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Ear to the Ground

Joe Wilson Wants Dick Cheney to Let It All Hang Out

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Posted on Apr 27, 2009
White House / David Bohrer

Ever the fan of cherry-picking, former Vice President Dick Cheney has called for the declassification of select intelligence he claims would polish his torture legacy. Whistle-blower extraordinaire Joe Wilson says the “most secretive individual in American politics” shouldn’t stop there—why not air all of the Bush administration’s dirty laundry once and for all?

Joe Wilson in the Daily Beast:

Cheney’s request for the declassification of material is a welcome development, but it should not be limited to his narrow request. Our country’s understanding of what was done in our name by the Bush administration depends on the release, not just of the documents Cheney has designated, but of all documents related to the efforts of the Bush administration and Cheney himself to defend the indefensible—the decision to invade Iraq despite the knowledge at the time that Iraq did not have a nuclear program, had no ties to al Qaeda, and posed no existential threat to the United States or to its friends and allies in the region.

The disinformation campaign to manipulate public opinion in favor of the invasion, the torture program, and the illegal exposure of a clandestine CIA agent—my wife, Valerie Plame Wilson—were linked events. In their desperate effort to gather material to whip up public support, Cheney and others resorted to torture, well known in the intelligence craft to elicit inherently unreliable information. Cheney & Co. then pressured the CIA to put its stamp of approval on a series of falsehoods—26 of which were inserted into Secretary of State Colin Powell’s speech before the United Nations Security Council. At the same time, Cheney was furiously attempting to suppress the true information that Saddam Hussein was not seeking yellowcake uranium in Niger. After I published the facts in an article in The New York Times in July 2002, Cheney tried to punish me and discredit the truth by directing the outing of a CIA operative who happened to be my wife.

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By KDelphi, April 28, 2009 at 8:36 pm Link to this comment

After the shame that the “CIA” has subjected this country to, I will never believe a word any of them say again. Anyone who says that they were “following orders” should go to Nouremburg. Hell, Louise, the CIA MIGHT be here blabbbering—they might as well for all the good they did us in “preventing terror attacks”. In my opinion, they have CAUSED attacks on civilians here, by breaking intl laws.

F*ck the CIA. They need to stop breaking our intl agreements.

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By don knutsen, April 28, 2009 at 3:54 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

What ? You mean some paperwork escaped the shredder ? Cheney wants more info. released on our torturing of so many unlucky afghani’s who happened to be in the vicinity while the thugs we hired were grabbing them up because they made money from each “terrorist type” they nabbed ? The same thugs we then put in charge of grabbing Osama outa Tora Bora…Oh, I almost forgot, Cheney had no intention of really getting Osama. They needed Osama every bit as much as Osama needed them. I like Joe Wilson’s idea. I would think releasing all the documents from the Bush / Cheney regiem would be worthwhile. But I doubt that anything escaped the shredder except possibly the two documents they kept that implied they we up to something usefull.

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By AFriend, April 28, 2009 at 2:45 pm Link to this comment


According to the CIA Joe Wilson returned from Niger and was debriefed in his home within a few days.

According to the CIA Wilson claimed to have met with many people and found no evidence of a purchase of yellow cake by Iraq.

The last meeting Ambassador Wilson attended in Niger, according the CIA debriefing, was with the former President. In this meeting the President confirmed an attempt by Saddam Hussein to purchase yellow cake. No evidence was found that a purchase was actually made.

According to the CIA Joe Wilson lied in his OP/ED when he claimed no evidence that Hussein had attempted to purchase yellow cake from Niger.

After that very public lie I can no longer believe Joe Wilson.


As far as the rest of what you write we simply disagree.

It’s impossible to claim that Bill Clinton, George Bush, Al Gore, Dick Cheney, Madeline Albright, Colin Powell, Sandy Burger, Condoleeza Rice, Tom Daschle, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, Bob Graham, John Kerry, Ted kennedy and 85% of the worlds Intelligence Community all said the exact same thing about Saddam Hussein but only Bush and cheney lied.

Although a popular one history will show that you make an impossible argument.

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By bell, April 28, 2009 at 10:22 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Cheney is amazing. He spent seven years hiding under a box in his cellar with caseloads of cheese snacks within arm’s reach. Now he’s on a crusade to prove some vampires are, indeed, able to walk freely in sunlight. Between this guy, old NewtG and the writhing slug-pupa Limbaugh, neocons can hold their heads high. These guys may act tough but their thought processes are fluffier than Theresa Russell’s bush in “Black Widow.”

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By Louise, April 28, 2009 at 9:46 am Link to this comment


“According to the CIA Joe Wilson lied in his now famous OP-ED regarding his trip to Niger.”


I confess, I was somewhat puzzled by this statement, since the CIA was a bit upset over the fact that one of their own had been outed.

The CIA had no factual knowledge of the alleged Niger purchase. In fact, had they or anyone checked with the IAEA, (International Atomic Energy Agency) they could have all saved themselves a lot of trouble. But (underline) that’s not really what it or this, is/was about. This is and was about a nasty little man who made stuff up, who badly wanted war and badly wanted the CIA to make up more stuff, so he could attack a defenseless nation, that had never, ever done anything to us.

Cheney demanded the CIA bring proof. The CIA asked Wilson to travel to Niger and try to find anything to establish validity to the administrations claim. Which he didn’t and couldn’t.

Now, how much damage the Bush administration did to whatever Plame’s assignment was we’ll never know, because it’s classified. But none-the-less, there was talk of potential loss of life, because of the outing. So how in the secret world of espionage, could you possibly know anything “According to the CIA” unless you are CIA, in which case you wouldn’t be here blabbering.

Then I realized you must be a member of that other CIA. Confused Idiots Amalgamated.

Confused Idiots Amalgamated is a group of lost but not gone dimbulbs who frequently get together to pass disinformation, re-enforce their inability to think on rational levels, and generally make stuff up in an effort to give their respective and collective idiocy value. Which would explain your ignorance on the subject, since Saddam had no need to buy yellow cake anywhere, since he already had an abundance of the stuff.

The (new) Iraqi government sold the yellowcake (550 metric tons, sitting there since the 1991 Gulf War) to a Canadian uranium producer, Cameco Corp. The yellowcake uranium (used to produce nuclear energy, as in nuclear power plants) was shipped from Iraq to Canada in the spring of 2008.

The complex storing the yellowcake had been dismantled by the International Atomic Energy Agency in 1991. They knew what and where the stuff was, and was keeping watch over the site. But of course the idiots who started Bush’s Iraq war had long since driven the UN and agents for the IAEA out of Iraq. Which calls into question republican ability to investigate and/or understand anything! 

Before the 2003 Iraq war, Rumsfeld, being the incredible nincompoop that he is must not have known about it. Or, if he did he didn’t have a clue where it was, or even what the stuffs used for! Likewise his fellow nincompoops, Bush and Cheney must not have known either, or they never would have gone looking for someone to make up their stupid Niger story. Duh ...

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By Hulk2008, April 28, 2009 at 7:40 am Link to this comment

How many waterboardings would it take to get all the details about those secret energy confabs Cheney held with the oil barons early in the Bush years?  Isn’t it ironic that oil prices shot up to phenomenal levels, along with the monstrous profits the oil companies took during those years ..... only to be shoved back down during the election cycle?
    I would bet more than a few simolians that ANYbody would agree to cap-and-trade, cold fusion, and the presence of space aliens on or about waterboarding session 183.  Torture is successful - in getting ANYbody to admit to ANYthing.  After nearly drowning that many times, how would a questioner distinguish real data from total hallucination?

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By Bud, April 28, 2009 at 4:41 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Dick Cheney,is the personification of EVIL!He is a greedy,paranoid,deceitful,psycopath,and should be held accountable for the assault on the United States Constitution,and for the slaughter of thousands of innocent Iraquis.

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By Outraged, April 28, 2009 at 2:46 am Link to this comment

I agree.  Let it all hang out Cheney, “burn your bra”!  Go for it.  The world is waiting.  EVERYONE, everywhere would like to know exactly what when on, no need to expose “some” of the memos, expose them all!  Be a “real” man.  From Newsweek, (an excerpt):

“The arguments at the CIA safe house were loud and intense in the spring of 2002. Inside, a high-value terror suspect, Abu Zubaydah, was handcuffed to a gurney. He had been wounded during his capture in Pakistan and still had bullet fragments in his stomach, leg and groin. Agency operatives were aiming to crack him with rough and unorthodox interrogation tactics—including stripping him nude, turning down the temperature and bombarding him with loud music. But one impassioned young FBI agent wanted nothing to do with it. He tried to stop them.

The agent, Ali Soufan, was known as one of the bureau’s top experts on Al Qaeda. He also had a reputation as a shrewd interrogator who could work fluently in both English and Arabic. Soufan yelled at one CIA contractor and told him that what he was doing was wrong, ineffective and an affront to American values. At one point, Soufan discovered a dark wooden “confinement box” that the contractor had built for Abu Zubaydah. It looked, Soufan recalls, “like a coffin.” The mercurial agent erupted in anger, got on a secure phone line and called Pasquale D’Amuro, then the FBI assistant director for counterterrorism. “I swear to God,” he shouted, “I’m going to arrest these guys!”

Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame were CIA, but they were not part of Bush’s “CIA”, how many remain of Bush’s “CIA” or for that matter, Bush’s “NSA” or “FBI”?  We have TWO sets of intelligence and policing, it behooves us to support the one and out the other.  Think carefully, be discerning (although I admit, not an easily discernable actuality, for the most of us).  But we do know, there WERE those who DID THEIR JOB, and others….well, they had an agenda, a goal, and this was NOT in accord with the wishes of the American people, the security of the nation, nor justice.

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By Inherit The Wind, April 27, 2009 at 8:15 pm Link to this comment

Why doesn’t President Obama have Wilson, Plame and Clarke in his administration.  These are 3 of the smartest and most capable people who have ever served since Adams, Jefferson, Madison and Monroe.

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By areg, April 27, 2009 at 5:59 pm Link to this comment

great article - Joe Wilson you are my hero and Dick Cheney, well, you are a disgrace to humanity and a first class scum bag who never represented anything other than Haliburton stockholders. How do people like this become Vice President? And yes, Scooter Libby took the fall for you, and you should join him in the same prison where you can live out the rest of your pathetic years out of the public eye. Even ex President Bush has had the courtesy to stay silent during Obama’s new administration while you sit there and criticize - after running the worst administration in modern times. You are Dr. Evil and you need to disappear. 


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By tolstoy, April 27, 2009 at 4:23 pm Link to this comment

Let’s see now:

1. You decide you want a war in Iraq for your personal and political gain, and besides that you don’t like Saddam. 

2. You talk your political buddies into “fixing the facts around the policy” so that you can build a case to a press that doesn’t question you seriously on anything.

3. Despite several reports from Iraq by reliable sources (including from Joseph Wilson) that Saddam has no WMD and basically is helpless you ignore all that to concentrate more effort into your BS that there must be a war in Iraq.

4. Along with your pressures on various allies who are incredulous but go along with you because they are too weak to resist, you engineer torture tactics with the specific design of getting prisoners to say there’s a link between Al Qaeda and Saddam. You’re disappointed when this doesn’t work.

5. When Joseph Wilson raises critical questioning about this path into ruinous war, which the Secretary of State has lied about earlier in the year, leading to a bogus invasion, you work to disclose his wife and ruin her cover and career as an intelligence operative.

6. You persist with a war that gets worse despite a hoopla baloney “we already won” aboard an aircraft carrier, an event in which you pretended George Bush flew an aircract onto the carrier.

7. The war leads on to massive displacement and deaths of the civilian population, something like a million or more, plus thousands of US military deaths and many more thousands of serious injuries, more so than any other US conflict previously.

8. No serious questioning of any of this occurs in the US press media, and when you’re out of office you’re feeling so good about yourself you suggest that not only was the war a “victory” (though exactly how and why is never clear) but that torture “worked” and you’re in favor of transparency on just how it did work.

9. Again the press is letting you get away with this, tho some mildly urge for “full transparency,” and the current President of the US uneasily would rather look the other way and “let bygones be bygones.”

10. In the history of this country, instead of a greater glory to the credit of this great nation, one that has historically at least attempted to be a leader in decency, your behavior smacks of being a historic first in fraudulence, atrocity, and disgrace—engineered by the White House. It makes Richard Nixon look like a boy scout with a case of mischief.

If I’m wrong on my account above (well, I may have exaggerated on Nixon), please set me straight.

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By srojam, April 27, 2009 at 3:49 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“...according to the CIA” ?

afriend, you’re a fool.

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By KDelphi, April 27, 2009 at 3:07 pm Link to this comment

I say, call his bluff, and let the chips fall where they may. Once everything is out there, maybe we can get back to being a country. Democrats must be aware that many Democrats may be implicated as well. We need to know al of it.

AFriend—Does the CIA have a website, or, are you an operative? If the entire truth comes out, we would find out that Wilson was “suspect”, too, wouldnt we?

Lets just get it out there and get it over with…

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By AFriend, April 27, 2009 at 12:46 pm Link to this comment

According to the CIA Joe Wilson lied in his now famous OP-ED regarding his trip to Niger.

According to the CIA the information Wilson gathered supported the claims that Saddam Hussein sought to purchase yellow cake. What was not found was any evidence that a purchase was actually made.

I have no choice but to doubt everything Mr. Wilson claims.

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By godistwaddle, April 27, 2009 at 11:42 am Link to this comment

Surely, you don’t think “We the People” of the preamble to the Constitution deserve to know what our elected masters do in our name.

That Republicans are cowards is tautological.

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By Louise, April 27, 2009 at 9:56 am Link to this comment

“Our country’s understanding of what was done in our name by the Bush administration depends on the release, not just of the documents Cheney has designated, but of all documents related to the efforts of the Bush administration and Cheney himself to defend the indefensible—”

And, lets see the Cheney/Bush testimony regarding 9/11 made public. Lets hear from every Congressaur who had a hand in crafting legislation shielding THEM from prosecution. Lets hear Powell tell who crafted his speech to the UN. Lets hear Rice tell who wrote her instructions when she testified about 9/11. What did they REALLY know, when did they know it?

Lets hear why Rumsfeld chose to abandon Afghanistan? Why he chose to bring Sanchez over to Iraq? Lets hear from Sanchez. Lets hear why they chose to scapegoat a handful of soldiers trained by Sanchez. Followed on by “private” contractors showing them what to do. Who were those private contractors? Why weren’t THEY scapegoated?

I’m sick of “scapegoat” prosecution! It needs to stop! Whether starting a war, TORTURE, 9/11, spying on and arresting American citizens, (without charge or trial) or hanging a General, (who had absolurely nothing to do with any of it) out to dry, we need to see the TOP DOGS, (who picked the scapegoaters to take the fall) prosecuted!

We don’t need to see any more bad apple, “scapegoat” trials aimed at a handful of people who only followed ORDERS from UNIDENTIFIED “public servants” or private contractors who in turn were following orders from, RUMSFELD, CHENEY and BUSH! We need to SEE and HEAR every rotten thing RUMSFELD, CHENEY and BUSH did!

How likely will that happen if it all gets shoveled into the bottomless pit of “special” prosecution or “special” commission?

A good example is the so-called 9/11 truth commission. How much “truth” came out of that? After months and months of hearings and testimony, (much of it “secret” much of it never put in the public record) what did we actually learn? That 9/11 happened, that’s what. And we already knew that!

“Reporters” report, about “interrogation methods some call torture.” How disgusting! We (and they) all KNOW what TORTURE is! But this weekend the masters of the universe have tried to tamp down the truth with wording. Mentioning “rogue” soldiers prosecuted for carrying out orders. But the idiots say nothing about the amoral Bush administration that guided their activities. Should we allow them to silence everything with the excuse, “We cant talk about a case under investigation. But we sure do have the dirt to dish on a few who will be “scapegoated”? NO!

NO MORE SCAPEGOATING! Let the truth keep rolling over our senses. Let the congressaurs calling for a special prosecutor be unmasked. Does anyone think, they want anything other than a handful of folks who followed orders prosecuted? Of course not! The last thing in the world they want is to see the TOP DOGS prosecuted! Some of THEM might get sucked into it! Lets not fall into the trap of special anything, which will only result in the lid slamming down to protect the REAL CRIMINALS in all of this! RUMSFELD, CHENEY and BUSH! And those who colluded with them to dismantle Constitutional government!

That investigation belongs in the Justice Department. Once the Investigation is complete facts found may lead to silence, but will also lead to charges and prosecution of the most culpable! And who knows? A level of immunity may bring people with facts, to testify to the truth, which can only hasten the outcome. The PROSECUTION of the people in and working with the Bush administration to commit war crimes!

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By skulz fontaine, April 27, 2009 at 9:43 am Link to this comment

Right on Joe Wilson. All of it, release every last ugly tidbit. You hear that Precedent Obama? Wake up Holmes, this is rapidily spiralling out of your control. However, I am not “afraid” of what’s happening in America these days. I am ANGRY! Angry that a treasonous swine the likes of Shotgun Dick Cheney and the Bushco contingent could get away with high crimes and misdemeanors. I’m angry that OUR United States Constitution could be so seditiously circumvented. Let all the nasty details come out and gear up the firing squads. Treason is a firing squad offense.
offense |??fens| ( Brit. offence)
1 a breach of a law or rule; an illegal act
Yeah, the guillotine idea went nowhere fast. We should stick to the tried and true.

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By lOst_sOuls_rembrd, April 27, 2009 at 8:31 am Link to this comment

Here here! Mr. Wilson

I am 60 and have lived through Vietnam, Watergate and the privatization of public services and truly simplier times long ago slowly wiped away from us citizens. 

As a parent, we teach our children that a lie is a lie is a lie.  You can’t pick and chose what information to give a parent to “sway” yourself out of trouble.  What kind of parents did Cheney have and by God I swear, he must truly be guided by the Machavillian theory: “the ends justify the means”

I am truly afraid as a citizen of the United States. Very afraid.

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By afif elias, April 27, 2009 at 5:59 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Dick Cheney is the worst vice president and should be tried for crimes against humanity and the american people for dragging us into winless war and which we can’t efford.  Socilaism is the only solution to put the american first but not elites.  Mr Obama need any favors but to the elites who get us to the brink of destruction.  God Bless America.

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By Clonakilty32, April 27, 2009 at 5:32 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The Bush administration especially Cheney and Rove are collectively the largest bunch of obstructionists ever assembled under one administration. To hearing them whining now about declassifying memos is absurd.  Lets start with declassifying every thing that was hid from the American public from the start of this criminal administration from 2000 through 2008.  I still want to know what was hidden from us during the meetings with top energy officials (Cheney) and CEOs before and at the time of the ENRON scandal.  Cheney fought the DOJ tooth and nail to keep records of those meetings from the American public.  Come on Dickhead lets have full disclosure of what the American public would like to know about your thuggery and criminal behavior for those eight years.  Lets hear some more whining Dickhead its showing your true cowardly whiny character.  Finish your whining and then go crawl under your rock.  The same rock that hid you through 5 deferments during the Vietnam war, COWARD!

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