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unhappycamper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 06:42 AM
Original message
Ransom
Ransom
By (convicted felon) Oliver North | August 07, 2009

Former President William Jefferson Blythe Clinton has now returned from Pyongyang with Al Gore's employees, Laura Ling and Euna Lee. The two women, reporters for Mr. Gore's "Current TV" operation, were seized by North Korean border guards on March 17 along the frozen Tumen River the border between North Korea and China. On June 8, following a five-day "trial," Pyongyang's Central Court convicted the women of "Illegal entry to commit hostilities against the Korean nation" and sentenced them to 12 years at hard labor.

On Tuesday, August 3, Mr. Clinton, accompanied by a doctor and his former Chief of Staff, John Podesta, arrived in Pyongyang aboard real estate mogul, Hollywood producer and Democrat Party-donor Steven Bing's private jet. On arrival at Pyongyang's nearly deserted Sunan Airport, they were met by Kim Kye Gwan, North Korea's long-time senior nuclear negotiator. Twenty hours later, after what the North Korean media described as "exhaustive" talks with "Dear Leader" Kim Jong Il, the 67-year-old dictator issued a "special pardon" and Mr. Clinton headed home with Ms. Ling and Ms. Lee.

It is good that the women are now reunited with their families and loved ones. Their release is being hailed by the White House as a "great gesture" and kudos are being showered on Mr. Clinton for his "initiative." The O-Team maintains that North Korean press reports of Mr. Clinton conveying a message from Mr. Obama "expressing apologiesprofound thanksand ways of improving relations between the two countries," are untrue. Though the Clinton aircraft was re-fueled at U.S. Air Force bases in Alaska and Japan, the Obama administration insists that the former President and party were on a strictly "private humanitarian mission," and that "there was no quid-pro-quo" for the release.

We all know better. The smile pasted on Kim Jong Il's face in the "official photographs" taken with Mr. Clinton tell the story. A price was paid. The North Koreans know what it is. The Obama administration knows what it is. But the American people don't and we won't unless transcripts of the Clinton-Kim Jong Il "conversations" are released. Don't count on that happening soon. The administration that promised to be "the most transparent in history" has made secrecy in foreign affairs a way of life.

In principle, there is nothing wrong with democratic governments engaging in secret diplomacy. Ben Franklin's covert negotiations with the government of Louis XVI resulted in the French monarchy becoming our ally in the American Revolution. FDR made clandestine arrangements with London to aid the British against Nazi Germany before the United States entered World War II. In these and innumerable other cases the U.S. has engaged in secret diplomacy with allies to confound common adversaries and the American people are not told about it until years sometimes decades later. But when our government conducts covert contacts with our opponents even for a humanitarian purpose like freeing hostages it nearly always blows up in our faces. I should know.


Rest of rant at: http://www.military.com/opinion/0,15202,197137,00.html?...
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armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 06:45 AM
Response to Original message
1. I'm not sure why it's relevant that he's a convicted felon.
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unhappycamper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 06:46 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. I just like saying that. n/t
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 06:47 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
unhappycamper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 06:48 AM
Response to Reply #3
4. And you think Ollie is legimate and honorable?
Get real, dude.
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armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 06:56 AM
Response to Reply #4
8. Nice try. My point is that you intended "convicted felon" as an insult...
Edited on Sat Aug-08-09 07:12 AM by armyowalgreens
And that is an unnecessary poke. You have tons of material to attack him with. He is a complete asshole. But being a "convicted felon" does not qualify someone for attack.

I just thought it was unnecessary. From personal experience with family members, the label "convicted felon" is not a pleasant thing to carry with you. It alone does not mean you are a bad person.
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Autumn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:59 AM
Response to Reply #8
43. Oliver North deserves
any poke given to him.I prefer to call him traitorous asshole felon.
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PA Democrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:03 AM
Response to Reply #3
31. It is absolutely relevant because North was involved in the illegal sale of weapons to Iran
in exchange for help in achieving the release of US hostages. Look up the Iran-Contra scandal.
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armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:07 AM
Response to Reply #31
32. I know about the Iran-Contra scandal.
Read the rest of this thread to figure out why I still think it's irrelevant.
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PA Democrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:18 AM
Response to Reply #32
34. And I think it is, and "convicted criminal" is about the nicest thing I would call
Oliver North.

http://www.democracynow.org/2004/6/8/reagan_was_the_but...

Reagan Was the Butcher of My People: Fr. Miguel DEscoto Speaks From Nicaragua

We go to Managua, Nicaragua to speak with Fr. Miguel DEscoto, a Catholic priest who was Nicaraguas Foreign Minister under the Sandinista government in the 1980s.

The 8 years Reagan was in office represented one of the most bloody eras in the history of the Western hemisphere, as Washington funneled money, weapons and other supplies to right wing death squads. the death toll was staggeringmore than 70,000 political killings in El Salvador, more than 100,000 in Guatemala, 30,000 killed in the contra war in Nicaragua. In Washington, the forces carrying out the violence were called freedom fighters. This is how Ronald Reagan described the Contras in Nicaragua: They are our brothers, these freedom fighters and we owe them our help. They are the moral equal of our founding fathers.

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Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 06:49 AM
Response to Reply #1
5. Are you kidding? North as much as admits his past is relevant in this paragraph in the article:
Edited on Sat Aug-08-09 06:51 AM by Heidi
But when our government conducts covert contacts with our opponents even for a humanitarian purpose like freeing hostages it nearly always blows up in our faces. I should know.

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armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 06:57 AM
Response to Reply #5
9. True. But it doesn't seem like the OP intended it as merely a reference.
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Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 06:59 AM
Response to Reply #9
10. Who cares how the OP meant it? This thread is clearly about GOP hypocrisy.
And if you hang around at DU long enough, it will become obvious to you (if it hasn't already) that poking the GOP for its hypocrisy is perfectly acceptable behavior.
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armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:02 AM
Response to Reply #10
12. If we want to attack them, lets do it as accurately as possible.
And with as much integrity as possible.

My point is that convicted felon should not be used as an insult. I realize that it's a minute detail, but it bothers me. I still enjoyed the OP and even rec'd it.
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tavalon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:00 AM
Response to Reply #1
11. Exxon has reneged on almost all of their promises to clean up after the Valdez spill
Sometimes, it's just important to remind people that a supposed rehabilitated asshole is in fact, not rehabilitated at all. And therefore, really has nothing that most of us care to hear.
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lapfog_1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:02 AM
Response to Reply #1
13. Uh.. do you know WHY he is a convicted felon?
Entirely relevant to this particular commentary.

I don't think Bill Clinton promised North Korea arms shipments for the hostages... plus some money to fund right wing insurgents in, say, Columbia or Venezuela.

Ollie North, on the other hand...

Not only did he do that, he also arranged it so that the hostages were not freed until Reagan became President. And did the negotiation with our enemy (Iran) while President Carter was still commander-in-chief. Without Carter's knowledge or approval. It was treason.

BTW, Nixon did it to President Johnson too, about Vietnam.

Every Republican President since Eisenhower, with the possible exception of Ford, has been a treasonous bastard.
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armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:09 AM
Response to Reply #13
15. I understand why his previous actions are relevant...
But he could just have easily not been convicted of anything. And we'd still have plenty of material on him.

The fact that he is a convicted felon is irrelevant.
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Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:16 AM
Response to Reply #15
16. armyowalgreens, you can insist all day that it's irrelevant,
but it's not. The OP is making a point about GOP hypocrisy; his past is relevant. Further, he's a public figure. When he writes an editorial at military.com seeking to smear the Obama administration, he can expect to be called on his hypocrisy.
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armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:24 AM
Response to Reply #16
17. No, it's still irrelevant.
What he has done is relevant. The fact that he is a lying asshole is relevant.


But the OP never elaborated on what he did or what he is. It simply states that he is a "convicted felon". As if being a convicted felon somehow discounts someones opinion.
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Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:28 AM
Response to Reply #17
19. Context is everything. Most progressives are very well aware of what North did;
the OP should not have to footnote the term "convicted felon" in reference to Oliver North.

Most progressives also are far more understanding of how easy it is to become a convicted felon in the US; you should perhaps learn a little more about unhappycamper before you accuse him of broadbrush slurs against convicted felons. He did not do that.
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armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:33 AM
Response to Reply #19
21. If it's so well known, why did the OP have to put "convicted felon"?
You are arguing that they shouldn't have to explain the context because it's well known. But if it's so well known, why do we need to be told he's a convicted felon?

Besides the fact that the OP is technically incorrect, it reveals the fact that they meant "convicted felon" as an insult.
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Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:35 AM
Response to Reply #21
23. He didn't have to put "convicted felon." He chose to and he broke no rules in doing so.
And this isn't Latest Breaking News, where every "i" must be dotted and every "t" must be crossed.
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:38 AM
Response to Reply #23
24. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:47 AM
Response to Reply #24
26. And in the context of DU, it's perfectly okay to insult Republicans.
So far, you've called the OP "douchy" and described his behavior as assholish. Maybe it's time to back off, huh?
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armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:50 AM
Response to Reply #26
27. No. I will not back off. I am offended by the OPs usage of the phrase.
If you are not offended, fine. But don't tell me how to handle myself. I'll do that just fine thank you.
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unhappycamper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:52 AM
Response to Reply #27
28. (convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)
(convicted felon)

That's our Ollie.
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armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:54 AM
Response to Reply #28
29. Thank you.
Of course, immaturity is exactly what this thread needed.

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Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:55 AM
Response to Reply #28
30. !
:rofl:

:spray:

:snarf:
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dgibby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 09:04 AM
Response to Reply #27
44. And I am offended by your denigration of another DUer.
Perhaps you'd do well to reread DU rules. It might be in your best interests to rethink this and apologize.
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lapfog_1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:25 AM
Response to Reply #15
18. No, it's entirely relevant.
A court of law and jury of his peers convicted this person of felony crimes.

These crimes arose out of him doing something that should have had him shot for treason.

Unlike President Clinton, Ollie North was a serving officer in our military, arranging for the release of hostages from a state with which we had no official contact, doing so without the knowledge of or approval by, his commander in chief. Not only that, but Ollie North traded arms for those hostages, arms that could easily have been used later (and might well HAVE BEEN) by Iran's terrorist allies like Hamas. Used against our allies in the region, like Israel. Not only did Ollie illegally sell Iran those arms for the hostages, but he sold more arms than were absolutely needed to secure the hostages release, so that money was paid by Iran to fund right wing death squads in Nicaragua, in direct violation of US law.

He has no credibility on the topic of hostage negotiation with our enemies. None.

And I can't believe that anyone here would either defend Ollie North, or complain when it is noted that he is a convicted felon.

And Ollie really shouldn't comment on Bill Clinton's trip ( where, I am willing to bet my life on it, nothing was given to the North Koreans for the release of the two hostages other than a picture of Dear Leader with an unsmiling Big Dog).
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armyowalgreens Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:31 AM
Response to Reply #18
20. You are explaining to me why what he has done is relevant...
You have failed to explain to me why being a convicted felon is relevant.


What's funny, now that we have gotten so deep into this argument, is the fact that he isn't actually a convicted felon. His conviction was overturned.
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TexasObserver Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:33 AM
Response to Reply #15
38. Conviction of a crime of moral turpitude is always relevant on issues of veracity.
Edited on Sat Aug-08-09 08:34 AM by TexasObserver
We have a concept known as "impeaching the witness" in our judicial system.

If you take the stand and give testimony, the opposing party and his or her counsel have a right to impeach your testimony. One way they can do this is by showing the jury and judge that you have a history of lying, and more particularlly, that you have a history of lying under oath.

If a person is convicted of a crime that involves moral turpitude, their prior conviction can be used against them to impeach their testimony.

Oliver North was part of a far reaching conspiracy, and that conpiracy involved lying under oath to congress, and conspiring with others to foist these lies in order to avoid US laws. Not just North, but other Reagan-Bush administration officials.

The OP's point is that North is a lying SOB and traitor who actively committed felony after felony to subvert both US law and democracy in Central America.
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Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 09:08 AM
Response to Reply #38
45. :whoosh:
TexasObserver for the win.

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cali Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:03 AM
Response to Reply #1
14. it goes to who he is and his credibility
or rather his lack thereof.
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TexasObserver Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:16 AM
Response to Reply #1
33. Maybe because it happened in the 1980s.
Edited on Sat Aug-08-09 08:17 AM by TexasObserver
Didn't you tell us you're 19?

That means you didn't live through the 1980s and the Iran-Contra scandal, where Oliver North was a central figure in the Reagan-Bush scheme to (1) sabotage the Carter reelection bid of 1980, while (2) making a deal with the very terrorists who were then holding 52 Americans hostage, (3) bribing them with US arms which were illegal to sell to the Iranians, (4) surreptiously, (5) so the Iranians would not release such American hostages, in order to (6) fix the election. He then helped take the illegal, off the books profits from the arms sale to illegally support terrorists in Nicaragua to try to overthrow a democratically elected government, to help the Contras, all in violation of federal law.

He was one of many members of the Reagan administration who were charged with crimes arising from their role in that sordid mess.

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TexasObserver Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:28 AM
Response to Reply #1
36. delete
Edited on Sat Aug-08-09 08:31 AM by TexasObserver
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Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:29 AM
Response to Reply #36
37. :whoosh:
TexasObserver for the win.
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TexasObserver Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:40 AM
Response to Reply #37
41. You'd better make that #38, Heidi. I had to move it.
I somehow ended up posting it to a different post than I intended.

And FYI, I disagree with his view of the term "convicted felon." If one is a convicted felon, that's a label that sticks. It does have meaning, even if the conviction is for something not involving moral turpitude.

Now, if one wants to argue about felons and whether they should have full rights, including voting, I am 100% in favor of not denying released felons their full rights.
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Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 09:13 AM
Response to Reply #41
46. I also favor of restoring felons' full rights upon release.
:thumbsup:
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kristopher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 06:50 AM
Response to Original message
6. Ollie North Reads Kim's Smile to Know Obama is Lying?
And you think that is worth posting on DU for some reason?

Be sure you share with us the wisdom of other intellectual giants like Dick Morris and Ann Coulter, ok?
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Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 06:54 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. Don't you suppose this thread might be about GOP hypocrisy?
I've known the OP for years, moderated with him for several terms. You might want to avoid kneejerk reactions unless you know a bit of the OP's posting history.
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kristopher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 01:43 PM
Response to Reply #7
48. No, I don't.
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formercia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:35 AM
Response to Reply #6
22. I doubt if DU is in any danger of being subverted.
Only weak-minded trolls are in danger, and they are pretty much a lost cause.

Ollie North dishonored his uniform and betrayed his country in the pursuit of the agenda of a foreign power.

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Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 07:46 AM
Response to Reply #22
25. You know what I think is ironic? I think it's ironic that North is suggesting Obama administration
misdeeds over Clinton's diplomacy and implying that "we'll never know" what really happened until transcripts of his meeting with Kim Jong Il are released.

But I'm still waiting for a full accounting of North's 2006 trip to Nicaragua. He claims he was there at a private invitation, but we don't know that, do we? After all, he was there to support a Rizo, who was not the US government's preferred candidate. I mean, North obviously is a guy willing--as you said--to "betray his country in pursuit of the agenda of a foreign power."

I dunno. Until the American people get a full accounting of North's 2006 trip to Nicaragua, how do we know he was not again pursuing the agenda of a foreign power? I guess I'll take anything North says with a big ol' grain of salt. :D

(Mornin', formercia! :hi: )
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formercia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:22 AM
Response to Reply #25
35. They name streets after Ollie North.
Edited on Sat Aug-08-09 08:23 AM by formercia
One Way>


Good Morning. :hi:
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undeterred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:33 AM
Response to Reply #35
39. I named my dog Ollie.
And I never thought of Oliver North until I read this. UGH!
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Heidi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:38 AM
Response to Reply #39
40. North can't take my Oliver memories away from me!
Here's my favorite Oliver from childhood. :)

http://www.amazon.com/Orange-Oliver-Kitten-Wore-Glasses...
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TexasObserver Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 08:44 AM
Response to Reply #39
42. If my dog looked like Ollie North, I'd shave his ass and make him walk backwards.
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kristopher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Aug-08-09 01:43 PM
Response to Reply #22
47. Subverted?
How about just repulsed. I don't come here to read rightist propaganda; if I want that there are lots and lots of sites that specialize in such vomit.
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