Friday :: May 20, 2005

More Proof That Scotty Lied Earlier In The Week

by Steve

Remember earlier in the week when Scotty McClellan told us at his impromptu “blame Newsweek for everything” press gaggle that the Pentagon had investigated the Koran desecration claims and found them to be unfounded? As I said earlier in the week, that was an outright lie. Well, there’s more on that today.

A piece by Carol Rosenberg for the Miami Herald indicates that Scotty was indeed lying:

An Army general was still investigating Thursday whether U.S. forces ever flushed a Koran down a toilet at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, according to a spokesman for the Southern Command, who outlined an over-arching inquiry into Koran mishandling at the Pentagon's prison for terror suspects.
Army Gen. Bantz Craddock, the Miami-based Southcom commander, ordered the inquiry on May 11 -- and soldiers have been scouring base documents ever since, said Southcom spokesman Raul Duany.
Allegations of desecration of Islam's holy book arose in an incorrect May 9 Newsweek report that said an investigation delivered to Southcom by Air Force Lt. Gen. Randall Schmidt included confirmation that interrogators had flushed a Koran down a toilet to rattle terror suspects.
At Guantánamo, a military spokesman confirmed that the inquiry was still open but said only Southcom was allowed to answer questions related to it.
Meantime, and separately, lawyers at Southcom were still studying the detainee abuse investigation that touched off the Bush administration-Newsweek showdown.

And in today’s Washington Post, we see this smack-down editorial. Writing that both Newsweak and the Bush Administration needed to respond seriously to the riots that ostensibly followed the Newsweak item, the Post opines:

The Bush administration's first response was equally straightforward. The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Richard B. Myers, told reporters last week that the U.S. commander in Afghanistan believed the violence "was not at all tied to the article in the magazine." Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice pledged that "appropriate action" would be taken if the allegations proved true. But then the administration's spinners, led by Pentagon and White House spokesmen, took over. The result has been a cynical campaign to capitalize politically while deflecting attention from serious issues.
Mr. Di Rita said Tuesday that the military was still reviewing whether there had been abuses of the Koran at Guantanamo. He acknowledged that there had been no thorough study of the allegations before Newsweek's report. If the Bush administration's aim is to address the causes of last week's violence, it should accelerate that tardy investigation, broaden it to include any demeaning of Islam that has taken place and make the results public.

Richard Cohen of the Post wrote in his column today:

I will spare you any harangue today about the mistakes and lies that got us into Iraq in the first place. Suffice it to say that for the White House and the Pentagon to come down on Newsweek for making a mistake is the height of hypocrisy.
Where, just for starters, is the retraction from Dick Cheney, who said that Iraq had "reconstituted" its nuclear weapons program? Where are the right-wing bloggers insisting he do so? And where, when it comes to such a touching sensitivity to the feelings of the Muslim world, was the conservative objection to the mad screeds of Ann Coulter, who wrote right after the Sept. 11 attacks, "We should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity"?

There won’t be any retractions from anywhere on the right, just like there will be no condemnations from the right wing corporate media or blogosphere in response to the comments from Bill Frist that Democrats wanted to “assassinate” Bush’s judicial nominees, or Little Ricky Santorum’s equating of Senate Democratic filibuster efforts to Adolph Hitler. Consistency and morality are secondary to many on the right. And its way past time that the mainstream media get a clue on this.

Steve :: 11:56 AM :: Comments (5) :: TrackBack (0) :: Digg It!