Monday, June 04, 2007

Who Is Visiting the White House?

This morning, an article in the Washington Post headlined “Cheney's Mystery Visitors” reports that Vice President Dick Cheney “intends to exercise ‘exclusive control’ of the logs showing who is visiting him or his staff at the White House compound or at the vice presidential residence at the Naval Observatory, WaPo said, “The private group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) has filed suit seeking the logs to determine the influence of religious conservatives. "What is the vice president's office trying to avoid making public?" asked Anne Weisman, CREW's chief counsel.” After making Cheney’s position clear that Cheney wants to be the sole keeper of the visitor logs instead of the Secret Service, WaPo reported an interesting behind-the-scenes White House staff change: “Two months ago, Meghan O'Sullivan said she would leave her post as the top White House staff member on Iraq to pursue opportunities outside of government. Seems like those opportunities are being put on hold, at least for the summer. “At the request of Bush and Gen. David H. Petraeus, O'Sullivan is headed back to Iraq, where she will be working with U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker for the next several months on helping the Iraqis meet political benchmarks the United States is insisting on to achieve national reconciliation.” Of course the reason for O’Sullivan’s return, which is being floated by the White House, is bogus. The real point is that O’Sullivan worked with Jay Garner in Iraq and when Garner was canned and White House flunky Paul Bremer was named Director of Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance for post-war Iraq, O’Sullivan worked for Bremer. Paul Bremer is a close friend of rightwing religious fanatic James Dobson. All of James Dobson’s ministries have been funded by the Prince family that owns and operates Blackwater, USA, a training ground in North Carolina for mercenaries being sent to Iraq by our State Department. Bremer used Blackwater guards for his security force in Iraq. Bremer’s last act in Iraq was to issue Order No. 17. Order Number 17 grants foreign contractors, including private security firms, full immunity from Iraq’s laws. Which means that even murder or environmental disasters may not be prosecuted if committed by foreign firms. On May 14th, James Dobson said, “I was invited to go to Washington DC to meet with President Bush in the White House along with 12 or 13 other leaders of the pro-family movement…and the topic of the discussion that day was Iraq, Iran and international terrorism. And we were together for 90 minutes and it was very enlightening and in some ways disturbing too...the world looked at Hitler and just didn't believe him and tried to appease him the way we're hearing in Washington today… you know, the President seems to me does understand this, as I told you from that meeting I had with him the other day, but even there it feels like somebody ought to be standing up and saying, ‘We are being threatened and we are going to meet this with force -- whatever's necessary.’” CREW is absolutely right...we need to know when Bush, Cheney and the entire Bush administration commune with far-right religious fanatic visitors. I would bet the rent that Paul Bremer is a White House habitué. We know James Dobson is a frequent visitor. We know fallen-from-grace evangelical preacher Ted Haggard had weekly sessions with the Prez. Since the Prez has no mind of his own, I want to know who is filling that empty space with religious rants and nonsense. And, I must confess, I want to know who is clocking-in for sleepovers. Yes, I want to know if the same (and/or different) people who are advising the Prez on the war in Iraq and on US policy are also sharing the President’s bed. So sue me...I want to know.

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