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Latest Featured Reports | Friday, August 29, 2014
Video Captures GA Family Disowning, Assaulting 20-Year Old Gay Son
But there is a "happy" ending, of sorts, to this heartbreaking and disturbing story...
'Green News Report' 8/28/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
BP refinery explodes. Again.; UN report warns of 'irreversible' warming; Fines for oil, chem spills; 22% of world elec. is now green; PLUS: People's Climate March coming to NYC...
Previous GNRs: 8/26/14 - 8/21/14 - Archives...
Faking the Ferguson Docs:
KPFK 'BradCast'
Brad interviews open records advocate Charlie Grapski on his evidence that Ferguson and St. Louis County police are illegally withholding evidence in the killing of Michael Brown; Plus MUCH more...
Records Requests Suggest Ferguson, St. Louis County Police Involved in Cover-Up
How else to explain the missing details and required documentation of Officer Darren Wilson's killing of Michael Brown?...
'Green News Report' 8/26/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
Napa earthquake is a warning for CA's nuke plants; Another coal plant bites the dust; Cutting emissions will save $$$; PLUS: Fighting drought with a 'salmon cannon'...Yep...
Previous GNRs: 8/21/14 - 8/19/14 - Archives...
Our Story So Far: The WI GOP Photo ID Voting Restrictions
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U.S. District Judge Mark Fuller checks in for 'treatment', may be able to duck prosecution...
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2012 GOP Veep nom and 2016 hopeful 'charms' elderly voters in FL, by ignoring them...
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'Green News Report' 8/21/14
Too much rain in AZ desert; Another toxic spill in Ohio River; Solar breakthrough; Wind energy prices hit all-time low; PLUS: Auto-magically cleaning up Baltimore Harbor...
Rep. Hank Johnson on Ferguson and Demilitarizing the Police: KPFK 'BradCast'
The Democratic U.S. Congressman from Georgia's 4th district joins Bradto discuss his new bill...
Republicans Call Ferguson Voter Registration 'Disgusting'
Rightwingers decry effort 'to register Democratic voters' following the killing of Michael Brown...
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The front page of the Post-Dispatch reminds again how ridiculous the era of post-9/11 Wars has become; Plus: another comparison to the Bundy Bunch...
'Green News Report' 8/19/14
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Brad interviews American patriots...
'Democracy's Gold Standard'
Hand-marked, hand-counted ballots...
Brad's Upcoming Appearances
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Media Appearance Archives...
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GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
VA GOP VOTER REG FRAUDSTER OFF HOOK
Felony charges dropped against VA Republican caught trashing voter registrations before last year's election. Did GOP AG, Prosecutor conflicts of interest play role?...

Criminal GOP Voter Registration Fraud Probe Expanding in VA
State investigators widening criminal probe of man arrested destroying registration forms, said now looking at violations of law by Nathan Sproul's RNC-hired firm...

DOJ PROBE SOUGHT AFTER VA ARREST
Arrest of RNC/Sproul man caught destroying registration forms brings official calls for wider criminal probe from compromised VA AG Cuccinelli and U.S. AG Holder...

Arrest in VA: GOP Voter Reg Scandal Widens
'RNC official' charged on 13 counts, for allegely trashing voter registration forms in a dumpster, worked for Romney consultant, 'fired' GOP operative Nathan Sproul...

ALL TOGETHER: ROVE, SPROUL, KOCHS, RNC
His Super-PAC, his voter registration (fraud) firm & their 'Americans for Prosperity' are all based out of same top RNC legal office in Virginia...

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So much for the RNC's 'zero tolerance' policy, as discredited Republican registration fraud operative still hiring for dozens of GOP 'Get Out The Vote' campaigns...

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The belated and begrudging coverage by Fox' Eric Shawn includes two different video reports featuring an interview with The BRAD BLOG's Brad Friedman...

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Another visit on Thom Hartmann's Big Picture with new news on several developing Election Integrity stories...

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VIDEO: Brad Breaks GOP Reg Fraud Scandal on Hartmann TV
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GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD FOUND IN FL
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The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...


Noose May Finally be Tightening for the Corrupt Florida Congressman
BRAD BLOG HELPS FBI: Lists a Few More Feeney Matters They May Wish to Inquire About...
By Brad Friedman on 4/24/2007 1:11pm PT  

Orlando Sentinel has some fresh details and Politico has some observations on the papers filed yesterday by the FBI concerning the guilty plea by Mark Zachares in the Abramoff affair, as we discussed yesterday in our item covering the FBI interview of the corrupt Rep. Tom Feeney (R-FL).

In addition to what looks like trouble in the case for at least two other GOP Congressmen, it looks like Feeney is being fingered as "Representative #3" in yesterday's filing...

1) Rep. Tom Feeney (R-Fla.), who went to St. Andrews in Scotland with Abramoff in August 2003, finally made the case as "Representative #3." This is not good news for Feeney, and the FBI is reportedly looking into his dealings with Abramoff, according to the St. Petesburg Times. At the direction of the House ethics committee, Feeney has already agreed to pay a fine of $5,643 for improperly reporting the trip.

That can't be seen as good news for Feeney who, we'll remind readers, is a very close friend of the Bush family, having run (unsuccessfully) as Jeb's Lieutenant Governor during his first run in Florida in '98, serving as point man in the FL House during the 2000 Election Debacle (when he promised to give the state's Electors to GWB no matter what the Supreme Court ended up deciding), and much, much more.

We'll also remind readers that the imprisoned Rep. Bob Ney (R-OH) was once designated as "Representative #1" before being indicted in the Abramoff affair himself....

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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Congressional Aide On 2003 Scotland Golf Junket with Both Men, Pleads Guilty, Is Cooperating With Feds
Corrupt Congressman Has Reportedly Spent $23k on Legal Fees So Far This Year...
By Brad Friedman on 4/23/2007 6:29pm PT  

Holy cow. When it rains it pours. Someone get us an umbrella. Quick.

Two related stories collide to suggest some possibly very bad news for our friend, the notoriously corrupt Tom Feeney (R-FL).

First this just in today from the St. Petersberg Times...:

FBI asks Tom Feeney about trip with Abramoff

Feeney's office said the congressman is cooperating voluntarily.

WASHINGTON - The FBI has asked U.S. Rep. Tom Feeney for information about his dealings with Jack Abramoff as part of its ongoing investigation into the lobbyist convicted of defrauding clients.

FBI agent Kevin Luebke refused to say whether Feeney, a Republican from the Orlando area, is under federal investigation.

Federal agents also have asked the St. Petersburg Times for an email sent to the newspaper by Feeney's office describing a golfing trip the congressman took with Abramoff to Scotland in 2003.
...
"Rep. Feeney considers this an embarrassing episode in his 17-year career as an elected official and an expensive lesson for him as a public servant," according to [a statement released by Feeney's office].
...
The FBI contacted the Times last week to ask for the February 2006 email that Feeney's then chief of staff Jason Roe wrote to the newspaper in response to a series of questions about interactions between Feeney and Abramoff. The Times has referred the FBI's request to its attorney.
...
Feeney, 48, who spent a decade in the Florida Legislature where he was speaker of the House, has paid $23,000 in legal fees this year - more than any other expense - according to his latest campaign finance reports.

"Rep. Feeney anticipates voluntarily cooperating with the Justice Department in any further investigation of this trip and looks forward to promptly resolving this matter," according to Feeney's statement.
...
"Any assertion that this office knew Abramoff paid for the Scotland trip is a g--d----- lie," Roe wrote in the email being sought by the FBI. The email was quoted in a newspaper article last year.
...
"Tom has never written a letter for Abramoff. Abramoff has never been in our office. Abramoff has never asked anything of us," Roe wrote in the email. "There is no accusation of a quid pro quo. No quid pro quo exists."

More details in the full story on what we've been reporting for years --- in what seemed like a vaccuum until now --- on Feeney's golf junkets with Abramoff to St. Andrews, Scotland. (See this May 2006 story for example: "Feeney/St. Andrews/Abramoff and Ney/HAVA/Abramoff Connections Still Flying Beneath the Radar")

There were three Congressmen who went on those trips. The first two, Tom DeLay (R-TX) and Bob Ney (R-OH), have both been forced out of Congress in the bargain and are respectively under indictment or in jail. Only Feeney, so far, has escaped both notice and legal accountability.

That may be about to change, however, with today's news that Mark Zachares, an aide to Rep. Don Young (R-AK), will plead guilty tomorrow to accepting some $30,000 worth of goods from Abramoff, with a promise of a job down the line in an interesting scheme that could also reveal something about what Feeney might have been discussing in some fashion with Abramoff.

As AP is reporting tonight:

From June 2002 through November 2004, Zachares worked for the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, providing Abramoff contact information for prospective businesses that would be affected by the creation of the Homeland Security Department, the court papers stated.

The two men worked out a "two-year plan" in which Abramoff would build a homeland security lobbying practice that Zachares ultimately would join.

Feeney has insisted that there was never a deal for anything between him and Abramoff, unlike with DeLay and Ney. However, the notion of long term plans, such as the deal Abramoff was working on with Zachares, has never been discussed in relation to Feeney.

And as luck would have it, Zachares was on that trip with Feeney and Abramoff in 2003 and is cooperating with the feds --- all of which could spell out very bad news indeed for Feeney.

We've been covering the corrupt Congressman in great detail for years in relation to allegations by Florida computer programmer Clint Curtis that Feeney asked him to create a vote-rigging software prototype when they worked together at a software firm in 2000, while Feeney was serving as a registered lobbyist for the company even while he was Speaker of the Florida House. We originally broke that story in December 2004. A summary version is here.

Let's hope Curtis saved those "Clint Curtis for Congress" signs. He may need them again sooner than he might have thought.

As you can imagine, we'll be watching this one closely. And likely with no small amount of elan...

UPDATE 4/24/07: Feeney fingered as "Representative #3" in FBI filings. Details...

For more info on The BRAD BLOG's continuing investigative series on
The Clint Curtis/Tom Feeney/Yang Enterprises Vote-Rigging Scandal series, please see:
- A Quick Summary of the story so far.
- An Index of all the Key Articles & Evidence in the series so far.
- Curtis eventually ended up running for U.S. Congress against Feeney in 2006.
For more info, see: www.ClintCurtis.com
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By Brad Friedman on 4/21/2007 1:48pm PT  

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Has the Former DoD War Architect Ever Met Condi Rice or Colin Powell?
Just Asking...
By Brad Friedman on 4/19/2007 11:42pm PT  

NPR's Morning Edition reported yesterday that Douglas Feith, the Bush Administration's former Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, has a new job since leaving the Pentagon. Apparently he's busy rewriting history as a professor at Georgetown University.

In apparent and extreme denial, one of the main Neocon architects for Bush's failed war had the following extraordinary exchange with host Steve Inskeep (who, unfortunately, didn't correct the record, so we guess we'll have to) concerning the rationale for going to War in Iraq. Feith turned downright indignant when Inskeep suggested that there were analysts who didn't see Saddam Hussein as a threat before the war...

NPR: Feith insists that many accounts misstate the reasons the U.S. chose war against Saddam Hussein.

DOUGLAS FEITH: He had demonstrated that he was interested in WMD and the danger was that he could take action in the future that would get him in a major fight with us. At which point he might use the WMD capabilities and connections to terrorists to hurt us.

NPR: Is there any point in that that you ended up assuming too much?

FEITH: I think that...I think that was a reasonable assumption under the circumstances...

NPR: Still...

FEITH: ...Do you not?

NPR: It sounds reasonable the way that you put it.

FEITH: Well that's what we were worried about (laughs)...I don't think that there's anything unreasonable in in...

NPR: ...But of course there were analysts making an entirely different...

FEITH: No, there weren't. No, there weren't....I mean that's just false. I, I, I hope you can do something to clarify this point. I mean, this notion that there were analysts who were saying that Saddam Hussein was not a threat?! There was nobody saying that.

"Nobody saying that"?! Really? Here's just two of them for a start. Names that Mr. Feith might be familiar with:

"[F]rankly, [the sanctions on Iraq] have worked. He has not developed any significant capability with respect to weapons of mass destruction. He is unable to project conventional power against his neighbors."
- Colin Powell, February 24, 2001

"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."
- Condoleeza Rice, July 29, 2001

What planet do these Bush dead-enders live on, anyway?! Amazing.

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'Don't tell me WE are fighting in this air-conditioned office! WE are not fighting this war! Our TROOPS are fighting this war!' Shouts Engraged Congressman...
By Alan Breslauer on 4/19/2007 5:11pm PT  

Guest Blogged by Alan Breslauer


Note from Brad: Holy cow...

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American Media Stays Fixated on VTech Killings; George W. Bush Still Not in Jail...
By Brad Friedman on 4/18/2007 2:38pm PT  

Killed or Found Dead (So Far) This Week in Iraq...
Sunday: 65
Monday: 51
Tuesday: 85
Wednesday: 233

Look, I hate to keep banging this same drum, but someone needs to.

While the American media continue their infatuation with the horrible shootings at VTech on Monday where 33 students were killed, the carnage continues, several times over, every single day in Iraq. Never mind all that "signs say that the surge is working" bullshit you've been hearing from wingnuts and repeated in the Mainstream Media. It doesn't seem to be doing anything of the kind.

233 were killed or found dead across Iraq today (Wednesday) in a country of 27.5 million.

183 of them were killed in a single car combing incident in the exact same marketplace where 137 were killed at once in a February bombing the month before last.

That follows 85 killed or found dead on Tuesday, 51 killed on Monday, and 65 killed on Sunday (when 20 police officers were also taken captive).

None of that takes away from the tragedy of the 33 killed on Monday at Virginia Tech. But in the United States, a country of more than 300 million, where such mass killings are exceedingly rare --- versus horrifically daily occurrences, year after year after bloody year on end in a country less than one-tenth the size of the U.S. --- one might think the American Mainstream Media would finally pause to take a serious review of the way in which they cover news events.

In case you feel, as one emailer suggested to me, that Americans seem to view the lives of non-American citizens as somewhat less valuable than those of American citizens, I'll also remind you that the killings in Iraq --- though you wouldn't necessarily know it based on American news coverage --- also result in dead Americans.

Some 3,312 American troops have now been killed in Iraq.

3,312.

To date, George W. Bush has failed to attend even one funeral, or ordered flags lowered to half-staff for a single one of them.

Leading me to ask again...At what point does the entire debacle become a criminal action? I suspect that point occurs just as soon as the Mainstream Media realizes that it is, and begins to regard the murders of U.S. Troops and Iraqi Civilians in the same light they view the VTech murders.

Perhaps Nancy Grace can make an honorable woman of herself yet. But I seriously doubt she will.

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Whereabouts of Vice President Unknown...
By Brad Friedman on 4/17/2007 8:45pm PT  

Uh, oh...Anybody seen Dick Cheney lately?

Two Secret Service officers were injured in an accidental shooting Tuesday at the White House.

The incident occurred in a security booth at the southwest gate.

Secret Service spokeswoman Kim Bruce said one officer was injured in the leg and the other received a shrapnel wound in his face. She said the injuries appeared to be non-life threatening and that both officers were taken to nearby George Washington University Hospital.

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By Brad Friedman on 4/17/2007 8:41pm PT  

Apropos of our earlier post today...

Not sure why everyone is so upset about the VTech shootings. After all, many parts of America are stable now. But, of course, what we see on television is this one shooting and everybody gets discouraged.

We're not alone in this school of thought, of course...

Laura Bush, Feb. 26, 2007:

"[M]any parts of Iraq are stable now. But, of course, what we see on television is the one bombing a day - this discourages everybody."

BTW, Laura's numbers may be somewhat off. Brookings Institute's latest data, as of Nov. 2006, puts the number of insurgent and militia attacks at 185 a day, instead of just one...

...Still, turn that frown upside-down, Negative Nellies!

(Hat-tip Think Progress.)

UPDATE: 85 killed or found dead in Iraq on Tuesday...
UPDATE 4/18/07: 233 killed of found dead in Iraq on Wednesday...

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UPDATE: Articles to be Filed Next Wednesday, According to BRAD BLOG Source...
By Brad Friedman on 4/17/2007 3:10pm PT  

From a blogger at Washington Post:

Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio), the most liberal of the Democratic presidential candidates in the primary field, declared in a letter sent to his Democratic House colleagues this morning that he plans to file articles of impeachment against Vice President Dick Cheney.
...

[text of his letter]

April 17, 2007

Dear Colleague:

This week I intend to introduce Articles of Impeachment with respect to the conduct of Vice President Cheney. Please have your staff contact my office . . . if you would like to receive a confidential copy of the document prior to its introduction in the House.

Sincerely,

/s/

Dennis J. Kucinich

Member of Congress

UPDATE 4/18/07: Kucinich's planned filing was postponed due to the VTech shootings, a reliable source tells us the Articles of Impeachment against Cheney will be filed in Congress next Wednesday.

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'Now Do You Understand?' Asks Larry Johnson...
By Brad Friedman on 4/17/2007 1:21pm PT  

Larry Johnson put the whole thing in perspective rather quickly and to the point yesterday when the body count in the VTech shooting was still at 22.

Even with the latest numbers of those murdered in Monday's shooting now at 33, it's dwarfed by Sunday's numbers in Iraq, where 65 lives were lost and 20 policemen were taken hostage.

And yet, that has been happening virtually every day for years now in Iraq, where jerks like Cheney and McCain and Bush continue to tell us that "things are getting better" and it's the media who are failing to report the "good news."

Take a look at the wall-to-wall media coverage ever since the 33 tragic fatalities on Monday in America, and imagine what would be going on here if a VTech-sized tragedy or two or three happened every single day in this country for years on end. Imagine if it happened just two or three days in a row! (Not to mention the population of Iraq is less than 10% the size of the United States.)

Would we blame the media for not reporting the "good news" each day? Or would we demand that something be done --- now --- to stop the carnage?

As usual, Johnson's take, documented with AP's reports on killings in Iraq on Sunday, is worth reading and noting.

In a follow-up today, Johnson notes the failures of the cable news channels, in their continuous, wall-to-wall coverage, to point out the following:

  • "Bush is going to attend services for the victims of the Virginia Tech shooting today. When was the last time Bush did that for the troops? Oh, right, never!," writes Leslie below.
  • Bush has ordered the nation's flags flown at half-staff until Sunday. Did Bush order flags lowered after Katrina's devastation and the deaths of hundreds of people?
  • It was astonishing to watch news reporters rabidly attack Virginia Tech's president and chief of police. Why don't news reporters regularly attack Bush and Cheney like that?

Lest we be criticized for not taking the VTech shootings seriously, make no mistake, they are an indescribable tragedy. But so are the number of human beings killed every single day in Iraq, day after day after nightmarish day, since the United States needlessly invaded their country.

And yet, the number one story reported by the media last week was Don Imus, followed by Anna Nicole, followed by the number one under-reported story: the death of our national conscience...

UPDATE 9:21pm PT: 85 killed or found dead in Iraq on Tuesday...
UPDATE 4/18/07: 233 killed of found dead in Iraq on Wednesday...

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Bush Appointee Admits 'Mistake', White House Has 'Full Confidence', Despite First Ever Call for Resignation of a World Bank President
Staffer Received Pay Increase Double Amount Allowable by Rules...
By Brad Friedman on 4/12/2007 7:16pm PT  

Blogged by Brad on the road...

Jesus...does this nightmare ever end?!...

April 12 (Bloomberg) --- World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz apologized for his role in the promotion of a woman with whom he was romantically involved as the international finance agency's employees demanded he quit.

Wolfowitz told a press conference in Washington today that he's prepared to accept whatever "remedies" the bank's board proposes. He later addressed the group's Staff Association in the atrium of the bank's headquarters, where colleagues shouted "resign, resign."
...
"I made a mistake, for which I am sorry," he said at the press conference. He also acknowledged the need to reorganize his personal office, where aides have been criticized for a lack of expertise in development aid and for ties to the Republican Party.

The Staff Association, which represents about 13,000 World Bank employees, hasn't called for the resignation of a president before, according to Alison Cave, who heads the group.
...
The Bush administration, which nominated Wolfowitz for the job, has "full confidence" in the World Bank president, said Deputy White House Press Secretary Tony Fratto.
...
Riza's promotion came with a pay increase that was more than double the amount allowed by staff rules, according to Cave. She later received an annual increase of 7.5 percent, also larger than rules allow.

(Hat-tip BRAD BLOG commenter "Ancient")

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Letter from Armed Services Committee Chair Skelton Sent Today to DefSec Gates...
By Brad Friedman on 4/10/2007 2:40pm PT  

Following up Arlen Parsa's BRAD BLOG article from yesterday detailing how the size of Bush's troop surge continues to balloon --- in both troop and budget size --- above and beyond what American's were told originally, today Rep. Ike Skelton (D-MO), the House Armed Service Committee chairman, sends a letter to DefSec Gates asking "Where does this end?" on the heels of yesterday's news that yet another 17,000 troops will be added to the "surged" forces.

RAW STORY has the full letter...

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Who Could Have Possibly Foreseen It?...
[LATE UPDATE] Pentagon Announces Today Another 15,000 Deployed Troops to be Extended to Maintain 'Surge'
By Arlen Parsa on 4/9/2007 5:34am PT  

Guest Blogged by Arlen Parsa

When George W. Bush announced he would execute a "troop surge" to send more American soldiers to Iraq and Afghanistan in January 2007, it was billed as an increase of slightly over 20,000 soldiers that would cost less than six billion dollars.

"America will change our strategy to help the Iraqis carry out their campaign to put down sectarian violence and bring security to the people of Baghdad," Bush announced in a prime-time televised address. "This will require increasing American force levels. So I've committed more than 20,000 additional American troops to Iraq."

The "surge," recognized as an escalation by many, was immediately controversial for several reasons --- not the least of which was a concern that the increase of 20,000 American soldiers might turn into a much larger US presence in Iraq, and a much more expensive one, than promised.

Three months after Bush's announcement, those fears have come to fruition.

Let's take a look at the numbers, in both troops and dollars...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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By Brad Friedman on 4/8/2007 12:46pm PT  


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Three Years Late, Long After the Flawed Senate Intelligence Committee Report, WaPo Finally Fills in a Very Few Blanks on Bush's Infamous '16 Words' Which Led to War
PLUS: A Quick Follow-up on Last Week's 'Bush Admin/WaPo Swift-Boating of Fitzgerald' Story...
By Margie Burns on 4/5/2007 1:32pm PT  

*** Blogged by BRAD BLOG D.C. Correspondent Margie Burns

On Tuesday, April 3, 2007 the Washington Post finally got around to publishing a front-page article, “How Bogus Letter Became a Case for War,” on the bogus Niger/uranium/Iraq story underlying those infamous “16 words” in Bush’s 2003 State of the Union speech.

The Post subtitle is “Intelligence Failures Surrounded Inquiry on Iraq-Niger Uranium Claim.” A more accurate subtitle would have read, “Intelligence Community Caved to Bush-Cheney Pressure.”

{Ed Note: We might suggest "Mainstream Media Failure to do Job, Scrutinize Admin's Iraq-Niger Claim, Led to Endless War" - BF}

I, among others, am familiar with the chronology because I wrote about it almost a full three years ago...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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