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Robert Scheer: The Neocon Coup

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    With the ravaging of the CIA and the ousting of Powell — instead of the more-deserving Rumsfeld — the coup of the neoconservatives is complete. They have
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 1, 2004
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      With the ravaging of the CIA and the ousting of Powell — instead of
      the more-deserving Rumsfeld — the coup of the neoconservatives is
      complete. They have achieved a remarkable political victory
      by failing upward.


      The Peter Principle and the Neocon Coup: The bloodletting has begun.
      Robert Scheer
      http://207.44.245.159/article7299.htm


      11/16/04 "Los Angeles Times" -- I'm not referring to the latest
      attempt to reconquer Iraq, but rather the wholesale political
      revenge campaign being waged by the hard-liners in the Bush
      administration against anybody and everybody inside the government
      who challenged the way the second Persian Gulf war in a decade was
      marketed and run.

      Out: Secretary of State Colin Powell, whose political epitaph should
      now read, "You break it, you own it" for his prescient but unwanted
      warning to the president on the danger of imperial overreach in
      Iraq.

      Out: Top CIA officials who dared challenge, behind the scenes, the
      White House's unprecedented exploitation of raw intelligence data in
      order to sell a war to a Congress and a public hungry for revenge
      after 9/11.

      Out: Veteran CIA counterterrorism expert and Osama bin Laden hunter
      Michael Scheuer, better known as the best-selling
      author "Anonymous," whose balanced and devastating critiques of the
      Iraq war, the CIA and the way President Bush is handling the war on
      terror have been a welcome counterpoint to the "it's true if we say
      it's true" idiocy of the White House PR machine.

      Meanwhile, incompetence begat by ideological blindness has been
      rewarded. The neoconservatives who created the ongoing Iraq mess
      have more than survived the failure of their impossibly rosy
      scenarios for a peaceful and democratic Iraq under U.S. rule. In
      fact, despite calls for their resignations — from the former head of
      the U.S. Central Command, Gen. Anthony Zinni, among others — the
      neocon gang is thriving. They have not been held responsible for
      the "16 words" about yellowcake, the rise and fall of Ahmad Chalabi,
      the Abu Ghraib scandal, the post-invasion looting of Iraq's
      munitions stores and the disastrous elimination of the Iraqi armed
      forces.

      As of today, the neocons on Zinni's list of losers — Deputy
      Secretary of Defense Paul D. Wolfowitz; the vice president's chief
      of staff, I. Lewis Libby; National Security Council staffer Elliott
      Abrams; Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Douglas J. Feith and
      Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld — are all still employed even
      as Bush's new director of central intelligence, Porter J. Goss, is
      eviscerating the CIA's leadership.

      This is the culmination of a three-year campaign by the president's
      men to scapegoat the CIA for the fact that 9/11 occurred on Bush's
      watch.

      So far, half a dozen of the nation's top spymasters have been forced
      out abruptly — a strange way to handle things at a time when Bin
      Laden and Al Qaeda are still seeking to attack the U.S. Ironically,
      this all comes as Goss is suppressing a lengthy study, prepared for
      Congress by the CIA's inspector general, that, according to an
      intelligence official who has read it, names individuals in the
      government responsible for failures that paved the way for the 9/11
      attacks.

      Thus Bush, with Goss as his hatchet man, is having it both ways: He
      can be seen to be cleaning house at the CIA — when he is simply
      punishing independent voices — while denying Congress access to an
      independent audit of actual intelligence failures.

      We should remember that as flawed as its performance was under
      former Director George J. Tenet, the CIA at least sometimes tried to
      be a counterweight to the fraudulent claims of Rumsfeld's and Dick
      Cheney's neoconservative staffs. All of the nation's traditional
      intelligence centers were bypassed by a rogue operation based in
      Feith's Office of Special Plans. Feith was given broad access to raw
      intelligence streams — the better to cherry-pick factoids and
      fabrications that found their way into even the president's crucial
      prewar State of the Union address.

      Now, by successfully discarding those who won't buy into the
      administration's ideological fantasies of remaking the world in our
      image, the neoconservatives have consolidated control of the United
      States' vast military power.

      With the ravaging of the CIA and the ousting of Powell — instead of
      the more-deserving Rumsfeld — the coup of the neoconservatives is
      complete. They have achieved a remarkable political victory by
      failing upward.

      Copyright 2004 Los Angeles Times

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