Thursday, May 14, 2009

Extraordinarily (for the first time ever ?) I am very displeased with Kevin Drum

Kevin "always click the link" Drum wrote

update: Welcome Mothers Jones (or whatever you are now that you aren't political animals). I am stunned that Kevin Drum linked to this post. The man has a great deal of intellectual integrity. My hat is off.

Nancy Pelosi fights back against news reports that she was briefed on the torture of CIA prisoners in 2002:

[skip]

"Game on! Two questions, though. Game on! Two questions, though. First, why did it take you a week to remember this? Second, what about reports that one of your aides, Michael Sheehy, was briefed about waterboarding in early 2003 and passed the news along to you? Any comment on that?"

Drum links to a post in "The Note" (shocking already) which contains a link to actual video of the press conference from ABC which shows an interview with Pelosi.

Pelosi's prepared comments are available at emptywheel

"Five months later, in February 2003, a member of my staff informed me that the Republican chairman and new Democratic Ranking Member of the House Intelligence Committee had been briefed about the use of certain techniques which had been the subject of earlier legal opinions.

Following that briefing, a letter raising concerns was sent to CIA General Counsel Scott Muller by the new Democratic Ranking Member of the House Intelligence Committee, the appropriate person to register a protest. " -- Nancy Pelosi


See here

" Second, what about reports that one of your aides, Michael Sheehy, was briefed about waterboarding in early 2003 and passed the news along to you? Any comment on that?" -- Kevin Drum

I have two Questions of my own

1) Did you listen to Pelosi's statement and/or read a transcript ?
2) Should you have checked what she said before accusing her of an omission ?

I think you should update with a correction and an apology. It is simply not acceptable to claim that someone did not "comment on" a fact in response to a statement which comments on that fact.

Oh and about your first question -- for all I know, Pelosi is accusing her briefer of a crime (lying to congress). I for one would be willing to take a week to find out if a verbal briefing of two congresspeople counts or if it has to be testimony (it is definitely a crime even if the liar was not sworn in). I'd like to be very sure of the facts (Goss basically confirmed Pelosi's recent claim when attacking her saying he was surprised that someone claimed it was not clear that the techniques "were to be used." I would certainly have confronted him on that, before going public. Some people feel the need to carefully check the law and hte facts before making accusations.

As Drum often types, always click the link. Also listen for a few minutes if necessary.

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