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Why they won’t Impeach: A Guilty Conscience?

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babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-17-07 03:54 PM
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Why they won’t Impeach: A Guilty Conscience?
http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/?q=node/23717

Why they won’t Impeach: A Guilty Conscience?
Submitted by davidswanson on Sun, 2007-06-17 19:42. Impeachment

By Bob Fantina

snip//

As public opinion on the war has swung from jingoistic enthusiasm to lukewarm acceptance to overwhelming opposition, the political opportunists who inhabit the stately halls of Congress have followed suit. Rather than providing leadership, they are herded like cows by the polling shepherds on whom they always keep a watchful eye. Those who enthusiastically supported the invasion of Iraq, despite all evidence that doing so was at best, illegal, and at worst, obscene, now dance around their votes, offering up a variety of specious reasons for doing so. Some have attempted to put their disgraceful behavior behind them by simply apologizing for the vote, acknowledging their wrongdoing and trying to move forward with brave but hollow words about bringing the troops home. One wonders what their speeches would say should public opinion turn, for some reason, to support for the war. Would those politicians who voted for the war, then apologized for doing so, then apologize for apologizing? The thought of the political gyrations they perform makes one’s head spin.

One of the tired old excuses which is frequently used is ‘if I knew then what I know now….” This is an unacceptable reason for their vote then, or their spinelessness regarding impeachment. The facts were clear prior to the vote authorizing Mr. Bush’s imperial war. In 2002 Scott Ritter, who served as the chief United Nations weapons inspector in Iraq from 1991 to 1998, said the following: “…since 1998 Iraq has been fundamentally disarmed: 90-95% of Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction capacity has been verifiably eliminated… We have to remember that this missing 5-10% doesn’t necessarily constitute a threat… It constitutes bits and pieces of a weapons program which in its totality doesn’t amount to much….” The information was there for Congress to see, if its members had not been blinded by Mr. Bush’s alarmist rhetoric and that old standby of being ‘strong on defense.’ Jumping on the president’s faulty bandwagon, they voted for war.

Mr. Bush has said that Congress had the same information prior to the vote for war that he had, and perhaps this is where the crux of the matter lies. Would even today’s Congress, for whom the word ‘integrity’ can hardly be applied, have the nerve to accuse the president of crimes for which they themselves are guilty? If they knew, as now appears to be the case, that Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction and no active plans to develop them, yet they voted for war, then they are as guilty of war crimes as Mr. Bush.

Impeachment proceedings would cast a bright spotlight on the circumstances that led to the invasion and occupation of Iraq: who knew what, when would be important issues to explore. Perhaps members of Congress, who may have known exactly what Mr. Bush knew, when he knew it, including the assessments of current and past U.N. weapons inspectors that Iraq had no nuclear weapons or others that threatened the world in any way, may be somewhat reluctant to see that light illuminating their own actions. It can’t be adequately filtered or directed: once shined upon Mr. Bush’s knowledge and corresponding actions, there would be no shadowy corner in which Congress’s members could hide. If the president is to be impeached, much of Congress would of necessity experience the same consequence.

snip//

For a time one wondered if, perhaps, this new Congress might step up to the challenges it was elected to meet. Any such hope has now faded, dissolved in legislation continuing the war when Congress could have ended it, and further decimated by that body’s complete failure to address Mr. Bush’s impeachable offenses.

Members of the House of Representatives serve two-year terms; senators serve six. Voters must simply replace them until they truly represent the people, and fulfill the duties and responsibilities of the offices they hold. It will take generations for politicans to get the message that they will be held accountable, and that incumbency no longer nearly guarantees reelection. But it is a message that the voters can send if they so choose. Failure to do so in the past has led America and the world to their current disatrous state; failure to do so in the future will be horrific.
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ClassWarrior Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-17-07 04:09 PM
Response to Original message
1. And, tragically, many on our side pile on and reinforce that...
Edited on Sun Jun-17-07 04:10 PM by ClassWarrior
...rather than working to get our representatives past it, so they can get the people's work done.

Visualize it.

NGU.


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pocoloco Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-17-07 04:31 PM
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2. Nobody is asking them to fall on their swords, but
the honorable thing for the dumb fucks to do would be to resign.

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ClassWarrior Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-17-07 05:21 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. For example.
:eyes:

NGU.


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cassiepriam Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-17-07 04:41 PM
Response to Original message
3. Where are the statemen? Where are those who can do the right thing?
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bvar22 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jun-17-07 05:21 PM
Response to Original message
4. I agree with most of this.
I am certain that every single Senator and Corgressman who voted FOR the IWR knew EXACTLY what they were voting FOR: A blank check for Bush* to Invade a country that posed NO THREAT to the USA.
I knew.
They knew.
Paul Wellstone knew, and did the right thing along with 150 other Democrats.

I hold Pro-War Democrats accountable for their politically expedient vote that doomed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and thousands of young Americans.

However, the shameful vote (AND culpability) over the Iraq War does NOT need to be the sole reason for IMPEACHMENT. There are dozens of other reasons to IMPEACH in which the Democrats are clean. Pick ONE, and file the papers!
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yurbud Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jun-18-07 08:21 AM
Response to Original message
6. Even if Bush's lies about WMD were true, Saddam would not have been a threat to us
and anyone old enough to remember the Cold War knew it. We stared down an enemy that had tens of thousands of nukes because they knew we had enough to overwhelmingly retaliate many times over. If Saddam by some miracle got a nuke over here on a missile or gave one to terrorists and it went off here, before the mushroom cloud dissipated here, every square inch of Iraq would be heated to a million degrees. And we would still have enough of our ten thousand nukes left to do that to every other country on earth.

Saddam was a bad guy, but he wasn't stupid.

This is why the case against Iran is also bullshit. The issue is not whether they are close to getting nukes, but why we should think that's a threat to us.

To the degree that it is an issue, it's because it makes it much harder for us to invade or intimidate them.
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