Obama misspeaks, Republicans manufacture some outrage, McCain is befuddled and Bush appeases

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The worse possible gaffe in the history of politics took place on May 27, 2008. The distinguished Senator from the great state of Illinois said Auschwitz when he should have said Buchenwald, Campaign Says Obama Misspoke On Nazi Camp

“Senator Obama’s family is proud of the service of his grandfather and uncles in World War II – especially the fact that his great uncle was a part of liberating one of the concentration camps at Buchenwald,” campaign spokesman Bill Burton said in a statement. “Yesterday he mistakenly referred to Auschwitz instead of Buchenwald in telling of his personal experience of a soldier in his family who served heroically.”

Aides said Tuesday that his grandmother’s brother, Charlie Payne, helped liberate a Buchenwald sub-camp in April 1945 as part of the 89th Infantry Division.

Especially ironic that Conservative bloggers, on which one can usually depend to be historical revisionists of the first order, were so quick to make sure that the Soviet Union got proper credit for being the first allied forces to reach Auschwitz ( which in itself was a series of three major camps and several subsidiary camps). Republican blogger Ace of Spades is beside himself, May 27, 2008,, Obama rewrites WWII history

In one of his more egregious and easily demonstrated lies, made even more so by the day he decided to let it loose on, Obama has rewritten WWII history such that the allies liberated Auschwitz.

“Egregious” as in the worse possible combined with “lies”, nothing like a since of proportion. The RNC is also upset,

“It was Soviet troops that liberated Auschwitz, so unless his uncle was serving in the Red Army, there’s no way Obama’s statement yesterday can be true,” said Alex Conant, a spokesman for the Republican National Committee.

So Ace and the RNC really really hate it when people lie and distort the truth. These are some examples of some actual egregious lies and distortions. What makes them especially despicable is the lost of innocent lives they lead to and the billions spent.

* In an interview with Polish television on May 29, 2003, President Bush stated: “We found the weapons of mass destruction.” Bush was referencing two trailers or “mobile labs” discovered in Iraq.

Just days earlier, the Defense Intelligence Agency had concluded that the trailers “could not be used as a transportable biological production system as the system is presently configured.” It was ultimately acknowledged that the trailers had nothing to do with weapons of mass destruction and were probably used to manufacture hydrogen employed in weather balloons.

* On July 30, 2003, in an interview with Gwen Ifill of PBS’s NewsHour With Jim Lehrer, Condoleezza Rice said: “What we knew going into the war was that this man was a threat. He had weapons of mass destruction.

* “The battle of Iraq is one victory in a war on terror that began on September the 11, 2001 — and still goes on. That terrible morning, 19 evil men — the shock troops of a hateful ideology — gave America and the civilized world a glimpse of their ambitions. – President Bush Announces Major Combat Operations in Iraq Have Ended, White House (5/1/2003).

This statement was misleading because by referencing the September 11 attacks in conjunction with discussion of the war on terror in Iraq, it left the impression that Iraq was connected to September 11.

* “Saddam Hussein had a lengthy history of reckless and sudden aggression. His regime cultivated ties to terror, including the al Qaeda network, and had built, possessed, and used weapons of mass destruction.”
Source: Richard B. Cheney Delivers Remarks to the Los Angeles World Affairs Council, White House (1/14/2004).

Saddam never had operational connections to al Qaeda.

* “We said they had a nuclear program. That was never any debate.”
Source: Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, This Week with George Stephanopoulos, ABC (7/13/2003).

This statement was false because there were deep divisions within the intelligence community on the issue of whether Iraq was actively pursuing its nuclear program. The statement also failed to mention weeks of intensive inspections conducted directly before the war in which United Nations inspectors found no sign whatsoever of any effort by Iraq to resume its nuclear program.

* “Going into the war against Iraq, we had very strong intelligence. I’ve been in this business for 20 years. And some of the strongest intelligence cases that I’ve seen, key judments by our intelligence community that Saddam Hussein . . . had biological and chemical weapons . . . .”
Source: National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice Interview with ZDF German Television, ZDF German Television (7/31/2003).

This statement was misleading because it failed to acknowledge the Defense Intelligence Agency position that: “There is no reliable information on whether Iraq is producing and stockpiling chemical weapons or where Iraq has — or will — establish its chemical warfare agent production facilities.”

* McCain’s Gaffes Reflect Bush’s Iran-Qaeda Myth

Sen. John McCain’s confusion in recent allegations of Iranian training of al Qaeda fighters in Iraq is the result of a drumbeat of official propaganda about close Iran-al Qaeda ties that the George W. Bush administration and neoconservatives have promoted ever since early 2002.0322 02

McCain, the Republican nominee for the presidency, was confusing the Bush administration’s charges of Iranian training of Shi’a militiamen associated with the Mahdi Army with the administration’s propaganda theme of Iranian tacit or explicit support for al Qaeda operatives in Iran — charges which have amplified by right-wing media.

During a press conference in Jordan Tuesday, McCain brought up the charge that Iran with training al Qaeda operatives and sending them to Iraq, then corrected himself after Sen. Joseph Lieberman, a Democrat from Connecticut, whispered in his ear. It was the fourth time in a little over three weeks, however, that McCain had made the same charge.

Remember Bush’s recent statements “Some seem to believe we should negotiate with terrorists and radicals, as if some ingenious argument will persuade them they have been wrong all along,” Sentiments echoed by fringe Right pundits and bloggers; Dubya would have nothing to do with negotiating or restated as one of their favorite buzzwords, appeasement. Bush Straddles His Hard Line in Engaging Sudan

Sometime in the next few weeks, a special envoy of President Bush plans to meet with Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, whose government sheltered Osama bin Laden and pursued a scorched-earth policy in southern Sudan that resulted in more than 2 million deaths.

Bashir’s government has been accused by Bush of participating in a “genocide” in Darfur, the only U.S. government use of such a strong accusation. Yet Richard S. Williamson’s visit to Khartoum follows a series of direct contacts by senior Bush administration officials with the Sudanese president, including Secretaries of State Colin L. Powell and Condoleezza Rice, Rice’s deputies, and several special presidential envoys.

[ ]…Bush recently accused those advocating talks with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and other radical figures of “appeasement.”