these responses are exactly what I predicted in the post.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  11. Patterico,

    I think you are really still a die-hard LA Times’ fan and that’s why you keep trying to get the Times to correct its articles. Most of us have given up and hope the circulation/ad revenue falls so low that it will be forced to get more open-minded management.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  12. Patterico – Facts just get in the way of the narrative for folks like steve. They are impervious to facts, and choose to rely on their own “interpretation” of the actual events, as viewed through their BDS colored glasses.

    JD (6f5e4a)

  13. Jlaw:

    #

    Push a story ala Cheney then disclaiming it a couple of days later is a friggin joke.

    You put it out there the meme survies.

    Right. Never mind the complete and utter lack of evidence that anyone in the administration pushed a meme – it’s out there ,so they must have done it.

    If conservatives were half as irrational and paranoid as liberals, we’d be accusing liberals of putting the “Saddam did 9/11″ meme out there, to discredit those who legitimately wanted to invade Iraq for other reasons.

    Xrlq (62cad4)

  14. Xrlq – I think it would be fair to say that the Left has, in fact, pushed the meme that Bush linked Saddam to 9/11 out there. To what end, it has never been clear, since the facts, not their interpretation of the facts, has never supported that meme. I guess with the media doing the heavy lifting for them, letting the facts get in the way of a good story was never a concern.

    JD (6f5e4a)

  15. Revisionist History YAY.

    Jlaw (8c4db5)

  16. Revisionist History YAY.

    Making shit up. YAY.

    JD (6f5e4a)

  17. Right. Never mind the complete and utter lack of evidence that anyone in the administration pushed a meme – it’s out there ,so they must have done it.

    If conservatives were half as irrational and paranoid as liberals, we’d be accusing liberals of putting the “Saddam did 9/11″ meme out there, to discredit those who legitimately wanted to invade Iraq for other reasons.

    But the meme was pushed out by the Admin

    “This administration never said that the 9/11 attacks were orchestrated between Saddam and al Qaeda,” Bush said. “We did say there were numerous contacts between Saddam Hussein and al Qaeda.”

    Think about that for a second, take a deep breath. There were no links but there were.

    In late 2001, Cheney said it was “pretty well confirmed” that attack mastermind Mohamed Atta had met with a senior Iraqi intelligence official. Later, Cheney called Iraq the “geographic base of the terrorists who had us under assault now for many years, but most especially on 9/11.”

    Bush, in 2003, said “the battle of Iraq is one victory in a war on terror that began on September the 11th, 2001.”

    The implied link is there. Unless you are blind.

    Jlaw (8c4db5)

  18. Patterico:

    First, to my knowledge, the Bush administration did not claim that Saddam Hussein was (or appeared to be) linked to September 11.

    steve:

    Granted. They hardly disabused the public of the notion, though.

    Bush (quoted in the post above):

    We have no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved with the Sept. 11 attacks.

    You can prattle on all you like about whether Cheney was right to say “I don’t know” whether the Atta meeting took place, when others (based largely on cell phone records, if I recall correctly) concluded it was well debunked. But that’s a pretty tangential thread to use to argue that the Bush administration “hardly disabused” the public of the notion of Iraq’s involvement, in the teeth of the crystal clear quote from the President himself that I present in the above post (in bold font, no less!).

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  19. New grist for the mill:

    “According to the U.K.’s Times of London newspaper, a new Pentagon study based on documents seized during the Iraq war reveal an aborted plot by Uday Hussein’s elite paramilitary group — the Fedayeen — to kill London-based Ahmed Chalabi, head of the Iraqi National Congress.

    Documents show that Fedayeen’s orders were to carry out assassinations and bombings in London, the Times reported.

    While the study showed no link between Saddam Hussein’s regime and Al Qaeda, it does detail the former Iraq dictator’s support for Middle Eastern terror groups, including those linked to Al Qaeda.

    The Times posted the Pentagon report here.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  20. “This administration never said that the 9/11 attacks were orchestrated between Saddam and al Qaeda,” Bush said. “We did say there were numerous contacts between Saddam Hussein and al Qaeda.”

    Think about that for a second, take a deep breath. There were no links but there were.

    What grade are you in? It’s clear English, and it’s what I said in the post: there were links, but not operational links having to do with the 9/11 attacks.

    Perhaps instead of asking what grade you’re in, I should be asking what major national newspaper you write for.

    Also from the post:

    Many liberals have argued that, by referring to (and allegedly exaggerating) the links between Al Qaeda and Iraq, the Bush administration has deliberately implied that Saddam was behind 9/11.

    Jlaw:

    The implied link is there. Unless you are blind.

    Jlaw, as I explain in the post, there is another way to look at statements like this. After 9/11, a lot of us decided we were tired of playing defense against terrorism — not just Al Qaeda, but any terrorism in the world. So we decided to declare a war on terror, and go after *all* these mother[expletive deleted]ers, wherever we might find them.

    Bush’s quote is equally consistent with that notion. In any event, I fully expected liberals to come onto this thread and endlessly argue that Bush et al. implied x, y, and z — you always do in these threads. No matter; the assertions of my post remain untouched by your predictable arguments.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  21. No Patterico:

    The administration has argued that Saddam’s government had close links to al Qaeda, the terrorist network led by Osama bin Laden that masterminded the Sept. 11 attacks.

    Guilt by association. You can’t honestly argue that a connection was attempted and for a large percentage of Americans was a success.

    Jlaw (8c4db5)

  22. “This administration never said that the 9/11 attacks were orchestrated between Saddam and al Qaeda,” Bush said. “We did say there were numerous contacts between Saddam Hussein and al Qaeda.”

    Just because you cannot understand something, Jlaw, does not necessarily mean it is difficult to understand.

    The implied link is there.

    If you search hard enough to find your justification, I guess I can see where someone saying the exact opposite of your contention is seen as proof of your contention.

    JD (6f5e4a)

  23. fully expected liberals to come onto this thread and endlessly argue that Bush et al. implied x, y, and z — you always do in these threads. No matter; the assertions of my post remain untouched by your predictable arguments.

    But your post contaims omissions. It igonores key statemets by the admin which tried to link 9/11 to Iraq.

    Jlaw (8c4db5)

  24. Wait, so it WAS a cakewalk?

    I’m so confused.

    How Insane Is John McCain? (1fe91d)

  25. But your post contaims omissions. It igonores key statemets by the admin which tried to link 9/11 to Iraq.

    No, it does not. It acknowledges that there are statements in which “Bush and Cheney sometimes justified the war in Iraq by referring to the fact that, after 9/11, America had decided to go after terrorists rather than wait for the terrorists to come to us.” I noted that liberals (like you) see these statements as an implied linkage, whereas folks like me see them as an explanation of why 9/11 changed how we deal with terrorists generally.

    And implications are not assertions.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  26. Oh and:

    href=”http://tinyurl.com/yvfs3y” target=”_blank” title=””>4000

    Jlaw (8c4db5)

  27. It igonores key statemets by the admin which tried to link 9/11 to Iraq. due to my BDS, I have interpreted to mean the exact opposite of what was said.

    There, fixed that for ya’

    Wait, so it WAS a cakewalk?

    The initial major military operations, through the taking of Baghdad, will be viewed, once the fog of BDS passes, as an astounding military accomplishment, done with incredible efficiency, all while attempting to minimize casualties on both sides. Truly remarkable, despite your lack of desire to acknowledge same.

    JD (6f5e4a)

  28. No, it does not. It acknowledges that there are statements in which “Bush and Cheney sometimes justified the war in Iraq by referring to the fact that, after 9/11, America had decided to go after terrorists rather than wait for the terrorists to come to us.” I noted that liberals (like you) see these statements as an implied linkage, whereas folks like me see them as an explanation of why 9/11 changed how we deal with terrorists generally.

    No these assertions implied a link….so much so that a majority of the American people (helped by the media) believed them.

    If you were so sure of this why did you not include Cheney’s statements on MTP. Why did you ignore Condi and only post the “facts” that bolstered your weak case.

    Why did the Administration have to correct he VP after his appearance on MTP?

    Jlaw (8c4db5)

  29. No these assertions implied a link

    And there, IN FACT, were links between Saddam and AQ, but no operational ties between Saddam and AQ. That you cannot differntiate between the two most certainly does not mean that President Bush pushed a meme that those links existed, especially when the direct evidence shows that he did not.

    JD (6f5e4a)

  30. If you were so sure of this why did you not include Cheney’s statements on MTP. Why did you ignore Condi and only post the “facts” that bolstered your weak case.

    As much as I would have liked to have made the post several thousand words longer, I decided to fairly summarize the thrust of the liberals’ argument: that the Bush administration had implied a link between Saddam and 9/11. My point was that the LAT was wrong to say that the admin. had ASSERTED a link.

    Now you go and destroy my whole premise by alluding to a MTP Cheney interview in which Cheney, when asked whether the Atta meeting happened, said “We don’t know.” THERE’S YOUR CLAIM RIGHT THERE!!! GAME, SET, MATCH: YOU!!!

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  31. Thanks for the notice of the “grim milestone.”

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  32. No there were tons of other subtle points made. Speeches that mentioned 9/11 and Iraq multiple times in a short space of time as to imply that somehow they were related:

    In his prime-time press conference last week, which focused almost solely on Iraq, President Bush mentioned Sept. 11 eight times. He referred to Saddam Hussein many more times than that, often in the same breath with Sept. 11.

    Bush never pinned blame for the attacks directly on the Iraqi president. Still, the overall effect was to reinforce an impression that persists among much of the American public: that the Iraqi dictator did play a direct role in the attacks. A New York Times/CBS poll this week shows that 45 percent of Americans believe Mr. Hussein was “personally involved” in Sept. 11, about the same figure as a month ago.

    http://www.csmonitor.com/2003/0314/p02s01-woiq.html

    As Bush said:

    The battle of Iraq is one victory in a war on terror that began on September the 11, 2001 — and still goes on. That terrible morning, 19 evil men — the shock troops of a hateful ideology — gave America and the civilized world a glimpse of their ambitions. They imagined, in the words of one terrorist, that September the 11th would be the “beginning of the end of America.” By seeking to turn our cities into killing fields, terrorists and their allies believed that they could destroy this nation’s resolve, and force our retreat from the world. They have failed.

    9/11 – Iraq….9/11 – Iraq.

    But hey now Powerline has jumped in with:


    The Times article includes this howler:

    But McCain openly disputed Bush administration claims that Hussein appeared linked to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. “I doubt seriously if there’s this close relationship between Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein,” he told CBS News in September 2002.

    Hmmm didn’t I just state that this quote was true or shall we just revise the 2002 transcript.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2002/09/16/ftn/main522136.shtml?source=search_story

    Jlaw (8c4db5)

  33. The howler, as any grade-schooler could easily comprehend, was not McCain’s quote (which was accurate), but the idea that there exist “Bush administration claims that Hussein appeared linked to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.”

    Are you really so dense you didn’t understand that?

    I have explained to you (two or three times now) an innocent interpretation of Bush’s speeches that reference 9/11 and Iraq. You are free to disagree with the innocent interpretation, but again 1) the interpretation exists; and 2) implications are not “claims.”

    I can’t re-explain every point in my post to you. From now on, when you make a point that I already addressed in my post, I will either ignore it or write “See post.”

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  34. That remains a pathetic argument on your part, Jlaw.

    Instead of actually reading the statements, and noticing the explicit argument being made, you avoid confronting that by claiming that putting the words together in the speech means more than the actual context.

    Pathetic.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  35. President Bush once mentioned 9/11 and No Child Left Behind in a speech. Is that a subtle linkage of the two. He also mentioned 9/11 and tax cuts in the same speech. Links abound. He has also mentioned Saddam and children’s literacy in the same speech. Coincidence, I think not.

    JD (6f5e4a)

  36. “Wait, so it WAS a cakewalk?”

    Maybe more like a walk in a market.

    stef (7b3836)

  37. You can prattle on all you like about whether Cheney was right to say “I don’t know” whether the Atta meeting took place..

    The Atta meeting was not referenced in the “We don’t know” quote.

    MR. RUSSERT: The Washington Post asked the American people about Saddam Hussein, and this is what they said: 69 percent said he was involved in the September 11 attacks. Are you surprised by that?

    VICE PRES. CHENEY: No. I think it’s not surprising that people make that connection.

    MR. RUSSERT: But is there a connection?

    VICE PRES. CHENEY: We don’t know. You and I talked about this two years ago. I can remember you asking me this question just a few days after the original attack. At the time I said no, we didn’t have any evidence of that. Subsequent to that, we’ve learned a couple of things. We learned more and more that there was a relationship between Iraq and al-Qaeda that stretched back through most of the decade of the ’90s, that it involved training, for example, on BW and CW, that al-Qaeda sent personnel to Baghdad to get trained on the systems that are involved. The Iraqis providing bomb-making expertise and advice to the al-Qaeda organization.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3080244/

    steve (fbae75)

  38. MR. RUSSERT: The Washington Post asked the American people about Saddam Hussein, and this is what they said: 69 percent said he was involved in the September 11 attacks. Are you surprised by that?

    VICE PRES. CHENEY: No. I think it’s not surprising that people make that connection.

    MR. RUSSERT: But is there a connection?

    VICE PRES. CHENEY: We don’t know. You and I talked about this two years ago. I can remember you asking me this question just a few days after the original attack. At the time I said no, we didn’t have any evidence of that. Subsequent to that, we’ve learned a couple of things. We learned more and more that there was a relationship between Iraq and al-Qaeda that stretched back through most of the decade of the ’90s, that it involved training, for example, on BW and CW, that al-Qaeda sent personnel to Baghdad to get trained on the systems that are involved. The Iraqis providing bomb-making expertise and advice to the al-Qaeda organization.

    Again, the evidence provided shows that they did not make the link you would have us believe that they were making.

    Maybe it was so subtle, so nuanced, that only liberals could catch it.

    JD (6f5e4a)

  39. MR. RUSSERT: Do we have any evidence linking Saddam Hussein or Iraqis to this operation?

    VICE PRES. CHENEY: No.

    That’s Cheney on Meet the Press, September 16, 2001.

    He also told Russert in September 2003 that “we just don’t know” if the Atta meeting occurred. See here.

    Does anyone have evidence of a “claim” as referenced in the LAT article? No? OK, thank you.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  40. Patterico – They are immune and impervious to the facts. They have fixed their narrative in place, with the help of the media, and no amount of facts are going to change their mind. President Bush linked Saddam and 9/11. Period. End of discussion for them. They will take words, phrases, and answers that say the EXACT OPPOSITE, and claim that it supports their position.

    JD (6f5e4a)

  41. The final report may not include the specific phrase “collaborative relationship”, but the 9/11 Commission issued a staff statement in which that precise phrase was used:

    There have been reports that contacts between Iraq and al Qaeda also occurred after Bin Ladin had returned to Afghanistan, but they do not appear to have resulted in a collaborative relationship.

    Please update your post.

    If you Google “collaborative relationship”, there are many pieces from ’04 (e.g. this one) which put “collaborative relationship” in quotes. I know you have a low opinion of much of the mainstream media, but did you really think they had messed up the quoting of two words out of a report?

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  42. Five days after the attacks, Cheney said he had no evidence linking Saddam to the operation.

    Three years later he could not rule it out.

    Initially terming the story of a Mohammed Atta meeting with Iraqi agents “pretty well confirmed,” he subsequently acknowledged the story could not be corroborated.

    You cannot document “Bush administration claims that Hussein appeared linked to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks” with these Cheney statements. He just made sure the door was left open.

    steve (fbae75)

  43. Please update your post.

    To say what? The documents referred to by the LAT didn’t use that phrase, but another document did?

    No thanks.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  44. If you Google “collaborative relationship”, there are many pieces from ‘04 (e.g. this one) which put “collaborative relationship” in quotes. I know you have a low opinion of much of the mainstream media, but did you really think they had messed up the quoting of two words out of a report?

    If you read the links in my post, you’ll know that the LAT could watch a Meet the Press report in which a 9/11 commissioner said “x” and report that he said “not x.”

    Anyway, if you look at the date on the staff report and the date on your second link, you’ll see that the second link refers to the first — i.e. the staff report. I think the report itself carries more weight — and the report itself is what the LAT was talking about.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  45. The LAT piece says that “postwar investigations” found no evidence of a “collaborative relationship”. I grant that the writing in that sentence is poor, given that the “9/11 Cdmmission report” is not itself an investigation, but a report.

    Nonetheless, it is accurate to claim that the postwar investigation known as the 9/11 Commission found no evidence of a “collaborative relationship”, because the commission issued a report in which it said that contacts between Iraq and Al Qaeda do not appear to have resulted in a “collaborative relationship”.

    At the end of your post you encourage your readers to ask the LAT rep where the “collaborative relationship” quote came from. The answer is quite reasonable: it came from a report issued by the 9/11 commission. Given that answer, do you really want to continue to encourage your readers to ask that question?

    You went on and on about how important it was that the specific phrase “collaborative relationship” wasn’t used. It was used, in a report that was widely reported on in the media at the time. You don’t think that undermines your post in the slightest????

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  46. Anyway, if you look at the date on the staff report and the date on your second link, you’ll see that the second link refers to the first — i.e. the staff report. I think the report itself carries more weight — and the report itself is what the LAT was talking about.

    The LAT was talking about “postwar investigations”, and in a bit of trivial sloppiness equated the investigation known as the 9/11 Commission with the 9/11 report.

    Do you have any evidence (aside from the absence of the phrase in the final report) that the commission specifically reflected on the phrase “collaborative relationship” and decided it was not appropriate? Given how widely the phrase was used in news reports at the time, I think there would be some evidence of a retraction or correction if the commission had rethought their phrasing and no longer thought the phrase appropriate. It’s much more likely that they believed the phrasing in the staff report to be consistent with the contents of the final report.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  47. The answer is quite reasonable: it came from a report issued by the 9/11 commission.

    Actually, in a statement issued by the staff.

    You went on and on about how important it was that the specific phrase “collaborative relationship” wasn’t used.

    In the reports mentioned by the LAT.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  48. Anyway, if you look at the date on the staff report and the date on your second link, you’ll see that the second link refers to the first — i.e. the staff report

    To be clear, I am not denying the absence of the phrase in the final report. I am merely arguing that the significance of the absence is trivial, given that the staff statement did contain the phrase.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  49. In the reports mentioned by the LAT.

    Nope. Your post does not limit itself to characterizing the reports themselves. You’re clearly pointing to their supposed reluctance to deny a “collaborative relationship” as evidence of regarding the Commissioners’ views on the subject. Hence, a staff statement issued by the commission in which the phrase is used is quite relevant to an understanding of the Commisioners’ views.

    You write:

    It is not splitting hairs to note that the L.A. Times asserted the use of the phrase “collaborative relationship” rather than “collaborative operational relationship.” As I repeatedly documented in posts from 2004, the 9/11 Commissioners made it abundantly clear that they saw a clear distinction between an “operational relationship” (which did not exist) and a “cooperative relationship” or “ties” or “links” in general (which they said did exist).

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  50. You also might want to quote more from that staff statement:

    Bin Ladin also explored possible cooperation with Iraq during his time in Sudan, despite his opposition to Hussein’s secular regime. Bin Ladin had in fact at one time sponsored anti-Saddam Islamists in Iraqi Kurdistan. The Sudanese, to protect their own ties with Iraq, reportedly persuaded Bin Ladin to cease this support and arranged for contacts between Iraq and al Qaeda. A senior Iraqi intelligence officer reportedly made three visits to Sudan, finally meeting Bin Ladin in 1994. Bin Ladin is said to have requested space to establish training camps, as well as assistance in procuring weapons, but Iraq apparently never responded. There have been reports that contacts between Iraq and al Qaeda also occurred after Bin Ladin had returned to Afghanistan, but they do not appear to have resulted in a collaborative relationship. Two senior Bin Ladin associates have adamantly denied that any ties existed between al Qaeda and Iraq. We have no credible evidence that Iraq and al Qaeda cooperated on attacks against the United States.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  51. Hence, a staff statement issued by the commission in which the phrase is used is quite relevant to an understanding of the Commisioners’ views.

    I’d say the staff statement is relevant to the staff’s views, and the Commissioners’ own words are relevant to their own views. You know, like Commissioner Lehman, whom I quoted in the post as saying “it confirms the cooperative relationship, which were the words of the Clinton administration, between al-Qaeda and Iraqi intelligence.”

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  52. I’d say the staff statement is relevant to the staff’s views, and the Commissioners’ own words are relevant to their own views

    The statement starts out:

    Members of the Commission, with your help, your staff has developed initial findings to present to the public on the nature of the enemy that carried out the September 11 attacks.

    So with the help of the members of the commission and under their supervision, a statement was issued for public consumption that contained the phrase “collaborative relationship”.

    Look, it got reported on very widely at the time with that phrase in lead paragraphs. Do you have any evidence of the Commissioners subsequently distancing themselves from that language?

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  53. Do you have any evidence of the Commissioners subsequently distancing themselves from that language?

    Sure. First, there’s the quotes I give in the post and the language of the 9/11 Commission Report.

    But I can go ya one better:

    Commission members said Friday that as result of the furor created by that portion of the report, they may rewrite it significantly in preparation of the panel’s final report, which is expected to be released next month.

    Mr. Kean suggested that the commission may want to limit the scope of the conclusion about ties between Al Qaeda and Iraq to only what is known about any possible collaboration between them on terrorist attacks against the United States, not against other targets.

    ”That’s our mandate,” he said. ”This was a staff statement, and we’ve had commissioners who have disagreed occasionally with the staff statements, and this may be one of those occasions,” he said.

    Interestingly, that same article quotes Lee Hamilton as denying a “collaborative relationship” — which is something that, if you read my links in the post (you did, right?) befuddled me in 2004. But there’s a couple of things about that. First, he made the statement in terms that make it clear he was talking about an operational relationship to engage in attacks, as the actual 9/11 Commission Report (you know, the one mentioned by the LAT) took greater care to make clear:

    Mr. Hamilton, a former Democratic House member from Indiana and former chairman of the House intelligence committee, said the commission has found evidence of repeated contacts between Iraqi officials and the Qaeda terrorists and may describe those contacts in greater detail in its final report next month. But he said the panel had been unable to document any ”collaborative relationship” between Iraq and the terror network — against the United States or any other target.

    Also, keep in mind that this is the same guy whom I quote in the post (you did read my post, right?) as saying

    I must say I have trouble understanding the flack over this. The Vice President is saying, I think, that there were connections between al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein’s government. We don’t disagree with that. What we have said is [that] we don’t have any evidence of a cooperative, or a corroborative relationship between Saddam Hussein’s government and these al Qaeda operatives with regard to the attacks on the United States. So it seems to me the sharp differences that the press has drawn, the media has drawn, are not that apparent to me.

    and

    There are all kinds of ties. There are all kinds of connections. And it may very well have been that Osama bin Laden or some of his lieutenants met at some time with Saddam Hussein lieutenants.

    They had contacts, but what we did not find was any operational tie with respect to attacks on the United States.”

    So it’s pretty clear that when he loosely talked about a “collaborative relationship” he meant an operational one resulting in attacks. The fact that the media seized on the language in the report and repeatedly screamed “NO IRAQ/AL QAEDA LINK!” and the like is probably why the Commission decided to write the final report in a clearer way than the staff report had been written.

    It’s been fun, but I gotta go to bed. Guess you get the last word tonight.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  54. Your Lehman quote is from June 20, ’04, which is the Sunday just after June 17, ’04, the date of the staff statement I provided in which “collaborative relationship”. The staff report you mention here is the same as the staff statement I linked:

    As another example, after the issuance of the staff report (the findings of which were very similar to those of the final report),

    In fact, in the MTP transcript that you yourself link, there is this passage:


    MR. RUSSERT: Let me turn to the staff report on the relationship, if you will, between Iraq and al- Qaeda, and I’ll put it on the board and read it for everyone: “Bin Ladin also explored possible cooperation with Iraq during his time in Sudan, despite his opposition to Hussein’s secular regime. …Bin Ladin is said to have requested space to establish training camps, as well as assistance in procuring weapons, but Iraq apparently never responded. There have been reports that contacts between Iraq and al Qaeda also occurred after Bin Ladin had returned to Afghanistan, but they do appear to have resulted in a collaborative relationship.

    Which led to this coverage by The New York Times: “The staff of the commission investigating the Sept. 11 attacks sharply contradicted one of President Bush’s central justifications for the Iraq war, reporting on Wednesday that there did not appear to have been a `collaborative relationship’ between Al Qaeda and Sadam Hussein.

    (there is obviously a “not” missing in the transcription).

    You yourself said the findings of the staff report were very similar to those of the final report. The staff report uses “collaborative relationship”.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  55. Although your comment 54 comes after my comment 53, I think they crossed. My comment 53 answers points you raise in 54. Namely, why the 9/11 Commission report reads somewhat differently from the staff report.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  56. (you did read my post, right?)

    I don’t dispute that the “no link whatsoever” characterizations that sometimes appear in the media are exaggerations. That said, your post is largely about the inaccuracy of the specific paragraph in the LAT piece that puts “collaborative relationship” in quotation marks. There is clearly a very reasonable basis for using that phrase in quotes. Nothing you cited in your last comment specifically walks away from that phrasing.

    The idea that a reader’s understanding of this topic is not enhanced by noting that the staff report (a report you said was very similar in its findings to the final report) uses the language “collaborative relationship” is ridiculous.

    The LAT looks a lot better given the information that the phrase was used in a publicly issued, widely discussed staff report.

    What’s your goal- to maximize your readers’ understanding or to maximize the degree to which you dump (fairly or somewhat unfairly) on the LAT?

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  57. Kabul is in Afghanistan. Not Iraq. Bill Richardsons quote is not very relevant.

    Dennis D (ae900a)

  58. p: “the 9/11 Commission report reads somewhat differently from the staff report”

    You’re suggesting that these two things should be treated as separate. At the time, oddly enough, Power Line, of all people, did not. They said this (6/17/04):

    McCarthy quotes the 9/11 Commission report paragraph (“Statement No. 15″) that has created this morning’s banner headlines

    Power Line’s Johnson, in writing those words, treated the staff’s Statement (and the words “collaborative relationship”) as part of “the 9/11 Commission report.”

    “You might want to ask Readers’ Representative Jamie Gold where that ‘collaborative relationship’ quote came from”

    You might want to tell your readers that according to Power Line, it came from “the 9/11 Commission report.”

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  59. p: “the Bush administration did not claim that Saddam Hussein was (or appeared to be) linked to September 11″

    We were constantly reminded that AQ was behind 9/11. We were also constantly told that Saddam was in bed with OBL. 1+1=2.

    Cheney said Saddam and AQ had an “established relationship.” Feith (according to Stephen Hayes; see here and here) called it “an operational relationship.” Bush personally said that Saddam and AQ worked “in concert.” All those claims were later disavowed by a GOP-controlled Senate which said this: “Saddam issued a general order that Iraq should not deal with al-Qa’ida.”

    p: “Both reports provide evidence of links between Iraq and Al Qaeda, but emphasized that the links did not amount to an operational relationship in which in which Iraq participated in the 9/11 attacks, or other attacks on the U.S. … The 9/11 Commission Report took care to use the word ‘operational’ when discussing the concept of a collaborative relationship.”

    Trouble is, that exact phrase (“operational relationship”) is what Feith said (according to Hayes). And it’s hard to find any meaningful difference between those words and the words used personally by Cheney (“established relationship”) and Bush (“in concert”).

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  60. p: “the Bush Administration decided to go after state-sponsored terrorism in an aggressive way”

    In the world of “state-sponsored terrorism,” Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are no slouches. They arguably rank much higher than Iraq and Iran.

    The Taliban was created by Pakistan (with some help from us). Pakistan is one of only three countries in the world that recognized the Taliban. The other two are Saudi Arabia and UAE. Bush treats Pakistan and Saudi Arabia as great allies, and tried to make a ports deal with UAE. But it’s nice to know that “the Bush Administration decided to go after state-sponsored terrorism in an aggressive way.”

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  61. Patterico – It appears that all of the dodges, weaves, lies, distortions, mischaracterizations, etc … that you expected, came to fruition.

    JD (75f5c3)

  62. jd: “President Bush linked Saddam and 9/11″

    Indeed. Bush said “you can’t distinguish between al Qaeda and Saddam when you talk about the war on terror … they work in concert.”

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  63. On your bad days, Patterico, this is what you become: a collection of uninteresting whining.

    The main thrust of the piece is to say, in essence, “Nyaah, nyaah, John McCain said that Iraq would be a cakewalk, but it wasn’t.”

    In other words, they contrasted McCain’s advocacy of a policy that conservatives defend as “working” with some other advocacies that didn’t quite work out that well. Using a ton of quotes.

    That’s called “journalism”. When it’s done to Democrats, you cheer.

    A little context would be nice. Plenty of liberals were surprised at how easily we overran Baghdad and kicked Saddam out of power.

    Yeah, I’m sure you think that a bunch of stuff in there about all the things liberals got wrong would be “nice”, but I missed the part where the LATimes is obligated to be nice to you.

    You don’t have an error here, or a factual dispute, or any new information to add. You’re complaining that a lot of true statements in the article here make John McCain look bad. That’s uninteresting, and also sort of embarassing.

    glasnost (4b51cd)

  64. “Nothing you cited in your last comment specifically walks away from that phrasing.”

    If it makes you happy to believe that, I can’t make you believe something different. I gave you a quote from one of the commissioners that said there was a “cooperative relationship.” I gave you a quote from another saying the Commission might write that specific section differently to address exactly the points we’re discussing. I gave evidence in the post that this was indeed done.

    “The LAT looks a lot better given the information that the phrase was used in a publicly issued, widely discussed staff report.”

    Why? The final report was specifically written differently, to clarify the extent of the links, and make clear that only the existence of an “operational” relationship was being discounted.

    You keep trying to make the staff report and the final report identical, but while they were similar in many respects, I have repeatedly pointed out how the final report of the Commission itself was careful to phrase this conclusion differently and fully list the extensive contacts — and I also gave you evidence that this was done deliberately.

    So when you claim that the staff report is “a report you said was very similar in its findings to the final report” [I said I didn't remember saying this but I did]you’re ignoring the whole point I’ve tried to make for the last several comments. You asked for evidence of a distinction. I provided clear evidence. You’re trying to minimize my evidence.

    I think it’s interesting that the staff report used that phrase, I really do. And had you come on here and made that point — while acknowledging it was merely a staff report, and that certain statements of the Commissioners themselves were at odds with it, and that the final report says something recognizably different — I would have said: Kudos to Foo Bar for adding to our knowledge.

    But you came on here acting like you have debunked my post, or told us something that is CRITICAL!!!1! to its accuracy. And that’s where you’re wrong.

    Patterico (a40603)

  65. If it makes you happy I may include a reference to the staff report in my e-mail to the Readers’ Rep. Because they’ll be all like: I know I saw that SOMEWHERE! and I’m all about helping them out.

    Patterico (a80177)

  66. jd: “President Bush linked Saddam and 9/11″

    Indeed. Bush said “you can’t distinguish between al Qaeda and Saddam when you talk about the war on terror … they work in concert.”

    Patterico – Don’t you love it when they make your points for you?

    JD (75f5c3)

  67. You can prattle on all you like about whether Cheney was right to say “I don’t know” whether the Atta meeting took place, when others (based largely on cell phone records, if I recall correctly) concluded it was well debunked.

    —–

    Why would that be even slightly conclusive? I’ve been to europe. The first time, I took my cellphone with me, intending to buy a local SIM card to use while I was there (I had done a little bit of research). It turned out to be impossible- my US phone was incompatible with the EU network. I might as well have left my US phone back in the US.

    Atta had been to Europe before, he probably would have known about this. So why is this considered conclusive? Last I heard, the Czechs were standing by it.

    rosignol (c2edc7)

  68. Patterico,
    Nearly every media outlet has (intentionally) biffed this story.

    While writing a recent piece on this for http://www.regimeofterror.com I called and emailed AP, McClatchy and the Post and the answers I get from these people are astounding and something I’d like your readers to know.

    These people admitted having no idea how many members of al Qaeda there were in 2003 (if you are going to discuss who al Qaeda is “linked” to you should know how many members are in it), they couldn’t tell me the difference between Egyptian Islamic Jihad and al Qaeda(the Treasury Department considers them indistinguishable from one another and EIJ made up 2/3 of AQ at its inception), they wouldn’t tell me what their definition of “links” or “ties” were but said that training, financial support and arming the group weren’t “ties.”

    The debates went on and on and these people all but told me they didn’t have the necessary background knowledge on this story and didn’t read the recent IDA report on the subject.

    NEWSWEEK biffed it

    McClatchy biffed it

    CNN biffed it

    ABC biffed it

    the NYTimes and WashPost biffed it

    and now the LATimes.

    Something needs to be done about this. If there were a “fairness doctrine” needed it’s to rid the public of our dishonest, lazy, biased hacks in the press. Not encourage more of them.

    Mark Eichenlaub (efa0b7)

  69. So jlaw can stretch Bush’s words into meaning something because he didn’t explicitly say the opposite but can’t see the connection between Saddam and the al Qaeda movement in the documents?

    Is this selectively overreading one and underreading the other?

    Mark Eichenlaub (efa0b7)

  70. Sadddam and Al Qaeda were not working together, Saddam was not involved in 9/11, Saddam was not going to attack us. All your fascist pro war blathter is just a smokescreen to make yourselves feel good about an unnecessary war you supported from the get go.

    Jakester (abeaf6)

  71. Jakester, all your whacky BDS blather shows is that you’ve not read the post or the thread.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  72. Jakester,
    Exposing our enemies does not equal prowar.

    Is the IAEA warhawks for keeping tabs on Iran’s nuclear program too?

    Maybe some people don’t think the U.S. is the enemy, they actually think that the people who want to kill Americans is actually the enemy….

    Mark Eichenlaub (efa0b7)

  73. Regarding the Mohammed Atta in Czechoslovakia thing, it has never been proven that he wasn’t there, dubious reports about is cell phone and other things notwithstanding:

    The issue re-emerged three days after the 9/11 attack when the CIA intelligence liaison was told by the BIS that the Hamburg “student” who had met with al-Ani on April 8 had been tentatively identified as the 9/11 hijacker Mohamed Atta. Since al-Ani was an officer of Saddam Hussein’s intelligence (and diplomatic) service, this identification raised the possibility that Saddam might have had a hand in the 9/11 attack. It could also be potentially embarrassing, as Kavan pointed out, “if American intelligence had failed before 9/11 to adequately appreciate the significance of the April meeting.”

    Kavan, in the newly created position of coordinator for intelligence, was in the center of the ensuing “crisis,” as he termed it. He gave the FBI full access to the Czech side of the investigation. Two Czech-speaking FBI agents were allowed not only to sit in on the high-level task force evaluating the intelligence but to examine source material. If Atta was at the meeting, he could not have used his own passport to enter the Czech Republic, so the BIS assumed he had used a false identity and began checking through visa records for suspicious visitors in April, examining grainy videotapes from cameras at airports, bus stations, and game arcades. As the investigation was still in an early stage, the FBI had been asked to keep the identification of Atta secret, but within a week, the Prague connection was leaked to the press—from Washington. On Sept. 18, 2001, the Associated Press reported, “A U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the United States has received information from a foreign intelligence service that Mohamed Atta, a hijacker aboard one of the planes that slammed into the World Trade Center, met earlier this year in Europe with an Iraqi intelligence agent.” CBS then reported that Atta had been seen with al-Ani.

    In Washington, the FBI moved to quiet the Prague connection by telling journalists that it had car rentals and records that put Atta in Virginia Beach, Va., and Florida close to, if not during, the period when he was supposed to be in Prague. The New York Times, citing information provided by “federal law enforcement officials,” reported that Atta was in Virginia Beach on April 2, 2001, and by April 11, “Atta was back in Florida, renting a car.” Newsweek reported that, “the FBI pointed out Atta was traveling at the time [in early April 2001] between Florida and Virginia Beach, Va.,” adding, “The bureau had his rental car and hotel receipts.” And intelligence expert James Bamford, after quoting FBI Director Robert Mueller as saying that the FBI “ran down literally hundreds of thousands of leads and checked every record we could get our hands on,” reported in USA Today, “The records revealed that Atta was in Virginia Beach during the time he supposedly met the Iraqi in Prague.”

    All these reports attributed to the FBI were, as it turns out, erroneous. There were no car rental records in Virginia, Florida, or anywhere else in April 2001 for Mohamed Atta, since he had not yet obtained his Florida license. His international license was at his father’s home in Cairo, Egypt (where his roommate Marwan al-Shehhi picked it up in late April). Nor were there other records in the hands of the FBI that put Atta in the United States at the time. Director of Central Intelligence George Tenet testified to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence in June 2002, “It is possible that Atta traveled under an unknown alias” to “meet with an Iraqi intelligence officer in Prague.” Clearly, it was not beyond the capabilities of the 9/11 hijackers to use aliases.

    None of this means that Atta in fact met with the Iraqi agent, or even if he did that it had anything to do with 9/11. But the conclusive claims that the meeting did not happen at all are nothing more than conjecture. The best evidence that we have militate towards such a meeting not against.

    MichaelW (ef69b7)

  74. “Bush lied, people died.”
    Except, the Bush Administration, as most responsible governments do when dealing with aspects of foreign intelligence where sources and methods might be compromised by explicit statements, were somewhat ambiguous in describing the relationship between SH and AQ.

    The problem arises when the Media, in order to write a compelling story (in their eyes), hyped the story-line to make the connections absolute. They made connections that, at best, were only oblique tangents. They took the statements that SH was developing WMD (true), had used WMD against his enemies (true), and his people (true), and ran that to he was providing logistical and/or operational support to AQ (not true – as far as we know at this time).

    I ask, as a way to shoot down this form of (il)logical thinking, that since the U.S. was involved in continueing contacts/negotiations/etc. with the USSR over the status of Germany in the early 50′s, are we responsible for the Soviet’s actions against the German people in the ’53 Berlin Riots?

    The Media Lied, and People Died!

    Another Drew (f9dd2c)

  75. jd: “Don’t you love it when they make your points for you?”

    Don’t you love it when folks who can’t deal with facts try to hide behind meaningless snark?

    When you’re ready, you can tell us how remarks by Bush (“in concert”), Cheney (“established relationship”) and Feith (“operational relationship”) are compatible with what the GOP-controlled Senate committee said (pdf): “Saddam issued a general order that Iraq should not deal with al-Qa’ida.”

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  76. drew: “he was providing logistical and/or operational support to AQ”

    The source of this claim was not “the Media.” The source of this claim was Bush, Cheney, Feith et al. I realize that you’re not going to try to explain how their words could possibly be interpreted any other way.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  77. This argument with leftists and their propaganda arm in the MetaStasisMedia is an exercise in futility, most especially when it comes to ANY military action in defense of the nation or our allies.

    The Utopian Socialists do not now and have never supported the use of our military to defend the nation. Their childlike understanding of the world leads them to believe Saddam and Bin Laden needed a timeout and then a very forceful round of campfire songs, “If I had a hammer” and “Kumbaya”. This was after, of course, we prostrated ourselves before them, begged forgiveness for being of Western European descent and for causing their “righteous anger” in the first place.

    A leftist isn’t chic in the whine and brie company he keeps, unless he is a)calling a Republican or non-leftist “stupid” or a “chickenhawk”; b)blaming the US or Israel for the fanatical behavior of some opposition group; c)running down his own country to curry favor with other One World Socialists around the globe; d)whitewashing terrorism, murder, genocide, ethnic cleansing, mutilation of women and girls…and every other manner of evil…that stems from leftist/opposition groups.

    The propaganda arm of this cadre of leftists, the MetaStasisMedia, Hollywood, Michael Moore, the wire services, campus intelligentsia…utilize lies, misrepresentations, parsing of words, fauxtography, to feed these mindless lemmings their one-note, echo chamber, songbooks.

    Here are the facts, and they are indisputable:

    Saddam Hussein was a ruthless, murdering, vile and despicable tyrant. He was KNOWN to be involved in STATE SPONSORED TERRORISM.

    Terrorism was….AND STILL IS…targeted against the US, its citizens and its allies.

    The terrorists became emboldened by the lack of organized response to their increasingly aggressive tactics.

    Saddam had a long history of harboring and supporting terrorists, including those who struck at the US and her allies.

    The Taliban had an intimate relationship with terrorists and were deeply involved in the state sponsorship of exporting and secreting its murderous dens around the world.

    When we put the terrorists on the run in Afghanistan, they sought to broker agreements with numerous regimes, friendly to their cause, and Saddam was willing to meet.

    Saddam HAD developed weapons of mass destruction, (there is no disputing this, only the propaganda arm of the leftists try to spin this…he was told to DISMANTLE them…he had them, he USED them and then refused to allow inspection of the remainder…we STILL don’t know where they may be…the LAST time, he hid them in the Tigris River, some went to Syria), and had VOICED a willingness to pass them along to terrorists or harbor them.

    THE CLINTON ADMINISTRATION signed into law…regime change in Iraq…because THEY stated that he was a risk to the world, in handing off mass murdering weapons…to mass murdering intended terrorists. Albright, Cohen, Sandy Berger ALL said that Saddam was a clear and present danger.

    To suggest that this was “Bush’s War” or “McCain’s War”…is simply a lie. It’s leftist propaganda…and our diseased MetastasizedMedia knows PRECISELY how to couch words and phrases to get their lemmings to follow them blindly to their cancerous worldview.

    cfbleachers (4040c7)

  78. jbg…I recall they only said that there were “contacts”. How does that become something else? Or more?
    I have contacts with the DMV, does that mean I’m the guy who writes the Vehicle Code?

    Another Drew (f9dd2c)

  79. I’m just waiting for the:

    “But we never said, in so many words, there were weapons of mass destruction”

    I’m sure if you start to parse the language enough you will surely find a pony.

    jlaw (3fc3a3)

  80. To those, including a poster above, who say that Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are greater threats than SH’s Iraq and Iran, I say: Take a deep breath.

    Iran attacked this country in 1979, were responsible for the Beirut Marine/Embassy bombings in the early 80′s, and have fingerprints on several attacks in Saudi on U.S. forces. To the best of my knowledge, Pakistan has never attacked U.S. forces and/or territory.

    To cite the Taliban as an example of Pakistan’s animus is to ignore why they were created/supported: The situation in Afghanistan upon the withdrawal of the Soviets was utter chaos – Civil War writ large. The Taliban were thought at the time to represent the best hope for the re-introduction of a civil society. Hopes were obviously misplaced, and (eventually) the situation was corrected.

    To pre-empt those who will ask why, in light of the on-going situation with Iran, we didn’t just attack them instead of Iraq? IMO, Iraq offered us a two-fer: We were able to eliminate a pest who was funding a lot of the bombing activity in Israel (rewards to the families of suicide bombers), a guy who was a constant threat to his neighbors and the West’s oil lifeling; plus, it would give us a logistical base for further operations against the really bad guys of the ME: Syria and Iran.

    Another Drew (f9dd2c)

  81. drew: “I recall they only said that there were ‘contacts’ ”

    What you “recall” is highly selective. I’ve posted specific quotes, with citations. I realize you and your pals are determined to pretend those quotes don’t exist.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  82. drew: “To cite the Taliban as an example of Pakistan’s animus is to ignore why they were created/supported”

    Yes, I realize you’d like to explain why supporting the Taliban once seemed like a great idea. And I’m sure you can also tell us lots of good reasons why Rumsfeld shook Saddam’s hand in 1983, at the same time that Saddam was using poison gas.

    “the Beirut Marine/Embassy bombings”

    Funny you should mention that. Maliki is appallingly close to the Beirut barracks bombing. At the time, he was 50 miles away running Dawa in Damascus. We claim Hezbollah did the bombing. Dawa and Hezbollah have always been very close. Read here about the connections between Hezbollah and Dawa, especially at that time:

    … some of the earliest suicide bombings commonly attributed to Hizbullah, such as the 1983 attacks on the US embassy and marine barracks in Beirut, were believed by American intelligence sources at the time to have been orchestrated by the Iraqi Dawa party. Hizbullah barely existed in 1983 and Dawa cadres are said to have been instrumental in setting it up at Tehran’s behest.

    Iraq used to be run by a secular thug who was an enemy of Hezbollah and Iran. Now Iraq is being run by an Islamist thug who has close and longstanding ties with Hezbollah and Iran. Heckuva job, Dubya!

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  83. So jukeboxgrad, you want to pretend that time and events are not important? Didn’t think you were here representing the adult version.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  84. “…shook Saddam’s hand …”

    And, at the time SH was a counter-point to our avowed enemy in the ME, Iran.

    Enemy of my enemy….

    To quote SPQR: “…time and events are not important?” International relationships are never cut-and-dried. Context is meaningful.

    Just think back to the change of attitude within the Left Intelligentsia re Germany in 1940, and after the start of Barbarrosa. But, of course, they were just mindless robots following the Comintern line.

    Another Drew (f9dd2c)

  85. drew: “International relationships are never cut-and-dried.”

    Now you tell us. All of a sudden nuance is back in style. I guess we’ve come a long way from this:

    you’re either with us or against us in the fight against terror

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  86. I gave you a quote from one of the commissioners that said there was a “cooperative relationship.”

    So what? That’s an individual commissioner (who is a Republican, which you failed to note in the post, although you point out Hamilton’s party ID). Right before that in the MTP transcript, you have Ben Veniste saying, yes, he agrees with what Russert had just read, which included “collaborative relationship” in the negative.

    As you concede, the NYT piece that discusses possibly rewriting has Hamilton, the vice chair, again saying no “collaborative relationship”. Then you go on to say, “yeah, but what he meant by that was X,Y,and Z”. Maybe your interpretation of what Hamilton meant would be relevant if the LAT piece had elaborated in a contrary way regarding what “collaborative relationship” meant, but the piece didn’t do that.

    In any case, the meanings of cooperative, operational, collaborative are hazy enough that you really need an explicit acknowledgment from the commission that it was a mistake to use “collaborative relationship”, and you don’t have that.

    that certain statements of the Commissioners themselves were at odds with it

    Certain statements of some of the commissioners, not statements that reflected the collective judgment of the commission.

    But you came on here acting like you have debunked my post
    I didn’t say debunked. I asked for an update and suggested that what I had cited undermines your point to some degree, and I stand by that.

    I would have said: Kudos to Foo Bar for adding to our knowledge

    Would you have said it in your main post? The contents of your post shouldn’t be a function of whether you think a certain commenter has overreached.

    You’re encouraging your readers to email the LAT and ask them “where did you get that ‘collaborative relationship’ quote?” Don’t you think the reader would prefer to know that a staff report from the commission included that phrase before deciding whether to take the time to email? I wouldn’t want to send that email and then feel sheepish when I got the reply, “uh, we got it from a report issued by the commission”.

    Foo Bar (8e06dc)

  87. The thing that amazes me is that we can fathom all of these “auras” and “implications” and “he hinted this” and “she implied that” while ignoring the plain words of Bush saying “there was no link between Iraq and the 9/11 attacks”.

    They’re also all so busy trying to play “gotcha” with Patterico’s exact wording while again ignoring plain English all in an attempt to show how Bush et. al. manipulated the poor unsuspecting public…

    Rob C (015891)

  88. “…you’re either with us or against us in the fight against terror…”

    Works for me, then and now!

    But, I’m a knuckle-dragging Neanderthal who thought that Iran should have been sent physically back into the 8th Century (so that they could really live their philosophy) back in 1979!

    BTW, ever heard of “geo-politics” or read the history of Count Metternich?

    Another Drew (f9dd2c)

  89. “there was no link between Iraq and the 9/11 attacks”.

    This clearly shows Bu$Hitler’s attempts to tie Saddam to 9/11

    JD (75f5c3)

  90. The BDS crowd on the left keeps squawking that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld et al implied a link between Saddam and 9/11. Not true.

    What is true is that the anti-war left, LAT, NYT et al inferred this, in service to their ongoing anti-war, anti-Bush narrative. They continue to do so, as clearly illustrated by the anti-war, anti-Bush commenters here.

    It has nothing to do with implication by Bush and everything to do with a convenient inference by the left. It’s called propaganda.

    YFS (8ec1f8)

  91. На блоге довольно много материала про воспитание детей. Здесь есть подборка советов о рождении и воспитании детей. Обмен советами и опытом: мифы о воспитании детей. Найдете много разных рекомендаций для родителей.

    vospiptayk (4f83d2)

  92. rob: “The thing that amazes me … while ignoring the plain words of Bush saying ‘there was no link between Iraq and the 9/11 attacks’. ”

    The thing that amazes me is the way certain people are willing to invent quotes. As far as I can tell, Bush never said the words you just put in his mouth. You should let us know where that quote can be found, outside of your imagination.

    The statement Bush made in 9/03 was a lot weaker than the statement you just invented. In 9/03, he didn’t say there was “no link;” he merely said there was “no evidence.” Keep in mind these are the same folks who had been telling us that “absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.” And aside from that, what he said in 9/03 hardly counts since this was after the invasion. Before the invasion he was singing a different tune.

    yfs: “The BDS crowd on the left keeps squawking that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld et al implied a link between Saddam and 9/11″

    I’ve cited the words they used. Like Bush saying “you can’t distinguish between al Qaeda and Saddam when you talk about the war on terror … they work in concert.” I notice you and your pals have no interest in trying to explain how these words could be interpreted in any other way (other than implying “a link between Saddam and 9/11″).

    “It’s called propaganda.”

    That’s hysterically funny. This thread vividly illustrates how Bush’s supporters pretend he said things he didn’t actually say, while steadfastly ignoring what he actually did say. That’s beyond propaganda. It’s self-delusion.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  93. “Don’t believe me? Check for yourself. Here is a link to the 9/11 Commission Report, and here is a link to the Pentagon report. The phrase “collaborative relationship” appears in neither document.”

    OK, let me give it a try…

    p.66 9/11 Commission Report

    “According to the reporting, Iraqi officials offered Bin Ladin a safe haven in Iraq. Bin Ladin declined, apparently judging that his circumstances in Afghanistan remained more favorable than the Iraqi alternative. The reports describe friendly contacts and indicate some common themes in both sides’ hatred of the United States. But to date we have seen no evidence that these or the earlier contacts ever developed into a collaborative operational relationship. Nor have we seen evidence indicating that Iraq cooperated with al Qaeda in developing or carrying out any attacks against the United States.76″

    templeton (35ef77)

  94. “you can’t distinguish between al Qaeda and Saddam when you talk about the war on terror … they work in concert.”

    This says not one single allahdamn thing about 9/11. Your fevered imagination inserts 9/11 in there, so you can feel better about arriving at a flawed conclusion.

    JD (75f5c3)

  95. jd: “This says not one single allahdamn thing about 9/11″

    Yes, a statement about AQ has nothing to do with 9/11, provided you think AQ had nothing to do with 9/11. Let us know if that’s what you think.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  96. jukeboxgrad, that’s right – intentionally stupid meaningless snark is only allowed to you.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  97. jukeboxgrad – Are you incapable of discerning the not the least bit subtle differences between a group, and the actions of a group? Is it possible for one to reference AQ and not reference 9/11? Good allah, you trolls are fucking dense. Lead-like.

    JD (75f5c3)

  98. jd: “Is it possible for one to reference AQ and not reference 9/11?”

    Yes, provided you think that AQ had nothing to do with 9/11. And provided you reference AQ and not reference 9/11. Trouble is, that’s not what Bush did. What Bush did was tie AQ to 9/11, and simultaneously tie Saddam to AQ.

    Bush told us that AQ did 9/11. Bush also told us, at the same time, that “you can’t distinguish between al Qaeda and Saddam [because] they work in concert.”

    Let’s say I told you that person A did crime X. And let’s say in the same breath I also told you that person B is a great danger, and a likely source of future crimes similar to crime X, and that ‘you can’t distinguish between person A and person B [because] they work in concert.’ And let’s say I also had my people claim that person A and person B had an “operational relationship” and an “established relationship.” It would take a lot of imagination to claim that I wasn’t tying person B to crime X. But you obviously have a lot of imagination.

    “fucking dense”

    What’s dense is pretending that Bush didn’t say what he said.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  99. you can’t distinguish between al Qaeda and Saddam when you talk about the war on terror … they work in concert

    Outside of your inferences, where in that quote is there any reference to 9/11?

    What Bush did was tie AQ to 9/11, and simultaneously tie Saddam to AQ.

    He did not “tie” AQ to 9/11. AQ was responsible for 9/11. It is also beyond dispute that Saddam had terror links, including links to AQ. That you go an make a ridiculous jump conflating AQ and 9/11 is all on you, buddy boy.

    JD (25bb93)

  100. It really astonishing to see how much people’s BDS depends on the silly assertion that daring to argue that Saddam Hussein would support Al Queda groups was this huge historic deception.

    Mind boggling silliness.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  101. …chirp chirp…chirp chirp…

    “Don’t believe me? Check for yourself. Here is a link to the 9/11 Commission Report, and here is a link to the Pentagon report. The phrase “collaborative relationship” appears in neither document.”

    OK, let me give it a try…

    p.66 9/11 Commission Report

    “According to the reporting, Iraqi officials offered Bin Ladin a safe haven in Iraq. Bin Ladin declined, apparently judging that his circumstances in Afghanistan remained more favorable than the Iraqi alternative. The reports describe friendly contacts and indicate some common themes in both sides’ hatred of the United States. But to date we have seen no evidence that these or the earlier contacts ever developed into a collaborative operational relationship. Nor have we seen evidence indicating that Iraq cooperated with al Qaeda in developing or carrying out any attacks against the United States.76″

    Comment by templeton — 3/24/2008 @ 12:02 pm

    templeton (6897fc)

  102. sort of screws up your argumnent when you haven’t even read your own ‘sources’ and just rely on a ‘word find’ search…

    templeton (6897fc)

  103. The issue here is context and the battle being fought is for said context.

    If you say that A is indistinguishable from B and works in concert with B then it is fair to assume that A and B acted together. This is an ideal context but in reality this is not always true. If the US Government decided to go to war and sent soldiers to fight this war, they aught to be considered as working in concert. Does that also mean that when soldier A is shot and killed, then also the US government is shot and killed? Is Senator Clinton as Hilteresque as Bush seeing that both are members of the American government which works more in concert then AQ and SH ever did?

    It would be just as foolish to suggest Hitlarism in Clinton as it would for Bush and just as stupid to think that the statement, “you can’t distinguish between al Qaeda and Saddam [because] they work in concert.” wouldn’t require context to make it sensible. As I understand the quote it means that both AQ and SH were a major player in global terrorism, contributed to various aspects of global terror, met in the hopes to further their mutual goals and saw the US as a mutual enemy and target of terrorist activities. Any human being who is subject to scrutiny as the President has been will seem to contradict themselves. Perhaps I assume these things because I view the President as a reasonable man with the wish to make Americans safe in their home and abroad. I also believe that Bush hopes to contribute to an environment in which American interests are furthered. jukeboxgrad, it seems, does not share in this view and thinks its opposite. So. here we are arguing over the minutia of words which are best understood in their context rather then in the context of our political spin.

    P. Ami (ba98ac)

  104. templeton, actually it is your argument that is screwed up. This is because you did not read Patterico’s post. All you did was find the phrase he explicitly said was used instead of “collaborative relationship” – “collaborative operational relationship”.

    Read his post where he says “The 9/11 Commission Report took care to use the word “operational” when discussing the concept of a collaborative relationship.” But you didn’t take care to read.

    So that one blew up in your face.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  105. ** chirp ** ** chirp **

    SPQR (26be8b)

  106. jd: “It is also beyond dispute that Saddam had terror links, including links to AQ”

    Right. That’s why a GOP-controlled Senate committee said this (pdf): “Saddam issued a general order that Iraq should not deal with al-Qa’ida.”

    “AQ was responsible for 9/11. … That you go an make a ridiculous jump conflating AQ and 9/11 is all on you”

    Nice job contradicting yourself. Since “AQ was responsible for 9/11,” there is no “ridiculous jump” in seeing the association between one and the other.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  107. spqr: “daring to argue that Saddam Hussein would support Al Queda groups”

    Nice job trying to change the terms of the discussion. Bush et al didn’t claim Saddam “would” support them, or could support them. Bush et al claimed he did support them. There’s no other way to interpret claims like “in concert.” Trouble is, that claim was false.

    “The 9/11 Commission Report took care to use the word ‘operational’ when discussing the concept of a collaborative relationship.”

    Small problem: “operational relationship” is the phrase that Feith used. I notice that no one here wants to explain that.

    “** chirp ** ** chirp **”

    That’s the sound you’re making in response to my point regarding Feith. I first made that point more than forty comments ago.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  108. ami: “As I understand the quote it means that both AQ and SH … met in the hopes to further their mutual goals”

    Small problem. A GOP-controlled Senate committee said this (pdf): “Saddam issued a general order that Iraq should not deal with al-Qa’ida.” You should tell those GOP moonbats that you know more than they do.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  109. Actually, jukeboxgrad, I wasn’t changing the terms of the discussion. I was making a point about your rather severe case of BDS. A point you’ve only confirmed.

    And my response to templeton had nothing to do with your point about Feith.

    Meanwhile, templeton is trying to figure out a new nick to show up with …

    SPQR (26be8b)

  110. templeton:

    So sorry; I was wasting my time working instead of responding to your vacuous post. So shove your chirping where your energy-saving bulbs don’t shine.

    I enjoyed the irony of your comment. You purport to take me to task for supposedly not reading the 9/11 Commission Report before discussing it. In so doing, you disclose a Grand Revelation that I explicitly discuss in my post — thus showing that you didn’t read my post before discussing it.

    Mmmm . . . that’s good irony!

    Patterico (2ee602)

  111. You can’t get irony that tasty just anywhere, Patterico.

    Or incompetence. Both are so close in the dictionary you know …

    SPQR (26be8b)

  112. You really are a mental midget, aren’t you?

    jd: “It is also beyond dispute that Saddam had terror links, including links to AQ”

    Right. That’s why a GOP-controlled Senate committee said this (pdf): “Saddam issued a general order that Iraq should not deal with al-Qa’ida.”

    First off, you are willing to take some political words from Saddam Hussein as gospel truth, over the mounds of evidence to the contrary. The 9/11 Commission says jukeboxgrad is wrong, and I am alright with that. I guess that those Ansar Al Islam camps were really just Boy Scout camps that Saddam allowed to be conducted there. The money he was paying to the families of Palestinian homicide bombers? Tithing.

    Jukeboxhero – Get the stars out of your eyes. You are not that cute, nor nearly as clever of a wordsmith as you may think. Just because AQ committed the actions on 9/11, you cannot use AQ and 9/11 interchangeably. No wonder that the idiot Bush was able to beat you clowns, twice. You are dummerer than him.

    JD (25bb93)

  113. Patterico – These posts are great. You could have written out every variation of the loonwaffle responses well in advance, and it would just be a matter of time until they were all trotted out. Predictable, and sad.

    JD (25bb93)


  114. “The LAT looks a lot better given the information that the phrase was used in a publicly issued, widely discussed staff report.”

    Why? The final report was specifically written differently, to clarify the extent of the links, and make clear that only the existence of an “operational” relationship was being discounted.

    Your post gives no indication that the phrase “collaborative relationship”, in the context of a denial, ever appeared in written or oral form coming from the commission or any of its members. The reader is left to scratch his head and wonder, “where’d the LAT come up with those quote marks around that phrase? Did they make it up? Did they confuse some sloppy secondhand summary written by another news organization with the primary source documents?”

    This impression that you leave with the reader is false. The article says that postwar investigations found no “collaborative relationship”. In fact, a postwar investigation did indeed lead to the creation of a publicly available report saying there was not evidence of a “collaborative relationship”. For the purposes of assessing the accuracy of the LAT piece, there’s a world of difference between that reality and the impression you leave.

    I think you’re probably a little bit embarrassed that you didn’t know that the specific phrase was used in the report issued in June ’04, so you’d rather not acknowledge it in the body of the post.

    My impression from visiting this blog intermittently over the past few years is that you’re one of the more fair-minded bloggers I’ve come across, but your failure to edit your post here does not strengthen that impression.

    Foo Bar (8e06dc)

  115. Foo Bar, your comments are not making any sense.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  116. An aside: am I the only person having trouble downloading the recent Pentagon report?

    This link

    http://a.abcnews.com/images/pdf/Pentagon_Report_V1.pdf

    is not working for me.

    DubiousD (e2f9f9)

  117. jukeboxgrad,
    The mental gymnastics you have practiced on this page has confused me as to what other twisty thoughts you might entertain. When you call the GOP moonbats, are you suggesting that my comment that SH and AQ met in the hopes of working together is so far to the “right” that even the GOP seems liberal (ie moonbat) compared to me or did you not know that you should be using the derogative word wingnut when discussing the GOP?

    p.66 9/11 Commission Report

    “According to the reporting, Iraqi officials offered Bin Ladin a safe haven in Iraq. Bin Ladin declined, apparently judging that his circumstances in Afghanistan remained more favorable than the Iraqi alternative.”

    Seems to me there would have to be a meeting between SH, or his agents, and AQ for that offer to be made.

    You are not only ideologically irrelevant but rude as well.

    P. Ami (ba98ac)

  118. So, let’s take a poll. Are they being A)aggressively ignorant, or B) willfully obtuse, or C) A and B ?

    JD (25bb93)

  119. DubiousD, that link worked for me. Some interesting information in that report that essentially substantiates the general points of the Bush admin that jukeboxgrad et al want to convert into some huge deception to feed their BDS ( when in fact the descrepancies between the claims before 2003 and the information we’ve received since is simply ascribed to the poor intel we had in general ).

    SPQR (26be8b)

  120. It is hilarious how much of Jules Crittenden’s critique of Frontline’s work applies to jukeboxgrad et al above.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  121. Jules Crittenden’s critique is superb. Thanks for linking it, SPQR. (The disclaimer at the end was funny, too.)

    DRJ (a431ca)

  122. G-O-N-G L.A.Times… G-O-N-G!

    Prediction… The Iraq war debate will end up causing political suicide for the left once again… just like in 2004.

    Remember, absence of proof is not proof of absence!

    trax (dfcd6e)

  123. You can dance around in fancy little logical circles all you want Patterico. But the fact will remain that statements by Dim Bulb et al were designed to imply that Iraq had something to with 9/11.

    Psyberian (d18acc)

  124. “working in concert”

    Perhaps we’re using the wrong words here.
    Might it be that the relationship between SH and AQ was more like that of a Presidential Campaign and a 527?
    They don’t work “in concert”, but they do work to a “common purpose”.
    “In concert” implies co-operation with a mutually agreed upon plan; whereas, “common purpose” means they both want the same end result (or, close enough for Gov’t Work), but are working independently towards it.
    ***insert snark here***
    And, like 527′s, the investigation takes forever before the FEC (U.S.) comes to a decision and lowers the boom.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  125. The insistence here by the idiots, as I refer to the left, is that Bush defacto linked Saddam to 9/11 by virtue of acknowledging that Saddam had specific links to AQ. Thus we may infer that the idiots believe that 1) AQ only worked on attacks that involved Saddam’s participation, and 2) vice versa. Yet we know both to be categorically untrue.

    That is specifically where idiots err in their logic, such as it is: they will go through whatever sort of intellectual contortion is necessary for their world view to survive, including obtuseness, two root definitions of which are stupid and dull. So, my answer to your poll, JD, is C, but I also propose a D: they’re in deep intellectual trouble, and they know it. Patterico and others have made the case very well, over and over, but in the end the left will believe whatever is necessary to keep their world view from collapsing.

    YFS (8ec1f8)

  126. I forget – how many 9/11 terrorists were from Iraq? Oh yeah. Zero. Nada. Next!

    Psyberian (d18acc)

  127. I forget, Psyberian, what relation is that to the discussion? Oh yeah, zero.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  128. Psy,

    Let’s assume your assertion is true. It’s marginally relevant to my post at best.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  129. Escuse me, Psyberian…
    I never recognized any “implication” in the words of the Admin. re SH & 9/11. I thought the record was quite clear that 9/11 was an AQ operation; but that SH was being a shit vis-a-vis his relations with the UNSC and his contraventions of the Cease Fire he signed in 1991.
    Wasn’t that what was said in GW’s speech to the UN?
    Where was the implication?
    What we heard were flat-out accusations of violations of SC resolutions.
    And, don’t fall back on the WMD dodge. We never said he had WMD. The accusation was that he was denying the inspectors’ access so that they may certify that he didn’t have WMD.
    We know he had WMD earlier – he had gassed the Kurds and the Iranians, maybe even the Marsh Arabs (but he did do a good job on them by drying up the marshes – but what’s a little genocide among friends).

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  130. Why Lookee here YFS. Our danged LIBERAL MEDIA done convinced 7 out of 10 Americans that they was a link betwixt AQ and Iraq. Them dang Libruls!

    Washington Post Staff Writers
    Saturday, September 6, 2003; Page A01

    Nearing the second anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, seven in 10 Americans continue to believe that Iraq’s Saddam Hussein had a role in the attacks, even though the Bush administration and congressional investigators say they have no evidence of this.

    Psyberian (d18acc)

  131. Of course, I could equally well assert my opinion as follows:

    You can dance around in fancy little logical circles all you want Psy. But the fact will remain that statements by George W. Bush et al were designed to explain that the war in Iraq was part of the war against terror — a fight that began on 9/11 with an attack from Al Qaeda, but that expanded to include any terrorists that posed a threat to the U.S.

    But again, my “fact” is my opinion, just as your “fact” remains your opinion. The only true “fact” here is that the LAT got three things “fact”ually wrong in two paragraphs.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  132. Dat’s a fact, Jack!

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  133. “I forget – how many 9/11 terrorists were from Iraq? Oh yeah. Zero. Nada. Next!”

    But, let’s not forget that the operational leader of the ’93 WTC bombing was travelling on an Iraqi passport (even though he was of another nationality), and took refuge in Iraq after that event. Can we imply anything from that?

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  134. Psyberian…

    Ya right… nothing to see here… move along… right?

    trax (dfcd6e)

  135. Sheesh, Psyberian, you sure are digging out some really old long-discredited anti-Bush memes.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  136. Nearing the second anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, seven in 10 Americans continue to believe that Iraq’s Saddam Hussein had a role in the attacks, even though the Bush administration and congressional investigators say they have no evidence of this.

    And this constitutes some kind of proof that the Bush administration pushed the meme that Saddam was involved, by pushing the meme that he wasn’t involved? Your world, does it resemble Alice in Wonderland’s?

    JD (25bb93)

  137. JD, actually Psyberian has also proven that the Bush administration has been claiming that Elvis is alive, aliens have visited our earth, and that Oswald did not shoot JFK.

    After all, a lot of people believe those too.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  138. Patterico, I think at times you get so covered with minutia that it is impossible for you to see the big picture. The main point about this is true and indefensible. If 7 out of 10 people (at least) were convinced of the link, then explain that.

    Are you willing to say that 70% of America is just stupid? I don’t think you really want to go there…

    Psyberian (d18acc)

  139. A lot of people think goracle is right, and that Michael Moore is some truthsayer too, SPQR. But, they prolly think alore has a personality and that Michael Moore is skinny too.

    JD (25bb93)

  140. The only true “fact” here is that the LAT got three things “fact”ually wrong in two paragraphs.

    I’m looking forward to the correction they’ll print regarding “collaborative relationship”:

    “Sunday’s piece incorrectly asserted that the 9/11 Commission report said there was no evidence of a ‘collaborative relationship’ between Iraq and Al Qaeda. In fact, it was a report issued by the 9/11 Commission, not the 9/11 Commission report, that contained this finding.”

    Ooh, they’ll be red-faced about that one!

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  141. Psyberian, we destroyed this silly canard of yours more than five years ago. What are you, the TVLand channel of political discourse?

    SPQR (26be8b)

  142. The main point about this is true and indefensible. If 7 out of 10 people (at least) were convinced of the link, then explain that.

    Oh. My. Allah. How could we have never seen this before? It had to have been Bu$hitler and his corporate cronies! That is the only explanation, amongst the myriad of possibilities. And for that to be the case, it is proof, proof I tell you, that Bush intentionally linked Saddam to 9/11, by going out of his way to not link Saddam to 9/11.

    JD (25bb93)

  143. Foo Bar, that was no more coherent than your earlier comments. You seem to be telling us that you don’t understand Patterico’s post.

    We knew that.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  144. Don’t 50+% of Americans think Elvis is still alive (New Poll, Film @ 11)?

    The next thing we’ll learn from Psy is that the Alger Hiss case was a Rove plot.

    Some people are walking case studies to the fact that there are too many drugs on campus.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  145. My apologies JD; there is that nasty little goblin that secretly goes around brainwashing people into believing in that nefarious AQ/Iraq link thingy. Sorry, forgot all about that.

    It was them dang Libruls, I tell you!

    Psyberian (d18acc)

  146. Yep, A. Drew, the LSD flashbacks to five years ago are annoying for some, I’m sure.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  147. SPQR – personal insults? Is that all you’ve got? Dude, you’re pitiful.

    Psyberian (d18acc)

  148. What personal insult?

    My perception is that he implied a certain course of personal conduct that may, or may not, have happened in the past.

    I suppose we’ll need an exhaustive analysis by the crack journalists at the LAT for a determinative explanation.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  149. BTW, thanks guys, and girls. This was fun today. Now, I’ve got to read my mail.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  150. Uh, no, Psyberian, my Ridicule Kung Fu has already defeated your poorly executed, 5 yr old rerun fighting style.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  151. Foo Bar,

    You keep acting as though the staff statement is the Commission’s report. It is not. It is the staff statement..

    Do you understand the difference?

    Or are you just pretending not to because you think it’s more rhetorically effective. (Hint: it isn’t, to those of us who are paying attention. But I suppose you may be playing to those who aren’t.)

    Patterico (a6d149)

  152. Yes, I understand the difference. My last comment was not intended to suggest that the staff report and the final report are one and the same. The point of my last comment was that it would be fairly trivial correction for the LAT to issue, given that a report (if not “the” report) contained the phrase, and given that the LAT sentence really said that postwar investigations arrived at the finding, which is true in the case of the 9/11 commission.

    I still can’t believe you’re happy to leave your readers with the false impression that “collaborative relationship” was invented out of thin air or appears in quotes only due to sloppy secondhand paraphrasing.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  153. jd: “you are willing to take some political words from Saddam Hussein as gospel truth, over the mounds of evidence to the contrary”

    It’s not a question of what I’m “willing to take.” It’s a question of what GOP Senators were “willing to take.” It’s a question of what information was taken seriously by a GOP-controlled committee, and what was dismissed. You dismiss what they took seriously, and vice versa. The only mystery is why the GOP put them in the Senate instead of you, since you’re obviously smarter than they are.

    “The 9/11 Commission says jukeboxgrad is wrong”

    Right. That’s why the commission reported that there was no “collaborative relationship” between Iraq and AQ.

    “I guess that those Ansar Al Islam camps were really just Boy Scout camps that Saddam allowed to be conducted there.”

    You’re referring to camps in Kurdistan, an area out of Saddam’s control. Don’t take my word for it. Listen to Rice (7/29/01): “But in terms of Saddam Hussein being there, let’s remember that his country is divided, in effect. He does not control the northern part of his country. We are able to keep arms from him. His military forces have not been rebuilt.”

    “The money he was paying to the families of Palestinian homicide bombers?”

    A pittance compared to the billions paid by Dubya’s Saudi pals: “for decades the royal family of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has been the main financial supporter of Palestinian groups fighting Israel.”

    “Just because AQ committed the actions on 9/11, you cannot use AQ and 9/11 interchangeably.”

    Good luck convincing any non-Kool-Aid drinker that when Bush tied Saddam and AQ together that he wasn’t also implying that Saddam was linked to 9/11. Bush’s central method of selling the war was to mention those three items together: 9/11, AQ and Saddam.

    You’re also forgetting that Cheney said our invasion “struck a major blow right at the heart of the base, if you will, the geographic base of the terrorists who have had us under assault now for many years, but most especially on 9/11.” Tell us how to interpret those words as something other than a claim that Saddam was behind 9/11.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  154. ami: “When you call the GOP moonbats”

    I was being ironic. Sorry that went over your head.

    “are you suggesting that my comment that SH and AQ met in the hopes of working together is so far to the ‘right’ ”

    I’m suggesting that your comment is at odds with the conclusions reached by a GOP-controlled Senate committee.

    “According to the reporting, Iraqi officials offered Bin Ladin a safe haven in Iraq”

    Sorry, but a vague report via unnamed persons about a vague offer made by unnamed persons is not something I take very seriously. Likewise for the GOP Senators who reported on the safe-haven issue in 2006:

    Conclusion 1: … Postwar findings indicate that Saddam Hussein was distrustful of al-Qa’ida and viewed Islamic extremists as a threat to his regime, refusing all requests from al Qa’ida to provide material or operational support. Debriefings of key leaders of the former Iraqi regime indicate that Saddam distrusted Islamic radicals in general, and al Qa’ida in particular… Debriefings also indicate that Saddam issued a general order that Iraq should not deal with al Qa’ida. No postwar information suggests that the Iraqi regime attempted to facilitate a relationship with bin Ladin. (p. 105)

    Conclusion 5:… Postwar information indicates that Saddam Hussein attempted, unsuccessfully, to locate and capture al-Zarqawi and that the regime did not have a relationship with, harbor, or turn a blind eye toward Zarqawi. (p.109)

    “You are not only ideologically irrelevant but rude as well.”

    Nothing could be ruder than war based on lies, which is the activity you’re defending.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  155. spqr: “Some interesting information in that report that essentially substantiates the general points of the Bush admin”

    Wow. What a shock. A report issued by the Bush administration is found to contain certain information helpful to the Bush administration.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  156. drew: “Perhaps we’re using the wrong words here.”

    Bush did indeed use “the wrong words.” He said Saddam and AQ were working “in concert.” That means acting jointly. Trouble is, they weren’t.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  157. yfs: “by virtue of acknowledging that Saddam had specific links to AQ”

    Nice job pretending that Bush didn’t say what he said. He didn’t just say Saddam and AQ had “links.” He said they were working “in concert.” Feith called it an “operational relationship.” Those statements were false.

    “believe whatever is necessary to keep their world view from collapsing”

    Thanks for this excellent example of projection.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  158. Juke Box Hero – Gots stars in his eyes. Juke Box Hero. Juke Box Hero.

    Quit lying.

    JD (25bb93)

  159. drew: “We never said he had WMD.”

    Wow. The revisionism is in full bloom. Since your amnesia has kicked in, here’s a reminder of what Bush told us we would find:

    500 tons of mustard gas and nerve gas, 25,000 liters of anthrax, 38,000 liters of botulinum toxin, 29,984 prohibited munitions capable of delivering chemical agents, several dozen Scud missiles, gas centrifuges to enrich uranium, 18 mobile biological warfare factories, long-range unmanned aerial vehicles to dispense anthrax

    (All the claims listed above, including all the numbers cited, came out of either Bush‘s mouth or Powell‘s mouth, or possibly both. Very detailed further analysis is here and here.)

    “The accusation was that he was denying the inspectors’ access so that they may certify that he didn’t have WMD.”

    More baloney. Blix said this:

    Iraq has on the whole cooperated rather well so far with UNMOVIC in this field. The most important point to make is that access has been provided to all sites we have wanted to inspect and with one exception it has been prompt. We have further had great help in building up the infrastructure of our office in Baghdad and the field office in Mosul. Arrangements and services for our plane and our helicopters have been good. The environment has been workable … Our inspections have included universities, military bases, presidential sites and private residences. Inspections have also taken place on Fridays, the Muslim day of rest, on Christmas day and New Years day.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  160. drew: “let’s not forget that the operational leader of the ‘93 WTC bombing … took refuge in Iraq after that event. Can we imply anything from that?”

    Let’s not forget that all the 9/11 bombers spent time in this country before the attack. Can we imply anything from that? Does it mean that Bush was providing safe haven to terrorists?

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  161. p: “You keep acting as though the staff statement is the Commission’s report. It is not. It is the staff statement.”

    The distinction you’re making a fuss about apparently meant nothing to Scott Johnson. I pointed this out in #58. Nice job ignoring this.

    It would be great to hear you explain why your perspective makes sense and his doesn’t.

    You’re also making a fuss about the word “operational,” as if Bush’s people never used that word. But Feith did, apparently. Something else you’re determined to ignore.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  162. My very first comment in the thread acknowledged that the final report didn’t contain the phrase, but the staff statement (a.k.a. the staff report) did.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  163. jd: “Quit lying”

    We’ll be waiting patiently while you demonstrate an example. So far you’ve proven this many: zero.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  164. Patterico, you’re the one that was, at one point, confused about the staff report. When I said that “a report” contained the phrase “collaborative relationship”, you tried to diminish it by emphasizing that it was a “statement” and not a report, when in fact you had called the same document a “staff report” in your main post. You just didn’t realize it was the same document yet.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  165. Explain to us how a Senate Committe noting that Saddam gave a speech claiming that they would not collaborate with AQ proves that they did not, in fact, have links to AQ. BTW – The same Senate Committe found that Joe Wilson was a mendoucheous liar. Do you still believe them?

    No collaborative relationship and no links are not the same thing. If you are going to use the 9/11 Commission Report as your “proof”, you cannot quit reading when you find the part you want to agree with.

    How about harboring terrorists like Abu Nidal?

    I do not get the “pittance”. Either Saddam was paying off families of Palestinian homicide bombers or he was not. Whether or not someone else “funded” that to a great degree is not relevant, except for you to attempt to distract. Focus.

    Good luck convincing any non-Kool-Aid drinker that when Bush tied Saddam and AQ together that he wasn’t also implying that Saddam was linked to 9/11.

    Just because using words in the same speech led you to believe one thing does not mean that was the intention. It says more about feeble brains.

    You’re also forgetting that Cheney said our invasion “struck a major blow right at the heart of the base, if you will, the geographic base of the terrorists who have had us under assault now for many years, but most especially on 9/11.” Tell us how to interpret those words as something other than a claim that Saddam was behind 9/11.

    Maybe that geographically, Iraq is in between, let’s say, Palestine and Aghanistan.

    JukeBoxHero is not a mental midget. By your standards, and those set forth by your fellow travelers, it would be your position that I am advancing the meme that you are, in fact, a mental midget.

    JD (25bb93)

  166. I still can’t believe you’re happy to leave your readers with the false impression that “collaborative relationship” was invented out of thin air or appears in quotes only due to sloppy secondhand paraphrasing.

    No, people who read what he wrote (unlike yourself apparently) know that he is correct. Patterico quoted the LAT as saying:

    Postwar investigations, including the 9/11 Commission Report and a report this month financed by the Pentagon, found no evidence of a “collaborative relationship” between Al Qaeda and the Iraqi regime.

    Now, this word “including” means that the LAT asserts that both the 9/11 Commission Report and the Pentagon report have found no evidence of a “collaborative relationship”. Patterico then states:

    Two paragraphs, three misstatements of fact.

    The statement that the 9/11 Commission Report found no evidence of a “collaborative relationship” is not factual. It says no such thing. This is a misstatement of fact.
    The statement that the Pentagon report found no evidence of a “collaborative relationship” is not factual. It says no such thing. This is a misstatement of fact.

    Just because there are sources that say something close, or even sources that use that phrase exactly, doesn’t mean that the LAT statement is correct. So our impression is not a false one. We understand what we read. Try it sometime for yourself. You might end up making more sense that way.

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  167. Racist

    JD (25bb93)

  168. Jukeboxgrad, despite a lot of unsubstantiated claims by you and others, the Bush administration has not faked any intelligence reports.

    That’s a better record than yours to date.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  169. Ok JD, focus buddy. :P

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  170. So our impression is not a false one.

    The impression his post conveys that I’m criticizing is not the conclusion that the LAT sentence is technically false if the most legalistic and nitpicky of standards is applied. I concede that.

    By not noting that a staff report contained that phrase, though, the reader is left with the impression that there was no reasonable basis whatsoever for putting “collaborative relationship” in quotes. This impression is false. Via the omission of the staff report, the significance of the LAT error is inappropriately and misleadingly magnified.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  171. This trying to be nice thing is really freaking painfully difficult, Stashiu. It is like they have no conscience, no soul. They just lie and make shite up, at will.

    SPQR can attest that I have been remarkably restrained, especially for me, in dealing with JukeBoxHero, Levi, etal here today (except for that mendoucheous fucking twatwaffle comment, which was completely taken out of context).

    Patterico and DRJ – How in the hell can you guys continue to be so freaking nice in the face of such mendoucheity ?

    JD (25bb93)

  172. Patterico, you’re the one that was, at one point, confused about the staff report. When I said that “a report” contained the phrase “collaborative relationship”, you tried to diminish it by emphasizing that it was a “statement” and not a report, when in fact you had called the same document a “staff report” in your main post. You just didn’t realize it was the same document yet.

    The key distinction is not statement vs. report, though that is the terminology used by the Commission and its staff. I’m sure I’ve loosely described the statement as a report on more than one occasion. And when the staff statement first came out, and was portrayed by much of the news media as a report “by the Commission” (as you have repeatedly and erroneously asserted) I may have fallen for that one too. (Apparently Scott Johnson did, according to Juke Box Hero — not that this means anything, but at least I’m NOT IGNORING IT!!!1!!!11!)

    But the key distinction is whether the document was by the staff or by the Commission. And the reason it’s important, as I have explained over and over again as if talking to something other than a brick wall of partisan pigheadedness, is that the Commission members wrote the section differently from the staff. The Commission members (other than ultra-hack Ben Veniste) made it quite crystal clear in their statements that any implication of a lack of linkage based on the infelicitous phrasing “collaborative relationship” in their staff’s report WAS W-R-O-N-G.

    There were all kinds of links. There were all kinds of ties. They could not have been more clear about this.

    And so they were careful to write THEIR report in a way that reflected this — including more detail regarding the contacts, and being careful to call the lack of relationship the lack of an “operational” relationship resulting in the 9/11 attacks.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  173. And in the face of all this, Juke Box Hero keeps bringing up a memo from an Undersecretary of Defense for Policy. He doesn’t dispute a single fact asserted in that memo, or show how any other investigation disputed a single fact (as opposed to the conclusion) of the memo. But even if he could, that memo does not, as far as I can tell, show that the Undersecretary of Defense for Policy made “claims that Hussein appeared linked to the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks” — which, if anyone cares, is the only possible relevant of the memo to this post.

    At best, the memo provides evidence that someone, whom Hayes (who quotes the memo) says may or may not have been an Iraqi agent, may have had some involvement with 9/11. That doesn’t quite sound like a claim that Hussein appeared linked to Sept. 11.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  174. — including more detail regarding the contacts, and being careful to call the lack of relationship the lack of an “operational” relationship resulting in the 9/11 attacks.

    Which is proof, proof I tell you, that the 9/11 Commission was attempting to advance the meme that there were operational ties by stating there were not operational ties.

    Devious, they were.

    JD (25bb93)

  175. The impression his post conveys that I’m criticizing is not the conclusion that the LAT sentence is technically false if the most legalistic and nitpicky of standards is applied. I concede that.

    How about if the standards of plain English are applied? Your “impression” is your own problem.

    By not noting that a staff report contained that phrase, though, the reader is left with the impression that there was no reasonable basis whatsoever for putting “collaborative relationship” in quotes. This impression is false.

    Again, your impression… people with reading comprehension skills aren’t having as much trouble as you seem to be.

    Via the omission of the staff report, the significance of the LAT error is inappropriately and misleadingly magnified.

    The fact they made three misstatements in two sentences appropriately magnifies the errors, not any omissions. Patterico didn’t reference lots of things because those things weren’t the point of the post… the misstatements were. Spinning off on BDS-tinged rants doesn’t change what was written, either in the reports, the LAT, or Patterico’s post.

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  176. SPQR can attest that I have been remarkably restrained, especially for me

    I read every comment JD, I’ve seen your efforts. I’m the one who said you could be nice, remember? ;)

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  177. Stashiu – You are wise beyond your years. Yoda like. In a non-yoda-ist kind of way.

    Night all.

    JD (25bb93)

  178. In a non-yoda-ist kind of way.

    It’s the ears, right? They did the ears wrong. I told them that they needed more articulation. Meh.

    Night JD, be well.

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  179. As I say, Foo Bar, it’s interesting that the staff decided to issue a statement with those words — and it’s even more interesting that the Commissioners took care to word the conclusion differently in their own report. But none of that undercuts the point in my post that the LAT got it wrong.

    I intend to publish my e-mail to Jamie Gold in a separate post, and link it in an update to this post. As I said I intend to do in an earlier comment, I’ll include the reference to the staff report in my e-mail to her, to be helpful. (I’m all about being helpful.) Since my post ends with a call to ask her where the phrase comes from, and since my e-mail will tell her, I intend to reference that fact in my update. So I guess you’ll end up getting what you want after all.

    But I stress that I do not do this because I feel I “need” to in order to avoid misleading readers. Readers would conclude from my post that the phrase was not used in the 9/11 Commission Report or the Pentagon report, as the LAT claimed — and readers would be correct in that conclusion. Because my post is accurate.

    The interesting fact that you located it in a statement not prepared by the 9/11 Commission itself is, as I say, interesting — but hardly necessary to include as an update to prevent readers from being misled.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  180. The Commission members (other than ultra-hack Ben Veniste) made it quite crystal clear in their statements that any implication of a lack of linkage based on the infelicitous phrasing “collaborative relationship” in their staff’s report WAS W-R-O-N-G.

    I already acknowledged long ago that “no link whatsoever” is wrong. When was I arguing there was a total lack of linkage? You seem to jump to the erroneous conclusion that just because somebody puts up some resistance to you in the comments that they must be far-left types who deny that Iraq and Al Qaeda had any contact at all. If you’ve been trying to convince me there were some links (in the sense of contacts), you’ve been talking past me all along.

    My point all along has been that there’s far more basis for putting “collaborative relationship” in quotes than your post indicates.

    as I have explained over and over again as if talking to something other than a brick wall of partisan pigheadedness

    Whatever, dude. I don’t deny that I’m a Democrat, but if you’re going to start assessing my pigheadedness, you might ask Tom Maguire where he got a quote from Dana Priest saying that the Plame leak didn’t damage national security, a quote he loved so much he used it over and over again.

    The end of your post says to ask the reader rep where the quote came from. You know the answer to that. I told you. It came from the staff report. Yet you leave that suggestion up there as if there’s no decent answer to the question.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  181. I intend to publish my e-mail to Jamie Gold in a separate post, and link it in an update to this post. As I said I intend to do in an earlier comment, I’ll include the reference to the staff report in my e-mail to her

    OK, glad to hear it. Thanks.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  182. My point all along has been that there’s far more basis for putting “collaborative relationship” in quotes than your post indicates.

    Well, Foo Bar, perhaps you can explain why one of your comments said:

    “We’ll be waiting patiently while you demonstrate an example. So far you’ve proven this many: zero.”

    Quite clearly, I have provided many examples.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  183. That was jukeboxgrad, not me.

    It’s not that hard to provide a link when referring to a commenter’s previous comment. I would advise doing so in the future, if for no other reason than as a way to double-check that you haven’t gotten confused about who said what.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  184. And you fall into the trap.

    Are you saying it matters who wrote the words?

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  185. Because I thought that we got to pretend that the staff statement was really the Commission’s. The critical thing is that the words were used by somebody.

    My point all along has been that there’s far more basis for putting “collaborative relationship” in quotes than your post indicates.

    Yeah, well, there’s far more basis for putting “We’ll be waiting patiently while you demonstrate an example. So far you’ve proven this many: zero.” in quotes than your comment 183 indicates.

    Please update your comment.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  186. Bwahahaha!!! Well-played… well-played indeed. :)

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  187. Yeah, too bad hardly anyone will see it.

    I was really afraid Juke Box Hero was going to interject first and spoil the fun.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  188. Meanwhile, where did that templeton fellow go? It was fun noting his utter failure to read the post.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  189. Ah, you’re so devious. Yes, that’s a perfect analogy- I’m just as responsible for the postings of some other random anonymous dude in your blog comments as the 9/11 Commission was for the contents of a report written by the staff they supervised, which starts by acknowledging the help of the Commissioners.

    Look, if you read me as arguing that the distinction between the staff report and the final report, and the authorhship of the two, as completely and utterly meaningless, then I’m sorry I left that impression. It’s not a completely meaningless distinction. Not super interesting, but not meaningless.

    My point all along was that someone reading your post is liable to think “what a bunch of bozos at the LAT- why the hell did they put those words in quotes?” when there’s a pretty decent answer to that question that you’ve known for 24 hours but have declined to share as of yet with anyone who does not delve into the comments section.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  190. Well, your “point all along” has included numerous comments in which you essentially pretended that the staff statement was issued by the Commission as opposed to the staff. Are you going to make me quote them, or are you going to concede that you have done this, and that it was a tad inaccurate, giving the evidence of distancing that you demanded and I then provided?

    The analogy is imperfect, of course . . . I know the staff of the Commission is different from the Commission, whereas I merely suspect that an anonymous commenter calling himself “Foo Bar” is different from one calling himself “Juke Box Hero” . . . or whatever.

    As for the update, the e-mail is sent, and I’m working on the formatting for the post. Patience, young Skywalker.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  191. To make your trick work analogy-wise, I would have to be supervising jukeboxgrad regarding some investigation we were both working on, I would have had to be thanked for the help I’d provided during the investigation in producing the “I’m waiting for an example” quote, and you would have to be using the quote as representative of the findings of the investigation.

    My point does not reduce to “it doesn’t matter whatsoever who the author is of anything”. You’re smart enough to know that, regardless of whether you consider yourself to have “caught” me here.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  192. Shorter Foo Bar: “I was pwn3d and refuse to admit I can’t understand simple English.”

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  193. Actually, I’m going to set it to publish after midnight. I try to have a substantial post every morning, and I’ve spent enough time on this (and the silly debate here) that this is going to have to be it. So the republication of the e-mail will be timed for after midnight, meaning the update won’t happen until around 6:30 a.m.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  194. You are going to make me quote them, aren’t you?

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  195. Incidentally, even hack Ben Veniste said in his MTP appearance that the “collaborative relationship” language referred to attacks on the U.S.:

    But in terms of collaborative relationship in operations targeting the United States, we have come to the conclusion that there is no evidence that we have seen to support that.

    So when you say in 87 that

    So what? That’s an individual commissioner (who is a Republican, which you failed to note in the post, although you point out Hamilton’s party ID). Right before that in the MTP transcript, you have Ben Veniste saying, yes, he agrees with what Russert had just read, which included “collaborative relationship” in the negative.

    I read that as implying otherwise. Not so.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  196. I acknowledge that I used the language “issued by the Commission” regarding the staff report.You seem to think this should be devastating to me.
    The staff wrote it; I’m sure the Commission had the final say about when it would be made available to the public. Saying that the Commission “issued” the report doesn’t seem unreasonable, in light of that.
    I acknowledge that you found an NYT piece that said they may do some rewriting. That is indeed a point in your favor.

    You didn’t provide anything that suggests that the commission, as a whole, is deeply unhappy about “collaborative relationship” continuing to appear in quotes in news pieces.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  197. I provided a ton of information suggesting that they felt the need to clarify it in interviews, and that the furor caused them to write the final report differently.

    Seriously. Go back and read the links to my old posts. Look at the transcripts linked therein. These guys had to address a media that was screaming BUSHLIED!!!! NO LINK!!!!! and explain that it wasn’t true, at least in the way the media was portraying it. It seems quite clear that they wrote the final report differently (using “operational” and detailing the links) for a reason.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  198. Incidentally, even hack Ben Veniste said in his MTP appearance that the “collaborative relationship” language referred to attacks on the U.S.:

    That might have been an interesting point had the LAT piece elaborated on what an absence of “collaborative relationship” meant in a way that’s inconsistent with what Ben Veniste said. It didn’t, though. It was a quick, throwaway line that didn’t contain elaboration.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  199. It’s an interesting point given the fact that your comment 87 implied that Ben Veniste was saying something different.

    I guess I’m now entitled to say you made that “claim” — since we all know an implication is the same as a “claim.” Even if the implication is subject to multiple reasonable interpretations.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  200. Ben Veniste was read the language from the staff report that included “collaborative relationship”, full stop, and did not object. That was my point.

    Do you honestly think that a reader who read your post and also was informed about the phrase appearing in the staff report would be just as upset with the LAT as a reader who didn’t know about the staff report?

    (and I’m sure some commenter will pop up and say “yeah, I’m just as mad”- such commenters are hardly random samples of the readers as a whole).

    Look, you do good work. I enjoy the blog on the occasions I come by. Sorry to be such a pest. I stand by my position that a post that goes into this kind of detail about that specific phrasing and doesn’t mention that the phrase was present in the staff report is somewhat deficient. Sorry you feel otherwise. I’m going to bed.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  201. Ben Veniste was read the language from the staff report that included “collaborative relationship”, full stop, and did not object.

    Jesus. And that phrase was actually intended by the Commissioners to refer to collaboration in operations attacking the United States. That was “my point all along” (to use your favorite phrase).

    I can’t imagine anyone who read and understood these comments feeling different in the slightest.

    After all, I say in the post that the final report used the phrase “collaborative operational relationship.” It can’t possibly escape the reader’s attention that this phrase uses the words “collaborative” and “relationship.” Superficial readers (like templeton the rat) will stop there and declare me a hairsplitter without considering my argument about the significance of the word “operational.”

    But any reader who takes the time to read and understand my argument about why that word is important (i.e. people unlike templeton the rat) would not feel even one iota of difference in learning that a) the staff had previously used the phrase without the word “operational” and b) the Commissioners had responded to a furor over the media’s misreading of this phrase by stressing that it referred to an operational relationship in attacks on the U.S.

    Sorry you feel differently. But having repeated the same thing about 500 times, I don’t think I can say it any more clearly.

    How about it, gang? Does any regular reader find Foo Bar’s point remotely significant to the post?

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  202. My eyes glazed over on this thread 40 comments ago. Most comments were so circular it’s like reading on a merry-go-round.

    DRJ (a431ca)

  203. Does any regular reader find Foo Bar’s point remotely significant to the post?

    Not in the slightest… of course I have to ask, what do you mean by “regular”? (a little nursing-humor there, sorry… I’m easily amused.)

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  204. How about it, gang? Does any regular reader find Foo Bar’s point remotely significant to the post?

    No, but I believe he knew that all along; alas, what to imply?

    YFS (8ec1f8)

  205. Post is updated, with a hat tip to Foo Bar.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  206. On the Foo Bar “collaborative relationship” sub-thread:

    1) I agree with Foo Bar that if the actual origin of quote-marked words is known to an author and that it is related and relevant (all tests met here, IMHO), then the author should ID that in a situation such as this.

    2) Not to ID the origin and leave a reader the impression that LAT made the quoted words up out of thin air may not be “defamation”, but it feels like “false light”.

    3) I think ID’ing the true origin – as you now have – and developing the contrast makes your case stronger. In fact, as Foo Bar hinted early in the thread, it anticipates and destroys the LAT’s easiest throwaway or dismissive defense.

    jim2 (a9ab88)

  207. foo: “you had called the same document a ‘staff report’ in your main post”

    You are pointing out correctly that our host referred to the staff ‘statement’ as a ‘report.’ And, as I have pointed out, Power Line did essentially the same thing. Actually, they went a bit further. They referred to the relevant passage as coming from “the 9/11 Commission report.”

    What we must understand is that it’s not OK if LAT does it, but IOKIYAR.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  208. jd: “Explain to us how a Senate Committe noting that Saddam gave a speech claiming that they would not collaborate with AQ proves that they did not, in fact, have links to AQ”

    Try getting your facts straight. The Senate didn’t describe it as “a speech.” They described it as “a general order.” And if you think this fact should be dismissed, you’re obviously entitled to your opinion. But the GOP-controlled Senate committee took a position contrary to yours. If you don’t like that, take it up with them.

    “The same Senate Committe found that Joe Wilson was a mendoucheous liar.”

    Uh, no, they did not. And I’m prepared to educate you on that point, too, but we should try to stick to one topic at a time.

    But thanks for bringing up the 2004 report. It’s interesting to note that Bushists love to cite it, while also dismissing the 2006 report issued by the same committee. Interesting how that works.

    “No collaborative relationship and no links are not the same thing.”

    The term “links” is so vague that it’s useless. There are also quite a few “links” between the Bush family and the bin Laden family. You’re trying really hard to dance away from the central problem, which is that Bush et al made false statements (when they used terms like “in concert” and “operational relationship;” those terms are much more emphatic than “links”).

    “If you are going to use the 9/11 Commission Report as your ‘proof’ ”

    Proof that Bush’s claims were false can be found in lots of places other than the 9/11 report. The 2006 Senate report is one example of many.

    “How about harboring terrorists like Abu Nidal?”

    It would be good if you could name an Arab country that has never allowed entrance to people like that. It would be especially helpful if you could show that folks like that have never spent a night in Saudi Arabia or Pakistan, two of Dubya’s favorite countries. Hey, guess what. Some folks like that might even be inside US borders right now. I suppose that means that Bush is giving ‘harbor’ to them. And I guess that Bush was “harboring” the 9/11 hijackers prior to 9/11.

    Let us know if you can actually prove your claim.

    “Whether or not someone else ‘funded’ that to a great degree is not relevant, except for you to attempt to distract.”

    The Saudi royal family paying billions to fund terrorism is highly relevant, if you expect non-Kool-Aid drinkers in this country and elsewhere to view our foreign policy as something other than deeply hypocritical.

    “Just because using words in the same speech led you to believe one thing does not mean that was the intention.”

    Right. And if I repeatedly discuss people who rape nuns and torture kittens, and I repeatedly mention JD while doing so, that indicates nothing about my “intention” to defame you. After all, I’m just “using words.”

    “Maybe that geographically, Iraq is in between, let’s say, Palestine and Aghanistan.”

    Simple question that you’re ducking. Is Iraq the “geographic base” of the people who attacked us on 9/11? That’s what Cheney claimed. Are you claiming he is correct? The 9/11 hijackers were mostly Saudis, and they were dispatched by a Saudi (OBL) operating in Afghanistan. In what sense was Iraq their “geographic base?”

    Jordan is also “in between, let’s say, Palestine and Aghanistan.” Is it logical to claim that Jordan is the “geographic base” of the people who attacked us on 9/11?

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  209. spqr: “despite a lot of unsubstantiated claims by you”

    An example would be helpful.

    “That’s a better record than yours to date.”

    You’re suggesting that I’ve faked something. You’ve presented an impressive number of examples: zero.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  210. jd: “They just lie and make shite up”

    We’ll be waiting patiently while you demonstrate an example. So far you’ve proven this many: zero.

    “Which is proof, proof I tell you, that the 9/11 Commission was attempting to advance the meme that there were operational ties by stating there were not operational ties.”

    You’re obviously very confused. It was Feith (with lots of help from Bush, Cheney et al) who advanced that meme.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  211. p: “Apparently Scott Johnson did, according to Juke Box Hero — not that this means anything”

    What it means is that any alleged carelessness on the part of LAT is indistinguishable from Johnson’s carelessness. But you never noticed or commented on his, because IOKIYAR.

    “so they were careful to write THEIR report in a way that reflected this — including more detail regarding the contacts, and being careful to call the lack of relationship the lack of an ‘operational’ relationship resulting in the 9/11 attacks.”

    Trouble is, the statements by Bush et al (like “in concert” and “operational relationship”) were not similarly “careful.” They were false.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  212. p: “Juke Box Hero keeps bringing up a memo from an Undersecretary of Defense for Policy”

    You shouldn’t imply that Feith was a minor figure. He wasn’t.

    “He doesn’t dispute a single fact asserted in that memo”

    Then I guess you haven’t comprehended a single word I’ve said. Feith claimed an “operational relationship.” Obviously I “dispute” that “fact asserted in that memo.” And I’m in good company in disputing that “fact.” That “fact” is also disputed by the 9/11 commission and the Senate committee.

    “or show how any other investigation disputed a single fact (as opposed to the conclusion) of the memo”

    English translation: ‘Feith’s memo makes perfect sense, provided one ignores the main point.’ Thanks for the laugh.

    By the way, none of us is in a position to thoroughly evaluate the specific ‘facts’ in the memo, since it’s still classified. Nevertheless, it’s fair to assume that the Senate committee didn’t take Feith’s ‘facts’ very seriously, since they reached a conclusion contrary to his.

    “that memo does not, as far as I can tell, show that the Undersecretary of Defense for Policy made ‘claims that Hussein appeared linked to the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks’ ”

    Wrong. Feith’s memo suggests that Saddam funded Atta. Aside from that, Feith’s memo is relevant because it claimed an “operational relationship.” That’s contrary to the conclusions reached by the 9/11 commission and the Senate committee.

    “someone, whom Hayes (who quotes the memo) says may or may not have been an Iraqi agent, may have had some involvement with 9/11″

    Wrong again. Hayes does not describe al Ani as someone who “may or may not have been an Iraqi agent.” Hayes described al Ani as “an Iraqi intelligence officer.” And Hayes says “the memo reveals potential financing of Atta’s activities by Iraqi intelligence.” Since you think it’s so important for LAT to get their facts straight, you should try setting a better example.

    “That doesn’t quite sound like a claim that Hussein appeared linked to Sept. 11.”

    Thanks for the laugh. You live on a planet where “potential financing of Atta’s activities by Iraqi intelligence” does not “sound like a claim that Hussein appeared linked to Sept. 11.” Us earthlings would love to have some of what you’re smoking.

    “a statement not prepared by the 9/11 Commission itself”

    You’re well into the zone of advanced Clintonesque parsing to claim that the staff of the 9/11 commission is not part of the 9/11 commission. Next up, you can tell us about the meaning of ‘is.’

    You are similarly in the zone of silliness with all your huffing and puffing about how there’s allegedly a huge difference between saying “operational relationship” vs. “collaborative operational relationship” vs. “collaborative relationship.” You’re splitting hairs.

    “declare me a hairsplitter without considering my argument about the significance of the word ‘operational’ ”

    If you want to claim that word is significant, then it was also significant when Feith used it. And if the 9/11 commission was correct (and if the Senate committee was correct), then Feith’s claim was false.

    “the Commissioners had responded to a furor over the media’s misreading of this phrase by stressing that it referred to an operational relationship in attacks on the U.S.”

    The problem you refuse to acknowledge is that Feith’s memo indeed “referred to an operational relationship in attacks on the U.S.”

    “I have provided many examples”

    You seem to be claiming that you’ve proven I lied. Really? Where?

    “I don’t even raise the issue of the article’s claim that the Bush administration made claims that Iraq was tied to 9/11. In all the comments below, nobody has produced any evidence of that”

    Feith’s memo did indeed claim “that Iraq was tied to 9/11.” There’s no other way to interpret the claim of “potential financing of Atta’s activities by Iraqi intelligence.”

    Aside from that, Bush’s statement that AQ and Saddam worked “in concert” also amounts to a claim “that Iraq was tied to 9/11.” Likewise for Cheney’s claim that Iraq was the “base” of the 9/11 attackers.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  213. It has to be tiring to be that mendoucheous.

    JD (75f5c3)

  214. I knew I could count on you for a substantive, thoroughly-documented response. I’m glad you didn’t let us down.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  215. Just catching up here…

    How about it, gang? Does any regular reader find Foo Bar’s point remotely significant to the post?

    What I find significant is that he has difficulty in admitting/acknowledging when he is mistaken.

    Could it be that his “handle” is absolutely self-descriptive?

    Another Drew (f9dd2c)

  216. JukeBoxHero – There is no amount of facts or documentation or rational discussion that would change your BDS inflicted mind.

    Bush says “A”
    JukeBoxHero hears “not-A”
    JukeBoxHero blames Bush for hearing “not-A” and maintains that Bush was pushing the meme of “not-A”

    It is a dishonest, mendoucheous, lying, retarded, dumb, dumber, dumbest, dumberest, stoooopid position to take. There is no reasoning with someone that does not use reason to arrive at their own illogical conclusions.

    JD (75f5c3)

  217. Keep ducking the simple issues. Feith said “operational relationship.” 9/11 commission and Senate committee said otherwise.

    Still waiting for you to spin away what’s obvious: Feith made a false statement. Likewise for the corresponding statements by Bush, Cheney et al.

    Surely you can handle this if you invent some more of your own facts (like the idea that Saddam made “a speech” which was the basis for the Senate finding).

    Also waiting for our host to invent some more facts (like the idea that Feith didn’t tie Saddam to 9/11; I proved this claim was false).

    Also waiting for you to prove where I lied. Actually, all you’re proving is that you like to make claims you can’t substantiate.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  218. You want to talk about Feith. Apparently, the Senate disagreed with him. Whoopee! Hallelujah!

    Okay, Saddam issued a general order, not a speech, that appears to have been widely ignored.

    Your claims, your burden of proof. Demonstrate that Bush linked Saddam to 9/11. You cannot. Because he didn’t. Therefore, you lied, are a liar, and continue to lie in pursuing your BDS driven rantings.

    JD (75f5c3)

  219. As always, jukeboxgrad’s point – even if granted to him for the sake of argument – is among the more trivial of rhetorical exaggerations. It is no more significant than, probably less so, than Clinton’s exaggeration of the Serbs actions in Kosovo to justify his air campaign against Serbian citizens and the subsequent occupation of Kosovo.

    Note that even today, the evidence is not clear that such statements would actually be false. As the Pentagon report shows, the bulk of intel recovered from Iraq is unprocessed, what we have is ambiguous enough on the subject to support most of the claims in hindsight.

    Its truly bizarre that people like jukeboxgrad, and the bulk of Democrats, are still obsessed with this silly issue and work so hard to twist the historic reality to fit their BDS paranoia.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  220. SPQR – I will no longer address them. They just wish to argue.

    Bush specifically did not link Saddam and 9/11, yet they continue to maintain that because their fevered minds made that association, that Bush intended for that to happen. Some Jedi mind trick.

    JD (75f5c3)

  221. Plus, I am trying to be more civil, and the lying mendoucheity of these fuckers is testing me.

    JD (75f5c3)

  222. jd: “the Senate disagreed with [Feith]”

    Nice job dishonestly minimizing the facts you don’t like. It’s not just that the Senate concluded that Feith made false claims. It’s that the 9/11 commission and the Senate concluded that Bush, Cheney and Feith made false claims. You obviously think the latter group has more credibility than the former, but you haven’t explained why anyone else should feel the same way.

    “Saddam issued a general order … that appears to have been widely ignored”

    Another jd post, another unsubstantiated claim. You haven’t lifted a finger to prove that Saddam’s order was “widely ignored.” And what counts is that it wasn’t ignored by the Senate. GOP Senators took that order seriously. You don’t. All that’s left to clear up is what makes you smarter than them.

    “Demonstrate that Bush linked Saddam to 9/11.”

    I’ve already shown that proof, in statements by Bush, Cheney and Feith. Feith suggested that Iraq financed Atta. You’ve said nothing to demonstrate that my proof is wrong. You’re just pretending it doesn’t exist. In other words, the position you’re taking is this.

    “Bush specifically did not link Saddam and 9/11″

    The mealy-mouthed disavowal you’re alluding to (“we have no evidence”) was made by Bush in 9/03. What counts a lot more is what he said pre-invasion. Let us know when you can show his pre-invasion statement that disavowed the link. We’ll be waiting a long time. Pre-invasion, he promoted the link, with statements like “in concert.”

    “They just wish to argue”

    English translation: ‘they insist on confusing us by making reference to actual facts.’

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  223. spqr: “It is no more significant than, probably less so, than Clinton’s exaggeration of the Serbs actions in Kosovo”

    You haven’t demonstrated any such “exaggeration” by Clinton. But if there was such “exaggeration,” your comparison would make sense only if you could show that Clinton’s statements led to thousands of American deaths. But they didn’t.

    “the evidence is not clear that such statements would actually be false”

    Bush didn’t just make false statements. He also lied. There are many examples, but here are a couple that are relatively easy to grasp:

    - we found the weapons of mass destruction
    - he wouldn’t let them in (link)

    “the bulk of intel recovered from Iraq is unprocessed”

    Keep hope alive. And those WMD will be turning up, any minute now.

    “what we have is ambiguous enough on the subject to support most of the claims in hindsight”

    Let us know when the GOP Senators who signed the 2006 report announce that they are repudiating the conclusions they reached.

    “still obsessed with this silly issue”

    Yes, I realize that to the likes of you trying to figure out how we got stuck in a two-trillion dollar quagmire is just a “silly issue.”

    “work so hard to twist the historic reality”

    The twisting is all yours, as I’ve demonstrated over and over again.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  224. Actually, no, jukeboxgrad, you have not demonstrated any “twisting” of historic reality by me.

    And if you don’t think that Clinton exaggerated the purported genocide in Kosovo, then you’ve not been paying attention. The mass atrocities claimed by the Clinton administration did not materialize on the ground. Bill Clinton claimed that at least 100,000 were missing and that he’d stopped an ethnic cleansing – comparing the situation to the Holocaust. Nothing of the sort was found on in Kosovo. If you applied yourself to Clinton’s statements on that, with the zeal for selective quotation that you’ve shown on Bush, it would be amusing. But since that does not feed your BDS, we know it won’t happen.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  225. “Demonstrate that Bush linked Saddam to 9/11.”
    I’ve already shown that proof, in statements by Bush, Cheney and Feith

    Please demonstrate where Bush linked Saddam to 9/11. Not where you imagine he did, where you conclude he did, or where you infer he did. Demonstrate where Bush tied Saddam to 9/11. You cannot. You are a liar. Plain and simple.

    Admit you are a mendoucheous liar. People are willing to forgive people when they admit their mistakes. Keep digging, not so much.

    Racist.

    Saddam issued a general order … that appears to have been widely ignored”

    Another jd post, another unsubstantiated claim.

    If that order had been followed, how did all of those AQ folks wind up in Iraq? How did the 9/11 Commission explicitly state that there were connection between Saddam and AQ (not 9/11 you lying little fucker)?

    JD (25bb93)

  226. spqr: “you have not demonstrated any ‘twisting’ of historic reality by me”

    I meant ‘you’ collectively. Sorry I wasn’t clear about that.

    “If you applied yourself to Clinton’s statements on that”

    You have no idea what I said about Clinton at that time. For your information, I’ve never voted for anyone named Clinton or Gore. But I realize you’re very good at making unwarranted assumptions. I also realize you’d love to change the subject and talk about any president other than the one we’re currently stuck with.

    “the zeal for selective quotation”

    You have failed to show that I’ve done any selective quotation.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  227. jd: “demonstrate where Bush linked Saddam to 9/11″

    Feith said that Saddam financed Atta. There’s other proof, but that’s a good place to start.

    Your deafness is remarkable.

    “how did all of those AQ folks wind up in Iraq?”

    Most of the AQ folks in Iraq showed up after we did. And there are more showing up all the time, since we don’t control the borders there, just like we don’t control the borders at home. Heckuva job, Dubya!

    AQ folks were in Iraq pre-invasion in the north, an area Saddam didn’t control. I’ve already quoted Rice confirming that, but of course you ignored that, just like you ignore all the other facts you don’t like.

    “How did the 9/11 Commission explicitly state that there were connection between Saddam and AQ”

    Words like “connection” and “links” are sufficiently vague to be meaningless. There’s also “connection” between the Bush family and the bin Laden family.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  228. I didn’t realize there was any area of Iraq that Saddam didn’t control, other than the skies over the no-fly zone. Can you give me a link for that, JukeBoxGrad, or tell me if it’s addressed in a prior comment on this thread?

    DRJ (a431ca)

  229. You live on a planet where “potential financing of Atta’s activities by Iraqi intelligence” does not “sound like a claim that Hussein appeared linked to Sept. 11.”

    I live in a world that depends on proof. When someone comes to me and says they have a “potential” indication something may have happened, I don’t equate that with a claim that it did.

    Feith’s memo did indeed claim “that Iraq was tied to 9/11.” There’s no other way to interpret the claim of “potential financing of Atta’s activities by Iraqi intelligence.”

    You’re being sloppy with your quotes. Each sentence implies Feith’s memo said what you place within the quotes. It does not, in either case. You are stretching a claim that, according to Czech intelligence, an Iraqi officer ordered an Iraqi intelligence officer to pay money to Atta. Hayes, not Feith, is the one who describes that as “potential financing of Atta’s activities by Iraqi intelligence” — and his description appears accurate. We are not told whether the order was carried out, or whether any financing was intended to be for 9/11.

    Feith claimed an “operational relationship.” Obviously I “dispute” that “fact asserted in that memo.”

    That is a conclusion, not a fact. Try reading what I said again. You have my permission to read it slowly — as slow as is necessary for you to understand it.

    “someone, whom Hayes (who quotes the memo) says may or may not have been an Iraqi agent, may have had some involvement with 9/11″

    Wrong again. Hayes does not describe al Ani as someone who “may or may not have been an Iraqi agent.”

    Shakir, not al Ani.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  230. drj: “tell me if it’s addressed in a prior comment on this thread”

    It is: 154.

    And since we’re discussing Zarqawi, here’s something else that is rarely mentioned: Bush let him get away.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  231. p: “When someone comes to me and says they have a ‘potential’ indication something may have happened, I don’t equate that with a claim that it did.”

    You’re a world-class hair-splitter. You’ve been trying to hide behind the word “operational,” (even though that’s the exact word that Hayes used, when citing Feith), and now you’re trying to hide behind the word “potential.” What a joke.

    Let’s say I have a memo which reveals the ‘potential’ financing of Atta by JD. You are saying, literally, that this does not sound like a claim that JD is linked to 9/11. You’re saying it doesn’t even convey the implication that JD is linked to 9/11. Really? How amusing.

    Please consider the following two statements:

    A) Saddam may have financed 9/11.
    B) Saddam financed 9/11.

    You’re basically taking the position that Bush said A, but it’s OK, because he didn’t say B. And you’re saying that A doesn’t even convey the implication that Saddam is linked to 9/11. Thanks for the laugh.

    I look forward to seeing you cut the same ridiculous amount of linguistic slack when the president is a D.

    Aside from all that, you’re wrong, because Feith didn’t even bother with words like “potential.” That word is part of a quote I presented from Hayes. Pay attention to what Feith himself said:

    al Ani ordered the IIS finance officer to issue Atta funds from IIS [Iraq Intelligence Service] financial holdings in the Prague office

    Do you comprehend those words? Feith flatly asserts that IIS handed money to Atta. Period. And Feith is unequivocal. No fig-leaf qualifiers like “potential” or “maybe” or “might have.”

    “Each sentence implies Feith’s memo said what you place within the quotes.”

    Nice try. I have quoted Hayes paraphrasing Feith, and I have quoted Feith directly. And the latter language is even stronger support for the claim I’m making.

    “an Iraqi officer ordered an Iraqi intelligence officer to pay money to Atta”

    Nice job trying to water down the facts. Feith says not just that the money was paid by “an Iraqi intelligence officer,” but that the funds were issued “from IIS financial holdings.” So this was not an instance of something making a personal donation.

    “Hayes, not Feith, is the one who describes that as ‘potential financing’ ”

    Indeed. Hayes decided to throw in the word ‘potential.’ Maybe he realized Feith was being too emphatic and wanted to give him some cover. But Feith didn’t bother with that.

    “We are not told whether the order was carried out”

    Yes, and we’re also not shown a notarized copy of the cancelled check, and we also don’t have video of Saddam personally thanking the person who wrote out the check. What you’re doing is called grasping at straws.

    “or whether any financing was intended to be for 9/11″

    Feith says Atta met repeatedly with IIS. Feith says IIS gave Atta money. But you seem to be claiming that Feith expected a reader of his memo to assume that the money was not “intended to be for 9/11.” Right. It was intended to help widows and orphans. And that’s why Feith and Hayes wrote about it. And that’s why Cheney personally recommended Hayes’ article. Because Cheney, Feith and Hayes all wanted to make sure America understood that Atta was helping widows and orphans, with IIS pitching in.

    Are you serious? Because the stuff you’re writing is indistinguishable from satire. You’re funnier than John Stewart.

    “That is a conclusion, not a fact”

    More misdirection and hair-splitting. In this context, there’s no meaningful difference. The 9/11 commission and the Senate committee obviously rejected both Feith’s conclusion and also his underlying facts. The facts lead to the conclusion. Hayes’ article, which received Cheney’s personal recommendation, said that Feith had proof of an “operational relationship” between Saddam and AQ. Atta getting IIS money would certainly be proof of that, if it actually happened. Feith said it did. The 9/11 commission and the Senate committee did not take that claim seriously.

    “Shakir, not al Ani”

    Yet another attempt at misdirection. Why are you dragging Shakir into the discussion? I’ve been citing a portion of what Feith and Hayes said that has nothing to do with Shakir. I think you’re trying to create confusion about this because there was some doubt about whether Shakir was an Iraqi agent. But there was no such doubt about al Ani.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  232. jd: “demonstrate where Bush linked Saddam to 9/11″

    Feith said that Saddam financed Atta. There’s other proof, but that’s a good place to start.

    Do you not understand that Feith is not President Bush ?!?!?!

    I didn’t realize there was any area of Iraq that Saddam didn’t control, other than the skies over the no-fly zone. Can you give me a link for that, JukeBoxGrad, or tell me if it’s addressed in a prior comment on this thread?

    DRJ – You did not miss anything. It is a meme that the Left developed to explain away those inconvenient little facts like Saddam allowing AQ and Ansar Al Islam to operate terrorist training camps inside the borders of the country that the ruled with a dictatorial iron fist. The idea that this went on without his knowledge, and tacit consent, is laughable.

    The BDS is not only palpable in this one, it is visible.

    JD (75f5c3)

  233. Demonstrate where Bush linked Saddam to 9/11.

    This should be easy to do, JukeBoxHero. It is a very narrow and specific allegation that you make, yet you seem incapable of, or unwilling to, back it up. Show us where President Bush linked Saddam to 9/11.

    Hint – Saying he was not linked is not proof that he linked them, outside of your BDS fevered mind.

    JD (75f5c3)

  234. In this context, there’s no meaningful difference.

    Wrong, JukeBoxHero. In this context, you have repeatedly shown yourself to be incapable of looking at facts, and have routinely drawn the wrong conclusions. Maybe in your world, there is no difference between conclusions and facts. That does help in understanding your argument by assertion style though.

    JD (75f5c3)

  235. JukeBoxHero:

    You’ve got stars in your eyes. And they’re blinding you to some pretty simple written words on the computer screen

    p: “When someone comes to me and says they have a ‘potential’ indication something may have happened, I don’t equate that with a claim that it did.”

    You’re a world-class hair-splitter. . . .

    Let’s say I have a memo which reveals the ‘potential’ financing of Atta by JD. You are saying, literally, that this does not sound like a claim that JD is linked to 9/11. You’re saying it doesn’t even convey the implication that JD is linked to 9/11. Really? How amusing.

    I deal with proof every day, and unlike you, I recognize the difference between something potentially happening and a claim that it did happen. Those are two different things. If I charge a criminal based on a potential something may have happened, and later claim that I treated the witnesses’ claims that it potentially happened as equivalent to a claim that it *did* happen, I’d have some trying times at work.

    You can mock all day my making a distinction, but it’s a real distinction. I can tell that you don’t want it to be, but that doesn’t change the fact that it is.

    Please consider the following two statements:

    A) Saddam may have financed 9/11.
    B) Saddam financed 9/11.

    You’re basically taking the position that Bush said A, but it’s OK, because he didn’t say B. And you’re saying that A doesn’t even convey the implication that Saddam is linked to 9/11. Thanks for the laugh.

    I’m saying A is not a claim that Saddam appears linked to 9/11. B is.

    Aside from all that, you’re wrong, because Feith didn’t even bother with words like “potential.” That word is part of a quote I presented from Hayes.

    I know. Re-read my comment. I’m the one who explained that to *you* after you gave a quote that falsely implied Feith had said it.

    Pay attention to what Feith himself said:

    al Ani ordered the IIS finance officer to issue Atta funds from IIS [Iraq Intelligence Service] financial holdings in the Prague office

    Do you comprehend those words? Feith flatly asserts that IIS handed money to Atta. Period. And Feith is unequivocal. No fig-leaf qualifiers like “potential” or “maybe” or “might have.”

    Pay attention to what I already said:

    Hayes, not Feith, is the one who describes that as “potential financing of Atta’s activities by Iraqi intelligence” — and his description appears accurate. We are not told whether the order was carried out, or whether any financing was intended to be for 9/11.

    Get it yet?

    “an Iraqi officer ordered an Iraqi intelligence officer to pay money to Atta”

    Nice job trying to water down the facts. Feith says not just that the money was paid by “an Iraqi intelligence officer,” but that the funds were issued “from IIS financial holdings.” So this was not an instance of something making a personal donation.

    There’s a reason you didn’t put the word “issued” in quotes. It ain’t there. “During one of these meetings, al Ani ordered the IIS finance officer to issue Atta funds from IIS financial holdings in the Prague office.”

    “Hayes, not Feith, is the one who describes that as ‘potential financing’ ”

    Indeed. Hayes decided to throw in the word ‘potential.’ Maybe he realized Feith was being too emphatic and wanted to give him some cover. But Feith didn’t bother with that.

    “We are not told whether the order was carried out”

    Yes, and we’re also not shown a notarized copy of the cancelled check, and we also don’t have video of Saddam personally thanking the person who wrote out the check. What you’re doing is called grasping at straws.

    No, it’s called sticking to the facts. The memo doesn’t even claim the order was carried out. I know you want to pretend it does. But it does not.

    “or whether any financing was intended to be for 9/11″

    Feith says Atta met repeatedly with IIS. Feith says IIS gave Atta money. But you seem to be claiming that Feith expected a reader of his memo to assume that the money was not “intended to be for 9/11.” Right. It was intended to help widows and orphans. And that’s why Feith and Hayes wrote about it. And that’s why Cheney personally recommended Hayes’ article. Because Cheney, Feith and Hayes all wanted to make sure America understood that Atta was helping widows and orphans, with IIS pitching in.

    We have no idea what Atta was telling the guy.

    “Shakir, not al Ani”

    Yet another attempt at misdirection. Why are you dragging Shakir into the discussion? I’ve been citing a portion of what Feith and Hayes said that has nothing to do with Shakir. I think you’re trying to create confusion about this because there was some doubt about whether Shakir was an Iraqi agent. But there was no such doubt about al Ani.

    I’m sorry. I thought you were talking about a guy in the article who was actually alleged to have helped Atta with 9/11.

    You need to be a lot more careful with your facts, friend. Things aren’t true just because you want them to be.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  236. This back and forth has been fun, but it’s now officially a waste of my time.

    You took your best shot and failed. You discount a direct statement from the president in favor of possibilities from undersecretaries. I hereby declare my post nondebunked. But do sputter on, please.

    Patterico (4bda0b)

  237. Apply now to the jukeboxgrad “School ‘O Political Math”!!

    You will learn fun, new ways of conjoining left-wing* political talking points like this:

    If you want to PROVE that A = B, follow this formula to success!
    A does not equal B
    B almost equals C
    C is close to D
    D has heard of E
    E once said F
    F put out a memo about G to H
    H misread the memo, therefore…
    A EQUALS “BUSH LIED!!!”

    *Note: Does not work with conservative talking points, void in FL, OH, WA, CA, or any other moonbat jurisdiction that may hold us accountable for what we actually say…. even if implied, your mileage may vary, school not responsible for brain-damage, loss of saliva, or incontinence.

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  238. Insta-classic

    JD (75f5c3)

  239. Insta-classic

    Original work. All copyrights implicit or implied will be enforced to the fullest extent of the law.

    ;)

    Stashiu3 (460dc1)

  240. Great work Patterico.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  241. I hereby declare my post nondebunked. But do sputter on, please.

    Only about the language. I hate double-negatives. Can’t we just say your post is now “bunked” instead?

    Xrlq (b71926)

  242. jd: “Feith is not President Bush”

    Wow, that’s rich. Next up, jd will claim that Bush didn’t invade Iraq. Why? Because he didn’t invade Iraq personally.

    Anyway, it’s nice to know that when we have a D president, you’ll take the position that they’re not responsible for the official statements and actions of their hired hands, but rather are only responsible for what they do personally. That seems to be the GOP concept of presidential accountability.

    “It is a meme that the Left developed to explain away those inconvenient little facts like Saddam allowing AQ and Ansar Al Islam to operate terrorist training camps inside the borders of the country that the ruled with a dictatorial iron fist. The idea that this went on without his knowledge, and tacit consent, is laughable.”

    I guess that means that Rice is part of “the left,” since she said this:

    But in terms of Saddam Hussein being there, let’s remember that his country is divided, in effect. He does not control the northern part of his country. We are able to keep arms from him. His military forces have not been rebuilt.

    The “terrorist training camps” you’re talking about were in “the northern part of his country,” the part that, according to Rice, “he does not control.” Let us know which of those simple English words you don’t understand.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  243. p: “I recognize the difference between something potentially happening and a claim that it did happen.”

    You’re pretending that the Feith memo was highly qualified, and didn’t take a definitive position. This requires you to ignore what Hayes actually said.

    The Hayes article was personally recommended by Cheney. It purports to be a summary of Feith’s memo. The article is called “Case Closed.” The article ends with this statement:

    there can no longer be any serious argument about whether Saddam Hussein’s Iraq worked with Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda to plot against Americans.

    “We are not told whether the order was carried out, or whether any financing was intended to be for 9/11.”

    You’re pretending that Feith and Hayes took the position of being uncertain about this. Trouble is, they didn’t. Hayes said “there can no longer be any serious argument.” You’re pretending there is room for doubt. Trouble is, Hayes took the position that there is no room for doubt.

    Hayes, citing Feith, is not just claiming that AQ/Saddam cooperation ‘potentially’ happened. He’s claiming it did happen, and that this is known for a fact. That’s why the article is called “Case Closed.” And Hayes, citing Feith, is not just claiming that Saddam worked with AQ. The claim is that Saddam worked with AQ “to plot against Americans.” And that Saddam funded Atta shortly before 9/11.

    But you insist on claiming that Feith’s memo does not link Saddam to 9/11. I think that tells us all we need to know about your objectivity.

    “You discount a direct statement from the president in favor of possibilities from undersecretaries”

    You are referring to “a direct statement from the president” that wasn’t made until 9/03, well after the invasion. What’s relevant is what he said pre-invasion. What he said then was things like “in concert,” which means working jointly. Later on, he admitted that this statement of his was based on no evidence. But he didn’t admit this until after we invaded. Clever timing.

    If you can find such “a direct statement from the president” pre-invasion (a statement admitting there was no evidence linking Saddam to AQ), that would be helpful. But you won’t. Pre-invasion, Bush was in the business of pretending that he had such evidence.

    And Feith didn’t just claim “possibilities.” According to Hayes, Feith presented facts so solid that “there can no longer be any serious argument about whether Saddam Hussein’s Iraq worked with Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda to plot against Americans.” Trouble is, this claim, conveyed by Feith via Hayes, and endorsed by Cheney, was bogus.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  244. stash: “A EQUALS “BUSH LIED!!!””

    I already cited specific, clear examples of lies told by Bush. Of course you and your pals have completely ignored that.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  245. Which brings us to what spqr said here.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  246. jukeboxgrad: Enjoy your BDS for the next 10 months, or the next 10 years, whichever you prefer. Up is not down, freedom is not slavery, and you are not correct. Bush never lied, but you’ll never believe that. You’re no better than the Truthers, convinced by innuendo and minutia of something exactly opposite to the truth.

    You’re also pendantic and boring… any amusement you’ve provided to this point has worn off so just convince yourself that you’ve won the argument (in other words, continue your delusions) and run off to DKos or DU and boast about how you “decimated the wingers” with your encyclopedic knowledge and superior power-ring debating skills. Right out loud.

    Stashiu3 (c8e98a)

  247. stash: “Bush never lied”

    I cited two very clear and obvious examples. Here’s another one.

    You haven’t lifted a finger to address this. Likewise for all your pals. You obviously don’t expect to be taken seriously.

    “innuendo and minutia”

    What a joke. Our host is a master of minutia. A key point of his post was about the difference between saying “collaborative operational relationship” as compared with saying “collaborative relationship.” And the difference between words issued in a “statement” as compared with words issued in a “report.” So your sensitivity to minutia is highly selective. More proof that you don’t expect to be taken seriously.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  248. OK, I’ve had a chance to look at the update a little more closely, and there’s something I find puzzling:

    I tell Ms. Gold where the phrase “collaborative relationship” comes from: a “staff statement”

    You’ve already referred to this document earlier in your post. As I explained to you, it’s the same document as the “staff report” to which you refer when introducing Lehman’s quote. So shouldn’t that be “the staff report” (or, at a minimum, “the staff statement”, if you’re really feeling the urge to call it by a different term when you want to diminish it). “A staff statement” is the kind of language one would use when referring to a document not previously discussed in the post.

    And I hope you enjoyed jim2′s assessment of my argument.

    Cheers!

    Foo Bar (8e06dc)

  249. Bad news, guys. The LAT is going to issue a correction.

    P

    Patterico (4141c6)

  250. I cited two very clear and obvious examples.
    Here’s another one.

    I saw them. None of the three are lies when taken in context with the situation at the time. The facts of what we know now don’t change what we knew then. Salon is notorius for their BDS-related distortions… just like you have become.

    More proof that you don’t expect to be taken seriously.

    I certainly don’t expect it from you. You only take seriously people who agree with you and hate Bush unconditionally. You are pathetic, except I lost all pity for your type long ago. You’re hamstrung by your own inability to see reality without delusions. You’re a liar, because deep down you know that all the convolutions in the world don’t really prove what your spittle-flecked diatribes claim.

    I really hate dishonest arguments and that’s all you’ve brought. Now go ahead and trot out your final “proof” and hold your breath for a response… and keep holding it. Right out loud.

    Stashiu3 (c8e98a)

  251. stash: “None of the three are lies when taken in context with the situation at the time”

    100% baloney. At the time Bush said “he [Saddam] wouldn’t let them [UN inspectors] in,” Saddam had let UN inspectors in. At the time Bush said “we found the weapons of mass destruction,” we had found no weapons of mass destruction. None. Zilch. Nada.

    And when Bush said that wiretaps required a court order, he had already started wiretapping without a court order.

    You’re 0 for 3.

    “Salon is notorius for their BDS-related distortions”

    Let us know when you’re ready to demonstrate a distortion in the article I cited.

    “You only take seriously people who agree with you and hate Bush unconditionally”

    Wrong. I take seriously anyone who shows respect for facts. That obviously excludes you.

    “I really hate dishonest arguments and that’s all you’ve brought”

    You’ve demonstrated an impressive number of examples: zero. Like most of your pals here, all you’re capable of emitting is pure wind. You should try substantiating some of your claims. It will be a new experience for you.

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  252. You should try substantiating some of your claims.

    The irony. Just FYI: Links to lies echoing your own lies do not constitute proof, no matter how many links you post or how many different times you post them. Those are only proof in the addled brains of the delusional BDS-sufferers. I’m not taking your math course… despite your weekly special “Two lessons for the price of three”.

    You and others have made the claims that Bush lied, the burden of proof is on you. You can’t meet it because it isn’t true, so throwing up other peoples lies, distortions, and strawmen and screaming “There’s your proof!!! Ha-HA!!! How about that, wingnut?” is all you have left.

    Again, enjoy the next 10 months/years/decades of blaming Bush for everything. It doesn’t make it true, nor you worth listening to.

    Stashiu3 (c8e98a)

  253. stash: “Links to lies echoing your own lies do not constitute proof”

    Number of times you or your pals have demonstrated a lie on my part: zero.

    “no matter how many links you post or how many different times you post them”

    English translation: ‘my mind is made up, so please don’t confuse me with the facts.’

    jukeboxgrad (fd8884)

  254. shorter jukeboxgrad: “My lies are facts and prove me right, deal with it wingnut.”

    Yep, you showed me. I will now ignore how many times your stuff has been fisked and assert that Bush lied about everything. I bet he’s not even a natural-born citizen. I’m convinced that every out-of-context and bald-faced lie you cited is absolute proof that Bush is evil and can do no right. I’ve seen the light, drunk the Koolaid, and felt the globe warming under my feet. I find your views compelling and wish to subscribe to your newsletter. 1 + 2 = BUSH LIED!!!!

    Now that you’ve proven your position, there’s no need for us to talk further, is there? We’re on the same page. Simpatico. Bestest internet buds. Comrades in the keyboard war against Bushitler fascism.

    Take care and … right out loud.

    Stashiu3 (c8e98a)

  255. Bad news, guys. The LAT is going to issue a correction.

    Congratulations.

    OK, so let me write as much of a concession as I think is warranted. I acknowledge that I characterized the error in the “collaborative relationship” sentence of the LAT piece as trivial, and that if a correction were to be issued, it would be a fairly trivial one. At no point did I claim that the sentence was 100% true (in fact, I explicitly acknowledged it as technically false). However, it is not unreasonable (not indisputable, but not unreasonable) to infer from what I said that I was either predicting that the LAT wouldn’t issue a correction or implying that there was no need for them to do so. So to the extent that my comments contained either of those implications, I acknowledge that regarding that secondary theme of my comments, Patterico was right and I was wrong.

    Whether they should or would issue a correction was never the primary thrust of my comments, though. It was that it was important to note the existence of the phrase in the staff report in order to allow the reader to get an accurate sense of the gravity of the LAT error. On that point, I elicited a concurrence from a commenter, jim2, whose agreement would not have been anticipated based on partisan leanings.

    So I wonder if that concession buys me enough goodwill to get Patterico to address why it is appropriate to use “a staff statement” in his update, when the document in question has already been mentioned as the staff report discussed by Lehman on MTP. As Wikipedia tells us, “the indefinite article is used in situations where a new subject is being introduced, and the speaker assumes that the hearer is not yet familiar with the subject”, whereas “a definite article is mostly used to refer to an object or person who has been previously introduced.” The staff report is already introduced in the main post by the time it is mentioned in the update.

    Foo Bar (03f778)

  256. stash: “every out-of-context and bald-faced lie you cited”

    You and your pals have demonstrated this many instances of me doing what you just claimed: zero. As usual, you like making claims you can’t substantiate.

    But you obviously need some help, so I’ll humor you with more detail on one point, as an example. Bush said this (7/14/03):

    the fundamental question is, did Saddam Hussein have a weapons program? And the answer is, absolutely. And we gave him a chance to allow the inspectors in, and he wouldn’t let them in. And, therefore, after a reasonable request, we decided to remove him from power

    (Emphasis added.)

    That statement is an outright lie. Bush is claiming we invaded because Saddam refused to let UN inspectors into Iraq. But just prior to the invasion, UN inspectors were indeed in Iraq. And they were being given access to all sites. Blix said this (1/27/03):

    Iraq has on the whole cooperated rather well so far with UNMOVIC in this field. The most important point to make is that access has been provided to all sites we have wanted to inspect and with one exception it has been prompt. We have further had great help in building up the infrastructure of our office in Baghdad and the field office in Mosul. Arrangements and services for our plane and our helicopters have been good. The environment has been workable … Our inspections have included universities, military bases, presidential sites and private residences. Inspections have also taken place on Fridays, the Muslim day of rest, on Christmas day and New Years day.

    Needless to say, with all your (collective) sputtering, drooling and name-calling, you’ve said this much to substantively address this issue: nothing. Likewise for the other examples I cited, which are also very easily researched and documented.

    You are not capable of addressing these issues substantively. You’re capable of only two things: name-calling and hiding.

    jukeboxgrad (e48ad0)

  257. stash: “every out-of-context and bald-faced lie you cited”

    Looks like you’re still confused. Let’s address one example.

    Bush said this (7/14/03):

    the fundamental question is, did Saddam Hussein have a weapons program? And the answer is, absolutely. And we gave him a chance to allow the inspectors in, and he wouldn’t let them in. And, therefore, after a reasonable request, we decided to remove him from power

    (Emphasis added.)

    That statement is an outright lie. Bush is claiming we invaded because Saddam refused to let UN inspectors into Iraq. But just prior to the invasion, UN inspectors were indeed in Iraq. And they were being given access to all sites. Blix said this (1/27/03):

    Iraq has on the whole cooperated rather well so far with UNMOVIC in this field. The most important point to make is that access has been provided to all sites we have wanted to inspect and with one exception it has been prompt.

    Let us know if you still don’t get it.

    jukeboxgrad (aff4e3)

  258. Jukebox,
    You’ve made some good points. FYI – there were terror camps all over Iraq at the time of invasion. Including many in Baghdad and surrounding Baghdad that were filled with thousand of foreign terrorists.

    You seem interested in actually talking about this topic in depth which I appreciate because most of those who say there were no links wont’ even debate it. Thanks for your comments.

    Mark Eichenlaub (efa0b7)

  259. Congratulations, Patterico #250.

    DRJ (8b9d41)


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