Tuesday, November 28, 2006

the Department of Defense must stop lying

* jeralyn on Wilkes lawyering up:
"If Geragos is now on the case, I think it means a federal indictment in California is looming. It's either time for a pre-indictment deal or gearing up the war chest."

* Newsday:
"Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's most senior adviser on Iraq is leaving the State Department to return to his teaching job.

Philip D. Zelikow is the best-known member of Rice's academic brain trust at the State Department, and the author of sometimes contrarian appraisals of the Iraq conflict and reconstruction effort. He holds the title counselor, a sort of adviser without portfolio."
I wonder how many of his political obits will mention the fact that the JerseyGirls tri

* anthony cordesman via corn:
"Progress is difficult to gauge, because so much US reporting grossly exaggerates progress, ignores or understates real-world problems, and promises unrealistic timelines. The US Defense Department has stopped releasing detailed unclassified material about Iraqi Army, Police, and Border Enforcement readiness, only giving information about how many units are "ready and equipped" and "in the lead." These are vague, if not meaningless categories รข€“ "in the lead" does not indicate the level of independence from US support, and we do not how many "ready and equipped" soldiers quit or deserted the force.
To put it bluntly, the US government and Department of Defense must stop lying about the true nature of Iraqi readiness and the Iraqi force development....Like all elements of strategy, Iraqi force development needs to be based on honesty and realism, not "spin," false claims, and political expediency."

* Time:
"In the altered landscape that is Washington, there's a new contender for the title of Scariest Guy in Town. He stands 5 ft. 5, speaks softly and has all the panache of your parents' dentist. But when it comes to putting powerful people on the hot seat, there's no one tougher and more tenacious than veteran California Congressman Henry Waxman. In the Democrats' wilderness years, Waxman fashioned himself as his party's chief inquisitor. Working with one of the most highly regarded staffs on Capitol Hill, he has spent the past eight years churning out some 2,000 headline-grabbing reports, blasting the Bush Administration and the Republican Congress on everything from faulty prewar intelligence and flaws in missile defense to the flu-vaccine shortage and arsenic in drinking water.

Come January, however, the man that the liberal Nation magazine once called the "Eliot Ness of the Democrats" can do even more, thanks to the two words that strike fear in the heart of every government official: subpoena power. As the new chairman of the House Government Reform Committee, Waxman will have free rein to investigate, as he puts it, "everything that the government is involved with." And the funny thing is, Waxman can thank the Republicans for the unique set of levers he will hold. Under a rules change they put through in the days when they used the panel to make Bill Clinton's life miserable, the leader of Government Reform is the only chairman who can issue subpoenas without a committee vote.
While Waxman promises what he calls oversight, the Republicans say it'll be more like a witch hunt, and the Administration is promising to fight him all the way to the Supreme Court to protect itself against what it expects to be a frontal assault on Executive power. Waxman says the G.O.P. should take comfort in the fact that he has historical perspective. "I've seen a good example of overreaching," he says, referring to the committee's treatment of Clinton. "It's not the way to behave.""
bring it.

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