Downing Street Memories

My reporter friend who started off the Washington Press Corpse commentary sent me this. What follows is his unedited post:

It's a good sign that bloggers and other folks on the left aren't letting the Downing Street Memo fade from view, even though it's been ignored or downplayed by most American media. There's a website, recently created by persons unknown (although there's a link on the page to Democratic Underground, so I'm sure it's someone with some ties to that site; it hardly matters).

For those who haven't heard of it -- and I wouldn't be surprised -- it's the proof that Bush and his Cabinet, as far back as summer 2002, were not only planning on military action in Iraq but were actively trying to craft the intelligence to fit the plan to invade ("the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy").

The Times of London broke the story about the memo on Sunday, May 1.

Damn few American media have paid any attention to it, although Knight Ridder's Washington Bureau wrote about it that next Thursday, May 5.

And that's relevant, because KR's reporting prompted this incredible string of shit at the redoubtable freerepublic.com the next day.

If this makes you doubt the legitimacy of the Downing Street Memo, just click the link at the top of the page. It's an AFP report that a memo was forged -- but what they're talking about is something entirely different: A supposed legal opinion by U.K. Attorney General Peter Goldsmith saying he was unsure about the legality of the Iraq war without a second U.N. resolution.

That document, apparently, was a forgery; it got plenty of attention in Britain because of the upcoming elections but damn near none in the U.S. It has NOTHING TO DO WITH THE DOWNING STREET MEMO, which hasn't been debunked or exposed or proven forged by anyone -- which should tell you quite a bit. Note the date on top of the AFP story: April 29, TWO DAYS before the Times broke the Downing Street Memo story.

Of course, that didn't prevent the irony's-knocking-but-no-one's-home freepers from posting gems like:

About every 20 minutes somebody at DU posts the Knight Ridder Washington Bureau report that says Bush/Blair prepped for a 2003 war with Iraq. The Washington Bureau report was based on a memo that has now been debunked as a FRAUD.

Will Wolcotte and Strobel, the two guys that continually print misinformation at this Washington Bureau of Knight Ridder, be punished? I doubt it. They never are.

It's always funny to see them flip back and forth when their "proof!!" and "undeniable evidence" ends up being forged and/or faulty. It's either "a MSM/BFEE cover-up" or "the Repugs did it to make us look bad... ". Time after time, they get fooled by forged documents and, yet, still don't get how stupid they are.

Yes, I know they're world-class idiots over at FR, but I couldn't resist chucking some of their own vomit back at them.

(Cross-posted as a dailyKos diary. Check out the comments.)

UPDATE: Just found out the site was created by Kossacks. Also, the Goldsmith memo may be authentic (or there may be an authentic version). -Rob

UPDATE (sorta kinda): A long, informative Corrente post on Bush™'s MO (i.e. fixing intelligence to fit the policy). -Rob

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