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cryofan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 11:10 AM
Original message
Please tell NY Times to stop plagiarizing Kucinich
The NY Times editorial yesterday on Iraq was basically a rewrite of Kucinich's position statement on the Iraq war. But Kucinich was not credited for the editorial. So I wrote a letter to them at letters@nytimes.com

Here is my letter to the NYTimes:

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
Jayson Blair now works for the NYTimes editorial board?


How is it that yesterday's NYTimes editorial looks as if it is simply a rewrite of Democratic Presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich's position on the Iraq war, yet Congressman Kucinich is not credited for the editorial? I thought Jayson Blair was no longer working at the NYTimes? Apparently I was mistaken....

Randy Smith

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>


Here is a posting from WWW.DEMOCRATS.COM explaining the plagiarism and showing the two writings:

.................................................



NY Times Plagiarizes Kucinich's Position on Iraq: US Out, UN In


The NY Times helped Bush take America to war
on a mountain of lies. But now the Times has
soured on Bush's miserable failure at nation-
building. "Iraqis are growing weary of American
occupation and the White House argues that
they will not tolerate the current situation
long enough for a constitution to be prepared.
That is the precise reason that the job should
be turned over to the United Nations. The United
Nations has far more international experience,
credibility and reputation for neutrality in these
matters than the United States does. There is
certainly no guarantee it can succeed. There is
only the certainty that the Bush administration,
which has made all the wrong bets so far, does
not have any better options." Amazingly, the Times
has embraced the position of Dennis Kucinich:
"US out and UN in." Of course, the Times does not
credit Kucinich for being the first political leader
to take this position. There's a word for taking
someone's ideas without credit: Plagiarism.

Below is the editorial that appeared
in Sunday's New York Times. It is
followed by a reprint of Congressman
Kucinich's strategy for getting our
U. S. troops out of Iraq. Read them
both and then send an email to the
Times telling them to give credit
where credit is due. You can send
your comments to them at -
letters@nytimes.com
Do it now. Time is of the essence in
responding to this. Tell them what you think.


FROM WWW.NYTIMES.COM :



November 16, 2003

Iraq Goes Sour

he American involvement with Iraq appears to have turned a
corner. The Bush administration's old game plan ?drafting a
constitution, followed by elections, followed by American
withdrawal ?has been replaced by a new timetable. It's a bit
cynical to say that the plan is to toss the whole hot potato to
whatever Iraqis are willing to grab it. But the White House
thinking is veering close.

President Bush gambled vast amounts of American money, influence and
American and Iraqi lives on the theory that toppling Saddam Hussein
would make the world safer and make the Mideast a more stable and
democratic region. Obviously, the Iraqi people are better off without
a vicious tyrant in power. But if the American forces leave
prematurely, the country will wind up vulnerable to another dictator
and possibly more of a threat to the world than it was before. Yet
the admi nistration is giving the impression of having one foot out
the door, while doggedly refusing to take the only realistic next
step ?asking the United Nations to take over the nation-building.

Blind Intelligence

It's useful, at this point, to look back and see how we got here.
Most Americans, polls told us, were eager to see Saddam Hussein
deposed because they believed he was somehow connected to Sept. 11.
The president knew that was not the case, as he acknowledged long
after the invasion. But the White House, along with many officials of
the Clinton administration, did believe that Saddam Hussein had
massive supplies of biological and chemical weapons, and that he was
attempting to make Iraq a nuclear power. That was what created a
sense of urgency about the invasion.

How did they wind up at what now appears to be a totally
incorrect conclusion about Iraq's weapons programs? The Central
Intelligence Agency , we now realize, had no idea of what was going
on inside Iraq. The country had been virtually shut off since
1998, when President Clinton ordered renewed bombing and weapons
inspectors withdrew. The C.I.A.'s estimates were basically worst-
case scenarios of what the Hussein regime might have been up to
in the interim. That was apparently a mistake, if an understandable
one.

But the assumptions Mr. Bush shared with the American people seem
to have been hyped further. That was at least in part because of
pressure from the Pentagon, where influential aides to Secretary
Donald Rumsfeld had their own sources of information, most notably
Iraqi exiles. The best known was Ahmad Chalabi, now a member of
the Iraqi Governing Council. After the American forces were in
Iraq, Mr. Chalabi claimed for a while that their failure to find
the weapons was due to the refusal of American officials to heed
his tips about where they wer e.

The Will to Invade

The people who believed that Iraq was armed to the teeth with
illegal weapons also based that opinion on simple logic. If Saddam
Hussein did not have them, surely he would have cooperated fully
with weapons inspectors rather than allow his country to be
invaded. The very fact that he never backed down seemed to be
proof he had something terrible to hide. But the Bush administra-
tion knew that as the countdown to invasion ticked away, Iraq had
reached out through middlemen with an offer to allow not just full
inspections, but inspections by American troops. It was an offer
that might, in the end, have turned out to be meaningless. But
the fact that the administration chose not to pursue it is one
of the strongest pieces of evidence that the White House regarded
the run-up to the war not as a time for trying to avoid conflict,
but as a time for public relations moves meant to give the
American people the impression that there was no way out.

The Failure to Plan

Most experts, in and out of government, believed that the American
military could quickly defeat the Iraqis. But there were far fewer
who thought that once the Hussein government had been toppled it
would be easy to make Iraq secure, get the country back on its
feet and establish a democratic successor. The Bush administration
had even less reason to make that conclusion, since the State
Department's own internal studies, done in preparation for the
attack, outlined the obvious pitfalls. Vice President Dick Cheney
had listed some of the same perils in 1991 when he defended the
decision not to march on to Baghdad during the first gulf war.
(American troops, he opined, would find themselves in a "quagmire.")

What, then, caused the administration to invade with so little
preparation for what would happen after the fighting, and so much
confidence that the Iraqis could quickly take the reins of power?
Once again, it seems most likely that the Defense Department and
the president's security advisers believed the reassurances of Mr.
Chalabi and the other Iraqi exiles. The administration seems to
have placed its bets on information given by the very people who
had the most to gain from the invasion.

The Governing Council

Mr. Chalabi, who has lived outside Iraq for much of his life, is
now a member of the Governing Council, a group of leaders
handpicked by the American government. So far, the council has
done little but squabble internally and complain about American
slights. It has made virtually no progress in preparing a new
Iraqi constitution. In a nation where the overriding danger for the
future is conflict among the Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds, it has failed
to show any aptitude for bridging those gaps even within its own
ranks.

If the administration winds up turning Iraq over to the council in
anything like its current form, it seems wildly unlikely that the
next government will be able to survive for any period of time
without civil war, or the same kind of brutality that caused the
world to recoil from Saddam Hussein. The Middle East would wind up
an even less stable place than it is now. The war on terror would
be far more difficult to fight. Iraq, which was probably not a
major haven for international terrorists before the invasion,
could easily turn into one.

The Last, Best Hope

The only real chance for a peaceful future for Iraq lies in a
government made up of representatives of all the critical factions,
working together to resolve problems fairly and peacefully. The
only way to get leaders with the skills to accomplish that
supremely difficult task is to train them. The best training is
the very process of writing the consti tution that the Bush
administration now rejects as too time-consuming.

Iraqis are growing weary of American occupation and the White
House argues that they will not tolerate the current situation
long enough for a constitution to be prepared. That is the precise
reason that the job should be turned over to the United Nations.
The United Nations has far more international experience, credibi-
lity and reputation for neutrality in these matters than the
United States does. There is certainly no guarantee it can
succeed. There is only the certainty that the Bush administration,
which has made all the wrong bets so far, does not have any better
options.

FROM HOUSE.GOV/KUCINICH:

Congressman Kucinich's Iraq Strategy

The war in Iraq is over and the occupation of Iraq has turned
into a quagmire. The US troops have become the targets of criminals
and terrorists who are flowing into Iraq for the chance to shoot
Americans. The cost of the occupation keeps rising: The President
has already asked for more than $150 billion to pay for it. And
there is no end in sight. The UN is now in an impossible situation,
where most of the members view the war and occupation of Iraq to
be a US folly. Under these circumstances, the UN cans help. The
US is stuck, mostly alone, with a costly, unpopular and unending
occupation of Iraq. If we stay the course, it will do damage to
American security. Iraq was not and is not a threat to the US,
yet the demands of an occupation will overstretch our armed forces.
And the extended deployment of reserve forces make us vulnerable
at home because the reserve call ups include large numbers of
firemen, policemen an d other first responders who are needed for
the homeland defense mission.

People are asking, is there a way out? I believe there is. I am
writing to share with you a plan that will get the UN in Iraq and
the US out. This plan could bring the troops home by New Yearr
day, it will cost much less than the Presidentr, and it will
increase American security.

The President must go to the UN and announce the US intention to
hand over all administrative and security responsibilities to the
UN. The UN would help Iraqis move quickly toward self-determination.
The UN, not the US, will administer Iraqr oil revenues. It will
be necessary to renounce clearly and unequivocally any interest
in controlling Iraqr oil resources.
The UN will administer contracts to repair Iraq. War profiteering
will no longer be practiced by the White House. It will be
necessary to suspend all reconstruction contracts and close the
US-l ed Coalition Provisional Authority, because of the suspicion
caused by the sweetheart deals that the Administration has given
to large American corporations. In its place, the UN would help
Iraqis administer funds to employ Iraqis to repair the damage
from the invasion.
Bring US troops home as UN peacekeeping troops rotate into Iraq:
The goal is to bring all US troops home by the new year, but in
any case, to bring them home as quickly and as safely as possible
with a planned and orderly withdrawal.
As soon as practicable after this address, the UN Security Council
would ratify a new resolution on Iraq that would deploy a
multinational force under UN mandate to keep the peace in Iraq
while the interim Iraqi government receives UN support and a new
Iraqi government is elected. It is my hope that within one month,
the first UN troops and support personnel will arrive in Iraq,
and the first US troops will be sent home. UN peacekeeper troops
and Iraqis who are commissioned as police and military will
replace the US (at a rate of two UN peacekeepers for every three
US troops). In place of the US-led Coalition Provisional Authority,
the UN will open an office to provide administrative support to
the Iraqi Governing Council, which will direct the repair to
infrastructure damaged by US invasion in the immediate term. In
two months, the UN will begin to conduct a census of the Iraqi
population to lay groundwork for national elections. At the same
time, new temporary rules for the election will be promulgated,
guaranteeing universal suffrage on a one-person cne vote basis.
During the transition period, a Memorandum of Understanding
(MOU) between the American and UN force commanders for a turnover
period will settle the question of who commands the troops. The
MOU will specify who is to be in charge in case an incident
happens during tha t period. These might be local agreements such
as have been used before or they might be for the entire area of
operations. By the end of month three, all US troops will have
returned home.
In month four, a major milestone will be reached when Iraqi
sovereignty is established for the first time. A nationwide
election will take place to elect representatives to a
Constitutional Convention. The Constitutional Convention will
have two duties: 1) elect a temporary Prime Minister who appoints
a cabinet to take over responsibility from the Iraqi Governing
council, and 2) draft a national constitution. Accountability of
this Prime Minister is achieved by virtue of the fact that he
can be recalled by a majority of the Convention.

In one year, there will be nationwide elections pursuant to the
new Constitution, which will install an elected government in Iraq.

The US owes a moral debt to the people of Iraq for the dam age
caused by the US invasion. The US will also owe a contribution
to the UN to help Iraq make the transition to self-government.
American taxpayers deserve that their contributions be handled
in an accountable, transparent manner. However, Americans are
not required to build a state-of-the-art infrastructure as the
Administration is planning. The Administration is ordering for
top shelf technology from US corporations for Iraq and paid for
by US taxpayers. Sweetheart deals have been awarded with billions
of dollars to top corporations and political contributors. That
is precisely what corrupts the Administrationr reconstruction
efforts today. Instead, Iraqis should be employed to repair Iraq,
and US taxpayers should pay only for the damage caused by the US
invasion, including compensation for its victims. US taxpayers
should not be asked, however, to furnish for Iraq what we do not
have here.

The war and o ccupation in Iraq have been costly in other ways
too. One price the Administration has forced the US to pay is
Americar moral authority in the world. The Administration
launched an unprovoked attack on Iraq, and the premises of the
war are proving to be false. This has cost our credibility and
done serious harm to Americar standing in the world. After the
attacks of 9-11, the world felt sympathy for us. But this war
and the occupation have squandered that sympathy, replacing it
with dangerous anti-American sentiment in most of the worldr
countries. And, perhaps most costly of all, the US occupying force
serves as a recruiting cause for terrorists and people who wish us
ill.

All we can do now is to make a dramatic reversal of course: we
must acknowledge that the continued US military presence in Iraq
is counterproductive and destabilizing. We have a choice in front
of us: either we change course, withdraw our troops and request
that the UN move in, or we sink deeper into this occupation, with
more US causalities, ever higher financial costs, and diminished
security for Americans.

We need a real change. My plan will bring the troops home by the
new year, transfer authority to the UN with provisions made toward
a rapid transition to Iraqi sovereignty, and it will save billions
over the Administrationr occupation. It will enable the US to
think creatively about how the US will deal with threats that come
not from established countries with conventional armies (our armed
forces are more than adequate to that task), but rather threats
that come from networks of terrorist and criminals, who use
unconventional means to injure Americans. We must also apprehend
the criminals who masterminded the 9-11 attacks on this country,
a goal that is hindered by the occupation of Iraq. Lastly, it will
also enable the US to redirect scar ce resources to rebuild America.

Sincerely,
Dennis J. Kucinich
Member of Congress

SEND YOUR COMMENTS BY EMAIL TO THE NEW YORK TIMES AT -

letters@nytimes.com

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Cocoa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 11:26 AM
Response to Original message
1. they do seem to be endorsing Kucinich's plan
and you're right, there's no good reason for them not to give him credit.

I guess that would undermine their lie that Dennis is a kook.

Meanwhile the real insanity is being spewed daily on "Hardball", and they're calling it "Iraq--the real story."
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Dookus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 11:32 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. yes...
DK was the first person to think Iraq is going badly.

:shrug:
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Cocoa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 11:50 AM
Response to Reply #3
6. that's not it
it's the plan to get the UN in and the US out. This editorial, and Dennis's letter, aren't just saying the war is going badly. They're both proposing a solution, and it seems to be the same solution.

I wouldn't call it plagiarism, but it's definitely a serious journalistic ommission not to mention that a presidential candidate has proposed this. It contributes to the lie that Kucinich isn't a real candidate.
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Dookus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 12:04 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. Sorry...
DK doesn't "own" that idea. Calling for people to tell the Times to "stop plagiarizing Kucinich" is ridiculous. He's far from the only American to support that idea. He's not even the only presidential candidate to support increased UN involvement.
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cryofan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 12:24 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. Point taken....however....
....I think a variety of responses will be most effective. I just thought that approach might touch a nerve. Feel free to send more a conciliatory letter yourself...I think both sugar and chile pepper are useful ingredients....
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Dookus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 11:27 AM
Response to Original message
2. Great idea!
let's attack news outlets if they agree with our candidates' positions.

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redqueen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 11:35 AM
Response to Reply #2
5. I don't think attacking is the best strategy
See my post below for what IMO constitutes an effective message. :)
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redqueen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 11:33 AM
Response to Original message
4. Done.
Here's mine:

Dear New York Times Editorial Staff,

Perhaps you were not aware, but there is a candidate currently running for the Democratic nomination who has proposed the same exit strategy you have given in your piece referenced above. The candidate I refer to is Congressman Dennis John Kucinich.

I hope that this was merely an oversight. Perhaps you felt that mentioning the fact that Kucinich has had a detailed plan outlining those same steps available for over a month might seem partisan.

Hopefully, since your paper obviously supports the same plan, you might mention from time to time that Kucinich has such a plan. I suppose it would be 'unrealistic' for me to expect your paper to endorse Kucinch. However, considering that your editorial board agrees with his stance on the exit strategy for Iraq, I'll continue to hope for it. I'm unfamiliar with your board's view of the trade deficit situation and how much it's related to WTO / NAFTA -- but this is another area where, in my opinion, Kucinich is way ahead of the curve.

Thanks very much for your time and consideration.
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sandnsea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 12:42 PM
Response to Original message
9. Sorry, Dennis turns over security
I don't see where the Times piece calls for turning the security over to the UN. All of the candidates want to turn over the nation-building; the reconstruction and administration. Only Kucinich wants to turn over the security as well and pull the US troops out. The Times article clearly says leaving prematurely would be wrong, as do the rest of the candidates. That's the primary difference between the other candidates, this article and Dennis' plan.
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redqueen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 12:44 PM
Response to Reply #9
10. The UN's member states require it
They state that US control is something that must go for them to step in.

Next?
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sandnsea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 01:59 PM
Response to Reply #10
11. Military control?
The US doesn't give military control of its troops to anyone, never has. The UN knows that and would never make that a demand, they've already worked out the security logistics in places like Kosovo and would do it that way in Iraq. If Bush turns over US troops to UN control, it'll create an uproar. Kucinich isn't even calling for military control of US troops, he's calling for US troops out. But the problem is there's not enough UN troops to replace US troops.

This article isn't calling for the UN to control US troops or take over Iraq security. It's calling for a turnover of reconstruction and governance. It's calling for the US to stay in, which means a security arrangement like Kosovo. This just isn't what Dennis is calling for.

It's not a big deal to me, I just think those differences are important to consider.
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redqueen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 02:25 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. But you're wrong.
Edited on Mon Nov-17-03 02:27 PM by redqueen
#1 - I guess we'll be witnessing the uproar you expect shortly.

US agrees to international control of its troops in Iraq

There have been no specifics yet about how the international community would control the mainly American and British forces in Iraq. Nato remains the only strong possibility because it would provide international credibility while leaving control with a military organisation which Washington dominates.

Nato has already proved its willingness to act outside its traditional sphere of operations by taking a role in Afghanistan. But to allow it to deploy in Iraq would mean getting the approval of all 19 Nato allies including France, Germany and Belgium, all staunch opponents of the war.

They would need to be satisfiedthat the UN had been given a sufficient role in the political control of Iraq. Diplomats say that the US and Britain will need to be certain that no one will block an Iraq mission before they make a request.




#2 - Kucinich describes a process, similar to the one used in Kosovo, whereby control issues would be worked out. The goal is to get all of them out, since we're so hated there and are sure to inspire hostility if not outright violence. However DK doesn't live in a fantasyland as so many wish to believe, and that being the case his plan contains all kinds of such details.
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sandnsea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 02:55 PM
Response to Reply #12
13. NATO isn't the UN, first
But beyond that, this will be worked out so the US retains control of our troops, just like it was in Kosovo. If Bush relinquishes control of our troops, there will be an uproar. I'll believe it when I see it.
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redqueen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-17-03 03:32 PM
Response to Reply #13
14. Obviously... but did you miss this part?
"Nato has already proved its willingness to act outside its traditional sphere of operations by taking a role in Afghanistan. But to allow it to deploy in Iraq would mean getting the approval of all 19 Nato allies including France, Germany and Belgium, all staunch opponents of the war."

Was even relinquishing troops to NATO control too much for Republicans during Clinton's term?

Also, I don't think it's too much of a stretch to conceive of these countries deciding to stick it to the US, after all these years of the US sticking it to other countries.

Speculation, but farfetched? I think not. At the very least they'll make feints in that direction, in order to get some kind of concessions from the US.

It's disgusting, the whole thing, really.
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