Waxman’s report said “Vice President Cheney’s office showed no electronic messages on 16 occasions from September 2003 to May 2005.”
Emptywheel bends over backwards to suggests that it serves little purpose to assume the worse, but that those missing e-mails do beg a lot of questions. Plame Investigation and Missing Emails: Analysis on Emails
With all that said, it appears that almost all the periods for which OVP or WH were missing emails (the exceptions being September 12, 2003 and May 21-23, 2005) were periods during which they were responding to document requests or subpoenas. There is clear indication that OVP, at least, attempted to shield conversations with journalists outside of Novak, Phelps, and Royce (and given Libby’s claim that he didn’t speak to Novak the week of the leak even though his Novak’s phone records showed he did, he appears to have tried to shield his conversation with Novak, as well) [h/t Jeff for the correction]. Thus, one possible explanation for the missing email archives is that OVP and WH were trying to hide email discussions about their attempts to hide the most incriminating discussions with journalists, notably with Judy Miller.
Speaking in terms of probability is it possible that so many e-mails that were sent or received by the Whitehouse around during certain points in the Plame leak/Joe Wilson editorial just happened to constitute much of what accidentally went missing.
The usual cast of characters Fred Kagan of the American Enterprise Institute, Bush crony Retired Gen. Jack Keane and the pretend to be unbiased Michael O’Hanlon are resiting from the same script. Why it took three people to write what we could have read by simply visiting the Whitehouse’s web page suggests these guys are more cheerleaders for group think then honest analysts and WaPO doesn’t have a problem with that. Making Iraq Safe for Politics
They all share another character flaw, the bizarre ability to enjoy selling snake oil when there is very little market for the stuff. In fact they are much closer to being the kind of sleazy salesmen that gives salespeople a bad reputation, Discontent Surges in Iraq
In the depths of a strangely cold winter in the Middle East, Iraqis complain that the lights are not on, the kerosene heaters are without fuel and the water doesn’t flow — and they blame the government.
And with the war nearing its fifth anniversary, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki is feeling the discontent as well from the most powerful political centers in the majority Shiite community.
It’s a pincer movement of domestic anger that yet again could threaten al-Maliki’s hold on his Green Zone office.
Maybe the entire neocon movement has been drinking the Victor David Hansen kool-aid and have all turned into modern Panglosses. It would be one thing if Iraq was just part of their little personal journey, but to them its a game and one their consciences allow to play with other people’s lives.
Gordon’s viewpoint — that staying is not only right but the only Serious Option — is, more or less, conventional Beltway wisdom. Yet missing entirely from this analysis is the fact that the vast bulk of Americans — even in the face of endless claims of Surge Progress — are more against this war than ever before (.pdf), and — regardless of claims of Progress — do not want to continue to support it.
One might think that in an article attacking presidential candidates for advocating withdrawal as they run to represent the public, that fact might be important, but — especially when it comes to war and occupation — nothing is less important to our Seriousness Guardians than what the lowly, ignorant American people want. Far more important is what Mike O’Hanlon and Gordon’s anonymous military sources think we should do.
I can’t watch every single news cast, but I don’t think a single major media news caster has questioned this Beltway wisdom: staying in Iraq is an absolute necessity to defeat non-state transnational terrorism such as that responsible for 9-11. Its the foreign policy equivalent of snake oil to cure your gout. Take this medicine and your gout is gone, stay in Iraq and terrorism will magically disappear. One wonders what planet the people that think that way are from. Glenn links to this analysis by Andrew J. Bacevich, Surge to Nowhere
A nation-building project launched in the confident expectation that the United States would repeat in Iraq the successes it had achieved in Germany and Japan after 1945 instead compares unfavorably with the U.S. response to Hurricane Katrina. Even today, Iraqi electrical generation meets barely half the daily national requirements. Baghdad households now receive power an average of 12 hours each day — six hours fewer than when Saddam Hussein ruled. Oil production still has not returned to pre-invasion levels. Reports of widespread fraud, waste and sheer ineptitude in the administration of U.S. aid have become so commonplace that they barely last a news cycle. (Recall, for example, the 110,000 AK-47s, 80,000 pistols, 135,000 items of body armor and 115,000 helmets intended for Iraqi security forces that, according to the Government Accountability Office, the Pentagon cannot account for.) U.S. officials repeatedly complain, to little avail, about the paralyzing squabbling inside the Iraqi parliament and the rampant corruption within Iraqi ministries. If a primary function of government is to provide services, then the government of Iraq can hardly be said to exist.
Iraq as the center of the universe, the eposode of Dr. Who that I also must have missed. The country with all that supposed WMD and sliver me timbers – the Elite Republican Guard is now the grand failed state that the neocons, with the help of the New York Times created. If these miscreants can’t have their Guadalcanal moment with picturesque sunset background then dammit they’ll stay there or keeps your kids there as long as it takes, but they’ll never admit what is obvious to everyone else, that they sold the farm and America’s future based on a failed strategy. Can their mess be cleaned up in a way that lessens the number of body bags and unmarked graves is the only question left.
“Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men.” ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.