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US Withdrawal * NuclearJusticeOption * Dean-DNC

08 February 2005 - Part 2

"If we make peaceful revolution impossible,
we make violent revolution inevitable."

John Fitzgerald Kennedy

1) Kennedy vs. Rumsfeld on US withdrawal from Iraq
- - New Bush Budget Boosts Pentagon, Slashes Domestic Programs
- - Stop "Nuclear Option" to Kill Filibusters in the US Senate!
- - ACLU action for real security and protection of Immigrants
- - The Outsiders: Howard Dean's Bid For DNC Chair

Editor's Notes:

This issue begins with transcript-excerpts from last Sunday's "Meet the Press" TV program. Tim Russert first interviewed Secretary of State Donald Rumsfeld, and then Senator Ted Kennedy. The Senator challenged the current US administration to expedite a schedule to get US troops out of Iraq. Senator Kennedy was eloquent and to the point. Also, about saving social security, he explained that it could be accomplished by rolling back 1/3 of the Bush permanent tax cut plan. Meanwhile, projects like Star Wars, world domination, and the excuse for endless war continue, and not surprisingly, Bush has introduced a budget proposal that slashes domestic programs.

Following the first item is information on campaigns for taking action in defense of US civil liberties. I was able to visit Richard Sitcha twice, who is housed in the Franklin County Jail in Greenfield, MA. He is there because government officials revoked his political asylum. He was an attorney in a controversial case in Cameroon, Africa. He lived in Connecticut for more than two years, only doing good deeds for our society before arrested, no crime committed. Richard has given me documents that shows how his legal status had changed four times since granted political asylum by the US. All the while, he remains behind bars for eighteen months! Richard would welcome being free in Canada. Why should the US keep him behind bars while an asylum decision is reviewed? His record, and the support he has received from his community proves that he is trustworthy? It would not be safe for Ricard to be returned to Cameroon. One can wonder how this country in Africa can pull the strings on justice in Richard's case. Could it be connected to Cameroon oil resources, dirty politics as usual? For more information on this case, visit:

The last subsection has a link to "The Outsiders: Howard Dean's Bid For DNC Chair." It looks like he will be elected for that position, since the other leading candidate stepped out of the race. Hopefully, Dean will be an effective catalyst for the Democrat Party's platform for a responsible foreign policy, and for reclaiming a lost USA democracy. Howard Dean endorsed Instant Runoff Voting when he was a candidate for President, and stood against the rush for the Bush-Iraq war.

By the way – the new posting expected from Bart Jordan had been delayed. Please stay tune and ready for such information. I will let Bart explain the delay, but these are dangerous times, especially for someone that can provide evidence that ancient civilizations knew all about certain dangerous radioactive isotopes, and that we are descending, not ascending from accomplishment in humankind's ancient past. For some background, references, publications, and music of Bart Jordan, see:; and this next link for updated information.

A free screening of the film:
will be presented at the Keene Public Library
- Auditorium - 60 Winter Street; Keene, NH -
Tuesday, March 22nd, 2005
7:00 P.M. - 9:00 P.M.

For feedback, discussions, and strategies,
regarding information posted at Flyby News, visit:

"It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate,
tireless minority keen to set brush fires in People's mind..."

-- Samuel Adams

1) Kennedy vs. Rumsfeld on US withdrawal from Iraq

- - New Bush Budget Boosts Pentagon, Slashes Domestic Programs
- - Stop "Nuclear Option" to Kill Filibusters in the US Senate!
- - ACLU action for real security and protection of Immigrants
- - The Outsiders: Howard Dean's Bid For DNC Chair

- - Kennedy vs. Rumsfeld on US withdrawal from Iraq
Transcript for Feb. 6
Guests: Secretary of Defense Donald RumsfeldSen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass.

MR. TIM RUSSERT: Our issues this Sunday: Iraq. The president pledges to stay the course.

(Videotape, February 2, 2005):
PRES. GEORGE W. BUSH: We will not set an artificial timetable for leaving Iraq, because that would embolden the terrorists and make them believe they can wait us out.
(End videotape)

MR. RUSSERT: The leading liberal in the U.S. Senate disagrees.

SEN. EDWARD KENNEDY, (D-MA): President Bush should immediately announce his intention to negotiate a timetable for a drawdown of American combat forces.
(End videotape)

MR. RUSSERT: What now? With us: for the Bush administration, the secretary of defense, Donald Rumsfeld; for the Democrats, the senior senator from Massachusetts, Edward M. Kennedy. But first, joining us now on MEET THE PRESS is the secretary of defense, Donald Rumsfeld. Welcome back.

SEC'Y DONALD RUMSFELD: Thank you, sir.


MR. RUSSERT: ..But when they say that they would like to have a constitution which says that daughters would get half the inheritance of sons, do you find that troubling for all the bloodshed we have spilled for Iraq?

SEC'Y RUMSFELD: The first thing we have to begin with is that Iraq belongs to the Iraqis. And the Iraqis are going to have a solution for Iraq that's Iraqi solution. They're not going to have an American solution or an Afghan solution

Look at our Constitution when it was first fashioned. Look what it did with respect to women not voting. Look what it did with respect to blacks and the way they were counted in the population. So you don't get from where they were to where they're going on a feather bed, as Thomas Jefferson said. You get there through tough discussion, trials, error, mistakes, good things, and they're on that path. And I think people ought to step back and say, "Isn't that amazing? Isn't that a wonderful thing for that region?"

MR. RUSSERT: ..So you're confident that we will not have an Islamic fundamentalist state in Iraq?

SEC'Y RUMSFELD: I think it would be just an enormous mistake for that country to think that it could succeed with all of its opportunity, with its oil, its water, its intelligent population--to deny half of their population, women, the opportunity to participate fully, I think, just would be a terrible mistake.

MR. RUSSERT: Our next guest, Senator Kennedy, has said now that the elections are over, we should have a specific timetable...


MR. RUSSERT: ...for the withdrawal of American troops. The president said that would embolden the terrorists. Why?

SEC'Y RUMSFELD: Well, first of all, let's point out the truth. The president and I and anyone would dearly love to be smart enough and wise enough to know precisely when our troops could leave. It would be such a relief for people to know that. It's not knowable. . . And it seems to me that the answer as to when our troops can come out is dependent upon the conditions on the ground and whether or not the Iraqis are capable of managing the security situation there. We're working very hard to see that they can.

MR. RUSSERT: In hindsight, do you wish we had sent more troops on the ground in Iraq initially?

SEC'Y RUMSFELD: I wish that we could have gotten the 4th Infantry Division in from the north, so that it would have been able to put more pressure on the Baathist regime and probably capture more of the Baathists that today are part of the insurgency. But in terms of the total numbers of troops that went in, we finally got the 4th ID in, but it had to come in from the south. So it was not as effective as had it come in through Turkey. The answer to your other question is no. I think that General Franks and General Abizaid have been correct in calculating the number of troops that we need on the ground in Iraq..

MR. RUSSERT: Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, as always, we thank you for your views.

SEC'Y RUMSFELD: Thank you.

MR. RUSSERT: Coming next: Iraq, Social Security and more through the eyes of Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy. He is next right here, only on MEET THE PRESS.

MR. RUSSERT: Senator, John Kerry, your colleague from Massachusetts, has called on the secretary of defense to resign. Do you agree with Senator Kerry?

SEN. KENNEDY: Well, I had asked for his resignation previously at the time of Abu Ghraib. But the issue really isn't his resignation. It's about changing of policy. And I think what we just heard in the last half-hour is why we need a strategy and why we need a policy that is going to permit the American to bring our troops home with honor. During the last half-hour, we heard a policy that was "make it up as you go along." We need a strategy. We need a program. We need to establish goals. We need to be able to ensure that not only the political institutions are going to work in Iraq--all of us were very hopeful, all of us were impressed by the voting--but we also ought to be able to have the development of a strong security in Iraq.

When we send over Americans that have had 12 weeks of training, like the nephew of my wife, and is a tail gunner on a Striker--12 weeks--and we have the best-trained American servicemen and the best soldiers in the world, there's no reason in the world that we can't expect Iraqis to be trained with four months, eight months, 12 months so that they are going to fight for their country and they're going to be willing to die for it. And I think that is what is missing when we hear these numbers batted around like we did today.

MR. RUSSERT: You made a very specific proposal which I asked Senator Kerry, your colleague, about last week. Let's watch.

(Videotape, January 30):
MR. RUSSERT: Specifically, do you agree with Senator Kennedy that 12,000 American troops should leave at once?
MR. RUSSERT: Do you believe there should be a specific timetable of a withdrawal of American troops?
(End videotape)

MR. RUSSERT: Senator Bill Nelson, Senator Joe Lieberman, The New York Times have all editorialized, saying, "No, no, do not set timetables." The president says you are emboldening terrorists because they'll simply wait us out. We're going to be out in a year, sure, we'll sit back and wait. Why would you advocate such a policy before the Iraqis even voted?

SEN. KENNEDY: Well, there's about three aspects of that question. First of all, there really isn't a difference between Senator Kerry and myself. Senator Kerry understands that the insurgency is part of the problem. And he also understands that this administration hasn't had a policy towards Iraq. It had a policy in order to win the war but not to win the peace. There really isn't a difference. There is a difference in terms of the goals that I established. Now, there is--the administration...

MR. RUSSERT: But, Senator, there is a difference. I asked him, "Do you agree with Senator Kennedy..."

SEN. KENNEDY: That's right.

MR. RUSSERT: "...on a fixed timetable?" He said no.

SEN. KENNEDY: I agree that he doesn't agree with my call for the immediate troop withdrawals, although we've had, as we saw in the Armed Services Committee just this last week, that--General Myers effectively announcing the withdrawal of some 15,000 troops, like I had suggested. The fact remains, those that have been critical of this idea say that we should not set the date because somehow the insurgents are going to wait. They're going to wait for 18 months or two years. And then after we train these Iraqi troops, they're going to somehow come back in and take over Iraq? What I'm talking about is a strong, secure, democratic Iraq that has democratic institutions, and then in the next four months, eight months, 12 months, 15 months, able to train their troops to be able to provide security. The best way that you're going to see resistance to the insurgency is a strong and secure and independent Iraq. That's what I'm for. That can be achieved with this.

The problem is at the present time the Iraqis do not believe that they own the country. The elections were an important down-payment on that, but still they ought to be able to have the kind of security and that ought to be trained--they ought to be trained. We ought to get about the business of doing it. Why can't they defend their own country? How long do we have to have Americans fighting and dying? How long do we have to ask the taxpayers to continue to pay out? Why can't we expect that we can train their troops in four months, eight months, 12 months, 15 months? I think we can, and I think we should. And we ought to establish as a goal--not as a requirement, as a goal--that we are going to negotiate that time frame with the new Iraqi government, but as a goal that we want our troops out by 2006.

MR. RUSSERT: Some observers, Senator, have said that you simply opposed the war from day one and that's your agenda. They point to a comment you made back in September of 2003. "This was made up in Texas, announced in January to the Republican leadership that war was going to take place and was going to be good politically. This whole thing was a fraud." Fourteen hundred and forty-five Americans dead, 10,770 injured or wounded. All that blood for a political fraud? Is that your view?

SEN. KENNEDY: Listen, my view is that we honor. We honor, deeply, deeply honor every one of the servicemen and women who have lost their lives. We've lost 32 in Massachusetts. I've talked to the parents and have attended a number of the funerals out at Arlington. They are heroes. And you know something, Mr. Russert? Our responsibility to those fighting men and women is to get it right, to get the right policy. That is the best way to honor them. And when I hear the secretary of defense say this morning that he was somewhat puzzled by the level of the insurgency, the rise of the insurgency, I remember being on the Armed Services Committee when we listened to the generals that testified before that Armed Services Committee and they all predicted an insurgency.

General Hoar, a former Marine, said, "If we get into Iraq, we fight the Iraq, we will win and you will have an insurgency that'll make the last five, seven minutes of `Private Ryan' look like a church picnic." They were absolutely correct. This is what the problem is. We're making it up as we go along. We heard it this morning. We've got to establish a policy. We have to establish a plan in order to get the Americans out with honor. And that plan that I put forward, I think, can achieve it.

MR. RUSSERT: But do you still believe that the war is a fraud and was begun for political reasons?

SEN. KENNEDY: What I believe is that this administration took their eye off the ball in fighting against terror. It was al-Qaeda that saw the loss of American lives. It was Osama bin Laden that we had on the run in Afghanistan. We had him on the run, and we took our eye off that and we went to war that we never should have fought in Iraq. And I don't think--and the reasons that we fought the war were weapons of mass destruction and because the tie with al-Qaeda.

Now, we found there's no weapons of mass destruction. The 9-11 Commission said there's no tie-in with al-Qaeda. Now, we're talking about we're leaving Americans in there till we democratize the country. You talk about mission creep. When did that ever get--do you possibly think that the Senate of the United States would have ratified going to war because we just want a democracy? We have stood for democracy and we haven't gone to war. We saw the restoration of democracy in Chile when Pinochet collapsed. We saw it in Argentina. We saw it in Paraguay. We saw it come in South Africa and we didn't go to war.

MR. RUSSERT: You also said "The war in Iraq has made the mushroom cloud more likely, not less likely, and it should never have happened." How has the war in Iraq made nuclear war more likely?

SEN. KENNEDY: Well, the--my own sense is--I'm not sure what the whole kind of context--I thought you were quoting the administration officials that use that as part of a justification and to go to war...

MR. RUSSERT: No, this is your speech at George Washington University. "The war in Iraq has made the mushroom cloud more likely, not less likely."

SEN. KENNEDY: Well, I think the principle reason is because now with al-Qaeda, we have the chance, I think, to decapitate al-Qaeda, to catch Osama bin Laden. What has happened with al-Qaeda is like taking mercury and pounding it and it's gone into a thousand different kinds of cells and those cells are extremely kind of dangerous. And they understand the potential uses of nuclear weapons as well as bioterrorist weapons. And they are out there searching to, in various places around, areas where you don't have careful kind of protection for nuclear weapons and searching for it. And I think that is the absolute result.

MR. RUSSERT: ..But, Senator, many observers will say we have a chance to have a democratic Iraqi state, no Saddam Hussein, a chance to remake the entire Middle East, and you want to cut and run and pull Americans out.

SEN. KENNEDY: It isn't--I'm offering the right way to do it. I'm offering the best way to do it. The program I offer is the best way to achieve an independent and a democratic Iraq. What is the wrong way is to continue along where the occupation is spurring the resistance, as we have seen just earlier in your program, with Secretary Rumsfeld saying that it is constantly growing, the insurgency is constantly growing. We don't know where it is going to go, and that's going to continue. I want to take the target off the backs of the American servicemen and women. And I want to let the Iraqis fight for their own security. And if they do, I think they'll be a stronger country to resist insurgency.

MR. RUSSERT: Let me turn to Social Security. The president said that we have an impending crisis with Social Security and you said he was wrong. We went up on your Web site, which was interesting reading, and found the things that you have labeled crises.


MR. RUSSERT: This is pretty revealing. "Iraq, national literacy, medical research, refugee program, mental illness, steel, nursing, higher education, youth violence, fish industry, AIDS, flu vaccine supply, hunger, teacher recruitment, unemployment, Medicare, health care, North Korea, Section 8 vouchers, gas prices, gun violence"; you said they were all crises.

We have a situation where the number on people in Social Security is going to double. People, rather than spending 15 months, are going to spend 15 years. In 2018, the Social Security Trust Fund will begin to draw down, and in 2042 run a deficit, according to the trustees of the fund. What is your plan? What will you do? If the president's wrong, what would you do specifically to fix Social Security?

SEN. KENNEDY: Well, first of all, all the facts that you mention are correct, and we have a problem beyond the 2049, a problem. As you saw in those figures this morning, the C.B.O. estimates they'll still- -if we do nothing at all, we'll still be able to pay 81 percent of the budget to the--let me tell you one thing. The president's program to make his tax cuts permanent is three times what's necessary to fix the national--to fix Social Security. Let's start with that.

MR. RUSSERT: But we have...

SEN. KENNEDY: Let's start with that. You've asked the question and I'm giving you an answer.

MR. RUSSERT: But, Senator, with Social Security, with Medicare, we have $5 trillion of unfunded mandates, and we are sitting here saying we simply roll back the tax cut on the top 1 percent or grow our way out of it?

SEN. KENNEDY: Well, wait a second now. You asked about Social Security. Now do you want to know on the Medicare how we ought to go to deal with the Medicare? I've given you a very good way to resolve the...

MR. RUSSERT: So you would roll back the president's tax cuts.

SEN. KENNEDY: That's a possible--for one-third, he wants to make it permanent. You can roll back just one-third of it and solve the Social Security problem. I think that ought to be on the table. It's interesting, when the president spoke the other night, Tim, he never mentioned what his answer was. He never told us what his solution was for the out years.

MR. RUSSERT: Would you agree with him that age eligibility should be on the table?

SEN. KENNEDY: Not at this time because I don't think we have a crisis.

MR. RUSSERT: Cost of living increases?

SEN. KENNEDY: I'm giving you my--one of the ways that we ought to do it. That's what your question...

MR. RUSSERT: Raise taxes?

SEN. KENNEDY: Roll back--or he wants to make permanent, and I say you can take a third of that part, at least solve--that is one of the alternatives.

MR. RUSSERT: But that's raising taxes.

SEN. KENNEDY: OK. That's rolling back.

MR. RUSSERT: That's honest.

SEN. KENNEDY: Whatever way. But we have one, but he hasn't offered it. I can tell you where we're going with the Medicare and the rest if you want to know. I think you can make a down--a very important--we spend 33 cents out of every health dollar is non-clinic. The president's talked about information technology. The Veterans Administration uses information technology and has seen a reduction in the cost per patient bed over the last five years by 7 percent while the rest of the beds have gone up 65 percent. If we put in place information technology and reduce from 33 cents to 27, it's $150 billion a year. We could cover all the uninsured and deal with many of the president's priorities in health care. I'm looking forward to try and work with him on this. We can take each of these items and find common ground. That's what I hope we can do with this administration.

For the complete transcript of this program, see:

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- - New Bush Budget Boosts Pentagon, Slashes Domestic Programs
Democracy Now! - Tuesday, February 8th, 2005
Bush's New $2.5 Trillion Budget Boosts Pentagon Spending, Slashes Domestic Programs

President Bush sent Congress a federal budget yesterday that some say reads like a hit list against almost every social program paid for by US taxpayers. It calls for the elimination of some 150 government programs. One out of every three of the targeted programs concerns education.

Bush's plan would slash aid to cities by one-third, eliminate health insurance for thousands of low-income families, reduce veterans' medical benefits, cut funding for city cops and county sheriffs, wipe out child care subsidies for 300,000 families, trim funding for clean water and soil conservation and shutter dozens of programs for preschool children and at-risk youth. The budget also targets public housing, Medicaid and farmers.

In addition Bush is proposing to cut the budget of the Environmental Protection Agency by $450 million; to cut $100 million from a Bureau of Indian Affairs program that helps build schools and to cut $200 million for home-heating aid for the poor.

But Bush isn't cutting back on all federal programs. The budget calls for a $19 billion increase in Pentagon spending. At a news conference in Washington, Bush spoke to reporters about his budget plan.

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- - Stop "Nuclear Option" to Kill Filibusters in the US Senate!
From Common Cause
Help Us Preserve the Integrity of the U.S. Senate

The Senate leadership is considering implementation of a rarely used procedure known as the "nuclear option" to get around a potential filibuster of federal judicial appointments. This maneuver could limit Senate debate on President George W. Bush's expected nominees to the Supreme Court, and other federal courts, and silence voices of dissent.

This so called "nuclear option" will give Vice President Dick Cheney, who serves as the Senate's presiding officer, the power to declare unconstitutional the use of filibusters in judicial nominations. This rule change will allow a simple majority of 51 votes, rather than 60 votes, to affirm judges for lifetime appointments. The Senate minority - the Democrats - will not be able to filibuster Cheney's rulings under this option.

This is wrong. It is wrong to jettison a longtime Senate procedure simply because it is inconvenient to one party's goals. It is an abuse of power to strip the Senate minority of a tool designed to protect its rights - rights both parties have vociferously defended throughout the Senate's history. Sign our petition today, and let the senators know that we oppose the changing long-standing Senate rules to blatantly advance one party's goals:

It is especially wrong to arbitrarily oppose a filibuster only in the instance of judicial nominations, which are among the most important and long-lasting decisions made by the Senate. So, let your senators know that we expect them to preserve the integrity of deliberations in the Senate, which is based on the ideals of compromise and curbing of extremism:

Save the Integrity of the U.S. Senate

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- - ACLU action for real security and protection of Immigrants

Tell Congress You Want Real Security Reforms, Not a War on Immigrants

Urge your Representative to oppose an unnecessary assault on immigrants that would undermine our national commitment to freedom and liberty.

The United States is a nation of immigrants with a long, proud history of granting asylum to those fleeing from religious or political persecution. But "security reform" legislation introduced in Congress threatens to make a mockery of that tradition with a requirement that would force many asylum seekers to get supporting evidence from the very governments they are fleeing.

This proposed bill would also expand the PATRIOT Act to make it possible to deport long-term permanent residents for providing non-violent, humanitarian support to organizations later labeled as "terrorist" by the government, even where such support was completely legal at the time it was provided. For example, people could be deported if they gave money to a tsunami relief organization and -- years from now -- the government decided the organization was involved in terrorism-related activities.

Take Action! Urge your Representative to oppose this unnecessary assault on immigrants that would undermine our national commitment to freedom and liberty.

Another provision of the bill would exacerbate already troubling driver's license provisions in the intelligence reform legislation by forcing state motor vehicle departments to implement complex immigrant laws without training or additional funds.

Several of the bill's controversial provisions were pulled from last year's intelligence reform legislation in part because of action by concerned individuals like you, and we need to ensure they do not pass this time either.

Click here for more information and to take action:

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- - The Outsiders: Howard Dean's Bid For DNC Chair

The Outsiders
by Ryan Lizza, The New Republic

A fascinating look at the insider-outsider battle behind Howard Dean's bid for DNC chair.

The views expressed herein are the writers' own and not necessarily those of Flyby News.
A "Fair Use Policy" that describes use of copyrighted material is posted at
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