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USIP
#1
US FOREIGN POLICY AND ISLAMIC RENEWAL
http://www.usip.org/pubs/specialreports/sr164.pdf
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#2
THE IRAQ STUDY GROUP: OFFICIAL DAMAGE CONTROL & COVER UP

Larry Chin
Global Research, November 27, 2006
http://globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=viewArticle&code=CHI20061127&articleId=3987


The Iraq Study Group (ISG) is a "bipartisan task force" created by the US Congress in response to the failure of the Bush administration to better manage the occupation of Iraq. Mainstream media reporting and official statements from Washington have characterized the ISG as proof of a "shift towards diplomacy" in the Middle East. These same reports cite the sponsorship of the so-called US Institute for Peace as evidence that the ISG represents a "change of course". In fact, the ISG is another official damage control apparatus, spearheaded by notorious Western political and corporate elites, former military-intelligence officers, and "experts" from right wing and intelligence-connected Western think tanks---one of which is the US Institute for Peace itself.

What is the US Institute for Peace?

The sponsor of the ISG is the US Institute for Peace (USIP). USIP’s directors and members feature prominently throughout the ISG’s panels.

Despite its insistence that it is an independent and non-partisan body, the USIP itself is a policy group that functions as an arm of the US government, and as a US intelligence/propaganda apparatus. The USIP appointed by the President of the United States, and confirmed and funded by Congress. The rotating membership of the USIP consists primarily of elites, including "retired" Washington politicians and Pentagon officials.

Named in true Orwellian fashion, the US Institute for Peace is a harbor for elite managers of global warfare. Its former members have included the most notorious war criminals in modern history, among them Dick Cheney, Frank Carlucci, Caspar Weinberger, and Stephen Hadley.

Headed by former Iran-Contra officials

The Iraq Study Group is charged with bringing "fresh eyes" to the Middle East conflict. However, one glance at the directors of the ISG should remove any illusions. The ISG’s leaders are world-renowned American elites and Cold Warriors, each of whom played major roles in the crimes of the Reagan-Bush and Clinton administrations.

These are very old eyes, on very blood-soaked globalists who seek to fine-tune, perfect, and expand the war, not end it:

Its co-chairs are James A. Baker III and Lee Hamilton. The chairmanship by this tag-team of war criminals itself promises more of the same.

Former secretary of state Baker’s deep and extensive political and business connections to the Bush family, and high-level role in the Bush and Reagan-Bush administrations is well known. It was Baker who personally intervened to install George W. Bush as president in 2000. It was Baker, member of the Carlyle Group, who laid the groundwork behind 9/11 and the "war on terrorism". It is James A. Baker Institute for Institute for Public Policy pushing many aspects of on oil and petrodollar conquest. Now it is Baker coming to George W. Bush’s aid again, with "better ideas", by way of George H.W. Bush, Brent Scowcroft and Henry Kissinger.

Hamilton is co-chair of the infamous 9/11 Commission, a blatant cover-up. Hamilton’s role with the ISG marks his third chairmanship of official cover-ups: Iran-Contra, 9/11, and now Iraq.

Edwin Meese is the former Reagan administration attorney general. In addition to facilitating many aspects of the Iran-Contra/CIA drug trafficking operations of the 1980s and early 1990s, Meese is implicated in the crimes related to PROMIS software, including the Inslaw scandal, and the murder of Danny Casolaro.

Lawrence Eagleburger is a former Reagan-Bush secretary of state, and another Iran-Contra insider. In line with the ideas of Baker, Scowcroft, Kissinger and Zbigniew Brzezinski, Eagleburger has been a blunt and outspoken critic of the "bungled" Bush-Cheney occupation. Note: Eagleburger replaced former CIA Director Robert Gates, who has been nominated to replace Donald Rumsfeld as Secretary of Defense.

William Perry, Clinton administration secretary of defense, is a legendary proponent of all-out military force, and even nuclear confrontation.

Vernon Jordan is the legendary Jimmy Carter-Clinton family confidant, advisor and Washington insider and damage control specialist, now a senior managing director of the investment firm Lazard Freres & Company.

Sandra Day O’Connor, former Supreme Court justice, was a driving force behind the stolen election of 2000 that installed George W. Bush. (Recall that when informed of Al Gore’s potential victory, O’Connor gasped "oh, that’s terrible", and promptly headed to the Supreme Court chambers to illegally stop it.) Given her lack of expertise on foreign policy and military-intelligence matters, there is no explanation for O’Connor’s role on the ISG---except as the legal advisor who will facilitate law-bending and the destruction of more Constitutional and international laws.

Other directors include former US senator, Republican Alan Simpson (classic obstructionist who provided political cover for a host of Reagan-Bush era scandals, and a spearhead for many Reagan-Bush judicial and cabinet appointments), the scandalized former Virginia senator, Chuck Robb, and the ubiquitous Democratic Party insider and former White House chief of staff, Leon Panetta.

Think Tank Assets

The ISG is structured around "working groups" which deliberate on four aspects of the Iraq occupation: military and security, economy and reconstruction, political development, and strategic environment.

The membership of the working groups is thoroughly dominated by figures from neoconservative, military-intelligence related Western think tanks, and outright intelligence fronts, including the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), the RAND Corporation, the Heritage Foundation, the Hoover Institution, the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), the Brookings Institution, the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), the James Baker Institute for Public Policy and National Defense University (NDU). There are also officers with Bechtel and Citigroup.

The working groups are as follows:

Military and Security

Hans Binnedijk, National Defense University

James Jay Carafaro, Heritage Foundation

Michael Flournoy, CSIS

Michael Eisenstadt, Washington Institute for Near East Policy

Bruce Hoffman, Security Studies Program, Georgetown University

Clifford May, Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

Kalev Sepp, Naval Postgraduate School

John Sigher, NDU

W. Andrew Terrill, Strategic Studies Institute

Jeffrey White, Washington Institute

Political Development

Reuel Marc Gerecht, AEI, neoconservative, and former CIA operative

Larry Diamond, Hoover Institution

Raymond Close, freelance analyst

Andrew Erdmann, National Security Council

David Mack, Middle East Institute

Augustus Norton, Boston University

Marina Ottaway, Carnegie Endowment

Judy Van Rest, International Republican Institute

Judith Yaphe, NDU

Economy and Reconstruction

Frederick Barton, CSIS

Jay Collins, Citigroup

Jack Covey, Bechtel

Keith Crane, RAND Corporation

Amy Jaffe, James Baker Institute for Public Policy

David Lipton, Citigroup

Michael O’Hanlon, Brookings Institution

James Placke, Cambridge Energy Research Associates

James Schear, NDU

Strategic Environment

Jon Altermann, CSIS

Steven Cook, Council on Foreign Relations

James Dobbins, RAND Corporation

Hillel Fradkin, Hudson Institute

Chas Freeman, Middle East Council

Geoffrey Kemp, Nixon Center

Dan Kurtzen, Princeton U.

Ellen Laipson, Henry Stimson Center

William Quandt, Brookings Institution

Shibley Yelhani, Brookings

Wayne White, Middle East Institute


The ISG’s military senior advisor panel consists of:

Admiral James Ellis, US Navy-retired

General John Keane, US Army-retired

General Edward Meyer, US Army-retired

General Joseph Ralston, US Air Force-retired

Lt. General Roger Schultz, SR., US Army-retired

Map of War and Conquest

Given its despicable leaders and unsavory composition, the Iraq Study Group does not represent a "change of course", but an extension of a very old and familiar map of war and conquest, across the Middle East and Eurasian subcontinent; a very old Cold War agenda to head off the perceived threats posed by China and Russia.

There is not one member of the Iraq Study Group who represents alternative viewpoints or opposition to Anglo-American geostrategic policy. There are no Iraqis; no one from the Middle East or Central Asia (not even intelligence plants). There is not one member who represents the views of the people whose lives and nations are being "managed".


It is, like the 9/11 Commission, a cover-up. It is a damage control apparatus designed to salvage the disastrous and politically embarrassing and untenable Bush-Cheney stewardship of the war, by putting the "war on terrorism" back on what the American Empire’s elites view to be its originally planned course: the bipartisan "consensus" reached immediately after 9/11.

It is elites and political criminals, talking to each other, hatching new schemes among themselves. This constitutes "study".

The ISG’s report, due to be released next month, will likely recommend Bush rear-end saving compromises, which may include troop redeployment, but no end to the war and no end to the permanent US presence in Iraq. There will be calls for greater "international cooperation" (covert deals and UN-led multinational warfare, "nuance"), and new, and perhaps more aggressive, counter-terrorism (to better destroy "insurgencies").

It is no surprise to note that the Iraq Study Group agenda comes at the same time that one of its original members, former CIA Director Robert Gates, has been tapped by Bush-Cheney as the new Secretary of Defense, and new Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), in one of her very first act as the new Speaker, consults with Zbigniew Brzezinski.

There is no guarantee that the Bush-Cheney hardliners will abide by the recommendations of this cover-up commission.

In any case, the world must brace for what could be a future that is more insidious, worse than what has already transpired. The world must oppose the legitimacy of the Iraq Study Group as fervently as it opposes the Bush administration’s continuing criminal war.

The Anglo-American Empire’s rampage across the Grand Chessboard has stumbled and derailed under the management of George W. Bush. The Iraq Study Group will restore it. That spells increasing danger for the world.

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#3
SOLUTION MUST BE TRULY COMPREHENSIVE
http://www.larouchepub.com/lar/2006/3350...eport.html


On Dec. 6, 2006, economist and statesman Lyndon LaRouche discussed the importance of the Baker-Hamilton Iraq Study Group bipartisan policy proposal, released that day to the Congress and to the Bush White House. This is a transcript of his remarks to his associates.
The Baker-Hamilton proposal puts what it calls a comprehensive approach on the table. However, it does not address the actual underlying problem. It is a correction against what has been the destructive policy in Washington heretofore, but it does not solve the problem it addresses, because we are in the middle of the onrush of the greatest financial crisis in modern history. It's now in progress.

At the same time, there are other structural changes in the world which have to be taken into account. We not only have to put the world back into order from the standpoint of the financial crisis. We also have to realize we face new situations. We have over 6 billion people on this planet. We have requirements for fresh water which are acute in many parts of the world. Fresh water cannot be produced in adequate amounts without the use of nuclear fission as a power. Without the rapid development of nuclear fission programs, we cannot meet that need. We also have other raw materials management problems, which can be managed, but they require new technologies. We have some growth in some parts of the world, in terms of the economy, but it's not sufficient. And it requires a change in policy among nations.

I have defined Eurasia as essentially a unit. You have an essential relationship between Western and Central Europe, and then Russia, which is really a Eurasian country. And then you have Asia. The relationship among Germany, from Berlin, to Moscow, to Beijing, and to New Delhi, generally defines the character of Eurasia.

Cooperation Among Nations and Regions
We have before us a 50-year prospect of required development of Eurasia, which needs long-term credit for the development of the countries of Eurasia; which means long-term investment in infrastructure and things of that sort, upgrading the population skills, so that we can bring development in the territory with a growing population, with China probably over 1.3 billion people and India with over 1 billion people. There are many poor in Asia in various countries, great underdevelopment. We must correct that in the coming two generations, of about 25 years each.

This requires cooperation from Europe, which must re-orient itself to supplying the supplementary needs of Asian countries. We have new cooperation which is potentially emerging in the Americas. We have some unity developing among the countries of South America, tendencies toward cooperation. Mexico is still problematic; there's a conflict there. The United States must adopt a policy toward the Americas of cooperative development. The United States and the Americas must cooperate with Eurasia. And Eurasia and the Americas must cooperate in developing Africa, particularly sub-Saharan Africa as a long-term mission.

Therefore, what these gentlemen are dealing with, is not simply trying to fix the chessboard, to get rid of the implications of this crazy Iraq War. We actually have to realize the damage that has been done in that process. We also have to recognize that there are long neglected questions which have now become ripe, which must be dealt with. And therefore, we have to go from the comprehensive approach to the immediate crisis situation in Southwest Asia, to the longer-term crisis problem we're dealing with in Eurasia and in the world as a whole, as a result of the presently onrushing general breakdown of the present world financial system.

The Threat of a Dark Age
And that, of course, is what you see in Washington, and generally in the capitals of Europe. You see talk about the crises, about the economic crises, talk about the housing crisis, the danger of a 30% collapse in the value of the dollar relative to its current value, which could bring on a world depression. These things exist. But beyond that, for over two generations, we have been making terrible mistakes in our international policy. We have created a mess. We have created a mess of neglected problems, as well as created problems. And therefore, we have to think in more comprehensive terms of cooperation among sovereign nation-states on a global basis, with emphasis on the three centers of world cooperation—continental Eurasia, the Americas, and Africa.

So, I think the lesson of today's address is: I saw many flaws in what was proposed by Baker-Hamilton, but the idea of a shift to a unified comprehensive approach to that region, the region of Southwest Asia as a whole, that's positive. Cooperation in that with other countries in the area—positive. It must be comprehensive. It must cover all areas. Unfortunately, it does not address the crucial problem beyond war: the fact that the world economy is on the verge of disintegration.

We are now facing a potential new dark age. We must address that problem comprehensively and take the economic factors that portends into account.



This article appears in the December 15, 2006 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
Bush Demands His Own Impeachment
by Jeffrey Steinberg

President George Bush's infantile and defiant response to the Dec. 6 release of the Iraq Study Group report was tantamount to a demand for his own impeachment, along with that of Vice President Dick Cheney. Now, the new Democratic majority 110th Congress has a clear mandate, from a wide segment of the U.S. political institutions, spanning the leading factions in both the Republican and Democratic parties, to dispense with the Bush-Cheney regime, before another new disaster unfolds. Topping the list of such looming disasters—beyond the all-but-unavoidable crash of the global financial system—is a military strike against Iran, by either the United States or Israel. The use of nuclear weapons in such a strike is not to be ruled out, according to well-informed U.S. military experts.

As EIR already reported, just days before the final session of the Iraq Study Group, co-chaired by former Secretary of State James Baker III and former House Foreign Affairs Committee chairman Lee Hamilton (D-Ind.), Vice President Cheney flew off to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, to attempt to forge a "Sunni bulwark" against Shi'ite Iran, built upon a U.S. and NATO military alliance with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member states plus Egypt and Jordan. Such an anti-Iran politico-military alliance would also, de facto, include Israel—an Israel, capable under present leadership, of launching a "breakaway ally" air strike against Iran.

As EIR reported in a now famous memorandum "Behind Cheney's Trip to Riyadh," Cheney's action was tantamount to a declaration of intent to launch preemptive war against Iran. If carried out, such a strike would spark a Sunni versus Shi'ite war within the Muslim world that would rapidly spread into a global Hundred Years' War. While such an asymmetric conflict would be firmly against U.S. vital interests, an Anglo-American faction that steers the Vice President's every sneering move, would celebrate the chaos, seeing it as the means by which to destroy the United States and end the Westphalian system of sovereign nation-states altogether. In today's parlance, this is called "globalization."

Backing Cheney's actions, President Bush preemptively rejected the most pressing recommendation of the Baker-Hamilton report: the opening of diplomatic talks with Iran and Syria, with no preconditions. Speaking in Riga, Latvia at the end of November at the NATO summit, the President rejected outright the idea of negotiating with Tehran or Damascus, and also rejected the idea of troop withdrawal from Iraq. "Victory is the only exit strategy," Bush had fulminated.

On Dec. 6, the Iraq Study Group released its final report, The Way Forward—A New Approach. The 96-page document presented 79 recommendations, which, taken as a whole, represent a call for a comprehensive change in U.S. foreign policy towards Southwest Asia, a change completely consistent with the earlier proposal by Lyndon LaRouche, "The LaRouche Doctrine for Southwest Asia," which was first published in April 2004.

While LaRouche, addressing a group of diplomats hours after the Baker-Hamilton document's release, expressed some misgivings about missing elements in the study document—including the failure to note the onrushing collapse of the international financial system—he nevertheless heralded the report as an institutional demand for a major shift in U.S. policy. And in a correspondence the next day, he wrote that "the Baker-Hamilton Commission's report has defined a new global strategy. It is not finished work, but it defines certain essential strategic parameters within which reasonable alternatives to failed currently operating policies, or lack of policies, can emerge. This Commission's report will reverberate throughout North America and Europe, where both the immediate situation in the Southwest Asia region and the strains of a failed policy on the financial situation of governments are already painful.... The Baker-Hamilton report, taken in context, defines a new global situation for purposes of policy-shaping. The effect will be, I believe, dramatic and early."

Did Bush Hit the Bottle?
Less than 24 hours after the release of the Baker-Hamilton report, President Bush repudiated the idea of direct talks with Iran or Syria, repeating his tired mantra about how "Iran and Syria know what they have to do." Bush was appearing before White House reporters with British Prime Minister Tony Blair. The President's flippant rejection of the strategic vision of the Baker-Hamilton document did not take the commission members at all by surprise.

In an extraordinarily frank exchange with reporters the day before Bush's remarks, two senior statesmen who were members of the Iraq Study Group ridiculed the President's dismissal of the study. It is not a stretch to say that their comments constituted an implicit call for his removal from office. Asked how Bush had responded to the Dec. 5 presentation by the Baker-Hamilton group of their final report, Lawrence Eagleburger, a former U.S. Secretary of State under the President's father, George H.W. Bush, said, "His reaction was, 'Where's my drink?' He was a little loaded. It was early in the morning too, you know." Considering that the President's 24-year bout of alcoholism is both well known and a highly sensitive topic around the First Family, Eagleburger's comments could hardly have been more provocative.

Asked what questions the President has posed to the group, Eagleburger added, "I don't recall, seriously, that he asked any questions." Former U.S. Sen. Alan Simpson (R-Wyo.), another prestigious Republican on the panel, added his own denunciation of what he called "100 percenters," those who "refuse to compromise." "A 100 percenter," he explained, "is a person you don't want to be around. They have gas, ulcers, heartburn, and B.O."

Inside the Commission
Sources close to several of the commission members have reported to EIR that the Iraq Study Group was well aware of the fact that the President would reject their blueprint for a policy overhaul. A month before the final session of the ISG, the group had met for over three hours with the President. According to the sources, they came out of that session with a resolve to force a public policy debate, and hopefully put enough pressure on the White House to force a course correction.

The final report, in fact, surprised many experts, with its broad scope and blunt language. For example, in addition to the controvercial calls for direct negotiations with Iran and Syria, and the urgent need to solve the Israel-Palestine dispute—on the basis of United Nations Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338, the Baker-Hamilton document directly rejected the Bush Administration's Sunni versus Shi'ite conflict schemes, albeit in the most diplomatic of language. The report said that the Bush Administration's "GCC plus two" approach was too narrow (!), and would not solve the Iraq dilemma.

The membership of the Baker-Hamilton commission represented a cross-section of the U.S. institutions. Virtually every member had served in the Executive Branch and/or in senior posts in Congress, and had had direct experience dealing with Presidents. When such a prestigious group of senior figures delivers such a harsh, unanimous critique of an administration's policy in a vital part of the world, there are consequences for refusal to respond.

Sources tell EIR that the White House will attempt to stall, perhaps into early Spring 2007, before issuing a clear rejection of the report. A review of the Administration's drawn-out rejection of the findings of the 9/11 Commission should make it clear that no such stall-and-appeal tactics can be accepted—with Iraq already in the throes of ethnic cleansing, and civil wars about to erupt in Palestine and Lebanon, stoked by Anglo-American covert operations and arms trafficking.

There is only one answer to the Bush-Cheney rejection of the Iraq Study Group: Impeachment. With the institutional backing of the Baker-Hamilton effort, the 110th Congress cannot waste a moment. Bruising oversight hearings must begin the moment the new Congress is sworn in.


BUSH DEMANDS HIS OWN IMPEACHMENT
Jeffrey Steinberg

President George Bush's infantile and defiant response to the Dec. 6 release of the Iraq Study Group report was tantamount to a demand for his own impeachment, along with that of Vice President Dick Cheney. Now, the new Democratic majority 110th Congress has a clear mandate, from a wide segment of the U.S. political institutions, spanning the leading factions in both the Republican and Democratic parties, to dispense with the Bush-Cheney regime, before another new disaster unfolds. Topping the list of such looming disasters—beyond the all-but-unavoidable crash of the global financial system—is a military strike against Iran, by either the United States or Israel. The use of nuclear weapons in such a strike is not to be ruled out, according to well-informed U.S. military experts.

As EIR already reported, just days before the final session of the Iraq Study Group, co-chaired by former Secretary of State James Baker III and former House Foreign Affairs Committee chairman Lee Hamilton (D-Ind.), Vice President Cheney flew off to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, to attempt to forge a "Sunni bulwark" against Shi'ite Iran, built upon a U.S. and NATO military alliance with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member states plus Egypt and Jordan. Such an anti-Iran politico-military alliance would also, de facto, include Israel—an Israel, capable under present leadership, of launching a "breakaway ally" air strike against Iran.

As EIR reported in a now famous memorandum "Behind Cheney's Trip to Riyadh," Cheney's action was tantamount to a declaration of intent to launch preemptive war against Iran. If carried out, such a strike would spark a Sunni versus Shi'ite war within the Muslim world that would rapidly spread into a global Hundred Years' War. While such an asymmetric conflict would be firmly against U.S. vital interests, an Anglo-American faction that steers the Vice President's every sneering move, would celebrate the chaos, seeing it as the means by which to destroy the United States and end the Westphalian system of sovereign nation-states altogether. In today's parlance, this is called "globalization."

Backing Cheney's actions, President Bush preemptively rejected the most pressing recommendation of the Baker-Hamilton report: the opening of diplomatic talks with Iran and Syria, with no preconditions. Speaking in Riga, Latvia at the end of November at the NATO summit, the President rejected outright the idea of negotiating with Tehran or Damascus, and also rejected the idea of troop withdrawal from Iraq. "Victory is the only exit strategy," Bush had fulminated.

On Dec. 6, the Iraq Study Group released its final report, The Way Forward—A New Approach. The 96-page document presented 79 recommendations, which, taken as a whole, represent a call for a comprehensive change in U.S. foreign policy towards Southwest Asia, a change completely consistent with the earlier proposal by Lyndon LaRouche, "The LaRouche Doctrine for Southwest Asia," which was first published in April 2004.

While LaRouche, addressing a group of diplomats hours after the Baker-Hamilton document's release, expressed some misgivings about missing elements in the study document—including the failure to note the onrushing collapse of the international financial system—he nevertheless heralded the report as an institutional demand for a major shift in U.S. policy. And in a correspondence the next day, he wrote that "the Baker-Hamilton Commission's report has defined a new global strategy. It is not finished work, but it defines certain essential strategic parameters within which reasonable alternatives to failed currently operating policies, or lack of policies, can emerge. This Commission's report will reverberate throughout North America and Europe, where both the immediate situation in the Southwest Asia region and the strains of a failed policy on the financial situation of governments are already painful.... The Baker-Hamilton report, taken in context, defines a new global situation for purposes of policy-shaping. The effect will be, I believe, dramatic and early."

Did Bush Hit the Bottle?
Less than 24 hours after the release of the Baker-Hamilton report, President Bush repudiated the idea of direct talks with Iran or Syria, repeating his tired mantra about how "Iran and Syria know what they have to do." Bush was appearing before White House reporters with British Prime Minister Tony Blair. The President's flippant rejection of the strategic vision of the Baker-Hamilton document did not take the commission members at all by surprise.

In an extraordinarily frank exchange with reporters the day before Bush's remarks, two senior statesmen who were members of the Iraq Study Group ridiculed the President's dismissal of the study. It is not a stretch to say that their comments constituted an implicit call for his removal from office. Asked how Bush had responded to the Dec. 5 presentation by the Baker-Hamilton group of their final report, Lawrence Eagleburger, a former U.S. Secretary of State under the President's father, George H.W. Bush, said, "His reaction was, 'Where's my drink?' He was a little loaded. It was early in the morning too, you know." Considering that the President's 24-year bout of alcoholism is both well known and a highly sensitive topic around the First Family, Eagleburger's comments could hardly have been more provocative.

Asked what questions the President has posed to the group, Eagleburger added, "I don't recall, seriously, that he asked any questions." Former U.S. Sen. Alan Simpson (R-Wyo.), another prestigious Republican on the panel, added his own denunciation of what he called "100 percenters," those who "refuse to compromise." "A 100 percenter," he explained, "is a person you don't want to be around. They have gas, ulcers, heartburn, and B.O."

Inside the Commission
Sources close to several of the commission members have reported to EIR that the Iraq Study Group was well aware of the fact that the President would reject their blueprint for a policy overhaul. A month before the final session of the ISG, the group had met for over three hours with the President. According to the sources, they came out of that session with a resolve to force a public policy debate, and hopefully put enough pressure on the White House to force a course correction.

The final report, in fact, surprised many experts, with its broad scope and blunt language. For example, in addition to the controvercial calls for direct negotiations with Iran and Syria, and the urgent need to solve the Israel-Palestine dispute—on the basis of United Nations Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338, the Baker-Hamilton document directly rejected the Bush Administration's Sunni versus Shi'ite conflict schemes, albeit in the most diplomatic of language. The report said that the Bush Administration's "GCC plus two" approach was too narrow (!), and would not solve the Iraq dilemma.

The membership of the Baker-Hamilton commission represented a cross-section of the U.S. institutions. Virtually every member had served in the Executive Branch and/or in senior posts in Congress, and had had direct experience dealing with Presidents. When such a prestigious group of senior figures delivers such a harsh, unanimous critique of an administration's policy in a vital part of the world, there are consequences for refusal to respond.

Sources tell EIR that the White House will attempt to stall, perhaps into early Spring 2007, before issuing a clear rejection of the report. A review of the Administration's drawn-out rejection of the findings of the 9/11 Commission should make it clear that no such stall-and-appeal tactics can be accepted—with Iraq already in the throes of ethnic cleansing, and civil wars about to erupt in Palestine and Lebanon, stoked by Anglo-American covert operations and arms trafficking.

There is only one answer to the Bush-Cheney rejection of the Iraq Study Group: Impeachment. With the institutional backing of the Baker-Hamilton effort, the 110th Congress cannot waste a moment. Bruising oversight hearings must begin the moment the new Congress is sworn in.




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